Long-desired Java feature misses deadlines, won't make it into Java EE 7

The JCache caching standard will be targeted for inclusion in Java EE 8 instead

Java EE (Enterprise Edition) programmers will have to wait a bit longer before they can use JCache, a long-desired standard caching API (application programming interface) for the language, as its development has missed "critical deadlines" and will not be included in the upcoming Java EE 7.

"This is undoubtedly disappointing to many of you as the community indicated strong support for JCache in the well-participated Java EE 7 survey," Oracle said in an official blog post on Thursday. "However, the consensus on both the Java EE 7 and JCache EGs was that it is best to not hold up Java EE 7 any further."

"JCache is fully expected to move forward strongly independent of Java EE 7 and be an excellent candidate for Java EE 8," the post added. In addition, developers should be able to use JCache alongside Java EE 7 "as a drop-in API provided the spec is finalized far ahead of Java EE 8," it stated.

JCache specification co-leader Brian Oliver offered a measured view of the issue in a forum message this week.

"There are numerous reasons why we think we've 'slipped,' both personal and organizational, but the fact is we're not done," Oliver wrote. "Furthermore we can't really hold up Java EE 7 especially when we know there's still a lot of work to do, discussions to have, decisions to make and documentation/implementation/testing to complete."

That said, "tremendous progress" has been made on JCache within the past few months and work will proceed at the same pace, according to Oliver. "The expectation is that we'll complete this work as soon as possible, with or without Java EE 7."

Java EE7 had been designed with an eye on improving the language's utility for cloud computing, where caching can play an important role, but some planned cloud-related features ended up being bumped to Java EE 8. In addition, Java EE has suffered from a lack of a standard caching API.

Other Java contributors expressed unhappiness that JCache won't make it into Java EE 7, which is scheduled for release in April.

"I can only say that I am very frustrated," one wrote on a Java EE forum on Thursday. "Can we somehow 'ensure' to keep the pressure on them or help them in any way to be ready for the next round?"

Not only should the JCache team deliver the feature as soon as possible, they should also "be ready to integrate new stuff according to the theme of EE8," the poster added.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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