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The status of Java on my machine:

Displaying poll results.
  9667 votes / 42%
  7287 votes / 32%
Does not apply (for reasons of availability, etc)
  713 votes / 3%
I don't know
  1296 votes / 5%
Java is delicious, when correctly prepared.
  3543 votes / 15%
22506 total votes.
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  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
  • This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.
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The status of Java on my machine:

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  • Missing option (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:25AM (#42616611)

    Currently running Minecraft.

    • lol, really the only reason I still have java enabled. Though it's disabled by default in my browser; except for when I need to run an app. For working with one of minecraft's nuclear mods. I'm starting to think Mojang is getting paid by Oracle . . . :P
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Likewise: I have the JRE enabled, but the browser plugin disabled. The browser plugin seems to be the real security issue.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      Hear hear! The 64-bit version, no less. The only browser plugin I have is Chrome, and with Click To Play, only things I decide to run in the browser get run.
    • I think running Minecraft could be considered " delicious, when correctly prepared." :)

    • by JanneM (7445)

      Exactly. Browser plugin disabled but not uninstalled, for one VPN connection I very occasionally need. Other than that, I use Java for Minecraft. Never use it for anything else.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Since I refuse to install it on any of my machines.

  • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:32AM (#42616695)

    Thing is, Java is enabled on my computer(s) but disabled in all of my browsers - that's been the setup for many months now.

    I liked the promise of Java, once upon a time. But, in practice, it's fallen terribly short of the mark in so many ways. It does have some utility in certain server environments, though.

    • by characterZer0 (138196) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:43AM (#42616825)

      JavaWebStart and applets are a security disaster. But what is the problem with Java desktop applictions?

      Yes, the used to be slow and ugly. That has not been the case for years. And if you use SWT, you can use native widgets.

      • Native widgets? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Ear Phantom (250084) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @02:27PM (#42618669)

        Nobody's invented a native widget in decades. The only reason SWT is still around is because of Eclipse, otherwise it would have died the same horrible death as all of IBM's other Java technologies.

        The problem with Java desktop applications is that the desktop itself is become irrelevant.

        Just compare the salaries of people writing Java desktop applications with those writing web apps or phone apps.

        Or don't take my advice...I've only been in the business of writing Java desktop apps for 15 years.

        • by tsotha (720379)

          Java desktop apps are still pretty common on internal company networks. They're easier to write and maintain than web apps. And while it's true they haven't kept up to date visually, companies generally don't care about aesthetics in non-customer-facing applications.

      • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @02:41PM (#42618841)

        But what is the problem with Java desktop applictions?

        I've got nothing against Java desktop apps per se, but they're uncommon. I would disagree with your assessment that they're no longer slow; the few I've used tend to be slow and have rather high memory requirements for what they do. Also, in my experience, they can be prone to significant memory leaks - not that Java's the only one with that problem.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Java is *not* prone to memory leaks. You have to actually make quite an effort to leak memory in a Java application. Of course, making those kind of mistakes is one of the first things n00bs seem to learn.

          • by petermgreen (876956) <[ten.knil01p] [ta] [hsawgulp]> on Friday January 18, 2013 @07:26AM (#42624399) Homepage

            I suspect the GP is being fairly loose with the term "memory leak" using it to mean applications whose memory usage goes up over time even though what the user is doing with the app isn't changing much.

            One problem is people think a garbage collector stops them having to worry about memory. That is true to an extent but programmers still have to be careful to avoid situations where an object is highly unlikely to be (or possiblly even can't be) used again but nevertheless there is a reference sitting arround to it somewhere.

            Another is that use of background garbage collection can create very undesirable behaviour under a multitasking OS and especially under a multitasking OS with swap and from the outside this behaviour looks very much like a "leak". AIUI If something stops the (low priority) gc thread from running then the application will continue to eat up memory until it hits a hard limit on the memory available (at which point non-background gc will be forced). Meanwhile the OS has no idea that the app doesn't really need this memory and so will do whatever is needed to make it available. Afaict this misbehaviour is why java runs with a relatively low hard memory limit by default (which papers over the problem to some extent but is far from an ideal soloution).

            • by Nimey (114278)

              Oh, that explains why I keep seeing Java apps that are self-limited to 100MB of RAM. Thanks for clarifying that.

            • This is why I think reference counting is a better way of memory management and is what Perl uses.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by danskal (878841)
          I would strongly disagree with your assessment that Java desktop apps are slow. I have been involved with writing three SWT apps that were very fast (admittedly, they weren't doing supercomputer work, but that's not the issue here).

          I also coded on them with Intellij Idea, which is written in Java and lightning fast for what it achieves.

          I can only conclude that the Java apps you have seen must be inferior, or just Eclipse.
          • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

            For whatever reason Java apps do tend to be slow. Maybe in raw computing performance it's okay, but for example I have an AMD dual core server with 8GB of RAM that can load Firefox in two to three seconds. If I try to open a Java app like JDownloader it takes 30+ seconds. That is with Java already loaded and running another app (PS3 Media Server). Both are not what I would call fast and responsive when you start poking their UIs.

            Desktop Java apps seem to mostly suck. On the server things might be different.

    • by Cimexus (1355033) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @08:38PM (#42621917)

      Right - I think this describes a lot of Slashdotters and am surprised this wasn't an option - "installed, but disabled in browser". Lots of software out there needs it. Minecraft being a prime example ... but there's plenty of other ones.

      • by fa2k (881632)

        I picked "Disabled". It can't really mean anything else, even though it's technically incorrect.

        (I suppose it could mean chmod -x /bin/java)

    • by _xeno_ (155264) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:28PM (#42622241) Homepage Journal

      Thing is, Java is enabled on my computer(s) but disabled in all of my browsers - that's been the setup for many months now.

      I just use the 64-bit JDK. It gets me the Java I need for work, and doesn't work in 32-bit browsers. Actually, I'm not sure the 64-bit version even includes the Java plugin. Which is just perfect, considering applets are useless and the only things I really need Java for are command-line development tools.

    • Java IS delicious (Score:5, Interesting)

      by coder111 (912060) <{moc.liamrr} {ta} {redoc}> on Friday January 18, 2013 @07:22AM (#42624373)
      I also have disabled the APPLETS in THE BROWSER, but that's not the same thing as getting rid of Java. Java and JDK are wonderful tools, and I've been developing in Java for past 15 years.

      I still think it's the best language/ecosystem to use for development of serverside enterprise applications. Nothing else is even close in terms of maturity and support and availability of tools, libraries, frameworks, etc. Some other languages have more and nicer features, but the ecosystem and support of Java is the most important asset it has.

      And yes, it was a sad day when Oracle took over...

    • Sometime in the last week or two I went to a website that didn't display properly and found that it was because I was missing the Java plugin for my browser. (Apparently the IT department at $DAYJOB had just blocked it, because they're really on the ball, or more likely I'd forgotten to reinstall it after the last time they updated the browser and just hadn't encountered any sites that used it in a while.)

      It's disappointing - Java has a fairly strong security model (except for the occasional implementation

  • Applets disabled (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pavon (30274) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:34AM (#42616729)

    The browser plugin is disabled as that is the source of most vulnerabilities, but I still use Java on a daily basis for other tasks. I imagine that is fairly common for software developers, and have no idea which poll option corresponds to that.

    • by Zarhan (415465)

      Same here. Not a developer but a bunch of tools that I have to use regularly use Java. Starting with Cisco's fabulous ASDM.

    • by tirerim (1108567)
      Yep, same here. I picked the last option...
    • The browser plugin is disabled as that is the source of most vulnerabilities, but I still use Java on a daily basis for other tasks. I imagine that is fairly common for software developers, and have no idea which poll option corresponds to that.

      I strongly suspect that's because the person who submitted this poll wasn't very knowledgeable on the subject and didn't understand the distinction between the browser plugin and the JRE.

    • by sdnoob (917382)

      same. i run java-based programs regularly but have java disabled in browsers.. nothing "mission critical" or anything, just a few utilities that there isn't a better (or is no) non-java option.

      i chose "Java is delicious, when correctly prepared." option because that is essentially correct. it's a great platform for some things, when implemented properly.

    • The browser plugin is disabled as that is the source of most vulnerabilities

      Me too. I have disabled the browser plugin since the security shenanigans in 2012 (August, IIRC). The only website I use that needs Java applets is the site of the Bank I have an account on. I enable the plugin just before going to that site, and disable it just after.

      • by mhotchin (791085)

        I have a similar problem, but a slightly different solution - I browse regularly using the 64 bit browser, java disabled. If a particular site needs it, I fire up the 32 bit version with it enabled. Two shortcuts, easy-peasy.

    • by IAmR007 (2539972)
      I have the plugin itself enabled, but NoScript means it only actually does anything if I request it to.
  • by slashmydots (2189826) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:44AM (#42616845)
    There was some CRM software called fishbowl that we tested. It's a huge Quickbooks gold partner so there's a gigantic company behind it. In the Program Files folder containing all info for that program, it contained an entire java installation basically. It ran as a standalone or plugin depending how you look at it and it didn't touch the browser or even technically be installed on the system. I think it was running Java 6v19 or something but that's fine because it's not touching the browser.
    WHY THE HELL DOESN'T EVERYONE DO THAT?! What is Open Office thinking, purposely installing a full blown copy of outdated software onto my machine when I may not even use it for browser-related tasks?! Ugh! I hope Oracle goes bankrupt. I really, really do. After this many years, they deserve it.
  • I deal with Scala on the JVM every day, but Java (the language) only intermittently.
  • It is (Score:5, Funny)

    by Sparticus789 (2625955) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:46AM (#42616867) Journal

    Java is currently all over my keyboard. Been trying to get it out of the crevices for years.

  • I gave up and never use it anymore. I don't play Minecraft either. Uninstalled. I can always redownload and reinstall if I need it.

  • But it's an app that completely locks down Java, using it's own locked-down bundled JRE. We don't allow any Java apps/applets other than the ones signed by us to run from our JRE.

  • In the world of Network Operations, it's impossible to disable Java at this time. Nearly every appliance we operate uses Java in some way in its administration GUI. Many of the home-grown applications here are also Java based. Vendors typically stray 5 to 10 years behind current market practices, so I don't see them abandoning Java any time soon. Heck, we're still waiting for some to abandon only support IE as a browser.

    What I'd like to do is limit if not outright block Java outside of our campus, but t

    • by umghhh (965931)
      Isolate __all__ issues??? How do you do that? I do not mean to glorify sun/oracle product because it has clearly issues but so does any software. I think Java is not as bad as some pay try to pretend it to be.
  • Sadly, I need it. From Raritan KVMs to jetdirect print servers to Brocade GUIs, I need it. Sadly, I don't get into those Brocades enough to learn the CLI.
  • After the recent bout of plugin vulnerabilities (plus what seems like a Firefox bug wrt Flash processes not dying) I disabled all plugins I do not actually use. So far, the only ones I've re-enabled are the VLC and WMP plugins, to watch H.264 videos.

    Which leaves Flash, Java, Silverlight, and something called "Uplay" disabled (I think some Ubisoft game installed that - fuckers). So far, I've missed out on enough Flash things that I'll probably re-enable it eventually, but it's been so long since I needed Jav

  • JRE or JDK? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by cpm99352 (939350) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @01:46PM (#42618215)
    As a Certified Java Programmer I uninstalled Java from my personal machines a week or so ago. I haven't professionally used it in about 5 years. Truly a sad day when Oracle took it over.
  • I don't have Java installed on any of my machines. Mac or Windows. I have no personal or professional use for it.

    I sorta wanted to play Minecraft, but nope, not installing Java just for that.

  • Pretty much constantly. I ignore the update request for a couple of days, then finally have the time to run it. Five minutes later, it wants another update.

    I've given up now, and only update when things that require Java stop working.

  • I haven't had Java installed on my machine for years. No useful web site seems to need it, and my own work is in Python, C/C++, Go, or JavaScript.

    • by menno_h (2670089)

      No useful web site seems to need it, and my own work is in Python, C/C++, Go, or JavaScript.

      Same thing here.
      I hate the language; real men compile their code to real binaries (or have it interpreted from human-readable text files).

  • I haven't had the plugin enabled in the browser for years. But I do have it installed, and use it on a daily basis as a IDE I use (AppCode by JetBrains) requires it, as well as some other desktop apps I use.

    Which is unfortunate, because every one of them IMO would be better served by not being written in Java.

    • by ockegheim (808089)

      I haven't had the plugin enabled in the browser for years.

      Sorry to appear clueless, and I do know there is a difference between Java and Javascript, but in Firefox say, does this mean in Preferences/Content the “Enable Javascript” box isn’t checked?

      Am I reckless if it’s enabled or paranoid if it’s disabled?

      • by mister_playboy (1474163) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @10:06PM (#42622475)

        JavaScript is entirely different from Java. "No relation" as they say.

        You can leave JS enabled... if you try turning it off, you'll see damn near ever website break to some degree.

        • by thoromyr (673646)

          ...and there was much rejoicing :)

          (the beauty of noscript is that you can selectively enable JS, though it'd be nice to have more flexibility that white/black list -- e.g., allow, but only for these domains)

      • by ockegheim (808089)
        Well how about that, I do! I just upgraded my Mac to Mountain Lion, opened Finale (music typesetting) to see if it ran, and it gave me this []. Guess I won’t be disabling it any time soon...
  • by girlinatrainingbra (2738457) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @04:47PM (#42620099)
    Missing options in this case apply to me
    -- Java was Never installed, thus did not have to be disabled -- had IceTea as the option on the version of Firefox/Iceweasel which I use. This option is not covered by "enabled", "disabled", or "not able to be installed". It's actually a completely different option
    -- Cowboy Neil drank my cup of hot Java!
    Are they holding Cowboy Neil incommunicado somewhere? Really? ;>)
  • Does not apply

    Many years ago I disable the Java in browser. Few years later I have observed that I'm not using the Java thing at all so I have uninstalled it.

    So it doesn't apply because I do not have Java on my machine at all.

    Looking back, except for OO.o and LibreOffice nobody's complained about its availability. And even in the OO.o/LO one can just click the error message away and it goes on working without problems. (IIRC the DB stuff and some plug-ins are written in Java, but I yet to spot any regression related

  • Which Java? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by PPH (736903) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @07:59PM (#42621653)

    The browser plugin is disabled. The standalone java VM is enabled.

  • by s.petry (762400) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:11PM (#42622131)

    If someone wanted to pwn me, they would not need Java to do it. Good user practices (stay off of warez and redtube) make me safer than disabling Java.

  • by the eric conspiracy (20178) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @09:13PM (#42622143)


  • open source programs are so entangled with java its extremely hard to be free of it. I know there are options, but are they really better, at all?

  • Java programs I use (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mister_playboy (1474163) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @10:09PM (#42622493)

    I've never had the Java browser plugin installed on this computer, but I do make use of Java desktop programs quite often:


    so Java is enabled.

    • by devent (1627873) on Sunday January 20, 2013 @11:14AM (#42639061) Homepage

      LibreOffice is not a Java program. LibreOffice is not a Java program. LibreOffice is not a Java program. LibreOffice is not a Java program. The same with OpenOffice.

      (if you mean you need the Java for database access in LibreOffice, then that's something different. But since you wrote "Java desktop programs"...)

  • Lunixmachine and NoScript blocking not only Java applets (which have become very rare in the course of the last 15 years) but any sort of unwanted #+%&$! from being executed by the browser - so what's all that fear of Java about? Seriously, having read all the bullshit, mainstream media reported about the coming Javarmageddon, I don't think anyone has any clue about systems security or even responsible use of the interwebs nowadays. Assuming that people blindly rely on AV snakeoil and even those giving
  • This is finally giving me the kick in the pants needed to work on replacing a friend's old Java applet with DHTML. But I need Java enabled to compare how the applet works to what I'm making.

  • by ctrl-alt-canc (977108) on Friday January 18, 2013 @03:55AM (#42623777)
    ...and is based on dalvik, you insensitive clod!
  • I don't put the cup on top of my computer. But the status is "with cream and sugar".
  • by Y2KDragon (525979) on Friday January 18, 2013 @08:07AM (#42624529)
    But I'm on my machine at the office. And while is SAYS that Java is enable and running, it is suspect to say the least. I have applications that require Java that aren't running right now, and other applications that should be there have mysteriously disappeared overnight. Seems that the people in charge of administering my desktop at work believe in "security by removal". If it's at risk, delete it. No, we don't bother with patching. We'll just wait for people to complain about things not working, make them go through the whole justification an approval process, then maybe get around to putting the current version on. Because, you know, it's safer that way.
  • Bought a new rig two weeks ago, haven't installed it; probably won't ever need it.

  • Java was uninstalled on my PCs since a long time. I don't need that [choose the words]. But the applications using Java? NOPE: when it's out it's out. :)
  • I have java installed, but it's configured to run only when I click-to-play. I need java for my stock trading platform and also to access some old PIX firewalls. I cannot disable it completely.

  • Too many web sites won't work without Java and/or Flash so I use Firefox and NoScript.
    • Are you sure you're not confusing Java and Javascript?
      • by djl4570 (801529)
        This has been discussed elsewhere in the thread. NoScript will Forbid Java, Flash, Silverlight, and other plugins. These are on the Options/Embeddings tab.
        • by Yosho (135835)

          He probably says that because you said "many web sites won't work without Java". I can hardly even actually remember the last time I was on a web site that required Java -- and that one was my company's web-based VPN. Otherwise, I don't think I've used an applet in the last decade...

          • by djl4570 (801529)
            You're right. It would have been more accurate to say "Many web sites won't work without Java script."
  • I think there should be an option for "uninstalled/not installed". When I got my new computer I didn't install Java because there where almost no pages I ever stumbled upon that used it, so why add a vulnerability vector for so little functionality?
  • I keep my JREs (32- and 64-bit v7; I use some non-browser programs of both bitnesses) updated and don't even bother shutting off the browser plugin. This is because

    1) thanks to precautions (and a good adblocker that I have a whitelist for) I've /never/ gotten an infection from the Internet[1], and
    2) once in a great while I visit a site where I actually want to run a Java applet.

    [1] even on my work computer which I ran for three-ish years without any antivirus (because it was an old machine and the AV deman

  • Not installed on our FreeBSD computing farm for simple lack of need. On a couple of FreeBSD desktop machines, I've installed it a while ago, but since it was such an inconvenience to jump through hoops to manually get the distfiles directly from Oracle (due to weird licensing issues), and since the ports were always lagging behind the officially released JDK versions, I've pkg_delete(ed) Java again soon after. I'm glad I did, so I was not affected by the recent string of Java vulnerabilities.
  • ...On all my Windows machines. And yes, I do know the difference between the browser plugins and the platform, but since I don't run any apps that use it, it seemed to be just cruft. Not on my OpenBSD server and Ubuntu desktop either for the same reasons.

    By some miracle we're not doing any Java stuff at work either so I can continue to not have it installed.

  • ... make answers live out-of-body experiences. Be kind to your answers, contextualize.
  • I'm surprised at the numbers. Out of curiosity, what are you folks who don't have Java installed using for a word processor?

    • by jgrahn (181062)

      I'm surprised at the numbers. Out of curiosity, what are you folks who don't have Java installed using for a word processor?

      In my case, Emacs. Unless you don't count writing plain text, HTML or troff documents as "word processing"; then I'm not doing it at all.

  • I use it for Air Video Server on my home theater PC, which does a very nice job of transcoding my hoard of MKVs to my wife's iPad, which then serves very nicely as a little bedroom TV for watching movies. Otherwise it gets used for basically nothing, ever.

"A car is just a big purse on wheels." -- Johanna Reynolds


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