Create Software Components 

Using Java Level 2



Course Info




Java Demos




How to install and use the JDK

The Java 2 SDK is a software development kit made available for free by Sun Microsystems.  The package gives you all the tools necessary for creating Java applications and applets

The current version of the SDK is J2SETM 1.4 (JavaTM 2 Standard Edition v 1.4) and this is the version we use on this course.

The following steps explain how to install the J2SETM on your PC running Windows 9x and NT(2000,XP).

Installing the JDK

Modifying your Path

Running your first program

Installing the JDK

  1. Obtain the Java 2 SDK from Sun

You can download the installation file directly from Sun's website at:-

You should ensure you download the SDK (Software Development Kit) and not the JRE (Java Runtime Environment.)

You should end up with a file called j2sdk-1_4_0_01-windows-i586.exe 

  1. Uninstall any Prior Version of the Java 2 SDK

If you have previously installed another version of the Java 2 SDK, uninstall it. 

Use the Microsoft Windows Add/Remove Programs utility, accessible from the Control Panel (Start --> Settings --> Control Panel).

  1. Run the Java 2 SDK installer

    Note -- you must have administrative permissions in order to install the Java 2 SDK on Microsoft Windows 2000 and XP.

    The file
    j2sdk-1_4_0_01-windows-i586.exe is the Java 2 SDK installer. Double-click on the file to start the installation. 


When the installation starts, you will be presented with the InstallShield screen.  Click on "Next" and then "Yes" to accept the license agreement.  You will be prompted for the installation directory.  Choose the default directory C:\j2sdk1.4.0_01 and click "Next".  

Note -- you can choose a different installation directory provided there are no spaces in the path name.



After clicking on "Next" you will be prompted for the components to install. All you really need are the "Program Files", but if you have the space available, you should install all the components.

On clicking the "Next" button again you will be asked if you wish to set the Java Plug-in as default for any browsers you have installed.  Tick all the boxes and click on "Next".

The installation files will now be copied.  When the installation is complete, a "Setup Complete" window is displayed, and you have the option to read the README file. Click on the "Finish" button when you are ready. 

  1. Delete the downloaded file (Optional)

    If you want to recover disk space, delete the file you originally downloaded.

Modifying your Path

The PATH variable is used to tell the computer the location of the java executables (javac.exe, java.exe, javadoc.exe, etc.)  You can run the Java 2 SDK without setting the PATH variable, or you can optionally set it as a convenience.
If you don't set the PATH variable, you need to specify the full path to an executable every time you run it, such as:

C:> \j2sdk1.4.0_01\bin\javac  

If you want to be able to conveniently run the Java 2 SDK executables (javac.exe, java.exe, javadoc.exe, etc.) from any directory without having to type the full path of the command you should set the PATH variable.  Once the PATH is set, running an executable is simpler.  For example, the command above becomes:


Modifying your path depends on what version of Windows you are using.   Set the PATH as follows, according to whether you are on Microsoft Windows NT or 95/98/2000/ME.

Setting the Path - Microsoft Windows 98 and 95 

If you are running Windows 95/98, open the "C:\autoexec.bat" file with a text editor like NotePad.  All you need to do is add ;C:\j2sdk1.4.0_01\bin; to the end of the line which contains the word PATH.  

Here is an example


To make the path take effect in the current Command Prompt window, execute the following:

C:> c:\autoexec.bat

To find out the current value of your
PATH, to see if it took effect, at the command prompt, type:

C:> path

Your new path should include the "c:\j2sdk1.4.0_01\bin" directory.  As a final test to make sure everything has been installed correctly, type "javac" at the command prompt.  If you get the output:

Bad command or file name

Then your path has not been modified correctly. If you get the output:

Usage: javac <options> <sourcefiles>

followed by a list of possible options then everything is correctly installed, and you are ready to start developing Java programs on your PC!

Setting the Path - Microsoft Windows NT, 2000, and XP 

Choose Start, Settings, Control Panel, and double-click System. On Microsoft Windows NT, select the Environment tab; on Microsoft Windows 2000 and XP select the Advanced tab and then Environment Variables. Look for PATH in the User Variables and System Variables.  Add the j2sdk PATH to the right end. Typically you would add:


Click "Set", "OK" or "Apply".

Running your first program

First Steps - Using Java 

Your computer system should now be ready to use the Java 2 SDK.  To get the feel of some simple java applets, try running the following applets.

Open the command prompt and change to the Java C:\j2sdk1.4.0_01\demo\applets directory by typing

C:> cd j2sdk1.4.0_01\demo\applets

Now type the following and see what you get.

appletviewer animator\example1.html

Here are some more you can try

appletviewer dithertest\example1.html

appletviewer clock\example1.html

appletviewer drawtest\example1.html

Note -- you can also view any of the applet examples in the demo applet directory by double-clicking a HTML file.  For example, double-clicking the example1.html file in the animator directory would load the applet into your default browser

Now try writing your first Java applications and applets >>


  Site Home 

Java Home   


Course Info





Scheme of Work





Learning Center

Web Materials


Java Demos



Lecture Materials

Tutorials & Notes





Site Home


Unit Home

ADR 2002