Script aliases

Published on 19 augusti 2014

Cake supports something called script aliases. Script aliases are convenience methods that are easily accessible directly from a Cake script. Every API method in Cake is implemented like this.

In this blog post I will show how to extend Cake with your own script aliases. It's really simple, I promise. ;-)

Creating an extension

Start by creating a new class library project and add a reference to the Cake.Core NuGet package.

PM> Install-Package Cake.Core

Add the script alias method that you want to expose to your Cake script. A script alias method is simply an extension method for ICakeContext that's been marked with the CakeMethodAlias attribute.

You could also add an script alias property, which works the same way as a script alias method, except that it accepts no arguments and is marked with the CakePropertyAlias attribute.

using Cake.Core;
using Cake.Core.Annotations;

public static class MyCakeExtension
{
   [CakeMethodAlias]
   public static int GetMagicNumber(this ICakeContext context, bool minValue)
   {
      return minValue ? int.MinValue : int.MaxValue;
   }

   [CakePropertyAlias]
   public static int TheAnswerToLife(this ICakeContext context)
   {
      return 42;
   }
}

Using the extension

Compile the assembly and add a reference to it in the build script via the #r directive.

#r "tools/MyCakeExtension.dll"

Now you should be able to call the method from the script.

Task("GetSomeAnswers")
   .Does(() =>
{
    // Write the values to the console. 
    Information("Magic number: {0}", GetMagicNumber(false));
    Information("The answer to life: {0}", TheAnswerToLife);
});

Wrapping up

This covers the basics of how to create script aliases in Cake.
If you create a cool extension, tell me about it and I will link to it from the Cake repository.