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Mac Java Update: JRE SE 7 1.7.0_10 is OS X 10.8 certified

18 December 2012 3,328 views 4 Comments

With things dying down of late and yet another Mac Java update available, perhaps the Java as security nightmare meme is history

Java was the future. In recent years, however, it’s gotten a bad name due to a string of nasty security vulnerabilities affecting just about everyone. Now, with things dying down of late and yet another Mac Java update available, perhaps the Java as security nightmare meme is history.

Honestly, I rather enjoyed Adobe’s Flash security travails — they deserved it. Yet, Piczilla got its act together and hackers turned their attentions to Java. Perhaps Oracle is turning the corner, too, with the arrival of Java SE Runtime Environment 7 1.7.0_10 (download), which comes to market with a bunch of bug fixes, as well as some more notable changes:

• Now OS X 10.8 and Windows 8 Desktop Mode certified
• The ability to disable any Java application from running in the browser. This mode can be set in the Java Control Panel or (on Microsoft Windows platform only) using a command-line install argument.
• The ability to select the desired level of security for unsigned applets, Java Web Start applications, and embedded JavaFX applications that run in a browser. Four levels of security are supported. This feature can be set in the Java Control Panel or (on Microsoft Windows platform only) using a command-line install argument.
• New dialogs to warn you when the JRE is insecure (either expired or below the security baseline) and needs to be updated.
• Bug fixes

Yes, Mountain Lion certification is good, but the third bullet point — the ability to tweak security by applet type — seems like a big deal. Similarly, warning users when they’re running old code should be helpful, too.

Enough to salvage Java’s battered security reputation or is Java just too yesterday for more folks to care?

Inquiring minds want to know…

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