Java Development Kit 8, planned for September 2013, is being delayed until next year because of ‘a renewed focus on security’.
Mark Reinhold, chief architect of the Java platform group at Oracle, posted on his blog that a developer preview release is still on the cards for September. He said that the need to push the schedule back was due to Oracle moving resources from the next release to improving current security, saying:
“Maintaining the security of the Java Platform always takes priority over developing new features, and so these efforts have inevitably taken engineers away from working on Java 8.”
In light of widespread concern over Java security and the intense effort being made by Oracle to address those issues with its series of critical-patch update releases, the most recent of which we reported yesterday, Reingold said that Oracle is committed to continue fixing security issues at an accelerated pace, to enhance the Java security model, and to introduce new security features, and that:
“this work will require more engineer hours than we can free up by dropping features from Java 8 or otherwise reducing the scope of the release at this stage.”
The major change still to be made to Java 8 is Project Lambda, which Reinhold says is “the sole driving feature of the release”. Project Lambda aims to support programming in a multicore environment by adding closures and related features to the Java language. Reinhold says:
“We integrated the language and VM changes for Lambda late last year, but between all the moving parts involved and the security work it’s taken a bit longer than expected to put the finishing touches on the stream API and the related core-libraries enhancements."
He laid out alternatives such as dropping Lambda from this release, but said Oracle has decided instead to wait until Lambda is ready, describing this option as:
“Slip the schedule just enough to finish Lambda, and ship the release after it’s thoroughly reviewed and tested. If we can finish the remaining design and development work by early May then we should be able to test and stabilize the build over the summer and ship a solid Developer Preview release in early September.”
The revised schedule for JDK 8, proposed on April 18, 2013 is:
|May 9, 2013
|September 5, 2013
|January 23, 2014
||Final Release Candidate
|March 3, 2014
The delay means that Java SE 9 will probably be released in early 2016, rather than late 2015. It will include the Project Jigsaw module system that Oracle had hoped to include in Java SE 8.
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