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JRE vs JDK installers on workstations [message #1861362] Sun, 08 October 2023 20:57 Go to next message
Dan Dieter is currently offline Dan DieterFriend
Messages: 1
Registered: October 2023
Junior Member
Obviously late to the java party... Looking to clean up our Java on workstations on Windows.

Trying to wrap my head around Java JRE vs JDK in the modern day for workstations. We technically have need for both JRE and JDK, trying to understand impact of decision to offer 1 or both.

While we are attempting to remove entirely from workstations, I know the reality is we will have legacy apps...

For now I am ignoring and not planning to support the really old/oddball stuff like jnlp (and web start or are these the same?). Though am expecting to need to set JAVA_HOME system variable for dependent apps (gist I get is there is a difference).


Using the JRE package makes sense for most scenarios if the usage is as a runtime. Not having the JDK binaries does improve security footprint.

Though JRE is debated, not everyone offers it and will be removed in the future, I assume... Many seem to use the JDK package universally, even for "runtime" usage.

Can you install/run both? I know we will have scenarios where JRE would be installed with an app, but the user may later need the full JDK? Would these play nice?

Any pro con or general wisdom for when you should use JRE vs just the JDK?





Re: JRE vs JDK installers on workstations [message #1861548 is a reply to message #1861362] Wed, 18 October 2023 11:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Marius Oprea is currently offline Marius OpreaFriend
Messages: 1
Registered: October 2023
Junior Member
Dan Dieter wrote on Sun, 08 October 2023 20:57
Obviously late to the java party... Looking to clean up our Java on workstations on Windows.

Trying to wrap my head around Java JRE vs JDK in the modern day for workstations. We technically have need for both JRE and JDK, trying to understand impact of decision to offer 1 or both.

While we are attempting to remove entirely from workstations, I know the reality is we will have legacy apps...

For now I am ignoring and not planning to support the really old/oddball stuff like jnlp (and web start or are these the same?). Though am expecting to need to set JAVA_HOME system variable for dependent apps (gist I get is there is a difference).

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Using the JRE package makes sense for most scenarios if the usage is as a runtime. Not having the JDK binaries does improve security footprint.

Though JRE is debated, not everyone offers it and will be removed in the future, I assume... Many seem to use the JDK package universally, even for "runtime" usage.

Can you install/run both? I know we will have scenarios where JRE would be installed with an app, but the user may later need the full JDK? Would these play nice?

Any pro con or general wisdom for when you should use JRE vs just the JDK?








The use of JRE (Java Runtime Environment) and JDK (Java Development Kit) depends on the specific needs and requirements of your application. Here are some general recommendations:

Using JRE:

If your application is intended to be run-time only (no development), then using the JRE makes sense. The JRE provides the environment needed to run Java applications.
The absence of JDK (compiler and other development tools) binaries from the JRE can improve security because they prevent new code from being compiled on the workstation.
Using JDK:

If you need the ability to develop, compile, and debug Java applications, you need the JDK. It includes all the tools needed to develop Java applications.
If you plan to develop Java applications, installing the JDK is mandatory.
Combined installation of JRE and JDK:

In some cases, you may need to install both the JRE and JDK on the same workstation. For example, if your application uses the JRE for execution, but you also need the JDK for development and debugging.
The general installation will not cause problems, but it is important to properly configure the system variables (such as JAVA_HOME and PATH) so that they point to the correct version of JRE or JDK depending on the need.
Update and Security:

It is recommended to regularly update both the JRE and JDK to fix vulnerabilities and keep your system secure.
If older versions of Java are not used, it is best to remove them to maintain security.
Legacy components:

If you don't plan to use legacy components such as Java Web Start (jnlp), then you can ignore them. New Java applications usually do not depend on them.
The general recommendation is to choose between JRE and JDK depending on whether you need to develop or just run Java applications. In addition, you should stay up to date and keep your system secure by removing unused or outdated components.

[Updated on: Thu, 19 October 2023 08:37]

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Re: JRE vs JDK installers on workstations [message #1861749 is a reply to message #1861362] Thu, 02 November 2023 04:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bradford Wunsch is currently offline Bradford WunschFriend
Messages: 2
Registered: November 2023
Junior Member
There is no other way than removing the old Java version if updating the JRE and JDK. I noticed the new Java version is really heavy on my computer.

[Updated on: Fri, 03 November 2023 03:10]

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Re: JRE vs JDK installers on workstations [message #1861765 is a reply to message #1861749] Thu, 02 November 2023 15:09 Go to previous message
Jade Raymon is currently offline Jade RaymonFriend
Messages: 2
Registered: November 2023
Junior Member
Well, I know that many users prefer to install the JDK universally because it includes everything, ensuring compatibility with both runtime and development needs. You can indeed install both JRE and JDK on the same system, allowing for flexibility in various scenarios, but they should coexist without issues.
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