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Java on Intel Apple – Part 2…

So my previous question on this subject was, “Will I be able to pull down any Linux x86 jar/tar/zip and use it on an Intel-based Mac?” That was a dumb question by me that was answered by some kind readers.

The question I should have been asking was who will be providing the Intel-OS X Java SDK? Will it finally be something I can pull down from java.sun.com or will I still have to wait for Apple to provide me with my Java SDK? And, why does Sun provide Linux and Windows SDKs but not Apple SDKs?

11 replies on “Java on Intel Apple – Part 2…”

Im pretty sure that Apple will continue to provide the Java SDK for the time being. When the Intel transition was announced at WWDC last summer, I read somewhere that the Java SDK on the Intel version of OS X was already ported/running natively.

Of course, I’m not a developer, and cannot verify this. I’m sure you could probably find better answers on the mac-java developer list.

Sun provides Linux/Windows SDKs because it is essential to Sun’s continued success with Java that high quality versions of those two exist for those two main platforms. (Would you count on Microsoft to provide a good Java implementation?)

The case is far less compelling for Sun to devote their resources to Java on OS X due to a far smaller share. This may change over time as OS X becomes more widespread. I also suspect that Apple wants to retain control, so they can ensure that the JVM implementation meets their UI/usability requirements. (Although some developers may argue that Apple hasn’t been very effective on that end).

I think thats the answer you are looking for.

Ahem. When I say I’m not a developer, I mean I’m not a paying ADC member with access to the developer seeds of Intel OS X and/or the intel-based Mac developer machine that Apple is leasing to ADC members.

I’m just a java developer making do with Java on a tragically slow powerbook, and looking forward to the dual-core Yonah powerbook. Then mabye eclipse will actually feel speedy. 🙂

Apple has a team of people working on its Java implementation. It works very hard to integrate Java with OS X. But don’t worry, Java should already be running well on the Intel Macs.

I believe that Microsoft is prohibited from developing Java past 1.1 and there is no one company that develops Linux. There used to be a group callled Blackdown that had a good Linux JDK which formed the basis for Sun’s Linux JDK. Of course, Sun owns Solaris. So that is part of the reason why Sun creates the JDKs for Windows, Linux, and Solaris.

Trivia: When Java was first released to the public in beta, it was available only on Solaris and Windows NT.

I agree with your opinion, Erik. If Sun really cares about desktop (rather than just server-side) Java, they should release Java for Mac themselves, and simultaneously with the other releases (Windows, Linux, and I suppose Solaris). Not doing so makes the whole “cross-platform” thing less credible.

Tom,

I’m with you. Sun needs to start paying more attention to Apple. In case they haven’t been watching; Apple’s stock price is up over 100% this year and 2006 looks to be just as big a year. How much more market share does linux have over Apple?

There are a lot of Java Developers using Apples and Sun should respect that.

Erik

Is there any reason the Linux/X11 Java release wouldn’t work on a Mac? Sure it would look grossly out of place since there would be any aqua integration, but once it compiles with X11 on Intel, it should work on OS X.

Don’t forget that there are two large JDK vendors apart from Sun: IBM and BEA. IBM provides their JDK for AIX (of course), Linux and Windows, and we at BEA have the JRockit JDK for Windows, Linux and Solaris. As to whether it will be ported to OS X or not, I can’t say.

Cheers — Henrik, JRockit team

Sun does not provide their VM for OS X because Sun has no business interest in doing so: the proprietary software vendor that produces OS X, i.e. Apple, is a licensee of Sun’s code, i.e. pays good cash for the J2SE license and technology support for the compatibility test suite, so it would be pointless for Sun to compete with their licensees on their platforms, and probably detrimental to their Java technology licensing business.

Contrary to BEA, Sun also does not have a proprietary J2EE environment to sell (any more), so there are no sales to be made from that investment either.

In essence, supporting Apples’s OS X on both intel and powerpc architectures would require Sun to invest a lot of money into writing the respective jits, fixing their code to work on those operating systems (OS X != Unix, one needs to adapt things accordingly), making that code pass their test suites (without passing the test suites, no release can be made), supporting the new users, without being able to generate income from it. Neither does Sun sell any Java-based software for OS X, nor does Sun sell desktop computers (i.e. into Apple’s market), nor does Apple sell into Sun’s market, so the magic of using WORA to pull Apple’s customers to Sun’s revenue generating products (i.e. servers or proprietary software solutions), can’t happen with Apple customers.

Quite to the contrary, if Sun decided to support Apple’s OS X 10.5 on intel and powerpc, they’d lose the licensing revenue from Apple, as Apple would have no interest to provide their own VM any more.

Linux, Solaris and Windows are the only Java markets that matter, effectively, as that’s where the server hardware to run JEE and the proprietary JEE implementations are being sold. Those are the only platforms where multiple J2SE vendors exist.

On the other hand, it is in Apple’s business interest to use their ‘monopoly’ on Java implementations to encourage their OS X customers to keep upgrading their proprietary operating system to get access to new J2SE releases.

Neither Apple nor Sun are charities 😉 They are always acting in ways that allow them to maximise their profits.

cheers,
dalibor topic

Sun does not provide their VM for OS X because Sun has no business interest in doing so: the proprietary software vendor that produces OS X, i.e. Apple, is a licensee of Sun’s code, i.e. pays good cash for the J2SE license and technology support for the compatibility test suite, so it would be pointless for Sun to compete with their licensees on their platforms, and probably detrimental to their Java technology licensing business.

Contrary to BEA, Sun also does not have a proprietary J2EE environment to sell (any more), so there are no sales to be made from that investment either.

In essence, supporting Apples’s OS X on both intel and powerpc architectures would require Sun to invest a lot of money into writing the respective jits, fixing their code to work on those operating systems (OS X != Unix, one needs to adapt things accordingly), making that code pass their test suites (without passing the test suites, no release can be made), supporting the new users, without being able to generate income from it. Neither does Sun sell any Java-based software for OS X, nor does Sun sell desktop computers (i.e. into Apple’s market), nor does Apple sell into Sun’s market, so the magic of using WORA to pull Apple’s customers to Sun’s revenue generating products (i.e. servers or proprietary software solutions), can’t happen with Apple customers.

Quite to the contrary, if Sun decided to support Apple’s OS X 10.5 on intel and powerpc, they’d lose the licensing revenue from Apple, as Apple would have no interest to provide their own VM any more.

Linux, Solaris and Windows are the only Java markets that matter, effectively, as that’s where the server hardware to run JEE and the proprietary JEE implementations are being sold. Those are the only platforms where multiple J2SE vendors exist.

On the other hand, it is in Apple’s business interest to use their ‘monopoly’ on Java implementations to encourage their OS X customers to keep upgrading their proprietary operating system to get access to new J2SE releases.

Neither Apple nor Sun are charities 😉 They are always acting in ways that allow them to maximise their profits.

cheers,
dalibor topic

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