What’s new in Java EE 8(by example)

The past September was a busy month, the most exciting news is Java 9 reaches GA, as well as the release of the long-waiting Java EE 8 and Glassfish v5. For more details, please read the official announcement Java EE 8 and GlassFish 5.0 Released! from Oracle blog portal.

A brief intro of Java EE 8

The world changes so quickly, after Java EE 7 was born in 2013, cloud service and microservice became more and more popular. Java EE had to embrace the changes, so a lot of perspectives are proposed to be brought into Java EE 8, including Configuration, Load Balance, Circuit breaker, Service Registry and Discovery, programmatic Security API, MVC etc.

But the road to Java EE 8 is not straight, most of proposed specifications are moved out of Java EE 8 finally. And in a long period, the development of some specifications were paused for some reasons.

To save Java EE, the Java community created a petition and wished Oracle can move forward Java EE more quickly.

At the same time, IBM, Redhat and other Java communities launched a new MicroProfile which targets lightweight Java EE and cloud computing service. Now it is a project under Eclipse foundation.

Although the Java EE 8 way is a little hard, finally it is released to the public.

And surprisingly Oracle decided to open up Java EE progress and move it to Eclipse foundation. An updated petition was created to help moving Java EE to Eclipse more smoothly.

Java EE 8 should be the last version released by Oracle(and Sun).

What is new in Java EE 8

Like me, some developers are a little disappointed about Java EE 8(JSR 366) , even complain it comes a little late. But no doubt there are still lots of new features and improvements which are valuable to update ourselves.

There tow new specifications were newly introduced in Java EE 8.

  • JSR 375 — Java EE Security API 1.0

Some specifications have been updated to align with Java 8 and CDI or involved as a maintenance release.

  • JSR 365 — Contexts and Dependency Injection (CDI) 2.0

The other specifications such as JMS, Batch have no updates in this version.

Unfortunately, some proposed specifications are not included in Java EE 8, including:

  • JSR 371 — MVC is vetoed in the final stage, but it is still existed as a community based specification.

Example codes

You can get the source codes from my GitHub account, and install JDK 8, NetBeans 8.2 or 9, Glassfish v5, and run the sample codes in your local system.

Get source codes

The source codes of my notebook is available on https://github.com/hantsy/ee8-sandbox.

Clone it into your local disk.

git clone https://github.com/hantsy/ee8-sandbox

More details about the source codes, please read Java EE 8 by example on GitBook.

Install Oracle JDK 8

  1. Get the latest Oracle Java 8, http://java.oracle.com

Install NetBeans IDE

Currently no IDEs have built-in Java EE 8 support.

NetBeans is being migrated to Apache Foundation as an incubating project, and NetBeans 9 is still under active development(but NetBeans 9 targets Java 9, not Java EE 8).

  1. Download NetBeans from http://www.netbeans.org, NetBeans 9 nightly is highly recommended.

Install Glassfish v5

  1. Download Glassfish v5 from http://github.com/glassfish

Import sample codes

  1. Starts up NetBeans IDE.
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Click any sub project node under Modules to open the certain project, and run it on Glassfish by click Run in the context menu.


I create a repository to collect all useful Java EE 8 resources, check the latest Awesome Java EE 8 checklist.

Written by

Self-employed technical consultant, solution architect and full-stack developer

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