DrJava Stable Release 20140826-r5761

Available for download at http://drjava.org .

DrJava is a lightweight programming environment for Java designed to
foster test-driven software development. It includes an intelligent
program editor, an interactions pane for evaluating program text, a
source level debugger, and a unit testing tool.

In addition to bug fixes, this stable release includes one important
new feature introduced after the last stable release:

This release of DrJava should successfully load the Java 8 compiler
when DrJava is run using a Java 8 JDK.


(i) Java 5 compatibility has been dropped. To use DrJava, you will
need Java 6 or newer.

(ii) The Mac OS X app is configured to use Apple Java 6, the last Java
release developed by Apple. Subsequent Oracle releases of Java
for Mac OS X use a different, incompatible app launcher. DrJava
can be run using an Oracle JDK on Mac OS X by downloading the
jar file version of DrJava and invoking it from the command
line. In some cases, simply clicking on the jar file icon will
start DrJava.

(iii) Recent versions of Mac OS X include a gatekeeper that declares
unlicensed apps (like DrJava and most other open source apps) as
"corrupt" and suggests that they be deleted. Many users report
that this happens when attempting to open the DrJava app (even
though it uses Apple's app launcher) the first time.
Nevertheless, the app can be opened manually and will
subsequently open normally.

(iv) This release of DrJava supports the editing and compilation of
Java 8 programs but it does not yet support new Java 8 syntax
in the interactions pane. We anticipate that a forthcoming
release will have this capability.

(v) DrJava currently triggers a JVM bug in the Oracle releases of
Java 7 and 8 on Linux. The bug prints a JVM crash message on
the console (typically the terminal from which DrJava is
started), but DrJava still appears to start normally. Java must
restart in most configurations (depending on your saved DrJava
preferences) because many critical parameters of the JVM
including the classpath, maximum heap size, and maximum stack
size must be specified at startup and cannot be changed. The
Oracle Java 7/8 JVM does not crash in DrJava until after the
restart operation (spawning a new JVM) has been executed, so
only the display of the DrJava splash banner fails as a result
of the crash.

Posted by Robert Cartwright 2014-08-26
  • Tom Verhoeff

    Tom Verhoeff - 2016-03-13

    When is Java 8 support in the Interactions pane expected?

  • Robert Cartwright

    If we can muster the resources, we will replace he current DrJava interpreter (based on Dynamic Java, a European open source project that terminated in late 2001 [see http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?DynamicJava]) with the Java REPL interpreter (see http://www.javarepl.com/console.html) for Java 8. This interpreter relies on incremental compilation to perform interpretation implying it can easily accommodate new language features in future versions of Java.

    A similar interpreter is being bundled with Java in Java 9. Unfortunately, Java 9 will require drastic changes to DrJava because it completely re-organizes the library structure of Java. It is not clear whether we have the resources to create a DrJava for Java 9.


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