One step closer for modularity

First Java 8 Project Jigsaw Preview Builds now available

Great news for those avidly awaiting Java 8 - the preview builds for Project Jigsaw have emerged, giving developers a glimpse into the module system for JDK 8.

Project Jigsaw has been mooted for some time, to replace Java's old monolithic approach with a brand new truly standard module system. This would then be designed and implemented into to the Platform and JDK to make the Java compiler module aware. Some have claimed that this is the biggest shift in the platform since Java 5's introduction of generics.

Oracle have released the preview builds on java.net, allowing developers to take a look at the prototype before it appears fully in the future, without actually building it themselves. The preview builds come in two types - "JDK modules image" which is almost exactly the same as the current JDK download except in modularised form, and a ready-to-assemble JDK. The choice is yours.

Currently, there's no Mac OS X download and the Solaris download only comes with 32-bit binaries, but we can expect this to be amended at a later date. As you'd expect with something so early, there's going to be a lot of bugs and issues - notably the crypto doesn't work properly yet - but it's at least a start towards seeing something more substantial.

Why not check out the QuickStart guide to give you a boost into using Project Jigsaw? Thanks to the Oracle Release Engineering Team for giving us the opportunity to finally give the new module system a testdrive.

Chris Mayer

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