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Oracle upgrades standard Java, JavaFX

Enhancements include first delivery of SDKs for Mac OS X, along with garbage collection and virtual machine boosts

By Paul Krill
April 27, 2012 06:58 AM ET

Infoworld - Oracle on Thursday is releasing updates to the standard edition of Java and the JavaFX rich client application platform, including the first delivery of the Java Development Kit and JavaFX Software Development Kit for Mac OS X. The latest enhancements for Java garbage collection and the Java Virtual Machine are featured as well.

The company is making available Java Platform, Standard Edition (Java SE) 7 Update 4 and JavaFX 2.1. Java developers, Oracle said, can download Oracle's JDK, which includes the JavaFX SDK for MacOS X from the Oracle Technology Network. Java SE 7 Update 4 and JavaFX 2.1 run on Windows, too. The company plans to release a consumer version of Java SE 7, complete with the Java Runtime Environment, for Mac OS X later this year.

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"It appears that Oracle is steadily making good on the promises of the road map outlined at JavaOne," analyst Al Hilwa, of IDC, said, referring to Oracle's Java technology conference held last fall in San Francisco. "It is important for Oracle to show steady momentum with this road map, and it is certainly good to see continued investment like the new JavaFX technology in Mac OS X from Oracle." Java, though, has been a problem on Mac systems lately, with the Flashback botnet serving as a Java-based attack against Macs.

"Oracle has aggressive plans for Java over the next few years and we are continuing to drive technical advancements across the platform," said Hasan Rizvi, senior vice president of Oracle Fusion Middleware and Java Products at Oracle, in a statement released by the company. "At JavaOne in 2011, we outlined our long-term road map for Java SE and JavaFX, and we are working closely with the Java community to meet our development milestones. With the upcoming Mac OS X port, we look forward to delivering simultaneous releases of the JRE across all major operating systems later this year, so all Java users will be able to take advantage of the latest features and security fixes."

Java garbage collection, which helps with memory management by reclaiming programming objects, is being improved in JDK. "The Java SE 7 Update 4 JDK includes the next-generation garbage collection algorithm, Garbage First (G1), which has been eagerly anticipated by the Java developer community. G1 provides predictable garbage collection even for very large applications," Oracle said in a statement. G1 is a server-style garbage collector, for multiprocessor machines with large memories, Oracle said.

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Reprinted with permission from InfoWorld. Story copyright 2012 InfoWorld Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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