Java 8 still dominates, but Java 17 wave is coming – survey

More than one-third of professional Java developers surveyed by Perforce JRebel were using the eight-year-old version of Java for their main application.

Java 8 still dominates, but Java 17 wave is coming – survey
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Despite arriving nearly eight years ago, Java 8 remains the most-used version of Java among users polled in a recent survey by Perforce Software company. However, many shops have plans to upgrade to the much newer Java 17, the survey found.

Asked which JDK (Java Development Kit) programming language was being used in their main application, 37% of respondents in the Perforce-sponsored survey answered Java 8. The runner-up was Java 11, used by 29% of those surveyed. The results of the survey of 876 Java development professionals, which took place from October 2021 to January 2022, were published this week in the 2022 Java Developer Productivity Report.

Both Java 8 (released in March 2014) and Java 11 (released in September 2018) are Long-Term Support (LTS) releases, which receive several years of product support from Oracle. Non-LTS releases, such as Java 9, Java 10, and Java 12 through Java 15, receive only six months of Oracle support.

Following Java 8 and Java 11 in usage were Java 12 or newer (12%), Kotlin (8%), Groovy (6%), Java 7 or older (5%), and Scala (3%). Among survey respondents who knew of their organization’s upgrade plans, 37% planned to upgrade to JDK 17, an LTS release published in September, within the next six months. Another 25% plan to upgrade to JDK 17 within the next six to 12 months. JDK 18, a non-LTS release, is due March 22.

The JRebel-branded 2022 Java Developer Productivity Report focuses on Java technologies and current approaches to developing Java applications. JRebel is a Java development tool developed by Perforce. In other findings in the survey:

  • Asked which factors influence a decision to upgrade JDK versions, a release having LTS status was the top factor cited (25%), followed by security (23%), and performance (20%).
  • Oracle’s Java distribution was the most popular, with 36% using it, followed by 27% using generic OpenJDK Java.
  • Microservices led the way as the most common architecture for users’ Java applications, with 32% leveraging it, followed by 22% using monolithic applications.
  • Docker was the most common virtual machine platform, for use with Java applications, with 41% using it. Kubernetes was used by 26% of respondents, followed by VMware at 16%.
  • Amazon Web Services was the most commonly used PaaS platform at 31%, followed by no PaaS provider at 24% and Microsoft Azure at 14%.
  • Apache Tomcat was the most popular Java application server by far, used by 48%, followed by JBoss/Wildfly at 15%.
  • JetBrains IntelliJ was the most popular Java IDE at 48%, followed by Eclipse at 24% and Visual Studio Code at 18%.

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