Java compiler API not supporting non-standard options such as -XDignore.symbol.file?

Peter Niederwieser pniederw at
Sun Oct 6 18:35:37 PDT 2013

Hi compiler developers,

I'm working on the Java compiler integration for the Gradle build tool ( Our main way of interacting with the Java compiler is the Java compiler API. Among other things, this allows us to have a long-running compiler process that can be reused over time, which is considerably faster than forking a new compiler every time.

I've noticed that the Java compiler API seems to silently ignore some of the options supported by the (Oracle JDK) command-line compiler. A concrete example is -XDignore.symbol.file=true, which some Gradle users need in order to be able to compile against internal JDK classes (e.g. com.sun.image.codec.jpeg.JPEGCodec). Is this a known issue, or is it even a feature (perhaps because -XDignore.symbol.file is a non-standard option)? To achieve the best possible compiler integration in Gradle, it would help a lot if the compiler API accepted exactly the same options as the corresponding command-line compiler.

Thanks for any insights.


Peter Niederwieser 
Principal Developer, Gradleware
Creator, Spock Framework

Join us at the Gradle eXchange 2013, Oct 28th in London, UK:
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