See the JavaCC documentation for details. Also see the mini-tutorial on the JavaCC site for tips on writing lexer specifications from which JavaCC can generate. At the end of the tutorial, we will parse a SQL file and extract table specifications ( please note that this is for an illustrative purpose; complete. In this first edition of the new Cool Tools column, Oliver Enseling discusses JavaCC — the Java Compiler Compiler. JavaCC facilitates.

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So a parser can be easily used to check the structure file and to extract specific components from the file. Of course, the challenges you face may be different and JavaCC’s default may actually make sense for you.

Erik’s Java Rants

Similarly, InterfaceDeclaration can start with any number of “abstract”s and “public”s. So let us start the creation of the JavaCC file with a very simple example.

As mentioned earlier, special tokens are those which don’t contribute any meaning, but are still informative, such as comments. In many cases, we need to ignore some characters in the file, formatting characters like Newline, Whitespace, Tabs etc. JavaCC is a widely used tool for lexical and parser component generation which follows Regular Expression and BNF notation syntax for lex and uavacc specifications. The grammar format defines the tokens used, the parser rules uttorial can even be used to specify code that has to be executed while parsing.


This first article will be a quick getting started guide aimed to get you up and running quickly. In tutorisl root of the project you can see the ant build.

Getting started in JavaCC

Create a class in kavacc package for representing a table:. Hence most parsers do not backtrack in this general manner or do not backtrack at allrather they make decisions at choice points based on limited information and then commit to it.

This process is called “backtracking”. This tutorial refers to examples that are available in the Tuyorial directory under the examples directory of the release. You can delete the src folder created by Eclipse, we will use our own source folders.

In this simple example, it is quite clear that there are exactly two strings that match the above grammar, namely:. The boolean expression essentially states the desired property.

Next we define the token “NAME”, which consists of one or more letters lower or upper case.

Here is a picture of the folder structure in the sample project: The users who voted to close gave this specific reason: These seem almost similar to the method syntax. Most of the time, when it is needed to parse a file or stream, programmers tend to depend on ” Tokenizer ” or ” StreamTokenizer ” rather than create a parser. Insert hints at the more complicated choice points to help the parser make the right choices.


A design decision must be made to determine if Option 1 or Option 2 is the right one to take.

For getting the table spec, we need a structure which contains a list of tables and their details. I might discuss this approach in the next installment of this series. I’m about halfway through the Book now: Of course, creating a parser is time consuming since it needs iterative testing of all possible states.

To generate a parser, the only input to JavaCC is a context free grammar file. A dnan S iddiqi.

An Introduction to JavaCC

Lookahead tutorial We assume that you have already taken a look at some of the simple examples provided in the release before you read this section. Note that when compiling with JavaCC, compilation is a 2-step process. The default choice determination algorithm happens to do the right thing, but it still prints the following warning message: There is a external target that creates a jar file for the parser.

The default values for each of these entities is defined below:.

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