What Will Java 8 Modularity Model Mean For OSGi?

Eclipse Foundation On Java 8 JSR

In a recent blog post, Mike Milinkovich made it clear that the Eclipse Foundation would support the Java 7 JSR when it was put to a JCP vote, but refrained from commenting about the Java 8 JSR. Now he has revealed that, although the Eclipse Foundation have every intention of backing Oracle over the Java 7 JSR, they are "no where near as positive" about the Java 8 JSR.

This uncertainty centres around the worry that Java 8 will fail to reconcile the OSGi world and the as-yet-unknown modularity model. Put simply, the Eclipse Foundation fear a Java 8 modularity model that is incompatible with OSGi. "In our opinion, that would be a disaster for the Java platform and the Java ecosystem," he predicts. OSGi forms the basis of the Eclipse plugin model.

Oracle previously supported OSGi (Oracle's WebLogic Java EE application server implementation is based on OSGi, as is Sun's Glassfish.) Nowadays, Oracle prefers to champion Project Jigsaw for building modularity into the core Virtual Machine. Chief Architect of the Java Platform Group at Oracle, Mark Reinhold has also pointed out the downside to OSGi, namely that it "is not at all integrated with the Java language" as it has "been built atop the Java SE Platform rather than from within it."

But, regardless of whether OSGi has been built from within or without, Mike Milinkovich is very clear on what the Eclipse Foundation needs to see from the Java 8 JSR: "unless we see sufficient accommodation for OSGi in the Java 8 JSR we will be voting No."

Jessica Thornsby

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