Apple's Leopard rejects latest version of Java

Forum overlords delete developer gripes


Apple faces yet more flack from the Mac faithful over the discovery that the operating system won't run the latest version of Java. It's one of several beefs relating to the OS X upgrade that is sparking vitriol among the normally docile crowd.

Leopard may have 300 new features, but it is unable to run Java 1.6, even though that same version is available for both Windows and Linux. That has taken some Mac users by surprise, including some on this user forum on Apple's website. Several users there say 1.6 is so central to the development work they do on a daily basis that they will be forced to use an OS other than Leopard if it remains incompatible.

"This is a show stopper for me, and I will have to revert to 10.4, since my job as a software engineer for Sun requires Java 6--this will likely prevent a lot of people from upgrading, and there's a well represented Mac userbase at Sun," a user going by the name buckmelter wrote. 10.4 is a reference to Tiger, the OS X predecessor to Leopard.

In the same forum, there are claims Apple has pulled a beta version of Java 1.6 that had been available for Tiger. If true, that would mean the latest version of Java, which has been available for about a year, may not be available at all for Mac users. That's a big deal for some people. For one, version 1.6 included bug fixes and new functionality. And secondly, Java apps and applets developed using 1.6 won't run on Leopard, and possibly may not work even if a user reverts to Tiger. That would be a real slap in the face for developers who rely on their Mac to get work done.

Apple PR representatives have yet to respond to emails we sent them almost 24 hours ago requesting comment for this story. Over the past few days, people moderating the company's support forum have deleted several threads related to users' inability to run Java 1.6 on Leopard.

Apple marketing monkeys, trying to woo developers to OS X, like to refer to the OS as "the only major consumer operating system that comes complete with a fully configured and ready-to-use Java runtime and development environment." Alas, good rapport with developers requires more than good slogans. Developers don't like surprises and they don't like to be kept in the dark. So far, there are no official communications regarding Apple's commitment to the latest Java virtual machine.

In addition to a predilection for secrecy, Apple is famous for exercising near absolute control over the Mac ecosystem. That extends to development of Java-related technologies, according to this post written two weeks ago by Java creator James Gosling.

"Lots of folks ask 'why doesn't sun just do the JDK for Mac?'" he writes. "The real answer is 'because Apple wanted to do it'. They've wanted to do all sorts of customization and integration that only they could do - because they own the OS."

In the same posing he writes: "Apple's JDK support is a part of my problem, and yes, I have their JDK6 from the ADC. It's hard to tell what the fundamental issue is, but it keeps feeling like the big problem is that developers aren't the 'Target Demographic' :-) iPods are nice, but they're not the defining center of my life...."

The revolt comes as other fanboys complain they get a blue screen of death when they try to install Leopard. Apple says here that many of the installation problems are the result of "third-party 'enhancement' software" installed on the machines that's not compatible with Leopard. The software in many cases turns out to be Application Enhancer, made by a company called Unsanity.

But other Mac users posting on private blogs and Apple's support forum say they're getting the BSOD even though they don't have Unsanity programs installed. Incompatibilities with DIVX Application Support and Tiger's RAID system may also be at play. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Google keeps legacy G Suite alive and free for personal use
    Phew!

    Google has quietly dropped its demand that users of its free G Suite legacy edition cough up to continue enjoying custom email domains and cloudy productivity tools.

    This story starts in 2006 with the launch of “Google Apps for Your Domain”, a bundle of services that included email, a calendar, Google Talk, and a website building tool. Beta users were offered the service at no cost, complete with the ability to use a custom domain if users let Google handle their MX record.

    The service evolved over the years and added more services, and in 2020 Google rebranded its online productivity offering as “Workspace”. Beta users got most of the updated offerings at no cost.

    Continue reading
  • GNU Compiler Collection adds support for China's LoongArch CPU family
    MIPS...ish is on the march in the Middle Kingdom

    Version 12.1 of the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) was released this month, and among its many changes is support for China's LoongArch processor architecture.

    The announcement of the release is here; the LoongArch port was accepted as recently as March.

    China's Academy of Sciences developed a family of MIPS-compatible microprocessors in the early 2000s. In 2010 the tech was spun out into a company callled Loongson Technology which today markets silicon under the brand "Godson". The company bills itself as working to develop technology that secures China and underpins its ability to innovate, a reflection of Beijing's believe that home-grown CPU architectures are critical to the nation's future.

    Continue reading
  • China’s COVID lockdowns bite e-commerce players
    CEO of e-tail market leader JD perhaps boldly points out wider economic impact of zero-virus stance

    The CEO of China’s top e-commerce company, JD, has pointed out the economic impact of China’s current COVID-19 lockdowns - and the news is not good.

    Speaking on the company’s Q1 2022 earnings call, JD Retail CEO Lei Xu said that the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic had brought positive effects for many Chinese e-tailers as buyer behaviour shifted to online purchases.

    But Lei said the current lengthy and strict lockdowns in Shanghai and Beijing, plus shorter restrictions in other large cities, have started to bite all online businesses as well as their real-world counterparts.

    Continue reading
  • Foxconn forms JV to build chip fab in Malaysia
    Can't say when, where, nor price tag. Has promised 40k wafers a month at between 28nm and 40nm

    Taiwanese contract manufacturer to the stars Foxconn is to build a chip fabrication plant in Malaysia.

    The planned factory will emit 12-inch wafers, with process nodes ranging from 28 to 40nm, and will have a capacity of 40,000 wafers a month. By way of comparison, semiconductor-centric analyst house IC Insights rates global wafer capacity at 21 million a month, and Taiwanese TSMC’s four “gigafabs” can each crank out 250,000 wafers a month.

    In terms of production volume and technology, this Malaysian facility will not therefore catapult Foxconn into the ranks of leading chipmakers.

    Continue reading
  • NASA's InSight doomed as Mars dust coats solar panels
    The little lander that couldn't (any longer)

    The Martian InSight lander will no longer be able to function within months as dust continues to pile up on its solar panels, starving it of energy, NASA reported on Tuesday.

    Launched from Earth in 2018, the six-metre-wide machine's mission was sent to study the Red Planet below its surface. InSight is armed with a range of instruments, including a robotic arm, seismometer, and a soil temperature sensor. Astronomers figured the data would help them understand how the rocky cores of planets in the Solar System formed and evolved over time.

    "InSight has transformed our understanding of the interiors of rocky planets and set the stage for future missions," Lori Glaze, director of NASA's Planetary Science Division, said in a statement. "We can apply what we've learned about Mars' inner structure to Earth, the Moon, Venus, and even rocky planets in other solar systems."

    Continue reading
  • The ‘substantial contributions’ Intel has promised to boost RISC-V adoption
    With the benefit of maybe revitalizing the x86 giant’s foundry business

    Analysis Here's something that would have seemed outlandish only a few years ago: to help fuel Intel's future growth, the x86 giant has vowed to do what it can to make the open-source RISC-V ISA worthy of widespread adoption.

    In a presentation, an Intel representative shared some details of how the chipmaker plans to contribute to RISC-V as part of its bet that the instruction set architecture will fuel growth for its revitalized contract chip manufacturing business.

    While Intel invested in RISC-V chip designer SiFive in 2018, the semiconductor titan's intentions with RISC-V evolved last year when it revealed that the contract manufacturing business key to its comeback, Intel Foundry Services, would be willing to make chips compatible with x86, Arm, and RISC-V ISAs. The chipmaker then announced in February it joined RISC-V International, the ISA's governing body, and launched a $1 billion innovation fund that will support chip designers, including those making RISC-V components.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022