Which Java 7 (or 8) Version Should I Deploy?

Ha! Oracle released three new Java updates on October 14th. The obvious question is: Which Java update should I apply?

Java 7 Update 71

Java 7 Update 72

Java 8 Update 25

The answer, as usual, depends on the needs of your organization. If you have been using Java 7 then it’s safe to continue using that Java family for now. I would, however, recommend that you deploy Java 8 to a few “test” computers so that you can prepare for the inevitable move to Java 8. It’s important to note that Java 7 reaches its EOL (End of Life) in April, 2015.

If you’re sticking with Java 7 then Oracle recommends that you deploy Update 71. From Oracle: “[Update 71] is the intended upgrade for most users.” This update contains only security fixes.

As far as Update 72 Oracle has this to say:”[Update 72] is available for developers and users requiring additional non-security improvements or for testing updated features. You should use 7u72 if you are facing any of the specific issues as noted in its release notes, and also as part of your quality assurance cycles. These improvements and features are planned to appear as part of the next scheduled CPU in January 2015.”

The PDQ Deploy Package Library has added Update 71 for Java 7 and Update 25 for Java 8. If you have Auto Deployments configured for Java then these are the versions that will (by default) be deployed.

blog-javau71-autodeployment

If there is a sufficient demand then we will certainly add Update 72 to the Package Library although it would be a separate package altogether, which means that PDQ Deploy users who have Auto Deployments configured for Java 7 wouldn’t have Update 72 applied as a natural upgrade to earlier Java 7 versions.

If you use the Collection Library in PDQ Inventory then you may notice that computers running Update 71 or Update 72 will be placed in the Java 7 (Latest) collections. (See image below.)

blog-java7u71-collections

If you do need to use Java in your organization it is definitely worth the effort to test Java 8. Find out which (if any) of your Java applications or websites don’t work with it. It’s important to note that Oracle has now made Java 8 the default Java download on their site. If you use Java 8 then it is recommended to deploy Update 25.

Use PDQ Deploy to silently install Java in your environment, it’s what we’re here for after all!