How to install Java on Mac (macOS 10.14 & 10.15)

Java is one of the most used programming languages for backend and creating different type of applications ( web application, mobile applications, desktop applications, and many more). It supports all the major operating systems such as Windows, Linux, Solaris, and MacOS. In this topic, we will see how to install Java on mac and its different variations.

Before proceeding further, let’s have a look at the quick index of the topic:

System Requirements to install Java on mac

The system requirements and considerations for installing the JDK and the JRE on macOS are as following:

Important points to be considered while installing Java on MacOS:

A computer running macOS and having administrator privileges.

Java can not be installed for a single user instead it is installed systemwide for all users.

The JDK package contains JRE by default. However, the current JRE version will not be replaced with the lower version of JRE.

Installing the JRE will not contain the JVM or other Java libraries for creating applications. It can only be used to run the Java apllications. See the difference between JRE, JDK, and OracleJDK.

Hardware requirements:

The following requirements should be meet to install Java 7 or later versions:

  • Intel-based Mac running versions 10.7.3 and above
  • Administrator privileges
  • A 64-bit browser (e.g., Safari)
  • 32-bit browsers do not support Java 7 and later versions on the Mac platform

Determining the JRE Version Installed on macOS

There can be only one JRE version on the system. Installing the JRE will replaces the previous version. However, it will not replace with the older versions.

The JRE version can be determned by the following ways:

Visit System Preferences->Other section->Java . This will start the Java Control Panel, after this, click on About to display the version information.


Enter the following command on terminal:

% /Library/Internet\ Plug-Ins/JavaAppletPlugin.plugin/Contents/Home/bin/java -version

The above command will display the installed Java version.

Determining the Default JDK Version on macOS

To start a Java application, the system uses the default JDK version. It is possible JRE may have the a different version that the JDK.

There can be multiple versions of the JDK, but, the JRE version can be only one (latest).

To determine the installed Java version, execute the below command:

java -version

The above command will display the output something like this ( for Java 10):

java version ""
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 23.2-b04, mixed mode)

To change the default version version of Java, either specify the full path, or use the java_home tool as follows:

/usr/libexec/java_home -v --exec javac -version

Installing the JDK on macOS

The JDK package by default contains the associated JRE versions. The JavaFX SDK and Runtime are also packaged into the standard JDK package.

Follow the below steps to install Java on MacOS:


Download the JDK .dmg file from Here, or by executing the below command:


before downloading the file you must accept license agreements.


After the successfull Double click on the ‘.dmg’ file to start the installation process.


Next, you will see a finder window having the name of the ‘.pkg’ file. Click on the ‘.pkg’ file to proceed the installation process:


In this step, you will see a Introduction window, click Continue.


You will see a installation type window, Click Install to continue.


In this step you will see a window having a message “Installer is trying to install new software”. Type your administrator password to allow this.


Enter the Administrator user name and password and click Install Software.

The downlaoded Java version is installed on your machne and confirmation window is displayed.

Installing the JRE on macOS

Follow the below steps to install the JRE on an macOS platform:


Download the JRE .dmg file, by executing the below command:


Accept the license agreement.


Next, double-click on the .dmg file and launch it.


In this step, you will see a finder window appears having ‘.app’ file.


Double-click on the Java icon, it will start the installation process.


The installation process will display the Welcome window, Click Next to continue the process.


Hence, the downloaded JRE version is installed and a confirmation window is displayed. Click Close to complete the process.

Installing By Homebrew

To install By Homebrew package manager, follow the following steps:

Step1: Install Homebrew and update it, and download openJDK package by executing the below commands:

brew update
Add adoptopenjdk/openjdk.
brew tap adoptopenjdk/openjdk

Step2: Find all available JDK versions by executing the below command:

brew search jdk

The output will be something like this:

==> Casks
adoptopenjdk                             adoptopenjdk12                           adoptopenjdk13-openj9                    adoptopenjdk8-openj9-jre
adoptopenjdk10                           adoptopenjdk12-jre                       adoptopenjdk13-openj9-jre                adoptopenjdk8-openj9-jre-large
adoptopenjdk11                           adoptopenjdk12-openj9                    adoptopenjdk13-openj9-jre-large          adoptopenjdk8-openj9-large
adoptopenjdk11-jre                       adoptopenjdk12-openj9-jre                adoptopenjdk13-openj9-large              adoptopenjdk9
adoptopenjdk11-openj9                    adoptopenjdk12-openj9-jre-large          adoptopenjdk8                         oracle-jdk
adoptopenjdk11-openj9-jre                adoptopenjdk12-openj9-large              adoptopenjdk8                          oracle-jdk-javadoc
adoptopenjdk11-openj9-jre-large          adoptopenjdk13                           adoptopenjdk8-jre                        sapmachine-jdk
adoptopenjdk11-openj9-large              adoptopenjdk13-jre                       adoptopenjdk8-openj9

Step3: Select Java versions like Java 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 by executing the one of the following commands:

brew cask install adoptopenjdk8
brew cask install adoptopenjdk9
brew cask install adoptopenjdk10
brew cask install adoptopenjdk11
brew cask install adoptopenjdk12
brew cask install adoptopenjdk13

Step4: for example to install Java 8 and 11, execute the below commads:

brew cask install adoptopenjdk8

brew cask install adoptopenjdk11


To display the loaction where Java is installed, execute the below command:

/usr/libexec/java_home -V

The above command will display the output something like this:

Matching Java Virtual Machines (2):
    11.0.6, x86_64:	"AdoptOpenJDK 11"	/Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/adoptopenjdk-11.jdk/Contents/Home
    1.8.0_242, x86_64:	"AdoptOpenJDK 8"	/Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/adoptopenjdk-8.jdk/Contents/Home

Homebrew will install the JDK at Mac’s standard folder for Java “/Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/”.


Verify the installation, by executing the below command:

java -version

The output will be as:

openjdk version "11.0.6" 2020-01-14
OpenJDK Runtime Environment AdoptOpenJDK (build 11.0.6+10)
OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM AdoptOpenJDK (build 11.0.6+10, mixed

By default, Mac takes the Higher version of Java.

Version Switching

To change the default version of Java create or edit the “~/.bash_profile” with the text editor of your choice like vim or nano, export JAVA_HOME variable to the specified JDK we want to use on Mac.

Execute the below command:

vim ~/.bash_profile

Update the file as:


export JAVA_HOME_8=$(/usr/libexec/java_home -v1.8)
export JAVA_HOME_11=$(/usr/libexec/java_home -v11)
export JAVA_HOME_14=$(/usr/libexec/java_home -v14)

# Java 8

# Java 11
# export JAVA_HOME=$JAVA_HOME_11

The above script will make the Java 8 as default Java version.

Uninstalling the JDK on macOS

To uninstall the JDK on macOS, Navigate to “/Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines”. Remove the directory whose name matches the following format:


For example, to uninstall Java 10, execute the below command:

rm -rf jdk-

Note: Do not try to uninstall Java by removing the Java tools from /usr/bin. This directory is part of the system software and any changes will be reset by Apple the next time that you perform an update of the OS.

Uninstalling the JRE on macOS

To uninstall JRE, Navigate to “/Library/Internet Plug-Ins”. From here, remove the JavaAppletPlugin.plugin directory.

Now, navigate to “/Library/PreferencePanes”.

Remove JavaControlPanel.prefpane.