Software update: Sun Java 6.0 update 18

Sun has released the eighteenth update for both the Java Standard Edition 6.0 development kit and runtime environment, with the exact version number set to 1.6.0_18-b07. The developers have provided new versions of various parts and completed a list of bugs. The list of changes for this eighteenth update is as follows:

Changes in 1.6.0_18 (6u18)

The full internal version number for this update release is 1.6.0_18-b07 (where “b” means “build”). The external version number is 6u18.

OlsonData 2009s
6u18 contains Olson time zone data version 2009s. For more information, refer to Timezone Data Versions in the JRE Software.

Security Baseline
6u18 specifies the following security baselines for use with Java Plug-in technology:

JRE Family Version 5.0
Java SE Security Baseline 1.5.0_22
Java for Business Security Baseline 1.5.0_22

JRE Family Version 1.4.2
Java SE Security Baseline 1.4.2_19
Java for Business Security Baseline 1.4.2_24

On October 30, 2008, Java SE 1.4.2 reached its end of service life with the release of 1.4.2_19. Future revisions of Java SE 1.4.2 (1.4.2_20 and above) include the Access Only option and are available to Java for Business subscribers. For more information about the security baseline, see Deploying Java Applets With Family JRE Versions in Java Plug-in for Internet Explorer.

Additional Supported System Configurations
For 6u18, support has been added for the following system configurations:

  • Ubuntu 8.04 LTS Desktop Edition for both JFB and Java SE (x86) in 32-bit
  • SLES 11
  • Windows 7 support is now available
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.3

VisualVM 1.2
VisualVM 1.2 is included in 1.6.0_18. VisualVM 1.2 introduces the following features and enhancements:

  • Sampling CPU and Memory profiler plugin (VisualVM-Sampler available on Plugins Center)
  • Support for multiple jstatd connections on a single local/remote host
  • New charts with dynamic tooltips, public Charts API for plugins
  • Monitor and Threads tab are saved into Application Snapshot
  • Application Snapshots can be opened using the Load action or –openfile parameter
  • Properties UI for Applications, Hosts and Snapshots, public Properties API for plugins
  • Customizable proxy settings in Options dialog
  • UI for customizing SSL certificates in Options dialog (VisualVM-Security available on Plugins Center)
  • Enhanced JMX API to enable customizing JMX environment/connections by plugins
  • Display name defined by the monitored application: property
  • Improved performance for remote X sessions
  • Automatic detection of broken jvmstat on Windows (username capitalization vs. hsperfdata file)
  • Various UI improvements: main menu, toolbar and context menu; system (theme) colors; About dialog, profiler snapshots, HeapWalker

Java DB
Java DB is included in 1.6.0_18. Java DB introduces the following improvements:

  • SQL Roles
  • Generated Columns
  • LOB Improvements
  • Replication of encrypted databases
  • In memory back end
  • Better updating of optimizer statistics
  • Service tag aware installers

Note that Java DB is distributed with the JDK and not JRE. Java DB 10.2 and Java DB 10.3 have reached EOL.

Performance Improvements

6u18 introduces improvements in the following areas:

  • Faster jar File Creation
    The fix of a long standing bug related to jar file creation has greatly improved creation time. For example, for a given jar file, it is possible that you might see a creation time improvement in the range of 20 percent. (Refer to 6496274.)
  • Java Hotspot VM 16.0
    6u18 includes version 16.0 of the Java HotSpot Virtual Machine. Contributing to increased performance in this release are several enhancements in Java HotSpot VM 16.0.
  • Application Startup Improvements
    • Better startup of applications and applets on systems where D3D is used. Savings are up to 100-200ms depending on application and the system. (Refer to 6891435.)
    • Revised support for pre-verification or FX runtime. Improves warm start of typical FX applications by up to 15 percent. (Refer to 6894899.)
    • Concurrent download of jars for webstart applications and applets.
    • Number of other startup improvements for UI applications and applets. (Refer to 6753173, 6896857, 6892138, 6868503, 6874881, 6874336, 6891293 and 6895250.)
  • Runtime Performance Improvements for UI Applications
    • Improved performance of applications using translucent windows. (Refer to 6794764.)
    • Better performance and smaller memory consumption by text rasterizer. (Refer to 6891557 and 6891551.)
    • Faster processing of PNG images. (Refer to 6549882.)
  • Ability to Read Larger .zip Files
    As of this update release, it is possible to read .zip files of sizes up to 4 gigabytes. (Refer to 6860950.)

Deployment Updates
Java Web Start now implements JSR-056 version 6.0.18.

JSR-173 StAX 1.2 API Upgrade
6u18 includes an upgrade to minor revision 1.2 of JSR-173 Streaming API for XML (StAX) which was a result of Maintenance Reviews 2 and 3. You can find more details about these Maintenance Reviews in the JSR 173 Change Log. Also refer to 6861589. The StAX 1.2 upgrade maintains binary and source compatibility. Existing binaries compiled on StAX 1.0 will continue to run on StAX 1.2. Programs written to StAX 1.0 will continue to compile to StAX 1.2. There will be a minor behavioral difference if deprecated methods are used. In this case, there will be deprecation warnings at compilation. Other than these warning messages, the StAX 1.2 upgrade maintains behavioral compatibility.

Bug Fixes
This feature release does not contain any new fixes for security vulnerabilities to its previous release, Java SE 6 Update 17. Users who have Java SE 6 Update 17 have the latest security fixes and do not need to upgrade to this release to be current on security fixes.

Version number6.0 update 18
Release statusFinal
Operating systemsWindows 7, Windows 7 x64, Windows 2000, Linux, Windows XP, Linux x86, Solaris, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP x64, Windows Server 2003 x64, Linux AMD64, Windows Vista, Windows Vista x64, Windows Server 2008
License typeConditions (GNU/BSD/etc.)