Google Cloud Platform

Java 8 on App Engine standard environment is now generally available

Earlier this quarter, we announced the beta availability of Java 8 on App Engine standard environment. Today, we're excited to announce that this runtime is now generally available and is covered by the App Engine Service Level Agreement (SLA).

App Engine is a fully managed platform that allows you to build scalable web and mobile applications without worrying about the underlying infrastructure. For years, developers have loved the zero-toil, just-focus-on-your-code capabilities of App Engine. Unfortunately, using Java 7 on App Engine standard environment also required compromises, including limited Java classes, unusual thread execution and slower performance because of sandboxing overhead.

With this release, all of the above limitations will be removed. Leveraging an entirely new infrastructure, you can now take advantage of everything that OpenJDK 8 and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) have to offer, including running your applications using a OpenJDK 8 JVM (Java Virtual Machine) and Jetty 9 along with full outbound gRPC requests and Google Cloud Java Library support. App Engine standard environment also supports off-the-shelf frameworks such as Spring Boot and alternative languages like Kotlin or any other JVM supported language.

During the beta release, we continued to enhance the performance of the runtime; many of our customers, such as SnapEngage are already seeing significant performance improvements and reduced costs by migrating their application from the Java 7 runtime to the Java 8 runtime.

The new Java 8 runtime brings performance enhancements to our application, leading to cost savings. Running on Java 8 also means increased developer happiness and efficiency, thanks to the removal of the class white list, and to the new features the language provides. Last but not least, upgrading from the Java 7 to the Java 8 runtime was a breeze. — Jerome Mouton, Co-founder and CTO, SnapEngage

The migration process is simple. Just add the java8

line to your appengine-web.xml file and redeploy your application (you can read more about the migration process here). Also check out this short video on how to deploy a Java web app to App Engine Standard.

With App Engine, you can scale your applications up or down instantaneously, all the way down to zero instances when no traffic is detected. App Engine also enables global caching of static resources, native microservices and versioning, traffic splitting between any two deployed versions (including Java 7 and Java 8), local development tooling and numerous App Engine APIs that help you leverage other GCP capabilities.

We'd like to thank all of our beta users for their feedback and invite you to continue submitting your feedback on the Maven, Gradle, IntelliJ and Eclipse plugins, as well as the Google Cloud Java Libraries on their respective GitHub repositories. You can also submit feedback for the Java 8 runtime on the issue tracker. As for OpenJDK 9 support, we're hard at work here to bring you support for the newest Java version as well, so stay tuned!

If you’re an existing App Engine user, migrate today; there's no reason to delay. If you’re new to App Engine, now is the best time to jump on in. Create an app, and get started now. Happy coding!