java again really

Steve Strong strong at
Thu Jan 3 17:24:05 UTC 2008

Les wrote:
> On Thu, 2008-01-03 at 10:58 -0500, Matthew Saltzman wrote:
>> On Thu, 2008-01-03 at 07:01 -0700, Karl Larsen wrote:
>>> Knute Johnson wrote:
>>>>> Knute Johnson wrote:
>>>>>> To install and run Sun Java on F8 look at the simplified instructions 
>>>>>> on this site;
>>>>>> You don't need to remove anything before installing Sun Java.  JEdit 
>>>>>> should work with icedtea anyway.
>>>>>    Some of the things the page says are wrong. But it will be easy now 
>>>>> with sim links to use the right java and jedit will work. By the way, I 
>>>>> tried it with icedtea and it did not work at ALL!
>>>> What is wrong with the document?
>>> Funny you should ask :-)
>>> The document is good but it appears the two lib files are already on F8 
>>> and it leaves out the most important part. You need to use the new java 
>>> when you call java from a terminal. I got done with the document but 
>>> when I would type java -version I got the wimpy version Fedora sends.
>>>     So I looked at /usr/bin/java and it is linked to 
>>> /etc/alternatives/java. So I mv java Then link to the new java 
>>> with this:
>>> [root at k5di bin]# ln -s  /usr/java/default/bin/java /etc/alternatives/java
>>> The default/bin/java will be the latest one in the /usr/java/ directory.
>>>     With this addition my jedit was installed fast and it works right. I 
>>> needs to be added to the document.
>> No, what needs to be added to the document is instructions on how to use
>> the alternatives facility to get these links set up properly.
>> I can understand how Karl or anyone else might be led to fix these
>> things up by hand, as above, but it's better to use the tool designed
>> for the job.  But in order to do so, one needs to know what that tool
>> is.  It's not as common knowledge as it ought to be.
>> man alternatives
>>> Karl
>> -- 
>>                 Matthew Saltzman
> Hi, Matthew,
> 	I have read the man page.  However, I am not sure this is simpler???
> It seems to be a tool to maintain dependency tracking for symbolic
> links.  The man page also repeatedly makes reference to Debian, which is
> an alternative Linux Distribution.  Given that a newbie, with some
> rudimentary knowledge (like myself or Karl) can manage symbolic links,
> and that we may or may not take on faith that a Debian tool will work
> with Fedora, how does this improve the situation?  I know that I can
> google this, but a link could be mentioned in the man page to assist
> with this.  In other words the tool is not yet ready for many if not
> most of us until either we improve our collective knowledge, or the
> tools documentation improves to help us find our way through a minefield
> of system affecting links and link modifiers.  Personally, I think such
> a tool doing a relatively complex task needs really good documentation
> about how to read its control script, and what each command does, and a
> good example showing the effects of those commands on software updates,
> software interactions (what if a shell is calling Jave.1.4 and you
> update to Java.1.5 for example).  And where the links are stored and how
> to back rev it when software has to be removed to restore system
> functionality.
> I know the current thrust is to automate all system administration
> tasks, but when it doesn't work, who can fix it if the "trail" is
> obscured, and the author(s) of the automatic tools is no longer
> available?
> Regards,
> Les H
i just got into reading this thread and thought i'd throw in my 
experience (why not???)

we had a lot of problems with the default java install on FC7 and 8.  i 
have my kickstart file NOT install the default java package and instead 
install the latest rpm from Sun.  then, i added lines to my post-install 
that uses the alternatives command to make the Sun install the current 
best version.

i haven't seen any bugs with the Sun install (although i read with 
interest some reports of bugs in this thread) and i'm happy with the 

in general, i think it's a good idea to NOT rewrite a solution to a 
problem in someone else's code base, so i'm suspicious of fedora doing 
it's own java and like the idea of incorporating the Sun rpm's in the 


Steve Strong
Math and Computer Science
Washington High School
2205 Forest Dr. SE
Cedar Rapids, IA   52403

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