Proposed schedule change for JDK 9

Mark Reinhold mark.reinhold at
Tue Sep 13 15:56:40 UTC 2016

Eighty-five JEPs are targeted to JDK 9 [1].  Most of those are done, or
very nearly so.  We are not, unfortunately, where we need to be relative
to the current schedule.

We've made a lot of progress on Project Jigsaw [2], the key feature of
the release, over the last eight months.  In March 2016 we published a
major update to the proposed design of the module system [3] and merged
it into the JDK 9 master forest [4].  Since then many developers have
downloaded the EA builds and sent in feedback (thanks!), both on the
module system itself and on its impact upon the rest of the JDK.

Despite this progress, at this point it's clear that Jigsaw needs more
time.  We recently received critical feedback that motivated a redesign
of the module system's package-export feature [5], without which we'd
have failed to achieve one of our main goals.  There are, beyond that,
still many open design issues [6], which will take time to work through.

Looking at the release as a whole, the number of open bugs that are new
in JDK 9 is quite a bit larger than it was at this point in JDK 8.  The
maintainers of many popular projects are now actively testing against
the JDK 9 EA builds [7], but we'd like to see even more in order to be
confident that potential issues have been found and reported.

For these reasons I hereby propose a four-month extension of the JDK 9
schedule, moving the General Availability (GA) milestone to July 2017.
I'll make a more detailed proposal for that date and other milestones
in the next few weeks, but for now I suggest we defer the start of the
Rampdown process [8] and continue to operate with the previously-adopted
Feature Complete extension-request process [9].

Minor enhancements and even strongly-justified proposals to target new
JEPs to JDK 9 will be considered, so long as they do not add undue risk
to the overall release.  As before, however, our main focus should be to
use this additional time to stabilize, polish, and fine-tune the features
that we already have rather than add a bunch of new ones.

Comments on this proposal from JDK 9 Committers are welcome, as are
reasoned objections.  If no such objections are raised by 16:00 UTC next
Tuesday, 20 September, or if they're raised and satisfactorily answered,
then per the JEP 2.0 process proposal [a] this will be adopted as the
new schedule for JDK 9.

- Mark


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