Java 6 Released

Java 6 has been released (both Wildfire and Spark are built using Java). Normally, the fact that we use Java isn’t relevant unless you’re building plugins or making customizations to the code. However, the Java 6 release merits a mention for several reasons:

  • This is the first Open Source release of Java. That means that in the near future, you’ll see Java 6 ship with many Linux distros. That will make it even easier to get Spark and Wildfire running on Linux.

  • Java 6 support for epoll on Linux fits in nicely with the scalability work we’re doing for the next release of Wildfire. Linux users will be able to scale Wildfire to many tens of thousands of connections.

  • There are big improvements to Swing (the user interface library) in Java 6. That means Spark will be faster and prettier with things like font anti-aliasing, much faster re-draws, and quicker startup time.

You can install Java 6 now, or get it automatically bundled with the next releases of Wildfire and Spark.


That’s awesome news! Look forward to seeing it in the next release!

Is it going to require much in the way of code changes on our part? As I am fairly new to Java programming, I have never had the opportunity to brave a major revision change. =)

Sun is incredibly anal about preserving backwards compatability, so the switch will be painless. We’ll also want to preserve Java 5 compatability, so we’ll avoid using the new API’s in Java 6.

Looking forward to to seeing Wildfire and Spark running on Java 6.

A couple of corrections are in order.

  • Java 6 is not released as open source. The source is available but it’s under a restrictive license. The article you linked is about the next major version, Java 7. The jdk-distro project packages Java for Linux using the non-free license for now. (It’s not end-use packaging, but the site does have some end-use howto’s available.)

  • Java 5 has epoll support on Linux. The 1.5_10 release included it.

Also, I should mention that Classpath 0.93 was recently released. It includes several goodies that make it interesting, including (I believe) epoll support. Here’s an interview with some interesting comments:




Thanks for the corrections and links. I can’t actually find any information saying that only JDK 7 will be released under the GPL, but I’ll take your word for it.

Classpath – yes, interesting, but I hope they find a way to merge with the Open Source JDK project or fully comply with the test suite. Supporting bugs in Classpath installs wouldn’t be tons of fun.


“I’ve heard rumors that once the freeing of the JDK7 code is complete, they’ll consider going back and freeing JDK6 retroactively, but nothing concrete on that score just yet.” --sab39


The decision of releasing Java under the terms of GPL was made like some weeks ago.

The development of jdk6 took way more time JDK7 also referred as openjdk will be GPLed.


JDK 6 Source under the JRL license


The remainder of the open-source JDK will be available in the first half of 2007.



What is most interesting about java6 is here : - check the “vm” AREA.

These are hopefully going to change the performance characterstics in interesting ways.