JDK 9 Outreach survey summary

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JDK 9 Outreach survey summary

dalibor topic-2

thanks to everyone who participated in the JDK 9 Outreach survey!

There were 37 respondents in total. The respondents were active in a
broad range of free and open source software projects, from Apache
Software Foundation projects like Apache Ant, Apache BookKeeper, Apache
Kafka, Apache Lucene/Solr, Apache Maven and Apache POI via Eclipse
Foundation projects such as Eclipse and vert.x, and language runtimes
such as Apache Groovy, Clojure and ruby, over enterprise development
oriented projects such Hibernate, WildFly, JBoss WS, Spring Security,
MVC 1.0 and SnoopEE to independent projects such as JUnit 5,
GraphHopper, Orient DB, Groovy FX, JavaSlang, JITWatch, JMRI, LWJGL3 and
of course OpenJDK itself, along with Project Jigsaw.

33 respondents (i.e. 89%) have tried building or running their project
with JDK 9 Early Access builds, while just 4 (i.e. 11%) had not done so
at the time of the survey.

The majority of respondents (20, i.e. 54%) indicated they planned to
support JDK 9 in their project within 6 months after JDK 9 GA. The next
largest group (16%, i.e. 6 respondents) indicated that they planned to
support JDK 9 immediately from the get go, i.e. the GA date The third
largest group (14%, i.e. 5 respondents) indicated that they planned to
support JDK 9 within 12 months of JDK 9 GA. Along with one respondent
whose response differentiated between immediate support at JDK 9 GA and
within a few months after the release based on the type of project they
were working on, that brings the tally of respondents planning to
support JDK 9 in their projects within the first year of JDK 9's release
to 32, i.e. 86%.

30 respondents (i.e. 89%) rated their experience migrating or adopting
JDK 9 so far, with the average rating of of 3.2 falling between Mediocre
(3.0) and Good (4.0). The majority of respondents (40%, i.e. 12) rated
it as Good, while 11, i.e. 37% rated it as Mediocre.

The comments provided some insight into the very varied challenges, from
balancing support for JDK 1.5 - JDK 9 in a code base, to challenges
surfaced by strong encapsulation of JDK internals, such as
instrumentation of such classes, edge cases with reflection based hacks
in popular libraries, and the general pace of the larger ecosystem of
dependencies catching up and adjusting to JDK 9 changes. On the desktop
side, one respondent reported insurmountable challenges in getting
Eclipse to build JavaFX projects using JDK 9, while another one reported
that they ended up re-implementing desktop support in their project
using JavaScript to be able to support both JDK 8 and JDK 9 due to
changes in native platform APIs on OS X in particular. One respondent
felt that the process was nice, and that everyone from OpenJDK, in
particular Oracle and Red Hat, were being very helpful.

Three respondents provided URLs to announcements of their projects plans
to support features from JDK 9:
https://marketplace.eclipse.org/content/java-9-support-beta-neon ,
http://jmri.org/releasenotes/jmri4.5.3.shtml and
https://cwiki.apache.org/confluence/display/MAVEN/Java+9+-+Jigsaw .

Last but not least, 8 respondents provided general feedback. One
participant pointed out that the available information is incomplete in
some accounts, and spread across multiple documents, with undocumented
or not yet implemented compiler options, along with the not yet complete
specification. The regular changes in the JDK & JRE, in particular
regarding class loading, had affected their project multiple times.
Another participant remarked that uncertainty around Project Jigsaw was
delaying adding support for JDK 9 in their project. One participant
pointed out that they can begin testing their project efficiently once
their build tool supports JDK 9. Meanwhile, another participant pointed
out that their testing was limited to JARs without module information,
and as such was testing the module system in a limited fashion. Finally,
one participant commented that their inability to comment directly on
reported bugs made bug handling cumbersome.

dalibor topic

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