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OS X - Apps and Games Discussion of applications and games available for Mac OS X.

Explaining the Java Situation


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vansmith

 
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There are a variety of threads that have cropped up lately expressing frustration and concern over the workings of Java. I hope that, in what follows, I can clear up a few things.

First, Java is not "broken." Contrary to popular reaction and perhaps gut instinct, Java hasn't spontaneously ceased to work. However, it is flawed from a security standpoint. This is why Java has ceased to work on your machine(s). In short, Apple has made use of what they call "XProtect" which is the built-in malware protection system for OS X. Essentially, the system tracks what can and can not be run on your system. With regards to Java, Apple has simply set XProtect such that Java will run only if it meets a certain requirement. In this case, it's a version number. Now, you might be asking yourself "but I've updated Java, why isn't it working?" The answer to that is quite simple - Apple has set the minimum version required higher than the most current version available. As of right now, Apple only allows Java to be loaded in Safari if it is at least version 1.7.11.22 which precludes all version from running since 1.7.11.21 is the most current version. This is why Safari continues to alert you, complaining of an out of date plugin.

Second, the cessation of operation is limited only to Safari. In other words, Java will continue to work as you'd expect outside of Safari including in all the other supported browsers. The XProtect method outlined above only affects Safari and this will continue to be the case for the foreseeable future. If you need an immediate work around, use another browser.

Third, despite being a nuisance, this is for your own good. I am generally the last person who likes being told what to do on my machine so when I say that it's best to take Apple's advice on it, you may want to consider. In other words, if you can do something online that doesn't involve Java, go with that.

Fourth, it is very possible that this will be temporary. Assuming Oracle is able to patch Java to fix a few recent and quite nasty security holes, Apple may very well issue an update to the XProtect plist file that removes the Java plugin restriction.

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joyss

 
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It's not working in Firefox or Google Chrome either. (*_*)
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vansmith

 
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It doesn't normally work in Chrome and if it doesn't work in Firefox, you've either blocked/disabled it or your Java installation is broken.

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kylefoley76

 
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I cannot get java to work in Firefox and it is clearly enabled in the plug ins. Also I want to use Java for applications that do not require a browser to be open, for example, the software found at this site: KGS Go Server

I can't use this software now. How do I use this software?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kylefoley76 View Post
I cannot get java to work in Firefox and it is clearly enabled in the plug ins.
What happens when you try to run it? Here's a test page.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kylefoley76 View Post
Also I want to use Java for applications that do not require a browser to be open, for example, the software found at this site: KGS Go Server
As I noted earlier, the confusion around Java vulnerabilities only affects Safari - client side applications will work as they always have.

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Since Van wrote this highly informative piece, Oracle has managed to get an update out the door that appears to ACTUALLY fix the issue this time. Downloading and installing the latest Java directly from Oracle is recommended IF you need it -- not as many people do anymore, depending on their web use.
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Thanks to Van...
It is so frustrating that Apple makes machines that last and then takes things away. I'd like to complain to Apple.. see what happens when old ladies get mad/1
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vansmith

 
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Apple is no different than other browser makers - I'm fairly sure that Firefox does the same thing and Chrome doesn't even run it.

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Thanks Van,
I know this sounds trivial but all I want to do it to get to chat with friends. I can see that security was the reason Apple changed things but there ought to be a way to chat. Thanks for your reply and the great topic explanations.
I may be back but will try to keep the frustration under check.
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As long as you're running the most recent version, you'll be fine.

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chas_m

 
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Another option is to use a better chatting program or system that doesn't rely on Java. There are literally dozens if not hundreds of such programs.

I do pretty much all my chatting on Messages or Skype or Adium (the latter used very rarely, as everyone I like talking to is on a Mac or iOS device these days). No Java, no problems.
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In Firefox, go to the Tools menu, click on Add-ins. Click Plugins. Make sure it's enabled.
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