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Release Notes

J2SE™ Development Kit (JDK) 5.0-1
for the OpenVMS Alpha Operating System

for the Java™ Platform

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Thank you for downloading the J2SE™ Development Kit (JDK) 5.0-1 for the OpenVMS Alpha Operating System for the Java™ Platform (hereafter called simply the JDK). For 5.0, Sun Microsystems has reverted to the terminology JDK and JRE. These release notes contain installation instructions, new features, known issues, and other information specific to this release of the OpenVMS Alpha port of Sun Microsystems' Java™ 2 Platform Standard Edition (J2SE). In addition to these release notes, the release-independent User Guide contains information on getting started using the JDK, using the Fast VM, using the Plug-in, and troubleshooting. This kit can be used to develop and run Java™ applets and programs on OpenVMS Alpha systems, Version 7.3-2 and higher.

The JDK 5.0-1 kit implements the J2SE 5.0 (a.k.a 1.5.0), and is based on Sun's J2SE 1.5.0_04 Solaris Reference Release. It passes all the tests in Sun's Java Compatibility Kit test suite (JCK V1.5a).

This kit contains two virtual machines:

  • The classic virtual machine (classic VM, the virtual machine shipped with prior releases) is based on Sun's reference implementation. The classic VM contains Just-In-Time (JIT) compiler technology, but does not have the performance of the Fast Virtual Machine (Fast VM). However, it provides additional debugging support not currently available in the Fast VM.
  • The Fast Virtual Machine is Just-In-Time (JIT) compiler technology designed to provide optimal Java runtime performance on OpenVMS Alpha systems. The Fast VM offers significant performance advantages over the Classic JIT. Because the Fast VM is included in this kit, it is not provided as a separate kit. To learn more about the Fast VM, refer to Using the Fast VM in the User Guide.

You select which virtual machine (hereafter called VM) to use when you set up your Java environment. To set up your environment, use one of the following two commands, as described in Setting Up the Java Environment in the User Guide:

$ @SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150.COM]JAVA$150_SETUP      ! Use the classic VM

Note: For simplicity, these release notes assume you installed the JDK using the default location and therefore reference SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150] throughout the text. However, if you specified a destination and installed the kit in that alternate location, substitute that location for the default while reading the examples in this document.

There is always a copy of JAVA$150_SETUP.COM located in the SYS$MANAGER directory. If you are not sure where the JDK was installed, you can always safely use:


IMPORTANT: Please make sure you understand the Copyright (copyright.html, installed file) and License (license.html, installed file) information before using this release.

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New Features

The following is a list of new features from Sun, in JDK 5.0. HP recommends that you read Sun's Java 2 Platform Standard Edition (J2SE) Documentation for a thorough description of all new features and enhancements available in the J2SE 5.0.

  • New language updates: Metadata, Generics, Enumerated types, Autoboxing of primitive types

  • New JVM Monitoring and Management API (not fully supported)

  • Improved out-of-box performance

  • New (but compatible) default Java look and feel

Other noteworthy changes include:

  • New core XML support including: XML 1.1 with Namespaces, XML Schema, SAX 2.0.2, DOM Level 3 Support and XSLT with a fast XLSTC compiler.

  • 32-bit supplementary character support added to the platform as part of the transition to Unicode 4.0 support.

For a complete list of features introduced in 5.0 since the previous major release (1.4), refer to the Summary of New Features and Enhancements on Sun's site.

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JDK v 5.0-1 New Features

JDK 5.0-1 is the initial release for the OpenVMS Alpha Operating System.

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JDK 5.0-1 is compatible with previous SDK versions. Most existing programs will run on the 1.5.0 platform. However, some important incompatibilities do exist and are thoroughly discussed in Sun's Java 2 Platform Compatibility with Previous Releases document. For specific J2SE 5.0 incompatibilities refer to the section, Incompatibilities in the Java 2 Platform Standard Edition 5.0 (since 1.4.2).

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The following sections describe how to install the JDK 5.0 kit on your OpenVMS Alpha system.


The prerequisites for running this kit are:

  • JDK 5.0 must be installed on an ODS-5 formatted disk.

  • OpenVMS Alpha V7.3-2 or higher. See Mandatory Patches.

  • TCP/IP Services for OpenVMS Alpha V5.3 with latest ECO or TCP/IP 5.4 with latest ECO for OpenVMS Alpha V7.3-2 or TCP/IP V5.5 with latest ECO for OpenVMS Alpha V8.2.
    Note: We do not support MultiNet directly. All of our testing and certification is done using TCP/IP Services for OpenVMS; however, because we do not call UCX directly and use only the socket functions available from HP C, MultiNet may work with this JDK.

  • DECWindows Motif V1.2-6, if you plan on AWT use.

Mandatory Patches

To successfully install and run the JDK for OpenVMS Alpha, you must install prerequisite patches for your OpenVMS version (See the list below. Install the patch versions listed, or later, if superseded.). These patches can be downloaded from the IT Resource Center (ITRC) at http://www2.itrc.hp.com/. Note: First-time users must register.

Patches for OpenVMS Alpha V7.3-2
  • All Rating 1 ECOs (search keyword = 'Install_1' )
  • TCPIP_ECO-V0504 (TCP/IP V5.4 and latest ECO Alpha) or TCPIP_ECO-V0503 (TCP/IP V5.3 and latest ECO Alpha)
Patches for OpenVMS Alpha V8.2
  • All Rating 1 ECOs (search keyword = 'Install_1' )
  • TCPIP-V0505 (TCP/IP V5.5 and latest ECO Alpha)

For more information, refer to the patch installation page on the Web site.

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Installing the Kit

To install the JDK kit:

  1. Download and install the prerequisite ECOs.

  2. Download the file DEC-AXPVMS-JAVA150-V0105-1-1.PCSI_SFX_AXPEXE (~168,000 blocks) from our Software Download web page and execute it to unpack it and obtain the original DEC-AXPVMS-JAVA150-V0105-1-1.PCSI file (~474,000 blocks):

    Note: If you are downloading the file to an ODS-5 disk, the unpacking operation might convert the filename into lower case. Convert it to upper case before proceeding; for example:

    $ RENAME dec-axpvms-java150-v0105-1-1.pcsi -

    Note: You can download the file and expand to .PCSI wherever you like; however, the installation (Product Install) must be done onto an ODS-5 formatted disk.

  3. To extract a local copy of these Release Notes before installing the JDK:

         /SOURCE=[directory_where_you_put_the_PCSI_file] -
  4. Install the JDK kit from the .PCSI file obtained, using the PCSI (POLYCENTER Software Installation) utility PRODUCT command:

    By default, the JDK gets installed in root directory SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150]. As an alternative to installing the kit in the default location SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150], you can specify /DESTINATION=device-name:[directory-name] on the PRODUCT command line, and the kit will be installed at that specified location.

    Remember: JDK 5.0 must be installed onto an ODS-5 formatted disk.

    Also, the following files are installed by the PCSI utility with a file attribute of ARCHIVE:


    If a file having any of these names already exists on the system, the installation process renames it to a new name with a file type ending in _OLD, before loading the new copy from the kit. Only the latest version of the existing file is preserved (by being renamed to file.type_old) before PCSI deletes all remaining versions.

    For example, an existing SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150.COM]JAVA$150_SETUP.COM is renamed to SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150.COM]JAVA$150_SETUP.COM_OLD before the new copy is copied from the kit.

    If you have previously personalized any of these files, you might need to merge your personalizations with the new copies.


    • The PCSI PRODUCT tool for OpenVMS Alpha installs different versions of the JDK using unique product names. For example:

      • SDK v 1.2.2-n is installed as product JAVA122
      • SDK v 1.3.1-n is installed as product JAVA131
      • SDK v 1.4.1-n is installed as product JAVA141
      • SDK v 1.4.2-n is installed as product JAVA142
      • JDK 5.0-n is installed as product JAVA150

      Therefore, if you decide to update to an earlier or later version of the JDK within the same product, you should not use the PCSI PRODUCT REMOVE command. Instead, use the PRODUCT INSTALL of the desired kit. By following these instructions you avoid potential shared-file conflicts.

    • Installing in the SYS$COMMON area requires privileges. The SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150] directory is the typical location for the installation of this kit.

  5. To use JDK 5.0, you must first set up the Java environment. You can select either the Fast VM or the classic VM as your virtual machine.

    Because you can have multiple JDK versions installed on your OpenVMS system, and because you can change from one version to the other, you need to follow specific steps to set up your Java environment properly. To run the command procedure to do this, refer to Setting Up the Java Environment in the User Guide.

  6. Refer to the User Guide for additional information on how to use this product in an OpenVMS environment. Local copies of these Release Notes and User Guide are installed at SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150.DOCS]RELEASE_NOTES.HTML and SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150.DOCS]USER_GUIDE.HTML, respectively.

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Determining Your Installed Version

After downloading, installing, and running the command procedure to set up the Java environment, use the java -fullversion command to display the version. For example:

$ java -fullversion
  java full version "1.5.0-n"

where n identifies the specific JDK 5.0 that is installed.

To switch from one version to another, see Switching Versions in the User Guide.

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Contents of the JDK

This section provides a general summary of the files and directories contained in the JDK once it has been installed on your system.

Note: For simplicity, these release notes assume you installed the JDK using the default location and therefore reference SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150] throughout the text. However, if you specified a destination and installed the kit in that alternate location, substitute that location for the default while reading the examples in this document.

Development Tools


This area contains programs that will help you develop, execute, debug, and document programs written in the Java programming language. For further information, see Sun's Tools and Utilities page.

Important: Review the information in the Interpreting Commands and OpenVMS Operating System Differences table in the User Guide to understand fully the nuances and differences in JDK 5.0 on OpenVMS Alpha.

Runtime Environment (JRE)


An implementation of the Runtime Environment (JRE) for use by the JDK. The runtime environment includes a virtual machine for Java 2, class libraries, and other files that support the execution of programs written in the Java programming language. (Note: The JRE included in the JDK is separate from the JRE kit).

Additional Libraries


Additional class libraries and support files required by the development tools.

Demo Applets and Applications


Examples, with source code, of programming for the Java platform. These include examples that use Swing and other Java Foundation Classes.

Additional Demos


Examples that demonstrate what is needed to write native C programs to interact with Java code.

C Header Files


Header files that support native-code programming using the Java Native Interface and the Java Virtual Machine Debug Interface, as described on the Sun site.

Source Code


Java programming language source files for all classes that make up the Java 2 core API (that is, source files for the java.*, javax.* and org.omg.* packages, but not for com.sun.* packages). This source code is provided for informational purposes only, to help developers learn and use the Java programming language. These files do not include platform-specific implementation code and cannot be used to rebuild the class libraries. To extract these files, use this command:

$ jar xvf src.zip

Do not modify core API source files. To extend the behavior of the core API, write subclasses of the core API classes.

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Known Issues

This section provides descriptions of the known issues and limitations that exist in JDK 5.0 for OpenVMS Alpha; these issues include the following:

  • The JVM Monitoring and management APIs are not fully supported.

  • The Hotspot Virtual Machine is not being implemented for the Alpha platform -- only for the Itanium platform. Therefore, the following tools introduced in JDK 5.0 will not be supported on OpenVMS Alpha:

    • jconsole, jps, jstat, and jstatd (monitoring and management tools)
    • jinfo, jmap, jsadebugd, and jstack (troubleshooting tools)

  • In order to support Japanese fonts you need to be using the Motif Toolkit instead of the default XToolkit. To use the MToolkit there are three logicals you need to re-define:

    $ define JAVA$MAWT_SHR -

    $ define JAVA$MAWT_G_SHR -

    $ define AWT_TOOLKIT "MToolkit"

    Note: the last one was not previously defined in SETUP.COM.

    To switch back to using the XToolkit, just redefine the first two logicals back to their original values, and either de-assign the AWT_TOOLKIT logical or define it to be "XToolkit".

  • The Plug-in's Java Console window does not display.

  • The JVM™ Tool Interface is not currently supported. JVMTI supports tools and interfaces that need access to JVM state, including debugging, profiling, monitoring, thread analysis, and coverage analysis tools. Therefore, any of these tools, such as JDB, and interfaces, such as those provided by JPDA, that depend on JVMTI, will not function properly. JVMTI will be supported in a future release of JDK 5.0 on OpenVMS Alpha.

Important: Review the information in the Interpreting Commands and OpenVMS Operating System Differences table in the User Guide and the remaining sections to fully understand the nuances and differences in this JDK.

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The JDK 5.0 documentation tree begins at the following location on the system where the JDK is installed:


The installed documentation is in HTML format and includes this release notes file and the user guide file, as well as the aforementioned index.html file.

Note: For simplicity, these release notes assume you installed the JDK using the default location and therefore reference SYS$COMMON:[JAVA$150] throughout the text. However, if you specified a destination and installed the kit in that alternate location, substitute that location for the default while reading the examples in this document.

For core API documentation, refer to the following sources:

  • The Java Platform API Specification:

    The API documentation provides brief descriptions of the API with an emphasis on specifications, not on examples.

  • The Java Class Libraries, Second Edition, published by Addison-Wesley Longman as part of The Java Series, as described on Sun's site. These volumes include much more elaborate descriptions, with definitions of terminology and examples for practically every class, interface, and member.

Also, you can browse the Software Documentation page on our web site. Optimizing Java Technology Software Performance on OpenVMS provides tips on improving Java performance on OpenVMS systems.

For more information on this release, refer to the Release Notes for the J2SE 5.0 software from Sun Microsystems, and to our User Guide for this JDK.

If you are new to the Java programming language, you can browse or download Sun's Java Tutorial.

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Problem Reporting

To report problems, refer to our Software Support web page.

© 2005 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.

Confidential computer software. Valid license from HP required for possession, use or copying. Consistent with FAR 12.211 and 12.212, Commercial Computer Software, Computer Software Documentation, and Technical Data for Commercial Items are licensed to the U.S. Government under vendor's standard commercial license.

The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. The only warranties for HP products and services are set forth in the express warranty statements accompanying such products and services. Nothing herein should be construed as constituting an additional warranty. HP shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors or omissions contained herein.

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Java and all Java-based marks are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries.

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