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New updates released for Java 8 and 11, Oct 2020

For those using the Long-term support (LTS) versions of Oracle Java, 8 and 11, please note that there were new updates released last week (Oct 20), specifically Java 11.0.9 and 8.0_271. For more on each, see the:

For some, that's all they need to hear.

And I could (and probably should) leave it at that. But there are other questions which folks will have, including more on getting those binaries/installers (from Oracle or Adobe), on the difference between those LTS versions and "more recent" Java versions, as well as non-Oracle JVMs, and on licensing matters and more. For those, read on. Perhaps I will split this other stuff out into its own post at some point, so I can just point to it from news of these Java updates.

Getting the latest Java binaries/installers from Oracle

And while anyone can get the binaries/installers from the Oracle web site, note that it does require a login, which is free. And you would be asked to agree to the Oracle license, which explains how production use of Java 11 or updates of Java 8 beyond 2019 require licensing of Oracle Java. (More on that below.)

One can find the latest binaries/installers here:

You may note that I point to the JDK there, in both cases. In the case of Java 8, there were also offered JRE and Server JRE installers, but those no longer exist for Java 11 and above. (And the JDK for Java 11 and above no longer even offer the JRE option within the installer.)

Getting other recent (but not latest) binaries/installers from Oracle

If you may want to use a version other than the very latest of each of those Java versions, you can find previous ones here:

Getting the binaries/installers from Adobe, for ColdFusion users

For users of Adobe ColdFusion, note that Adobe provides java binaries/installers on their own site, on the "CF downloads" page (for downloading things related to CF). That page has a section at the bottom which offers recent Java versions.

As of my posting this entry, the Adobe page did not yet have these two latest Java installers. Adobe was aware of the issue. And the new binaries were available the next day, Oct 28. Still, that is 8 days. We can hope that Adobe would somehow undertake to get them available sooner than that. Still, just know that they often do lag some number of days.

What about when the Adobe site is delayed in posting the installers?

If there's ever a lag in Adobe offering the binaries/installers there, you can just obtain them from the Oracle site, if you are in a hurry to get your Java updated.

That leads to some other, related, questions...

Are the binaries supposed to be identical on the Adobe and Oracle sites?

They have been identical, in my experience, when I have done file compares.

And since the license is within the binary (you are asked to accept it upon installation, or expected to accept it if extracting), that would make it seem that it does not matter where one gets the binary (from Adobe or from Oracle).

What about when there is a disparity in the binaries between Adobe and Oracle?

Occasionally, there MAY be a disparity, as was the case with the recent Java 1.8.0_261 version. The one on the Adobe site was slightly different from that on the Oracle site, with one being a version 1.8.0_261.12 and the other being 1.8.0_261.25. More on that in the next section.

What about when there is a disparity in the binaries Adobe offers and the checksumes they offer?

When there is a variation like the above, the checksums Adobe offers on their site may well differ from their own binaries.

If Adobe has kept the binaries and their checksums in-sync, then the binaries on the CF site would match the checksums they offer for those binaries.

But if Adobe has NOT kept the binaries and their checksums in-sync, then the checksums may instead match those of the different version offered on the Oracle site.

I'm just saying that while I understand people wanting to know that binaries and checksums match, when they don't, there may be a reason (that is not nefarious).

How would one tell the low-level version of such Java binaries?

Again, we're talking here about when you may find different files for the same "version" of java, such as 1.8.0_261, and the lowest-level variant of 261.12 vs 261.25. In the case of the Windows 64-bit exe, one can see this version number using the properties for the file (right-clicking on the exe in Windows Explorer), where one reported 8.0.2610.12 while the other reported 8.0.2610.25.

Obviously, that only works with an exe. In the case of the Linux binary or zip or gz, one would not see that. And one could certainly do a binary compare and confirm if they ARE different. Another option is to see the CF Admin, where on the "settings summary" or "system information" pages, which each show (among their many fields) a "Java VM Version" field, and for the .25 version above, it would be reflected as being "25.261-b25". (For the sake of comparison, the value for the latest Java 11.0.9 installer would show " 11.0.9+7-LTS".) If that distinction (about this lowest-level binary version) is a concern for you, you could and should compare the version of your desired binary/installer on the Adobe site with the version on the Oracle site above.

Other questions about CF and JVM versions

There are several other questions, some of which I have addressed in other posts, and some which I want to elaborate in new ones:

  • The list of Java installers on the Adobe starts with Java 12. Should I use that?: The answer there is that you CAN use it, with CF2018 at least, which offered support for Java 12 within months of its release, but then Java stopped supporting it shortly thereafter. I have more on this here.
  • So why are Java versions coming and going so quickly?: I do address it some in that last post, but I have started a blog post on that which I plan to post soon.
  • Can CF be used with the current latest Java versions, Java 15?: Here again, that's something I would clarify in that new post, but the answer (like with Java 13 and 14) would be, "no, CF does not currently support those latest Java versions that are coming and going so fast". I suspect a future update to CF2018 (and perhaps 2016) will offer support for some updated Java version...but I won't be surprised if Adobe waits until the merry-go-round stops with the planned next long-term-support version, due to be Java 17.
  • Does Adobe support me running CF on openJDK, Coretto, or other JVMs?: The plain answer to that is no. Adobe has clarified in their support requirements pages and in blog posts that they only support the Oracle JVM. But that leads to the natural next question...
  • Can you use CF with JVMs that Adobe doesn't "formally support"?: I will say that you CAN, as some HAVE, but the real question is whether you SHOULD. If Adobe doesn't support a given Java version, and you choose to run on it, it may "work" for some part of your app (or for other folks), but it may fail for SOME part of your app. It's a risk some may be willing to take, but do "be careful out there".
  • So what JVM versions can be used with what versions of CF?: Again, I have addressed that in a previous post, and have a table clarifying CF versions vs Java versions supported, but I want to pull that out to its own post.
  • Now that we must license Oracle Java to use it in production, must we license it to use with ColdFusion?: The answer there is also "no" (but that's a good thing). Adobe announced in early 2019 (when this change in Oracle licensing happened) that Adobe had reached an agreement with Oracle and Oracle Java is licensed by Adobe for our use with Adobe ColdFusion. Again, I'd like to do a new post to elaborate on that.
  • If I try to update the JVM CF uses, what might go wrong and how could I fix it?: Good news there, as well. It SHOULD be quite simple to do that, but there are several small mistakes you could make which may cause CF not to start. I address these in a post with lots of detail on problems and solutions.

Clearly, there's a lot to the topic of CF and the Java it runs on. For most folks, it's one of those hidden aspects they don't pay attention to (and the above may seem tedious), while for others they are concerned about such details (and I hope the above will be helpful).

And as I did when I announced a new update for Java back in Apr 2019, I have added more to this post than is really specific to this particular update. Again I want to draw these things out to their own posts, but until then I wanted to add these points that seem important for some.

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