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The following are instructions on how to setup Eclipse / WOLips so you can work with mulitple versions of WebObjects. This tutorial will demonstrate setting up your environment simply for WebObjects 5.3.3 and 5.4.3 but there's no reason you can't have different setups based on customer or project instead.

Create New Directory Structure

The first thing we need to do is to create a new directory structure to allow for multiple versions of WebObjects to be installed in. This new directory structure basically creates a new root level that WOLips will look in for all frameworks used by a given project or workspace. This directory structure can be anything you wish. For demonstration purposes, I'm going to create it under the Developer directory.

Create: /Developer/WebObjects/Versions/

Download WOInstaller.jar

We now need to download the WOInstaller.jar file from and save it into the Versions directory we just created.

Use WOInstaller.jar to download WebObjects

Open and run one of the following commands:

java -jar /Developer/WebObjects/Versions/WOInstaller.jar 5.3.3 /Developer/WebObjects/Versions/WebObjects533
java -jar /Developer/WebObjects/Versions/WOInstaller.jar 5.4.3 /Developer/WebObjects/Versions/WebObjects543

Depending upon which version of WO you would like to download.

Installed Versions

When the script is done downloading, your directory should look something like this. At this point you could rename the directory to something like MyCustomer or MyProject. For this demonstration we'll just leave it named as is.

Open Eclipse / WOLips

You need to launch Eclipse and WOLips at least once so that it will create the default file in ~/Library/Application Support/WOLips/. If you've already been using WOlips, you can skip this step.


Feb 12, 2010: At least with WOLips 3.4.5830, launching Eclipse/WOLips is not sufficient to get it to create the default You need to create a project; a new WebObjects Application project will do nicely.

Copy the default file

Select the file and make a copy of it. Then rename the copy to be In reality, you can rename it however you'd like, for example:,, but I find that putting the version number in the middle will keep all the different versions together, and will not mess with the extension mapping.

Modify your new file to point to your newly downloaded version of WebObjects

As an example, if you downloaded WebObjects 5.3.3 into /Developer/WebObjects/Versions/WebObjects533, then modify your new file as follows (substituting your username for bubba, of course):




That last line, for wo.api.root, should be entered all on one line. I broke it in half here only to keep the wiki's window width relatively small!

Set the Eclipse Workspace to use the newly Installed Version of WebObjects

To tell the Eclipse/WOLips incremental builder where to find the version of WebObjects you want to use, you need to give it the name of the modified file. You do this by going Under the Eclipse menu, selecting Preferences, then selecting the "WOLips" tab at the right, expand it and finally selecting "Build". Enter in the file name of the file that you just modified.

OPTIONAL - Setup Eclipse's Ant Builder to use the newly Installed Version of WebObjects

Currently, the Eclipse Ant builder is not controlled by the "WOLips -> Build" setting in Eclipse's Preferences. You need to explicitly tell it to use your modified file. In your project, open the file in your project and add the fully-qualified path to your customized file.

OPTIONAL - Building your project from the Command Line Using Ant

Along with the usual argument that tells ant where the woproject.jar file is, you simply add another argument using the standard java command line property argument. Essentially we set a property telling the build.xml where the wolips properties file is and the build.xml in turn reads in all the properties from that.

$ ant -lib /path/to/woproject.jar clean build

OPTIONAL - Building your project using Hudson

Shameless Plug

Come to WOWODC-East for hands-on labs demonstrating how to integrate multiple WebObjects installations with Hudson.

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