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ANNOUNCE: japitools 0.9 released


I'm proud to announce the first japitools release intended for wide public consumption. japitools is a set of tools for testing compatibility between different versions of a Java API. It can be used both for verifying whether an independent implementation of an API is correct and complete, and for ensuring that binary compatibility is maintained between successive versions of the same API. In particular, japitools can be used to test the conformance of independent implementations of the Java platform itself.

Features of this release:

* japize tool reads Java class files and dumps a machine-readable
representation of the API to a "japi" file.

* japicompat tool compares two japi files for binary backwards

* japilist tool provides human-readable summaries of the contents of a
japi file.

* serialize and serialcompat tools test serialization compatibility.

* japifix tool updates japi files made by previous releases, and in some
cases can correct malformed files.

* Comparisions cover every requirement for binary compatibility as
defined in the JLS, and more, but exclude many differences that are
known to be insignificant, to keep the signal-to-noise ratio high.

* All algorithms are tuned for memory usage and performance, to allow
running on machines with limited resources or as unsupervised (eg
nightly) jobs.

* japi file format is fully specified, allowing interoperable tools to
be created.

For more information on japitools, including a change history, visit the project website at . japitools 0.9 can be downloaded from . Any questions or comments should be directed to

Particular thanks for their help in making this release as good as it can be go to Brian Jones for providing the ant build system, the serialize and serialcompat tools, and lots of wrapper scripts, along with some invaluable testing and setting up nightly japicompat tests for GNU Classpath CVS; and to Dalibor Topic for working towards a similar arrangement for Kaffe, and being a patient and committed tester despite several brown-paper-bag development releases. Thanks also to everyone else who's provided feedback.

Major features planned for the near future include HTML and possibly XML output,and more advanced filtering of errors to allow, for example, ignoring errors against an early JDK version if the same problem appears in (more recent versions of) the JDK itself.

Stuart Ballard, Programmer
NetReach - Internet Solutions
(215) 283-2300, ext. 126

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