Ant tool seems to be popular. But do people use it a lot in the industry? What is the most used place during development? Doesn't IDE take care of the build/deploy responsibilities? Then how do you use ANT and IDE together? Thanks.
IDEs build fine - on one developers machine - ANT (and other build tools - I also like Maven2) attempt to make a reproducible build process that can work on any machine, as well as doing things that most IDEs build processes don't support without repetitive manual intervention - copying resource files to deployment locations, filtering files to include values specific to the build, running unit tests on build, supporting multiple build configurations, etc. Also, you can't really do continuous integration though an IDE build process...
Write once, run anywhere, because there's nowhere to hide! - /. A.C.