JDK 9 schedule

Java 9 release date announced

Coman Hamilton
Clock image via Shutterstock

With the JDK feature proposal process long over, the cement has dried on official plans for Java 9 features. The Java team is now committing to a tight release schedule for JDK 9 over the next 15 months.

Java 9 has been scheduled for general availability in September 2016, according to a schedule proposal announced by Mark Reinhold, Chief Architect of the Java Platform Group.

JDK 9 Schedule

2015-12-10 Feature Complete – All features implemented and integrated into the master forest
2016-02-04 All Tests Run – All planned tests have been run on all supported platforms
2016-02-25 Rampdown Start – Increased level of scrutiny are applied to incoming changes
2016-04-21 Zero Bug Bounce – The bug backlog is completely addressed
2016-06-16 Rampdown Phase 2A second round of checks are applied to incoming changes
2016-07-21 Final Release Candidate – The final release candidate has been declared and submitted for testing
2016-09-22 General AvailabilityFinal release, ready for production use

The Java development team are using the same milestone definitions as in JDK 8, meaning that by the end of this year, all features should have been implemented and integrated into the master forest, together with unit tests, for the Feature Complete deadline.

The dates here are meant to leave sufficient time for broad review and testing of the significant features of the release, in particular the introduction of a module system and the modularization of the platform, while maintaining the cadence of shipping a major release about every two years.

Community members are advised to take the schedule with a pinch of salt. Previous Java releases have experienced significant delays, with Java 8 delayed over six months as a result of security flaws.

Mark Reinhold has invited comments and objections from JDK 9 committers. This schedule will officially be adopted for JDK 9 on Tuesday, May 12 pending comments and objections.

SEE ALSO: Behind the scenes of Java 9 – how new features get made

The latest major development in the Java 9 pipeline came with the decision to drop the JSON API from the next release. At the recent JAX 2015 conference in Germany, Java Language Architect Brian Goetz told JAXenter that there were “no big surprises” left for the next major JDK release. In a packed conference talk on the upcoming Java 9 release, hands from the audience shot up when the Java architect asked which attendees had their own ideas for which features needed to be implemented in the next JDK.

The Java community has been fiercely debating future Java features since Java 8‘s widely successful introduction of Lambdas. According to Alex Zhitnitsky’s community survey on Java 9 features, Value Types, Reified Generics and Generic Specialisation are among the most requested non-targeted Java features.

SEE ALSO: How Java 9 and Project Jigsaw may break your code

In August last year, Oracle announced the first set of Java 9 features, including a HTTP 2 client, process API updates and segmented code cache. Later in November, unified JVM logging, compiler controls and the removal of deprecated GC combinations were announced as part of a second set of Java 9 features.

Coman Hamilton
Coman was Editor of at S&S Media Group. He has a master's degree in cultural studies and has written and edited content for numerous news, tech and culture websites and magazines, as well as several ad agencies.

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