JDK update

Java Development Kit 8u20 update arrives with new enterprise features

Coman Hamilton
javacode

Oracle’s latest update to the JDK arrives with much focus on commercial side of Java

While most of us were still busy discussing the
latest Java 9 feature
announcements
, Oracle brought out another update to
the Java 8 Development Kit. The latest JDK, available
for download
here
, brings a number of new features, tools and enhancements,
along with the obligatory bug
fixes
 – most of which are focused on Java’s commercial
products.

The 8u20 highlights

The two big new features are an improved Mission
Control and an Advanced Management Console, together with a host of
medium to small-sized performance updates and changes.

The Advanced
Management Console
 has arrived for Java SE users.
This commercial product gives programmers information about which
JREs and applications are being used with details about each
one.Java
Mission Control 5.4
 features new plug-in IDE
launcher integration (notably for Eclipse 4.4) as well as a JFR
plug-in and several other improvements. There’s also
the MSI
compatible installer
 which allows sysadmins to
“provide automated, consistent installation of the JRE across all
desktops in the enterprise, free of user interaction
requirements”.

8u20 also brings with it a number
of performance updates, in particular String
De-Duplication and improved support for apps running in Garbage
Collector G1. Additional features include security and applet
changes to the Control Panel and the new flags MinHeapFreeRatio and
MaxHeapFreeRatio.

For a full list of all changes, big and small, check
out the 8u20
release notes
.

Java 8? Pfft, who cares anymore?

Although there’s plenty of reasons for mild feelings
of excitement at these updates, most of the buzz in the Java
community has since moved on to the chatter about Java 9, which
received its first big
news
 this week – since the appearance of early
releases JDK
9 earlier this month
.  

Among the latest features to
be confirmed for Java’s next major release
 are three new
APIs: a lightweight JSON API, a HTTP client and updates to the
process API. In addition, Oracle also announced they want to
improve performance when threads compete over access to objects, as
well as introduce a segmented code cache for less fragmentation and
shorter sweep times. Of course that’s all nothing compared to
Project Jigsaw (Java 9’s equivalent of Java 8’s
lambdas
), which is focusing on scalability for smaller devices,
improved security for the JDK and Java SE, enhanced performance and
easier construction of libraries and large applications.

Author
Coman Hamilton
Before becoming Editor of JAXenter.com (S&S Media Group), Coman completed an M.A. in Cultural Studies and wrote for numerous websites and magazines, as well as several ad agencies. // Want to submit a story? Get me at coman[AT]jaxenter.com or linkedin.com/in/comanhamilton
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