Oracle Java Development Kit 8 (JDK) licensing will be changing in January 2019. While Oracle JD Edwards has not released an official statement, we were anxious to know the effect this might have on customers. So, we did a little digging. All signs point to business as usual for Oracle's commercial customers. The impact of this licensing change will be felt by customers who do not currently use Oracle support.
Open source and commercial licensing
Oracle has been moving Java to a combination of open source and commercial licensing that replaces the former Binary Code License (BCL). The commercial license is called Oracle JDK. If you are familiar with WebLogic licensing, you will see the similarities. JD Edwards customers use My Oracle Support or Oracle Technology Network (OTN) to obtain Java SE as part of WebLogic. We don't see this process changing. The free open source component—OpenJDK—started with Java 9 and will continue to be used by Linux.
Oracle JDK support
As of November 2018, the JD Edwards EnterpriseOne statement of direction indicates that Oracle JDK 8 will be certified/supported. This is good news for IBM platforms like IBM i or AIX as well since IBM JDK 8 is used for WebSphere/Enterprise servers. But neither Oracle JDK 11 nor OpenJDK have yet been listed. Our assumption is that commercial customers will continue to use the Oracle JDK 8 patches available. Based on the "Oracle Java Se Support Roadmap", we expect JD Edwards EnterpriseOne will certify/support Oracle JDK 11 sometime in the future though since it is considered a Long-Term Support (LTS) release.
Auto update not included
The most noticeable change will be seen in Java SE 8 desktop support. It will no longer include an auto update feature to new releases like the Java Plugin and Java Web Start. Customers who use EnterpriseOne's Change Assistant tool should take notice since it requires Java Web Start. Oracle will encourage you to use packaging options to deliver Java applications as stand-alone apps with custom runtimes. This means in the future you won’t likely need to download the correct JDK/JRE level for Change Assistant. We will continue to watch for details from Oracle.
Here are a few good resources to help you prepare: