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Return of the OpenJDK Developers' Guide

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A new version of the OpenJDK Developers’ Guide is now available. This version complements other, more formal, documentation already available.

It updates and replaces some older, less extensive versions of the guide that are still online, but which are no longer maintained. The guide helps (new) community members contribute to the development of OpenJDK - for instance, by defining the collaboration process and by providing examples. The goal is to have one place for all the necessary documentation that’s now scattered across multiple locations or doesn’t even exist.

There are many documents available for OpenJDK such as JDK Enhancement Proposals or JEPs. The Developers’ Guide provides tutorials and examples as an addition to the existing documentation. The guide describes how the process works, how to collaborate, the coding conventions, and other relevant topics. While it focuses on new contributors, it also serves as a reference for more experienced members.

One of the topics in the guide is Change Planning and Guidelines, which includes the process for fixing a bug. The process contains step by step instructions for fixing a bug. It all starts by sending an email with a specified subject to the mailing list. The message should describe the intended change. When an agreement is reached, a bug id should be registered with the status ‘open’. What follows are many more steps including fixing the bug, creating tests, and running the regression tests. After going through all the steps the bugfix should be pushed to version control.

The OpenJDK Developers’ Guide gives step-by-step instructions on how to work. It aims to make the development process more efficient for both maintainers and (new) developers.

The source of The OpenJDK Developers’ Guide is located on GitHub. It’s still a work in progress and contributions are welcome. Contributions should be made in a private fork and discussed on the mailing list.

There were some older versions of the guide in the past, but they’re no longer maintained. The new version was started as a formal project within OpenJDK with a mandate to bring the contribution guide up to date. As Jesper Wilhelmsson from Oracle stated on Twitter, "Long overdue, the OpenJDK Developers' Guide is resurrected with the intent to update and maintain it."


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