I'm fairly new to Java programming and I've recently read this article from Oracle(from September 2018). https://blogs.oracle.com/java-platform-group/oracle-jdk-releases-for-java-11-and-later. What does this mean? From the article:

The Binary Code License for Oracle Java SE technologies (“BCL”) has been the primary license for Oracle Java SE technologies for well over a decade. The BCL permits use without license fees under certain conditions. To simplify things going forward, Oracle started providing open source licensed OpenJDK builds as of Java 9, using the same license model as the Linux platform. If you are used to getting Oracle Java SE binaries for free, you can simply continue doing so with Oracle’s OpenJDK builds available at jdk.java.net. If you are used to getting Oracle Java SE binaries as part of a commercial product or service from Oracle, then you can continue to get Oracle JDK releases through My Oracle Support (MOS), and other locations. Starting with Java 11, Oracle will provide JDK releases under the open source GNU General Public License v2, with the Classpath Exception (GPLv2+CPE), and under a commercial license for those using the Oracle JDK as part of an Oracle product or service, or who do not wish to use open source software. This combination of using an open source license and a commercial license replaces the historical “BCL” license, which had a combination of free and paid commercial terms. Different builds will be provided for each license, but these builds are functionally identical aside from some cosmetic and packaging differences, described in detail below.

Does this mean that OpenJDK 8 is still under the BCL license? I get my Java from Amazon which is a distribution of OpenJDK.

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    You should have gotten the license information along with the distribution. That's what counts irrespective of what is said elsewhere. Yet it sounds like it is so. Mar 14, 2021 at 13:21

1 Answer 1


To my (non-lawyer) eyes this reads as they promising it goes/stays GPL + CPE or you can get it under BCL (for a fee) if the above license isn't compatible with your intended use (quite farfetched, but still).

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