The Java Extension Mechanism

for Support of Optional Packages

Documentation Contents
Note: Optional packages are the new name for what used to be known as standard extensions. The "extension mechanism" is that functionality of the JDK and JRE that supports the use of optional packages.

Optional packages are packages of Java classes (and any associated native code) that application developers can use to extend the functionality of the core platform. The extension mechanism allows the Java virtual machine (VM) to use the classes of the optional extension in much the same way as the VM uses classes in the Java 2 Platform. The extension mechanism also provides a way for needed optional packages to be retrieved from specified URLs when they are not already installed in the JDK or JRE.

Overview Extension Mechanism Architecture Enhancements Made in Previous Release JDK 1.3 API Specification

The following classes play a role in the extension mechanism:

See also the API Details section of the mechanism specification for notes on these APIs.


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