Oracle Extends Public Updates for Java SE 8

Oracle has updated its Java SE Support Roadmap to include, among other things, extended support for Java SE 8, with updates available until at least January 2019. The company also promised to provide consumers with updates for personal (non-corporate) use of Java SE 8 through at least the end of 2020.

The announcement was meant to allay concerns about "support cliffs" resulting from the ramp up to Oracle's new faster release cadence for the Java SE Platform and OpenJDK.

Oracle's new, faster release schedule provides for a feature release every six months, update releases every quarter, and a long-term support (LTS) release every three years. But the process of implementing this new schedule left two versions of Java without long-term support, Scott Sellers, Azul Systems president and CEO, told ADTmag. If the next LTS release after Java 8 is going to be Java 11, Seller explained, Java 9 and Java 10 are effectively skipped. Java 11 is expected in September of this year on the new schedule. The next LTS version after that -- three years later -- will be Java 17, which gets released in September 2021.

The extended public availability of Java SE 8 updates from Oracle was announced in a blog post by Donald Smith, senior director of Oracle's Product Management group. The list of key support roadmap updates Smith posted included:

  • Oracle will continue to support Java SE 8 Web Start applications for public and personal (non-corporate) use to the same dates noted above.
  • Oracle will continue to commercially support Java Web Start on Java SE 8 for commercial use, or when used in conjunction with Oracle products that have a Web Start dependency, through at least March 2025.
  • As announced in 2015, Applets will continue to be supported in Java SE 8 until at least March 2019, pending continued support by browser vendors.

Smith promised more details in an upcoming white paper.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].