The latest release for Java SE 11 is Java SE 11.0.4 . Similar to Java 8, Java 11 is an LTS release. LTS stands for long term support, and basically this means that the release will be supported with updates and fixes for a considerable number of years.
This helps people developing in a commercial setting as they know that if they choose an LTS release that they will be able to rely on the support for that release, so helps with future planning. If I am writing software for my company, or im implementing a software package that relies on Java, its good to know that the LTS version will have continous support for 5 – 10 years from release, as it allows me plenty of time to plan the next upgrade if necessary.
New releases of Java often include the latest features, and performance improvements. But as upgrading existing software isnt always an easy task as it can require extensive testing, its good to know that is under your control, and that the version you are running will be available and supported for years to come.
New features In Java 11
Downloading the JDK for Java 11
Navigate to https://www.oracle.com/java/technologies/javase-jsp-downloads.html and scroll down till you get to the Java SE 11 Section. Click on the Oracle JDK Download button.
Oracle JDK License Update
This will take you to the Java SE Development Kit 12 Downloads page. One thing to note here is that the Java licensing has changed since April 2019. Now to use java in a commercial setting (for example, if you are working in a company, government body or organisation of any kind) then you will need an Oracle license to use Oracle Java.
If you dont have the option to purchase a licence then you will need to use OpenJDK version of Java. OpenJDK is still a robust version of Java, but unlike the Oracle version it doesn’t come with commercial support. But if you are already using some of Oracles paid products in your organisation, such as Solaris OS or Oracle DB, check as you may get a license for Java included with those.
If you are using Java for personal use, such as learning Java or developing software for personal use at home, then the new license rules still allow you to use Oracle Java. Just make sure that if you are using Java at work, you are complying with the licence and using the appropriate version.
Oracle JDK Download
Scroll down the page until you see the versions available to download for Java SE Development Kit 11.0.4. For windows we have the choice of the auto installer executable or the zip file.
If you click on the executable for windows, you will be presented with a confirmation screen for accepting the Oracle License Agreement. Once you have read the license terms and are happy with them, click to accept the license then click to download.
If you havent already signed in, you will be presented with the Oracle login screen. Either login, or register and then login, and your download should start after that.
Installing The JDK
Once the executable installer has downloaded, click on it to begin the install. You may get windows asking you if you want to allow the installer to make changes, so click yes in this case as we know we are doing an install.
You will then get presented with the Java SE Development Kit 11.0.4 64 bit setup install window, so click next to continue
You will then see the Java SE Development Kit 11.0.4 64 bit custom setup screen, you just usually need to accept the defaults so click next to continue.
You will then see the installer splash screen with the progress bar as it installs the Java JDK and JRE.
Once the install is complete you will see the install complete confirmation screen. Click Close and at that point you are done with the installer.
Checking The Java Environment
To make java accessible from the command link easily, it should be on your system path. You can check this by starting a command prompt and checking. Right click the start button then click command prompt.
At the command prompt, type java -version, and it will show you which version of java is currently setup on your path, or an error if not.
The version shows 1.8.0_221-b11. Which shows that our java 11.0.4 has not been added to the system path. This isn’t necessarily a problem. We can modify our system path to point to the version of Java that we just installed, or we can follow the steps below to be able to use multiple versions of Java on the same machine by using batch files.
Installing Multiple Versions Of Java
If you want to have multiple version of java available on your computer for some reason, such as you have a piece of software that demands a specific version of java, you can install java just as we have done here, and then use a windows batch file to point to a specific version of java.
Or you may want to point to the jdk instead of the JRE, for instance if you have some specific software that may need to compile code, so as software for developers. in that case what we would do would be to create a windows batch file that would modify the path so that the version of java we require is run instead of what has already been defined on the path.
set path=C:\Program Files\Java\jdk-11.0.4\bin;%path%
We create a windows batch file by opening notepad, and then saving that with a .bat extension. If we then run that we get the below.
This does look the same as before as we havent actually installed an additional version yet, but if we check the path by typing path at the command line we can see that the one we sit is there first now.