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"Java is a programming language originally developed by Sun Microsystems and released in 1995 as a core component of Sun Microsystems' Java platform. The language derives much of its syntax from C and C++ but has a simpler object model and fewer low-level facilities. Java applications are typically compiled to bytecode that can run on any Java virtual machine (JVM) regardless of computer architecture." — Wikipedia article


The only supported JVM implementation in Arch Linux is the open source OpenJDK. It is nearly perfect, and it should not be necessary to install Oracle's proprietary version of Java. If you want to install Oracle Java alongside OpenJDK, see #JDK-compat.

Note: After installation, the Java environment will need recognized by the shell ($PATH variable and $JAVA_HOME). This can be done from the command line by sourcing /etc/profile, and for Desktop Environments it is likely a logout/login will be necessary.


The OpenJDK Java runtime environment (JRE) can be installed with the package jre7-openjdk, available in the official repositories. There is also a Java development kit (JDK) available with the package jdk7-openjdk. Sources are available with the package openjdk7-src.

If you want Java functionality in browsers (Java applets and Java Web Start), install icedtea-web-java7. For more details see Browser plugins#Java (IcedTea).

Flagging packages as out-of-date

Oracle Java SE

The Oracle implementations of JRE and JDK are available in the AUR: jreAUR and jdkAUR.

Java SE 6/7

The AUR contains jre6AUR/jre7AUR and jdk6AUR/jdk7AUR, which are the Oracle implementations of Java SE 6 and Java SE 7.


The Oracle JDK (6 and 7) can also be installed in parallel with another Java installation (for example OpenJDK). The packages can be found in the AUR: jdk6-compatAUR and jdk7-compatAUR.

Oracle JRockit

JRockit is a JIT version of Java, provided by Oracle and available as jrockitAUR from the AUR.


VMkit is an LLVM-based framework for JIT virtual machines. J3 is a JVM running on VMkit. The webpage can be found here: vmkit. J3 depends on the GNU classpath libraries, but may also work with the Apache class path libraries.

Parrot VM

Parrot is a VM that offers experimental support for Java through two different methods: Either as a Java VM bytecode translator or as a Java compiler targeting the Parrot VM. parrot is available in the official repositories and parrot-gitAUR in the AUR.



Due to the fact that the JDBC-drivers often use the port in the URL to establish a connection to the database, it is considered "remote" (i.e., MySQL does not listen to the port as per its default settings) despite the fact that they are possibly running on the same host, Thus, to use JDBC and MySQL you should enable remote access to MySQL, following instructions in MySQL article.

Java sound with PulseAudio

Note: This procedure is likely to be relevant for previous version of Java (Java 6) only.

By default, Java and PulseAudio do not get along very well with each other, but this is easy to fix using padsp.

(These paths are correct for Sun's Java, you will need to change the paths for OpenJDK)

First, rename the java binary to java.bin

# mv /opt/java/jre/bin/java /opt/java/jre/bin/java.bin

Then, create a new launcher script at /opt/java/jre/bin/java

padsp /opt/java/jre/bin/java.bin "$@"

Finally, make the launcher script executable

# chmod +x /opt/java/jre/bin/java

You will need to redo this process on each update of Java.

You can also try replacing padsp with aoss, which can also fix it under standard ALSA as well as in Pulse, do what works best. I must warn everyone that these hacks sometimes work perfectly, but are sometimes very unstable as well.

Impersonate another window manager

You may use the wmname from to make the JVM believe you are running a different window manager. This may solve a rendering issue of Java GUIs occurring in window managers like Awesome or Dwm.

$ wmname LG3D

You must restart the application in question after issuing the wmname command.

This works because the JVM contains a hard-coded list of known, non-re-parenting window managers. For maximum irony, some users prefer to impersonate LG3D, the non-re-parenting window manager written by Sun, in Java.

Illegible fonts

In addition to the suggestions mentioned below in #Better_font_rendering, some fonts may still not be legible afterwards. If this is the case, there is a good chance Microsoft fonts are being used. Install ttf-ms-fontsAUR from the AUR.

Missing dependencies

If you encounter, often when installing from the AUR, a missing dependency of java-runtime, you might need to install some form of jdk.

Tips and tricks

Note: Suggestions in this section are applicable to all applications, using explicitly installed (external) Java runtime. Some applications are bundled with own (private) runtime or use own mechanics for GUI, font rendering, etc., so none of written below is guaranteed to work.

Behavior of most Java applications can be controlled by supplying predefined variables to Java runtime. From this forum post, a way to do it consists of adding the following line in your ~/.bashrc (or /etc/profile.d/ to affect programs that are not run by sourcing ~/.bashrc, e.g., launching a program from Gnome's Applications view):

export _JAVA_OPTIONS="-D<option 1> -D<option 2>..."

For example, to use system anti-aliased fonts and make swing use the GTK look and feel:

export _JAVA_OPTIONS='-Dawt.useSystemAAFontSettings=on -Dswing.aatext=true'

Better font rendering

Both closed source and open source implementations of Java are known to have improperly implemented anti-aliasing of fonts. This can be fixed with the following options: awt.useSystemAAFontSettings=on, swing.aatext=true

GTK LookAndFeel

If your Java programs look ugly, you may want to set up the default look and feel for the swing components:

Some stubborn Java programs insist on using the cross platform Metal look and feel. In some of these cases you can force these apps to use the GTK look and feel by setting the following property:

Symlinks change

Typically, OpenJDK installation creates symlinks in /usr/bin for java, javac ... etc. If you want to change these symlinks to any other JDK (e.g. if you installed environment-compat packages of Oracle JDK), this script might be handy for you.