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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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Java Applets Still In use?
By Sunday Ironfoot on 2/4/2009 4:18:52 AM , Rating: 2
Does anyone still use Java Applets these days? I do I lot of websurfing and can't remember the last time I came accross a Java Applet on a website. Surely Flash/Air and Silverlight are all the rage these days and we need 64bit versions of those.

By Master Kenobi on 2/4/2009 9:07:45 AM , Rating: 2
Java is too heavy, and is considerably more difficult to use than a Jscript/Flash/Silverlight combination to get the same thing done.

RE: Java Applets Still In use?
By TomZ on 2/4/2009 9:47:00 AM , Rating: 2
I agree - who uses Java apps in browsers any more? That's so '90s!

RE: Java Applets Still In use?
By glitchc on 2/4/2009 11:24:19 AM , Rating: 2
MATLAB uses Java applets for many of its toolboxes. The 64-bit version of MATLAB does not support quite a few toolboxes (Image and Data Acquisition being the one I desire), and I suspect that is probably due to the lack of a 64-bit Java runtime.

It is quite annoying to build a machine for image processing with oodles of RAM and processing to find that the Acquisition toolbox is not supported in 64-bit MATLAB.

RE: Java Applets Still In use?
By noirsoft on 2/4/2009 11:58:33 AM , Rating: 2
*adds another item to the long, long list of "reasons why Matlab is a plague on humanity"*

RE: Java Applets Still In use?
By TomZ on 2/4/2009 12:07:44 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, exactly, and I assume MATLAB is still using some ancient version of the JRE? If that's the case, then they'll probably add support for 64-bit JRE sometime in 2015.

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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