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What is up with Zulu 8.20?

Updated on February 15, 2017 in Zulu Releases
1 on February 15, 2017

Can you explain what is in Zulu 8.20? Where can I get the details?

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0 on February 15, 2017

Zulu 8.20 reached GA on February 7, 2017. At A Glance….

o Updates for OpenJDK 8, 7, and 6

The full set of community and embedded builds all provide accumulated fixes through the January 2016 critical patch update. New Java levels were updated on all Windows, Linux, and Mac platforms on Intel, for JDK and JRE packaging types. The Zulu base levels are now Java 8 update 121, Java 7 update 131, and Java 6 update 89.

o Adoption of the Marlin 2D graphics rendering engine.
o First set of PowerPC builds reached RTM, reflecting base level 8 update 112.


The full story…

Zulu 8.20 is now Generally Available. Overall, Zulu 8.20 is an all-platforms up level of Zulu 8.x, 7.x, and 6.x reflecting the January security updates to OpenJDK.  

One of the remaining differences between Oracle JDK and OpenJDK (and therefore Zulu) is an anti-aliasing 2D graphics renderer, discussed in detail on the Zulu Forum. Intrepid astro-physicist Laurent Bourgès rewrote OpenJDK’s Pisces renderer into a new multithreaded version called Marlin, and open sourced it back into OpenJDK 9 under JEP 265. Azul delivered Marlin built from OpenJDK 9 in Zulu 9 Pre-Release 3 last February, and Laurent himself validated our implementation. Today, thanks to prodding by a prominent Zulu subscriber, the Zulu team has backported Marlin into Zulu 8, too. Simon captures the results of that effort in his blog post on graphics performance in this recent article. Azul successfully closed the gap on yet another non-difference between Zulu and Oracle JDK.

Alongside this new set of Intel x64 bits, Azul also delivered our first set of PowerPC binaries to two Zulu Embedded subscribers, thus expanding Zulu’s range of processor architectures. These bits are specific to customer environments, so do not have a public community download. If you require PowerPC binaries, please make a request for them through Azul Sales.



Java SE updates.

Zulu 8.20, the Java 8 download equates to Java 8 update 121.

Zulu 7.17 equates to Java 7 update 131.

Zulu 6.15 equates to Java 6 update 89.


OS updates. A prospect requested support on CoreOS which proved positive in spin tests using the current Zulu Linux binaries. As such CoreOS is now moving towards formal QA and documented support in a future Zulu release.


Tools updates. ZeroTurnaround joined the Azul ISV Alliance program in late December. Their tool JRebel is now fully certified for use under Zulu.


Cloud Updates. A refresh round of Zulu AMIs on Amazon and Zulu VHDs on Azure are slated for early 2017.


Frequently Asked Questions
Is Zulu 8.20 radically different than earlier Zulu JDK 8.19 versions?
A. No, all these builds are continuations of prior release efforts. There is one change in the OpenJDK 8 release train, whereby now there are no longer separate security-only builds. Security fixes and garden variety fixes go in together here forward on the 8 branch, indicating the age of the OpenJDK 8 cycle and clearing the way for 9 to reach GA.

Q. Is PowerPC the same as Power? Does this mean that Zulu and Zing can now both run on Power platforms from IBM like Power Linux or Power AIX or iSeries?

A. No. Please read this for why not.

Q. Any other interesting facts?
A. Azul took over formal maintenance of OpenJDK 6. Andrew Brygin now holds the title of Project Lead. Congratulations to Andrew on his appointment.

Please discuss any points of the Zulu 8.20 release in this thread.


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