Oracle will continue to support Java Standard Edition 6 until at least mid-February 2013, marking the second time that the company has extended its support lifespan.
The venerable software, released in 2006, was due to be retired in November 2012. However, Oracle has extended this until February next year in order to allow more time for the transition to Java SE7, which has itself been out for nearly a year and a half.
"The last publicly available release of Oracle JDK 6 is to be released in February 2013. This means that after 19 February 2013, all new security updates, patches and fixes for Java SE 6 and Java SE 5 will only be available through 'My Oracle Support' and will thus require a commercial license with Oracle," the company said in a blog post on Monday.
Initially, Oracle had planned to end updates, patches and security fixes for Java SE6 back in July 2012, but this plan was thrown off track by the delayed introduction of the newer Java SE7, resulting in the November time frame. Now this has been moved to February next year, SE6 holdouts have a little longer to make the move to SE7 if they want to continue to receive updates and patches for free.