Java and Snow Leopard

September 22nd, 2009 by nils

I noticed that there isn’t a whole lot of useful information about Java and Snow Leopard (OS X 10.6) out there on the web. Maybe this is because there isn’t a whole lot to say about it. Snow Leopard comes with Java 6 (1.6.0_15 that is) only, which means that the links that still exist in the


directory all point to “CurrentJDK”, which points to “1.6”. The thing is that Snow Leopard ships with a 32 bit version and a 64 bit version of the VM (Virtual Machine), 64 bit being the default one. The Java Preferences app shows this nicely:

Java Preferences Application

And that is the big news about it, since a 32 bit version of java 6 didn’t previously exist for OS X.

Now I’ve previously had to tweak Eclipse to use the 1.5 VM (see “Java Versions on Mac OS X“), and now it just works. I’m assuming that this is because of the “mixed mode”:

$ java -version
java version "1.6.0_15"
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.6.0_15-b03-219)
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 14.1-b02-90, mixed mode)

…so the VM would automatically detect if an application should be executed in 64 or 32 bit mode and then start the correct VM. I still need to investigate how this actually works. Anyway, the good news is that java and eclipse seems to be working better with Snow Leopard. I’ll write more on this as I continue working with it, for now here is an interesting post on the topic:

1 Comment

  1. […] if you are using 10.6 “Snow Leopard”, you might want to consider reading my post “Java and Snow Leopard” […]

    Pingback by Nils Preusker » Blog Archive » Java Versions on Mac OS X — October 5, 2009 @ 6:28 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.