Apache Ant is a completely free, cross-platform and open source command-line software implemented in Java, distributed along with the Apache project, and designed from the ground up as a powerful build system for compiling applications written in the Java programming language.
Similar to GNU make
The Apache Ant software, which is a command-line program, is a quite similar to the open source GNU make compiler, but it is known to have much better support for various cross-platform issues with developing Java applications.
The perfect build system for many Java projects
Being an Apache project, the Apache Ant software is the perfect build system for many Java projects at Apache, as well as numerous other independent open source projects that are written in the Java programming language.
Getting started with Apache Ant
Whether you’re an end-user who needs Apache Ant to compile the sources of an application written in Java, or you’re an aspiring Java developer, you can easily use the Apache Ant on your operating system of choice (see the section below for supported OSes).
For your convenience, the software is distributed as a pre-built binary that can be used on any GNU/Linux operating system, 32 and 64-bit flavors are supported. Of course, advanced users who want to optimize the installation can also grab the source package from Softpedia.
Simply run the ‘ant’ command in a terminal emulator to view the usage message and available command-line options. Please note that on some distributions, Ant requires the OpenJDK software.
Runs on GNU/Linux, Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X
Being written in Java, Apache Ant is a cross-platform software that runs on any computer operating system where the JRE (Java Runtime Environment) technologies are supported, including all GNU/Linux distributions, as well as the Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows OSes.