Which version of Java to install on OSX with Homebrew?

By | March 15, 2020

Sometimes you’ll come across applications that will require a specific version of Java. This will be because other versions of Java will have extra libraries that may not be compatible.

To install a specific version of Java on Mac OSX with homebrew, go to Github AdoptOpen JDK to see what version you need.

The basic command though will be to tap the AdoptOpenJDK repository with:

> brew tap AdoptOpenJDK/openjdk

and then

> brew cast install <version>

Once it is installed, run

> java -version

to confirm that Java installed successfully. You should get the following:

15-MacBook-Pro:~ sean$ java -version
openjdk version "1.8.0_242"
OpenJDK Runtime Environment (AdoptOpenJDK)(build 1.8.0_242-b08)
OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM (AdoptOpenJDK)(build 25.242-b08, mixed mode)

Note, to install the latest version, all you need to do is run:
> brew cast install adoptopenjdk

And if you are wondering what the difference is between a JDK and the JRE (the article prefix should be a clue), a Java Development Kit contains the Java Runtime Environment but also has javac (the compiler) along with other programming tools added. The Java Runtime Environment contains the Java Virtual Machine is which required to run Java programs.

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