Oracle hands care of OpenJDK 8 and 11 to Red Hat

Responsibility for feed and care of two legacy editions of OpenJDK has passed from Oracle to Red Hat.

The IBM-bound Linux spinner is taking over stewardship of OpenJDK 8 and OpenJDK 11 in a change that means Red Hat will oversee maintenance and bug fixes. OpenJDK is the free and open-source implementation of Java Platform, Standard Edition and the basis of the Java Development Kit (JDK).

The move will not mean new features for these OpenJDK editions as they have been superseded. OpenJDK 8 was used in JRE 8 and OpenJDK 11 employed in JRE 11 released in March 2014 and September 2018 respectively. Oracle released JRE 12 in March this year based on OpenJDK 12 with OpenJDK 13 due later this year.

Updates passed under Red Hat for these legacy cousins will, however, feed into releases of Java from Oracle and other members of the Java community.

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Red Hat has been a keen and enthusiastic backer of OpenJDK since 2007 and claims to be one of the project’s largest contributors. Andrew Haley, Red Hat’s Java technical lead and a member of the OpenJDK governing board for seven years, became OpenJDK 8 and 11 project lead in February.

Indeed, Red Hat’s been a keen proponent of Java using a license and code to Linux since the early-to-mid 2000s, when it sought to make OpenJDK palatable to penguins by running the framework without license-encumbered code – that was the IcedTea Project.

Looking ahead, Red Hat this year plans to launch OpenJDK in a Microsoft installer and to distribute IcedTea-Web, the free software implementation of Java Web Start, as part of the Windows OpenJDK distribution.

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