About Custom Parameters

Custom parameters allow you to pass job-specific options to the Ant task used by the DITA Open Toolkit during composition.

Astoria provides several methods for supplying custom parameters to the DITA-OT:

Custom Parameter Syntax

Here is the syntax for custom parameters used by the Ant task for composition jobs.


  • Each parameter name must be prefixed with -D, and the D must be uppercase.
  • Complex parameter values (such as values that contain spaces) should be enclosed in quotation marks.
  • If multiple parameters are required, separate them by a single space.

For example:

                     -Dargs.draft=yes -Dargs.debug=no

Custom parameter syntax is the same, whether supplied explicitly or as an environment variable.

Precedence of Custom Parameters

The method used to supply custom parameters determines the precedence of the parameters. Custom Parameter settings are higher priority than composition profiles which are higher priority than environment variables.