Looking to stave off criticism of the now-jeopardized Java 9 release, Oracle’s top Java official defended the platform against what he termed falsehoods around its accommodations for Apache Maven, third-party frameworks, and existing code.
“There seem to be many misconceptions out in the world about what Java 9 is, what the Jigsaw module system is, how it’s going to impact people,” said Mark Reinhold, chief architect of the Java platform group at Oracle, at the Devoxx UK conference in London last week. Today in an online post, he addressed what he sees as the three biggest misconceptions around Java 9.
A top misconception, Reinhold wrote, is that the Maven build system will not work with Java 9. “That’s not true. Maven works fine on Java 9.” But there have been problems with Maven plugins, including a minor problem with the Surefire testing plugin, he acknowledged.
Also, there has been some chatter that developers’ favorite libraries, frameworks, and tools will not work with Java 9. Reinhold acknowledged this might be true today for some elements, but he said there is a good chance they will work in the production release. He noted that the maintainers of such projects have had a lot of early access to Java 9, so they can prepare for its release. That’s why projects such as Spring Boot and Hibernate Validator work with Java 9 now, he said.
A third misconception Reinhold cited is that people seem to believe they cannot use Java 9 until they convert all their code to modules and convert their frameworks and libraries too. “That’s not true,” he said. Developers can still use the Java class path in Java 9 for the Java runtime to search for classes and resource files. It’s just that with Java 9’s modules, developers no longer need the class path.
Java 9 will also feature modularity, but a vote on the modularity specification failed last week in the Java Community Process. This leaves the planned July 27 release of Java Development Kit 9 in question.