After beginning a new era by releasing JDK (Java Development Kit) 10 six months ago, Java is moving even further with the launch of Java SE (Standard Edition) 11 (JDK 11). It is now generally available and up for production usage with an HTTP client API, which implements HTTP/2 to bring productivity improvements.
Version 11 of Java SE comes with more than 15 significant feature changes. Moreover, it has removed CORBA, JavaFX, and Java EE (renamed Jakarta EE) modules to make them available as standalone technologies. It is the latest version of standard Java implementation by Oracle in the form of a Long Term Support (LTS) release having commercial support for at least eight years. However, the bug fixes and security updates have offerings till 2026.
Some of the key features included in the new release are:
1) Flight Recorder and Open-source Mission Control - This feature will bring much power to the developers through its performance and troubleshooting help.
2) No-op Garbage Collector - It is useful when it comes to the distributed systems consisting of a plethora of excellent short-lived services
3) The Launch of Single-File Source-Code Programs - Though appears as just a small change, this feature is of great value for newbies to learn Java, the jshell.
4) VarHandles - It is one of the significant steps for eliminating the need of using the sun.misc.
5) HTTP Client (Standard) - It standardizes the incubated HTTP Client API, which was introduced in JDK 9 through JEP 110 while they got updated with JDK 10.
6) Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.3 – It is a significant overhaul of the TLS protocol, which provides substantial security and improvements in the performance over the previous versions.
7) Project ZGC - It is experimental though predictable low-latency GC (garbage collector) for handling the heaps that range from relatively small in size (a few hundreds of megabytes) to significantly large (many terabytes).
Further, as per the blog post by Oracle (https://blogs.oracle.com/java-platform-group/introducing-java-se-11), the new Java 11 release includes seventeen enhancements defined via the JDK Enhancement Proposals (JEPS). Here is the list:
181 – Nest-Based Access Control
309 – Dynamic Class-File Constants
315 – Improved Aarch64 Intrinsics
318 – A No-Op Garbage Collector
320 – Removal of Java EE and CORBA Modules
321 – HTTP Client (Standard)
323 - Local-Variable Syntax for the Parameters of Lambda
324 – A Key Agreement with Curve25519 and Curve448
327 – Unicode 10
328 – Flight Recorder
329 - Poly1305 Cryptographic Algorithms and ChaCha20
330 - Launch of Single-File Source-Code Programs
331 - Low-Overhead Heap Profiling
332 - TLS (Transport Layer Security) 1.3
333 - ZGC: Scalable Low-Latency Garbage Collector though Experimental
336 - Deprecating the Pack200 Tools and API
With millions of developers running Java worldwide, it continues to be the top and most preferred programming language by the software programmers or dedicated Java developers. And, as Java 11 demonstrates, with continued thoughtful planning and involvement of the ecosystem, the Java platform is well-positioned for the modern development and growth in the cloud.