The Java Runtime Environment (JRE), otherwise called Java Runtime, is a piece of the Java Development Kit (JDK) that contains and organizes the arrangement of devices and least necessities for executing a Java application. The JDK, alongside the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) and the JRE, can be utilized by engineers to program and run Java applications.
In order for a software program to execute code, it needs a Java runtime environment to load class files, verify access to memory and retrieve system resources. The JRE specifically contains a Java class loader, which is responsible for loading classes and connecting them to the core Java class libraries, and the JVM, that ensures proper environment performance.
Java is everywhere! Almost every piece of electronic equipment in the world uses Java technologies. If that’s not impressive, think of billions of PCs, mobile phones, Blu-ray players, printers, medical devices, car navigation systems, webcams or even lottery terminals.
Java 32 and 64 bit enables developers to create software on one platform (Java Platform) and provide it to users running almost any other platform (Windows, Mac, Linux, Solaris or Unix). Java also allows the execution of Web applications and services. Behind this highly customizable and powerful platform stands the Java programming language.
The Java Runtime Environment (JRE) brings the Java platform to your PC within seconds from starting the installation process. While Java sits patiently on the computer, it instantly acts when called upon. And that happens more often than you may think of. Whether you play online games or free video chat with your friends anywhere around the world, Java is running in the background making sure you have an enjoyable experience.
Oracle’s platform also features a Control Panel that can be easily accessed within your computer’s (oh, well!) Control Panel. It allows the configuration of the network and temporary Internet files settings or security certificates. You can also manage the settings of the JRE and access more advanced functions such as Debugging, Java console, Default Java for different web Browsers, Java Plug-in, JavaFX runtime, JRE Auto-Download or Security.
The thing that sits at the core of the Java Platform is the Java Virtual Machine. Its sole purpose is the execution of Java bytecode programs that uses a JIT compiler to translate these programs into instructions while caching the code in memory. This makes Java applications able to run on multiple platforms while having to warm up a bit until the loading process is completed.
The JRE acts as a software layer on top of the various operating system that enforces uniformity and provides additional Java services, such as automatic memory.
Java Runtime Environment Features:
- Deployment technologies like Java Web Start and Java Plug-in.
- User interface toolkits like Java 2D.
- Integration libraries like Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) and Java Naming and Directory Interface (JNDI).
- Lang and util libraries like Java Archive (JAR).
- Other base libraries like Java Management Extensions (JMX), Java Native Interface (JNI) and Java for XML Processing (JAX-WS).
- Write software on one platform and run it on practically any other platform
- Create programs to run within a web browser and web services
- Develop server-side applications for online forums, stores, polls, HTML forms processing, and more
- Combine Java technology-based applications or services to create highly customized applications or services
- Write powerful and efficient applications for mobile phones, remote processors, low-cost consumer products, and practically any device with a digital heartbeat
The Java Runtime Environment is also meant to be distributed by developers alongside their main Java application. This way, they make sure that you will be able to run their Java-written programs. If you don’t have it by now, you better get it. You’ll be joining an ever-growing number of users that use Java technologies while working on their PCs.