What does LTS mean for OpenJDK?
dalibor.topic at oracle.com
Mon Aug 20 13:23:42 UTC 2018
On 17.08.2018 18:36, Stephen Colebourne wrote:
> The LTS (long term support) release Java 11 is nearly upon us. But
> what does LTS mean in the context of OpenJDK?
Please see http://openjdk.java.net/jeps/322
"If a release is part of a series of releases for which an implementor
offers long-term support then the value of $OPT should start with "LTS",
e.g., 11.0.2+13-LTS. This will cause "LTS" to be displayed prominently
in the output of java --version, etc."
Whether an implementor decides to offer long term support for a given
OpenJDK release, for how long they do it, which platforms they chose to
support in this way, is ultimately up to them.
So far Oracle, for example, has cumulatively contributed almost 15 years
of maintenance to OpenJDK between OpenJDK 6, JDK 7 Updates, JDK 8
Updates, JDK 9 updates and JDK 10 updates across a lot of different
Over the last couple of years, we have developed a model to transition
between different teams of maintainers across OpenJDK update releases.
For example, Oracle developers maintained OpenJDK 6 for 5 years. After
they stepped down, they enabled other developers to take over OpenJDK 6
maintenance. Those developers, focusing on a different set of operating
systems from Oracle developers, continued to work on the OpenJDK 6
source code until, eventually, they stopped. Then another set of
developers continued where they left, with yet again a different set of
operating systems that they cared about.
A similar transition has happened with OpenJDK 7 Updates, after almost 4
years of maintenance by Oracle developers.
A similar transition would also happen for OpenJDK 8 Updates after
January 2019, assuming that a suitable Project Lead steps forward to
carry on the maintenance work led by Oracle developers since 2014.
Since such transitions are bound to happen more often under the new
release cycle, there is a process for them in the JDK Updates Project as
You can observe that process in the works via the jdk-updates-dev
mailing list, specifically with respect to JDK 10 maintenance via
> What will Java 11 get from Oracle?
Well, long term support, for one, as discussed on
But beside that, it will get a reference implementation in OpenJDK.
Followed by, assuming that the transition from JDK 10 to JDK 11 proves
to be as smooth as the transition from JDK 9 to JDK 10 was, at least six
months of JDK 11 updates maintained by Oracle developers and contributed
to the corresponding OpenJDK JDK Updates Project jdk11u repository along
with binaries being published at http://jdk.java.net.
Finally, JDK 11 would get an orderly maintainer transition process.
Specifically, at some point after a jdk11u repo is established in the
JDK Updates Project, an e-mail to jdk-updates-dev would announce when
Oracle would stop contributing to that particular repository. For JDK
10, it looked like this:
After the last OpenJDK JDK 11u release led by Oracle, a call for future
11u maintainers such as
would go out on the jdk-updates-dev list, and, if someone qualified
stepped up on the list, there would be some work to do on an orderly
transition of maintainer duties for that repo within the JDK Update
Project - rather unexciting things like dealing with updates to hgcheck
and jcheck configurations for the repo, for example.
You can read the jdk7u-dev mailing list archives from the time of
transition, if you want to know the details. Some details will of course
end up being slightly different for JDK 11 Updates, since we will use
the existing JDK Updates Project for jdk11u, we'll have a single repo
instead of a forest, and so on.
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