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Debian Java Group (weg page)


I've put our information together and created a web page. It's a fast
starting point. I've created it using cut and paste from the various
postings to this topic.

The page in HTML is available from
http://www.oche.de/~leutloff/debian/debian-java.html. Because it's not
ready for the public, there's no link to this page. After some
additions the page should be part of our web server.

I'm unsure if it's wise to put the names in this document. I want to
give the possibility to contact somebody personal. I don't want to
close this group. This issue needs some more attention.

We've agreed about a special discussion group debian-java. Can
somebody please create it!?

Should we have a mail address like coordinator-java@debian.org or
java@packages.debian.org or something like that!? I propose to let
this thing open until we see that it would be useful.

<-------- snip

[Debian GNU/Linux -]Java Group

The goal of the Debian Java Group is to integrate the various free Java
related components into the Debian GNU/Linux distribution. The tools around
Java are in great flux. So it's difficult to find all the things that are
necessary to program in the Java language and to use the resulting programs.

This page should present the current state of our work. We list the known
Java tools and the current maintainer. If you know about missing thing,
please send us a email.

To coordinate our work we have created the mailing list
debian-java@lists.debian.org. To subscribe send a mail to
debian-java-REQUEST@lists.debian.org with subscribe in the body. On this
list there is also room for working on a Debian network client including the
necessary server side administration tools. You'll find more on this topic
at the end of this page.

Java tools

JOLT - Java Open Language Toolkit

The JOLT project is aimed at providing a freely available and
redistributable implementation of Sun's Java language and tools (not only to


Kaffe - Kaffe the free Java Virtual Machine

The current version available is 0.9.2, it is compatible at the bytecode
level with Sun JDK 1.1.3. However a few features are still lacking on the
current version.


guavac - free Java byte compiler

Guavac is a new standalone compiler for the Java programming language. It
was written entirely in C++, and should be portable to any platform
supporting Gnu's C++ compiler or a similarly powered system.


Kore - free set of Java classes

Glynn Clement's "kore" - a free set of classes to replace Sun's Java class
libraries. These are needed, in addition to Kaffe (or Per Bothner's upcoming
Java gcc enhancements), in order to create a 100% free Java implementation.

Send a message containing "subscribe" in the body to
kore-list-request@jimpick.com to sign up.

The kore package itself is available at: ftp://sensei.co.uk/misc/

Native Java compiler

I also dug up a reference for Per Bothner's Java gcc project mentioned
above, although it seems that whatever cygnus is doing, they are keeping it
to themselves for now: http://www.cygnus.com/~bothner/gcc-java.html

Also, see this article on Per's first Java/gcc program:

(Keep in mind that article is from way back in June. I don't have any idea
how far they are now.)

Mnemonic - free web browser

Is/will this web browser be Java aware?


Java IDE for GNU Emacs

Excerpt from a news posting:

I finished some major work on JDE for GNU Emacs.  I made it a major
mode, added incomplete and menu support for folding mode, viewing of
applets etc... (cons all-the-features-from-java-mode)

If you want to preview it, drop me a few lines ;)

        Nicolai P Guba
        BT Laboratories                 GNU Project
        nicolai@drake.bt.co.uk          nicolai@gnu.ai.mit.edu

BISS AWT - Java GUI application programming framework (not DFSG compliant
8-( )

Excerpt from the README:

BISS-AWT is a Java framework of about 150 Java classes for building
graphical applications with state-of-the-art user interfaces. Instead of
following the native lib based, "OS-native" look-and-feel (like Suns
java.awt), it is implemented purely in Java and has its own "Java-native"

The framework can be extended without native library support (i.e. you can
write your specialized versions of TextAreas, Checkboxes, Lists etc. without
being forced to write your own, non-portable, native libraries).

It already has nice things like text editors, pop-up menus, notebooks,
hierarchical Lists etc. without the need for a JDK 1.1 compliant native lib.
The cross platform compatibility has been tested on a variety of different
operating systems (Linux, BSD, NextStep, OS/2, Windows 95, ..).

Besides being useful as an add-on library for all standard Java AWT
implementations, it can be used to build an own, stand-alone AWT that
requires just minimal native library support. This distribution comes with a
native layer for the kaffe-0.8.1 virtual machine.

As a proof-of-concept, there are also some tools included which form a Java
specific IDE (integrated development environment, ClassBrowser etc.). These
tools already can be used to do serious Java programming (BISS-AWT itself
has been built with it). There even is a graphical layout generator which
considerably eases the effort required to design complex dialogs).

The BISS-AWT comes with full sources (both Java and for the optional native
library) and is distributed under a GPL-like license (please see file
LICENSE.BISS_AWT for details). It is a vivid project which will be
constantly improved (with respect to both the GUI and the IDE components).


In summary, it looks like it is worthwhile to start writing GPL'd Java code
right now, as very soon the free development environment to support it will
be in place.

If you're very brave, you might try Kaffe + Guavac + Kore as your
development environment, but it seems from recent mail traffic on the Kaffe
list that it is not quite stable. For the time being, it is probably best to
stick to Kaffe + Guavac + JDK, or just the JDK by itself.

List of current maintainer

      package                     coordinator/maintainer

 guavac            Hamish Moffatt <hamish@debian.org>
 jdk (jdk-vm,      Stephen Zander <srz@mckesson.com>
 jdk-classes, jre) last maintainer: Jim Pick <jim@jimpick.com>

 kaffe:            Jim Pick <jim@jimpick.com>
                   last maintainer: Vincent Renardias <vincent@waw.com>
 kore:             Ben Armstrong <synrg@sanctuary.nslug.ns.ca>
 biss-awt:         Christian Leutloff <leutloff@debian.org>
 java-base-doc:    Ben Armstrong <synrg@sanctuary.nslug.ns.ca>
 misc:             Greg Stark <gsstark@mit.edu>

Feel free to contact a maintainer individually or the whole group over the
mailing list debian-java@lists.debian.org.

There's some good info on how to become a developer now:

Java based Network Client

It would be nice to build a lightweight network computing client. This would
be a really stripped down system capable of network booting and executing a
web browser and Java (not much more than a kernel, X server, browser, and
Java runtime), and a regular Debian system to be its server. It should
network boot from one floppy (or ROM) and download X and the rest once it
has booted. Use of font servers and other stuff intended to reduce or
eliminate local storage would be nice.

I think it would be a service to the world to have a free complete
implementation of such a thing to compete with the Oracle/IBM version.

Obviously, getting all of the services to run under a complete Debian system
is a starting point for this project, and is also essential for everyone who
really doesn't like the network computing idea because it is the
re-invention of the mainframe :-) . Stripping the client down might best be
a separate project from Debian within SPI.

I'm sorry I didn't communicate this clearly. When I say "network computer",
I mean a particular scheme to make a very inexpensive Java-executing engine
with centralized administration for use in primary school.

As far as I can tell, we are coming close to having all of the Java run-time
components in free state. The web browser might be a bit less complete.

Related Debian packages

netboot - booting of a diskless computer

This package allows booting of a diskless computer over a network and
mounting the root filesystem via NFS. It contains the necessary bootrom code
and utility program to convert a Linux kernel or MS-DOS into a netbootable

nfsroot - set up server to allow nfsroot clients to boot.

60min after you installed this package on your server, you can:

Insert a nfsrootbootfloppy (create one with "mknfsrootboot") in any computer
on your local network that has it's networkcard configured (running whatever
OS), press "RESET", and hey presto, it's running LINUX! (and is configured
to do just as much as your server, by default).

This package allows you to have most /etc files on the clients the same as
the server, and some different. You'll need 30k disk space per potential
client, and it's got a daemon that probes the network for hw adresses, and
puts them in /etc/bootpd, and makes /tftpboot entries (excluding hosts in
Java is a trademark of Sun Microsystems Inc.

Back to the Debian GNU/Linux homepage.

Please send questions and inquiries to debian@debian.org.
Please send comments on these webpages to webmaster@debian.org.

Last Modified: 26 November 1997. Copyright © 1997 SPI; See license terms.

<-------- snap

I'm some days offline. So be patient if you don't get a reply

Comments needed! ;-)


Christian Leutloff, Aachen, Germany
  leutloff@sundancer.oche.de  http://www.oche.de/~leutloff/

Debian GNU/Linux 1.3.1! Mehr unter http://www.de.debian.org/

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