Sun Microsystems Inc. announced the availability on Wednesday of the Java 2 Platform, Standard Edition, version 1.4 (J2SE 1.4), delivering some new features and several enhancements in the process.
J2SE includes performance enhancements that represent an increase of as much as 58 percent improvement over J2SE version 1.3.1, according to internal Sun tests using standard benchmarks, Sun officials said. In addition, for Java client applications, Swing class library-based applets and applications showed an average increase of 40 percent in GUI performance.
In addition the new version includes new I/O and 64-bit support, as well as enhanced support for SSL, LDAP and CORBA, officials said.
J2SE 1.4 is the first J2SE release to be developed through the Java Community Process. Sun officials said 39 companies participated in the development of J2SE 1.4.
The new version has built-in support for XML, advanced authentication, and a complete set of security services. J2SE 1.4 and Suns Java Web Services Developer Pack, which Sun has released in early access, enables developers to begin building, testing, and deploying Web services on the platform now, the company said.
"As a developer, Im impressed by the ease of use of the new Drag and Drop capabilities," said John Zukowski, chief evangelist for Spidertop Inc., a Montreal Java solutions provider. "I dont like the fact that theyve changed printing support for a fourth time, but think that what they have now is good. Definitely much easier to print. Many of the standard parts of 1.4 arent new like security and Java Web Start. They are just new to the standard edition. Nice to not have to worry about having users install extensions or having to provide them with your apps. The logging library is nice, but unfortunately it requires 1.4. Many people will use log4j instead as it works with earlier versions of Java."
"J2SE version 1.4 is a comprehensive offering that enables an entirely new class of scalable, high-performance applications to be deployed on any platform" said Rich Green, Suns vice president and general manager for Java Software. "With compelling performance results and key new features such as new I/O and 64-bit support, J2SE is the ideal platform for large-scale data mining, business intelligence, engineering and scientific applications."