How to keep Java up to date on your computer

Java is a popular programming language that is used to run a variety of software applications and programs. The beauty of Java, is that it allows software developers to write programs that can be run on a variety of Operating Systems, including Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.  Java has come under fire in recent years as being not very secure.  Most of the reported issues, however, are with the browser add-on (used to run applets) and don’t affect desktop applications (see my blog post titled: How does Java Security Flaw affect Desktop Applications, for more information).  Having said that, Java, like any other software, receives periodic updates to fix potential security and other issues, and so it is important to keep your Java version up to date.

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Java on Mac OS X

This is a follow up to another Blog post I made:

How does Java Security Flaw affect Desktop Applications

Java has been in the news a lot in the past few days, and not for good reasons. A major security flaw was found in the Java browser plugin, and a fix has subsequently been released by Oracle. This has left a lot of computer users wondering whether they have Java on their computer, which version they might have, and which version should they have.

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How does Java Security Flaw affect Desktop Applications

There have been several articles in the past few days discussing the Java Security flaw, and the subsequent fix by Oracle.  A lot of these articles recommend removing Java, and basically inciting a fear of Java.  As a Java developer, these blanket statements about Java obviously have me concerned.  When assessing the threat, I think it is best to first understand what Java is and how it used, before purging Java from all computers.

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Installing Java on Windows

Java is a programming language (originally developed by Sun, now managed by Oracle), used to create web applications, desktop applications and applets. In order to run Java desktop applications, or Java applets, you need to have a Java Runtime Environment (JRE) and/or Java Plugin, installed on your computer. If you are running Windows, getting the JRE and Plugin, is very easy.

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