Java Runtime or Time to Run from Java?
Date: 9/4/2012 9:23:00 AM
If you believe Oracle (the IT software company, not the prophetic medium), there are 3 billion+ devices which run Java - from mobile phones, CD/DVD players, medical equipment, webcams, games, even the Mars Rovers Spirit and Opportunity.
In a travesty, my Doctor diagnosed Java as the reason for my unsettled stomach over weekend. Thankfully, he corrected that it was the variety we drink up; not the variety we think on.
Seems the only place the Java guys have left alone are the toilets. Whoops! Spoke (or wrote) too soon; appears there *are* Java guys working on toilets too!
BTP, what we simple users have to know is we need a small part of the huge Java programming language, called Java Runtime Environment (JRE), to enjoy the cute little programs called applets, written by those Java guys.
For that, Java or JRE needs to be installed separately and kept updated. Which is where the confusion starts. As someone or other frequently laments on the net, the Java naming convention is madness. For example the webpage describing the Unisex Toilet problem specifies that you need Java 1.5+. If you Google for Java 1.5, you will find links to J2SE 5.0 instead of Java 1.5 - leaving you to scratch your head (at least).
Leaving alone Java SE, JDK or Java FX - which are all for programmers - there is enough confusion about the JRE. For example, if you look at the Latest Versions page, I specify the current JRE version as 188.8.131.52*, but if you Google for it, you’ll probably end up with JRE 6, JRE 6u35, et. al. Oracale’s own Java download page will list 2 JRE versions - 6u35 and 7u7. Now you know why I wear the Mad Hatter’s hat.
Let me see if I can write some sense into this madness. The first thing in Java 1.5.0, 184.108.40.206 or 220.127.116.11,
- is to forget the first ‘1’ - it is a deprecated reference for programmers,
- the next number is ‘the’ version number for ordinary folks, and,
- the following ones are the updates to ‘that’ version.
So, JRE 18.104.22.168 is 6u35 and 22.214.171.124 is 7u7. But, if so,
- why are there both version 6 update 35 and version 7 update 7?, and
- what is the difference?
The difference is the new version (Java 7) is more stable, secure, faster and contains more additions to libraries.
Version 6 is being maintained because Oracle has policy that as long as a previous version has substantial user base (>50% ?) that version would be maintained, and Java version 7 as of now is not certified for Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS).
So which version to use?
- If you are an IT company employer or employee - you should be the one writing this article - not me.
- If you are a non-IT corporate honcho, ask your IT department.
- If you are a small or micro business owner, or a normal user like me, update to Java version 7 (7u7 as of Sep ‘12).
There is absolutely no fun in missing out on security, speed and a smartass programmer’s applet using new libraries.
- Don’t know how to manually update JRE? read this.
- Confused about 32-bit and 64-bit Windows/JRE and unsure of which one to install? read this.
- Tip: I use Google Chrome (or Firefox) which are 32-bit browsers and hence have installed JRE 7u7 x32.