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MSBuild CreateProperty[Item] and CallTarget bug

It seems like I'm constantly moving files from one place to another, I think this is because I have way too many storage/machine options. (As a side note, my personal storage capacity is at 800GB currently...thats scary.) I wanted to have a means to cleanly and easily snyc up these files. I was considering purchasing (or finding online) a sync tool, but I didn't want to go that route because a friend of mine, Daniel Brookshier, lost about 4 days of work due to an error with the sync tool. I'm not sure what the error was. So I decided to forget about that approach. Instead I wanted to write an MSBuild project file to do the syncing for me. The idea was to have an MSBuild file that I could place in whatever directories that I wanted to snyc, then I could define the various different locations that I wanted to store these files; ie where on my notebook, where on my desktop; where on my removable media X.
Anywayz to make a long story short I discovered a bug in MSBuild! It creeps up when you invoke the CreateProperty or CreateItem, then invoke CallTarget that will reference that newly created property or item. To clariify this have a look at this simple MSBuild project file.

<Project xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/developer/msbuild/2003" DefaultTargets="Create">
Target Name="Create">
CreateProperty Value="E:\Data">
Output TaskParameter="Value" PropertyName="DestFolder" />
CreateItem Include="*.*">
Output TaskParameter="Include" ItemName="TestFiles"/>
<CallTarget Targets="Print"/>

    <Target Name="Print">
Message Text="Dest: $(DestFolder)"/>
Message Text="TestFiles: @(TestFiles)"/>


This file is pretty simple, 2 targets; Create target will create an Item and a Property dynamically then the Print target is called. This will simply print the values the property and item just created. If you have MSBuild invoke the Create target you'll find that this doesn't work. For one reason or another a target called with CallTarget in the same target that properties/items are create in (using CreateProperty or CreateItem) doesn't get the value of those properties/items. I filed a bug report and they will look into fixing this for the next version evidently. You can read up at: http://lab.msdn.microsoft.com/ProductFeedback/viewfeedback.aspx?feedbackid=74e5cb0e-4075-4c7e-9660-c130f94df465 

I've included a zip file containing 2 project files, the one above and one that will show the expected behavior.

sample.zip (.95 KB)

Sayed Ibrahim Hashimi

msbuild | Visual Studio Wednesday, 28 December 2005 05:03:03 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #     |  Tracked by:
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