It is less than a year until support for Java 7 finally comes to an end, and Microsoft has reminded users running apps in the language on its cloud that it is time to move on.
Community support for Java 7 is currently set to end on 29 July 2022 and while the code won't suddenly stop working on Microsoft's Azure App Service, it will no longer receive updates or security patches.
Microsoft's advice is to bite the bullet and make the jump to Java 8 or 11. The latter, in the LTS release of Microsoft's OpenJDK build, should be supported by the software giant until at least October 2024. The next LTS version, Java 17 (currently in release candidate status at OpenJDK), will get support from Microsoft, in Microsoft Build form, until at least September 2027.
Java 7 is growing somewhat long in the tooth, although users could be forgiven for having put off migration amid arguments over licencing that have taken place during the last decade.
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Microsoft has long acknowledged the importance of Java in its ecosystem and officially signed up with OpenJDK in 2019. It had a flirtation during the Ballmer era via subsidiary Microsoft Open Technologies, but 2019's sign-off was the real deal. The company followed up with the Microsoft Build of OpenJDK with LTS binaries for Java 11 for macOS, Linux, and Windows.
The Azure App Service is all about hosting web applications. Ruby, Python, and PHP are among the languages supported as well as the obvious .NET and, of course, Java. However, Java versions 8 and 11 are where it's at as far as Microsoft is concerned, to the point where Java 7 might be hidden in its Stack Settings to stop users taking dependencies on runtimes the company would prefer they didn't.
Shifting to Java 8 could prove a minor headache, depending on the APIs used. However, Microsoft's warning is a reminder that a migration is most definitely not an if, but a when. ®