Oracle Java Development Kit 6 and 7 support ends this week, leaving many developers with few options.
In a survey conducted by JRebel, a company that produces its own code development environment, about 15 percent of Java developers still use JDK 7. Consequently, around a million developers could be without software patches and security updates, putting their productivity, security, and reliability at risk.
Object-oriented language Java SE 7 was the first release of the popular development environment since Oracle acquired Sun Microsystems for $7.4 billion.
Java SE 7 is being retired after more than a decade, according to Oracle Java director of product management Donald Smith. My Oracle Support will provide access to existing software fixes, but no new patches will be released. The details are in the middleware support agreement.
The Java SE Support Roadmap describes how users of Java SE 7 can benefit from many new features, performance improvements, and a continued stream of fixes and updates from Oracle by upgrading to Java SE 8 or Java 11, he said.
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Java SE 7 users may continue using Java SE 7 until it reaches Sustaining Support, or until a version of the Oracle product removes Java SE 7 from the supported matrix. After that, users may switch to the next supported Java SE release in accordance with the support matrix for the particular Oracle product.
It is important to note, however, that companies like Azul have committed to maintaining Java 6/7 updates and services through 2027, so from a technical perspective there are options.
However, licensing is also an issue.
With Java 17, Oracle began offering a no-fee license with free quarterly updates for three years – but only for that release, not earlier releases such as Java 7, 8, and 11.
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