I would like to upgrade my main system to 16.04, but I work on projects that require OpenJDK 7.

Apparently it is not available from a trivial apt-get install openjdk-7-jdk. Only versions 8 and 9 are listed in the repository.

Can anyone point me to instructions on how to install it?

  • In case anyone's wondering why you'd still want JDK 7, I'm in the same situation because I think neo4j 2.1.6 isn't playing nicely with Ubuntu 16.04 and the only thing I can see that could be wrong is the JDK. – Sridhar-Sarnobat Dec 14 '16 at 21:41
  • Do you explicitly require openjdk 7 as your system JVM or do you just need a Java 7 runtime. You can download the latter from the Oracle archives. – Thorbjørn Ravn Andersen May 26 at 8:48

Security Warning

Packages in the PPA mentioned below are not updated with security patches to Java. Do not use in production; see alternative answers instead.

At time of writing, the last upload for OpenJDK 7 was done '2016-04-22' with version 7u95 and still available as 'latest', where Ubuntu 14.04 has been updated to 7u181.


UPDATE : ALTHOUGH THIS IS THE MOST VOTED ANSWER ITS PROBABLY NOT THE ONE YOU WANT TO USE IN 2018 DUE TO LACK OF SECURITY UPDATES BY THIS PPA.

I found the following instructions which worked for me :

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:openjdk-r/ppa  
sudo apt-get update   
sudo apt-get install openjdk-7-jdk  

This defines the “PPA for OpenJDK uploads (restricted)” as an additional package repositiory, updates your information, and installs the package with its dependencies (from that repository).

  • 13
    If you have mistakenly installed openjdk-8 first (like I did) then after following this answer you'll need to do a sudo update-java-alternatives so you can make openjdk-7 the default. – Rian Sanderson Jun 10 '16 at 1:54
  • 3
    FYI: This currently doesn't work for 16.10 – opticyclic Oct 17 '16 at 1:40
  • 16
    -1 because this PPA is totally out of date and ignoring many important security patches. Totally unacceptable to have this installed, imo. – gertvdijk Mar 14 '17 at 13:34
  • 2
    Also does not work for 17.04. – Colin Harrington Aug 8 '17 at 21:27
  • 2
    -1 also as the PPA suggested is Restricted and isn't kept up to date. – delimiter Sep 11 '17 at 19:15

It does not look like the maintainer of openjdk-r/ppa will be updating the openjdk-7 package beyond version 7u95-2.6.4-3. That package's description "Copied from debian experimental in Primary Archive for Debian GNU/Linux" gives us a clue about how to handle this ourselves, though.

Option 1: Manual Installation

  1. Download the packages intended for your architecture:
    (for most users, this means amd64 if 64bit, or i386 if 32bit Ubuntu is installed)

  2. (Attempt to) install the packages using dpkg:

    Ubuntu 17.10 and earlier:

    sudo dpkg -i openjdk-7-* libjpeg62-turbo* libfontconfig1* fontconfig-config*
    

    Ubuntu 18.04 and later:

    sudo dpkg -i openjdk-7-* libjpeg62-turbo*
    
  3. Check the output from dpkg. If there were dependency problems – which is likely – you will see the following (with your architecture substituted for amd64):

    Errors were encountered while processing:
    openjdk-7-jre:amd64
    openjdk-7-jre-headless:amd64
    openjdk-7-jdk:amd64

    If there were no dependency issues, great, you're done, skip to #4. Otherwise, if you need to resolve some dependency issues, this is handled with:

    sudo apt install -f
    

    Notice, there is no need to re-run dpkg after letting apt resolve dependencies. It will automatically finish installation of the openjdk packages.

  4. Update java alternatives. You can view all installed java versions with update-java-alternatives --list. To activate OpenJDK Java 1.7, run:

    sudo update-java-alternatives -s java-1.7.0-openjdk-amd64
    

    You may notice an error about the IcedTeaPlugin.so plugin being unavailable. This isn't a real concern for developers working with the JDK.

  5. Verify java is working:

    java -version
    

    which should output something similar to:

    java version "1.7.0_161"
    OpenJDK Runtime Environment (IcedTea 2.6.12) (7u161-2.6.12-1)
    OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM (build 24.161-b01, mixed mode)

Option 2: Automatic Installation (including updates with apt)

Pinning can be utilized to install and update openjdk-7-jdk and its dependencies from Debian repositories.

  1. Create a pinning file that tells apt to only consider packages that interest us (we certainly don't want our entire Ubuntu distribution "upgraded" with Debian experimental packages).

    Create file /etc/apt/preferences.d/debian with the below contents. You'll need superuser privileges, so use one of sudo vim, sudo nano, gksudo gedit, etc.

    Package: *
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=experimental
    Pin-Priority: -1
    
    Package: *
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=sid
    Pin-Priority: -1
    
    Package: openjdk-7-jdk
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=experimental
    Pin-Priority: 500
    
    Package: openjdk-7-jre
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=experimental
    Pin-Priority: 500
    
    Package: openjdk-7-jre-headless
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=experimental
    Pin-Priority: 500
    
    Package: libjpeg62-turbo
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=sid
    Pin-Priority: 500
    

    For Ubuntu 17.10 and earlier, also append the following (and see note at bottom):

    Package: libfontconfig1
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=sid
    Pin-Priority: 500
    
    Package: fontconfig-config
    Pin: release o=Debian,n=sid
    Pin-Priority: 500
    
  2. Install the Debian keyring:

    sudo apt install debian-archive-keyring
    

    Note: while this is the simplest method of adding the debian keyring, it may not be up to date. Check for output like the following when running apt update in step 4:

    W: GPG error: http://cdn-fastly.deb.debian.org/debian experimental InRelease: The following signatures couldn't be verified because the public key is not available: NO_PUBKEY 8B48AD6246925553 NO_PUBKEY 7638D0442B90D010
    E: The repository 'http://httpredir.debian.org/debian experimental InRelease' is not signed.

    If you see this error, then manually add the necessary keys with:

    sudo apt-key adv --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys 8B48AD6246925553
    sudo apt-key adv --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys 7638D0442B90D010
    

    where 8B48AD6246925553 and 7638D0442B90D010 should match the pubkeys you see in the warning message.

  3. Add the needed repositories:

    sudo add-apt-repository 'deb http://httpredir.debian.org/debian experimental main'
    sudo add-apt-repository 'deb http://httpredir.debian.org/debian sid main'
    

    Why not use a stable Debian repository? You'll run into unsatisfiable dependencies with Debian stable. The experimental (for openjdk-7) and sid (for libjpeg62-turbo, libfontconfig1, and fontconfig-config) repositories are more lenient with dependency versions.

  4. Update apt cache (expect this to take a while since Debian's package lists are big):

    sudo apt update
    
  5. Install openjdk-7-jdk:

    sudo apt install openjdk-7-jdk
    
  6. Update java alternatives. You can view all installed java versions with update-java-alternatives --list. To activate OpenJDK Java 1.7, run:

    sudo update-java-alternatives -s java-1.7.0-openjdk-amd64
    

    You may notice an error about the IcedTeaPlugin.so plugin being unavailable. This isn't a real concern for developers working with the JDK.

  7. Verify java is working:

    java -version
    

    which should output something similar to:

    java version "1.7.0_161"
    OpenJDK Runtime Environment (IcedTea 2.6.12) (7u161-2.6.12-1)
    OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM (build 24.161-b01, mixed mode)

fontconfig notes

libfontconfig1 and fontconfig-config must be upgraded to 2.12 or later on Ubuntu 17.10 and earlier. The update packages from Debian do not contain Ubuntu's customizations, so some applications display ugly fonts with these packages installed; e.g. Charles Web Debugging Proxy. Depending on the programs you use, you may or may not be affected by this problem.

  • Interesting answer, please update it if you find a way to keep this package automatically updated. – J.Serra Jul 29 '16 at 14:48
  • I just tried installing jdk 7 on ubuntu 16.04 and this is the only way I managed to get it working. Thank you! – link Aug 9 '16 at 6:49
  • 2
    @J.Serra Answer revised with automatic update method. – MDMower Jan 26 '17 at 21:19
  • perfect answered especially the automatic method is highly appreciated! thanks for takin the time to figure out and writing down! – steadfasterX Jul 2 '17 at 8:53
  • 1
    The automatic method mostly worked for me, but is not entirely permanent either. I had to add two more packages to /etc/apt/preferences.d/debian (in addition to libjpeg62-turbo): libfontconfig1 and fontconfig-config – comodoro Aug 27 '17 at 10:31

You can download a OpenJDK 7 from Azul which may fit your needs. They both have a DEB (for the package system) and a ZIP distribution. I have only worked with the ZIP distribution.

http://www.azul.com/downloads/zulu/zulu-linux/

Install Java 7 on Ubuntu 16.04, Ubuntu 17.04

It’s recommended to install Oracle Java, because it has a performance edge over OpenJDK. For that reason I want to post an alternative. If you want to install Oracle Java run the following commands in terminal to install it from PPA.

  1. Add the needed repositories:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
    
  2. Update apt cache and install oracle-java7:

    sudo apt update
    sudo apt install java-common oracle-java7-installer
    

    During the installation process you will need to accept the Oracle License agreement. Once installed we need to set Java environment variables such as JAVA_HOME

  3. Correct Java environment variables.

    sudo apt install oracle-java7-set-default
    source /etc/profile
    
  4. Verify java is working:

    java -version
    

    which should output something similar to:

    java version "1.7.0_80"
    Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.7.0_80-u80)
    Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 25.131-u80, mixed mode)
    
  • 3
    The oracle installer no longer works Connecting to download.oracle.com (download.oracle.com)|184.51.150.144|:80... connected. HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 404 Not Found – autonomy Aug 15 '17 at 14:53
  • For Oracle JDK, the company is not offering public support for JDK 7 (they offer paid support). I think the apt-get is trying to obtain the installer from a non-existing page. -- If you need JDK 7, you may download installers from Archive website: oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/downloads/… – Jaime Aug 31 '17 at 14:06

Oracle JDK alternative:

I wanted to avoid the effort with repositories because I switch between 7, 8, and 9, so I ended up with Oracle JDK rather than OpenJDK. Downloaded from the official site. I am not sure about whether the latest build 80 contains the same fixes as OpenJDK's build 161. But I have it for development so that doesn't mean much anyway to me.

Then you need to set $JAVA_HOME in the environment so that various scripts pick up the right JDK (e.g. Maven, JBoss etc.).

For completeness, JDK version 7 was EOL'ed, even JDK 8 public support is being terminated since September 2017 and will get no public updates after September 2018.

Use containers

This is a universally valid answer on how to run <outdated> removed software on <current> Ubuntu: containerize your application.

For example, use Docker and an older Ubuntu base image in which the software you're looking for is still available/maintained.

It also works the other way around; try out the software on a newer or even other Linux distribution on your currently running stable Ubuntu.

Example for Java 7 using Ubuntu 14.04

  1. Install Docker - Docker CE free version is fine. See for example https://docs.docker.com/install/linux/docker-ce/ubuntu/ or use the docker.io package in recent Ubuntu versions shipped.

  2. In an empty folder, create a file Dockerfile:

    FROM ubuntu:trusty
    RUN apt-get update \
        && apt-get install -y \
            openjdk-7-jdk \
        && rm -rf /var/lib/apt/lists/*
    
    ENTRYPOINT ["/usr/bin/java"]
    

    Add more packages in that command if you need that.

  3. In that folder, run:

    docker build -t gertvdijk/java7 .
    
  4. Run a command inside a single-use-container using that Java 7 image:

    E.g. java -version:

    docker run --rm -it gertvdijk/java7 -version
    

    Output:

    java version "1.7.0_181"
    OpenJDK Runtime Environment (IcedTea 2.6.14) (7u181-2.6.14-0ubuntu0.1)
    OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM (build 24.181-b01, mixed mode)
    
  5. Optionally, create a wrapper for convenience.

    • Create a file /usr/local/bin/java7-in-docker with contents:

      #!/usr/bin/env sh -e
      
      DOCKER_IMAGE=gertvdijk/java7
      PWD="$(pwd)"
      
      exec docker run \
        --rm -it \
        -v ${PWD}:${PWD} \
        -v "/etc/passwd:/etc/passwd:ro" \
        -v "/etc/group:/etc/group:ro" \
        --user "$(id -u):$(id -g)" \
        --workdir "${PWD}" \
        "${DOCKER_IMAGE}" \
        $@
      

      This will make the current working directory available inside the container - not your whole filesystem, and it will impersonate your local user account in the container namespace.

    • Mark it as executable:

      sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/java7-in-docker
      
  6. Run your Java 7 transparently, like this:

    java7-in-docker -jar relative/path/to/some.jar
    

An addition to MDMower's answer above about Manual or Automatic Installation.(*)

On Ubuntu 16.04.5 LTS with hwe-16.04-edge kernels and Cinnamon as DE, I experienced unexpected font behavior upon installation/upgrade of libfontconfig1 and its dependency fontconfig-config. Suddenly, I had weird and thin and barely legible mono-space fonts and other "ugly" fonts in many application's menu bars, as well as in terminal windows and many other places throughout my applications.

In case you encounter this issue: There seems to be no working fix at runtime for this. No point wasting your time searching for a setting to correct in any of Cinnamon's or Gnome's or FontConfig's or your Terminal's preferences (e.g. gconf-editor/gconftool, gnome-tweak-tool, fc-*). That won't have any effect on the "broken" fonts. It seems the update of Fontconfig-Config somehow resets known/cached references to certain fonts, and some fallback fonts are being rendered instead, while still referring to the fonts by their original name.

Simply restart your system, and everything is back to normal. Even just logging out and back in might suffice.


(*) This was supposed to be an addition or comment to above answer by @MDMower, but insufficient StackExchange "reputation" prohibits me from posting it as a comments. My edit was rejected (partially rightfully so), as well, hence this spammy "answer" instead. Sorry. I would be glad if someone with enough "power" might move this "answer" to be a comment, where it belongs. Thanks!

An easy way is:

Add these lines to: /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu trusty main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu trusty-security main restricted universe multiverse

Then update apt and install. You will probably need to downgrade tzdata package.

After that, I would recommend to comment out those lines and apt update again to prevent install or update of packages from that repository (which could lead to unexpected behavior).

One problem is that you need to hold those packages so they don't get removed when you update your system (specially tzdata package).

NOTE: Use this method as last resort, prefer any other that will allow you to update without issues.

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