Monday, 26 November 2018

Amazon are trying to make sure that Java is available for free to its users in the long run with the introduction of Amazon Corretto. Whilst Oracle still owns the Java trademark, Java is available to everyone. Amazon Web Services (a subsidiary of Amazon.com) is now offering Amazon Corretto, a no cost distribution of OpenJDK for AWS customers and anyone else who wants it. Arun Gupta, principal open-source technologist at Amazon wrote that the solution is a no-cost, multi-platform, production-ready distribution of the OpenJDK.

He says that “Java is one of the most popular languages in use by AWS customers, and we are committed to supporting Java and keeping it free.”

“Amazon has a long and deep history with Java,” according to James Gosling, a founder and lead designer of the Java programming language and a current AWS distinguished engineer. “I’m thrilled to see the work of our internal mission-critical Java team being made available to the rest of the world.”

Amazon already heavily relies on Corretto internally. They are making the software available to their customers for use in the cloud, or to anyone who wants to use it on premises or locally, on various platforms, including Amazon Linux 2, Microsoft Windows, and mac OS, and as a Docker image. They have made this decision as earlier this year, Oracle announced that it will no longer offer free long-term support for OpenJDK after January 2019. This decision appears to be indicative of Oracle focusing on paying customers over those who use their services for free.

As a result of this, those who need support for Java have to pay vendors such as Oracle, IBM or Red Hat for security fixes and updates. This has now changed due to AWS. Last month they announced that they will offer free long-term support for OpenJDK in Amazon Linux 2 until at least June 30 2023 and the company is working on Corretto 11, which will be available until at least August 2024.

Corretto 8, the initial preview release, corresponds to OpenJDK 8, which should hit general availability in Q1 2019. By then, the platform options will expand to include Ubuntu and Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

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