Microsoft releases preview of its own OpenJDK release

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Microsoft is making available the Microsoft Build of OpenJDK, a long-term support distribution of the Java development kit that includes Java 11 binaries. The build will become the default Java 11 distribution for Azure services later this year.

With the release, Microsoft aims to improve Java support for its customers and developers. OpenJDK is the open source implementation of Java. The Microsoft Build of OpenJDK is open source based on a GPLv2+CE license and contains binaries for Java 11 based on OpenJDK 11.0.10+9. The distribution is available for x64 server and desktop systems on Windows, macOS, and Linux. In addition, Microsoft is announcing an early Java 16 binary for Windows on Arm, based on OpenJDK 16+36.

Microsoft claims to have contributed more than 50 patches to OpenJDK in the past eighteen months, including improvements to Windows packaging for macOS. In addition, the company would use half a million Java Virtual Machines internally, including for game servers; 140,000 of those would already be based on the Microsoft Build of OpenJDK.

The company wants to process feedback before the release of a production version and then support Java 11 until at least 2024. OpenJDK 17 binaries should also be released later this year. By this year, the Microsoft Build of OpenJDK should become the default distribution for Java 11 on Azure. Support for Java 8 is also available for Azure, but Microsoft advises customers to move to Java 11 or later versions.

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