Java JDK for FreeBSD 4.x / Jakarta-Tomcat 4.0.1, by Victoria Chan

Introduction - Java today, January 14th 2002

This document is written in hopes of making it easier for anyone that needs to get Java™ for FreeBSD, up and running with the least amount of aggravation. Plan on spending a whole day on such a project as it will take time to assemble all the pieces and compile them individually, and then as a whole.

The Java™ programming language was born on May 23rd 1995. One would expect that after all this time, Java™ Applications would be easy to install and ready to run from a single package or port, thus making it available for the en masse.

This is not the case, unfortunately, as Java™ distribution is held very closely by Sun™, and prohibits re-distribution. All Java™ Applets must be compiled from source codes, by parts and pieces, together with the Java™ Development Kit from Sun™. All these ingredients must be blended together in the right order, assembled and compiled by the end user. With such distribution philosophies at heart, it is my opinion that Java will always be developer / hacker use only. I certainly found this to be true when I needed to serve up some .jsp pages for a client on my web server, and needed to get Jakarta Tomcat to work with my Apache on my FreeBSD box.

The Tomcat portion of the install is very straight forward, but the difficulty I had was getting Java Development Kit up and running for FreeBSD 4.x, as Sun™ only supplies Binaries for Linux / Solaris™ & NT. This meant that I had to compile my own for FreeBSD. I began by searching for documentation on the internet. I quickly found that there are more source codes that I needed and patches to the source codes, with very little supporting documentation of what to do with these sources & patches.

What you need to assemble

Ensure that you have the current ports collection. If you do not, when you run "make" it will bomb out as it is trying to download an older source. You can upgrade your entire ports collection by using CVSup. See for more information. You can also download the ports you need manually from to get you going.

The list of dependencies below, are required to be installed manually in a certain order. Dependencies that are automatically or dynamically downloaded are not listed here.







You will need to get the following:

  • Download bsd-jdk131-patches-5.tar.gz from and place it in the /usr/ports/distfiles/

  • Next get out your hoop-jumping suit! Go to and find SDK downloads. Click on the "continue" button below "GNUZIP Tar Shell Script". Be sure you read every word of the license page before you click on the Accept button! You will be brought to a page named "Download Java(TM) 2 SDK, Standard Edition 1.3.1_02". None of the ftp buttons on this page are likely to be useful to you, as they will simply download the code into your web browser.  Instead, scroll to the bottom and click on the "HTTP download" button. Now it gets really weird (almost like Sun doesn't want their software released). When the "File Download" box comes up, be sure to click on the "Open" button rather than the "Save" button (choosing Save at this point will crash IE). You will be presented with another "File Download" box - this time choose "Save" and you will be able to save j2sdk-1_3_1_02-linux-i386.bin. Place it in /usr/ports/distfiles/

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