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Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE?
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Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE?

On Jan 14, 2006, at 10:01 AM, Paul Howland wrote:


On my Mac running 10.4.4, /usr/bin/java points to /System/Library/ Frameworks/JavaVM.framework/Versions/CurrentJDK/Commands/java which in turn points to 1.4.2 or 1.5.0, depending on what J2SE you have installed.

Mac OS X 10.4.4 is currently defaulted to 1.4.2 even if you have the public release of Java 1.5 installed. You will only get a symbolic link change if you install the latest java 1.5 developer preview. When J2SE 1.5 update 4 is released to the public then folks that it install it will have Java 1.5 as their default (the symbolic link and preferences set to 1.5).

I agree you could modify your path, but given that most people won't have done that, my original point was correct. As regards modifying the symbolic link I described, it is trivial to do (and trivial to put back) and does no more than I described. It has no other untoward side effects.

1) It affect the whole of the system. It other words it may break other applications or Apple's own application / java subsystem which may make assumption about how it is configured. Why use a shotgun when you don't have to?

2) It changes a symbolic link that is managed by Apple (under / System). It may cause updates to break or install incorrectly and/ or an update may change it on you with out you realizing it.

3) It puts your system in a non-standard configuration (differs from what your customers have). Your testing may not find issues that your customer may hit as a result.

4) Changing it is simply not needed.

- IDEs can be told to use a particular JDK/JVM using fully qualified paths (many IDE support easy selection from a list of JDKs / JVMs available on the system).

- Bundle based applications can request the version of Java the needed via plist entries (note Java preferences can affect that depending on what the plist entries are).

- JNPL using Applets / Applications can request which version of JVM that want (like bundle based applications, again potentially affected by java preferences)

- Applets (not using JNPL) get what ever java preference is set to (unless the users browser overrides that in some way)

- Command line use of Java can be controlled using PATH modification or fully qualified paths. (each terminal instance could be set to use a different JVM / JDK)


This is an excellent summary of the reasons that we recommend developers NOT modify this symlink

 M McDougall
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 >Java 5 SDK or just JRE? (From: David Hinz <email@hidden>)
 >Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE? (From: Shawn Erickson <email@hidden>)
 >Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE? (From: Paul Howland <email@hidden>)
 >Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE? (From: Shawn Erickson <email@hidden>)
 >Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE? (From: Paul Howland <email@hidden>)
 >Re: Java 5 SDK or just JRE? (From: Shawn Erickson <email@hidden>)

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