The JDK of 10000 Days Starts With a Single Release Candidate



My apologies for severely misquoting Lao Tzu in the title of this blog post but it occurred to me today that we are only 16 days (10000 in binary, hence the title) from the release date of JDK 9. Hopefully, everyone who intends to use JDK 9 has downloaded an early access (EA) build and has begun testing their application code.

Build 181 of OpenJDK 9, which was released at the beginning of August, has no priority 1 (P1) bugs and was subsequently announced as the initial release candidate (RC). Azul released Zulu 9 Pre-release build 14, which is our binary distribution of this build on August 26th. You can download it for testing here.

What’s interesting is that the published plan for JDK 9 has a schedule from initial RC to General Availability (GA) that looks like this:

  22nd June 2017   Initial Release Candidate  
  6th July 2017   Final Release Candidate
  21st September 2017      General Availability


Call me pedantic, but the initial RC was a bit late (just under seven weeks to be precise). Since then nothing has been mentioned on the jdk9-dev mailing list about when (or even if) there will be a final release candidate. Given the short space of time between now and GA I don’t expect to see another build. I also don’t expect there to be any further delay in the date of GA.

JDK 9 is a significant release of the Java platform because of the impact that the Java Platform Module System (JPMS) has on backward compatibility for existing applications. Many applications use non-public APIs from the JDK (like the infamous sun.misc.Unsafe class) either directly or indirectly via third-party libraries and frameworks. It’s not too late to test your application with the RC and send relevant feedback. Don’t delay, do it today.

I’m confident that, despite the rather compressed release candidate phase of the development of JDK 9, the release will be a big success.

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