Proposed OpenJDK IcedTea project: Needs group sponsorship

Andrew John Hughes gnu_andrew at
Fri Feb 20 11:24:04 PST 2009

Hi everyone,

As many of you are aware, the IcedTea project:

has done a lot of work over the past year and a half in making OpenJDK
available on a wide range of distributions and architectures.  At
present, the build process for IcedTea involves the application of
several patches (over 100 looking at a recent checkout), and it would
clearly be better to see most of these reach the upstream project
where possible.  The best way to do this seems to be to collect those
changes from SCA signatories in a upstream tree, which would then
provide an easy means of tracking which patches are headed upstream.
I'd expect each changeset unique to the IcedTea forest to have an
associated bug on too.

This has the following advantages:

* The process for getting patches into OpenJDK7 build drops already
involves passing from one forest to another.  Putting IcedTea into
this equation should make things easier for all concerned.
* There is a clear distinction between patches for IcedTea which can
be used by OpenJDK and those which still have legal issues.  The
latter remain in IcedTea's current repositories and are applied to the
IcedTea forest base.
* The work on IcedTea becomes more immediately visible to developers
working with the repositories.
* The merge work required for IcedTea7 goes down a lot, being done
once in the forest rather than locally on every machine for numerous
permutations of configure options...
* The process of moving from patches in IcedTea to the IcedTea forest
can be more immediate than just submitting bugs, and also acting as a
cleanup process for these patches.

I hope that the Porters group can see the value of this proposal and
would be willing to sponsor it in order to make this an official
OpenJDK project.  According to a
member of a group needs to formally propose the project on
announce at and my hope is that a member of this group
would be willing to do so and in so doing support the work of the
IcedTea developers and, in turn, Red Hat's contribution to the OpenJDK

Andrew :-)

Free Java Software Engineer
Red Hat, Inc. (

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