Print 45 comment(s) - last by Kefner.. on Feb 9 at 1:34 AM

The transition to a 64-bit world continues

With 64-bit adoption rising for both Windows Vista and Windows 7 installations, Sun Microsystems' latest update of Java 6 features enhanced 64-bit support.

Java 6 Update 12 will finally have a 64-bit plug-in, a feature that was first requested in January of 2003, as well as a 64-bit version of Webstart. Java Webstart enables the deployment of standalone Java software applications over a network or the internet.

The Java plug-in allows web browsers to run Java applications; a 64-bit plug-in is required for 64-bit browsers. It is included as part of the Java Runtime Environment, Standard Edition (Java SE).

If 32-bit and 64-bit browsers are to be used interchangeably, then both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of the JRE must be installed as well.

Although the Java Runtime Environment had x64 versions for Linux, Solaris, and Windows, there were no 64-bit versions of the Java plug-in, Java Web Start or Java Control Panel. 32-bit versions of the JRE could be installed on 64-bit systems in order to obtain this functionality, but can only be used with 32-bit browsers.

The foundation for the 64-bit plug-in comes from the completely redesigned plug-in of Java 6 Update 10. The Java Virtual Machine running applets is isolated from the web browser at the operating system level. If an error occurs while running the applet, the new Java plug-in detects and handles the error. The web browser is unaffected, even if an uncooperative applet refuses to shut down.

Update 12 also features official Windows 2008 support, as well as improved application startup and runtime performance for both Java Webstart and JavaFX. There are no major security updates, but Update 12 contains 140 bugfixes.

Java 7, meanwhile, is tentatively scheduled for an early 2010 release.

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By walk2k on 2/3/2009 7:53:05 PM , Rating: 3
Actually I like browsing in 64-bit without Flash, sites load so much faster without all the ads. If I need to use Flash I just load a 32-bit browser.

By Pirks on 2/3/2009 8:00:57 PM , Rating: 5
You are okay with pressing "No, I don't want to download and install Flash plugin" button in IE x64 every 5 seconds? You are The Patientce Itself, my friend. Hats off!

By Ihmemies on 2/3/2009 8:18:00 PM , Rating: 3
You could also use 64-bit Firefox. Hopefully it doesn't nag the user all the time like IE does?

By puffpio on 2/3/2009 8:41:15 PM , Rating: 2
I use a 64 bit build of FF, but I don't believe it was compiled using PGO like steps...still better than nothing

By Pirks on 2/3/2009 8:47:15 PM , Rating: 5
Some shady unsupported x64 build done by some obscure guy? I wouldn't trust it. Where's the _official_ Firefox x64, huh?

By eegake on 2/3/2009 10:11:49 PM , Rating: 5
A 64 bit version of Firefox built under Gentoo linux, an all-source distribution, is the fastest web browser I have ever used. There's nothing obscure about that.

Were it not for the Java/Flash issues I would have been using 64 bit Firefox for a year or two at least. As things stand, Firefox and Open Office are the only 32 bit applications I still use.

By Pirks on 2/4/2009 1:17:49 AM , Rating: 1
Fastest browser? Nothing is faster than Chrome.

By puffpio on 2/4/2009 2:04:56 AM , Rating: 2
you sure about that? have you run a 64 bit version of Firefox? I'm running one using Firefox 3.1 beta3pre and it's a tossup between this and chrome. the latest javascript engine in FF 3.1 (tracemonkey) can go toe to toe against chrome's v8 engine and even exceed it in some test cases

By lycium on 2/4/2009 2:37:00 AM , Rating: 2
everyone who uses chrome a lot knows it still has some issues with gif animations, pages displaying strangely... firefox often seems "faster" because it'll display a page without full information in some situations. (however there is no comparison between jscript performance)

on the other hand, as a programmer i wonder how long it would take to read all the relevant chrome/webkit and firefox source to get a really worthwhile opinion :P

By PhoenixKnight on 2/4/2009 9:25:51 AM , Rating: 2
There is an alpha release of Adobe Flash Player 10 for linux available at

I'm using that with 64-bit Firefox 3 in Gentoo and it works pretty well for me.

By walk2k on 2/3/2009 9:43:12 PM , Rating: 1
No it doesn't nag me at all. I think you can tell it "no and don't ask me again".

By Pirks on 2/3/2009 11:40:33 PM , Rating: 5
You can't

By TomZ on 2/4/2009 2:54:50 PM , Rating: 2
You can't, but I can. I'm using IE8 (Win7), and I fired up the 64-bit version, and it only prompted me once to install Flash. In the pop-up dialog, I selected to not prompt me again, and that works.

By Pirks on 2/4/2009 8:53:45 PM , Rating: 2
Good for you, beta user. I'll wait for release, 'cause I'm using Opera most of the time anyway :P

By amandahugnkiss on 2/4/2009 3:33:06 AM , Rating: 2
I agree, on the 32 bit version I allowed it to install and just leave it disabled until there's something I want to see. For Win7 and Vista I hope to see greater use of Silverlight and less use of Flash.

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