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[openj9-dev] OpenJ9 documentation and keeping it current

IBM recently contributed some user documentation to the Eclipse OpenJ9 project that covers tuning, configuration, and diagnostic information.

GitHub repository:
Online publication:  

Most of this content is in the form of a command reference, but work is underway to supplement this information with more content about OpenJ9 components such as the JIT compiler, Garbage Collection policies, shared classes cache implementation and how to interpret different types of dumps produced by the VM.

Now that we have some documentation in the project, it is very important that we keep it up to date with any features or enhancements that are being made to the OpenJ9 code base. To this end we have introduced a small process step in the OpenJ9 contribution guides.

"If your contribution introduces an external change that requires an update to the user documentation, make sure you add the label "doc:externals" and open an issue at the user doc GitHub repository. Examples of an external change include a new command line option, a change in behavior, or a restriction".

To help developers provide enough information for other contributors to write the content, we have introduced an issue template:

New documentation changes:

Contributions to the user docs are welcome, so you can write your own update if you want to, but opening an issue ensures that others can help and nothing gets missed when we pull together the list of notable changes for a release. Source files are in markdown and we use the MkDocs build toolchain to generate the online content. To find out how to contribute to the user documentation, please read the contribution guidelines (

- Sue Chaplain

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