Java Development Kit and Java Runtime Engine


The minimum environment required for a java program to run is called JRE (Java Runtime Engine). JDK is the minimum environment required for the development of Java Applications.

Java Runtime Engine (JRE)

It is an environment that is required for executing a Java application. Very popular usage of JRE is with a browser where it is available as a plugin to allow applet (client-side program) to execute. JRE is composed of the following components:

  1. Interpreter: It understands binary java code (e.g.: java.exe).
  2. Tools: They provide various functionality such as security, core services, internationalization, RMI, etc.

Java Development Kit (JDK)

It is an environment that is targeted for developers who desire to develop Java applications. JDK is nothing but Java Standard Edition which is used for the development of desktop, user interface, communication, and applet types of applications. JDK is composed of the following components:

1. Compiler: It is used to compile java code to bytecode (e.g Javac.exe).
2. Interpreter: It processes bytecode to native code (e.g. java.exe).
3. Tools: They provide functionality such as RMI, internationalization, core services,
4. Library: Reusable pre-defined Java API (rt.jar, jce.jar, jsse.jar, etc.).

JDK is a superset of JRE. JDK has all the components that JRE has plus it has a compiler.

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Installing JDK

JDK is available for many operating systems such as Windows, Linux, Mac OS, and Solaris, etc. When downloading ensure you choose Java 8 with the latest update. It is very important to choose the right architecture for JRE is available for 32/64 bit architecture. After JDK is downloaded double click on it to install it. Choose the default options to complete the installation.


JDK is the minimum environment required for a developer for developing Java applications. JDK can be downloaded from the oracle website. JDK is the super set of JRE

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