Before Ant, building and deploying web applications required a series of scripts or manual processes, which often led to mistakes. Apache Ant is a software tool for automating software build processes. It is similar to Make but is implemented using the Java language, requires the Java platform, and is best suited to building Java projects. However, that doesn’t mean it is restricted to Java projects. I use Ant increasingly for all my web development projects as it is an integral part of Eclipse, my IDE of choice. It makes building applications and releasing them across different servers far more efficient and less problematic. Read more – ‘Apache Ant Best Practices’.
If you're currently not using Eclipse as your development tool of choice, you certainly should be! Eclipse is an open source community whose projects are focused on building an open development platform comprised of extensible frameworks, tools and runtimes for building, deploying and managing software across the lifecycle. Read more – ‘Using Ant with Eclipse’.