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The CrashPlan app is a Java-based application. This article describes what that means, what you need to know about Java security, the difference between Java and Java applets, and how Java is used and packaged with the CrashPlan app.
What is Java?
Java is a programming language that isn't specific to any one processor or operating system. It allows software developers to build applications that run in a sandbox environment called a Java Virtual Machine (JVM). Running in a Java-based sandbox means that the application can be used in similar ways across multiple operating systems, such as Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and Solaris. Java is commonly used to create desktop applications and Java applets for those computers.
Differences between Java and Java Applets
It is important to understand that Java and Java applets are not the same thing. Java applets—not Java itself—have a history of security vulnerabilities. Java desktop applications that do not use applets are not affected by those vulnerabilities, because these applications only execute commands over which they have full control.
Java applets are only a security risk if they execute untrusted commands, such as those coming from websites and browser plug-ins that run Java applets downloaded from public locations. For more information on Java applet vulnerabilities and how to disable Java applets in your web browser, see cert.org.
CrashPlan and Java
The CrashPlan app utilizes Java desktop tools that let your computer run Java-based applications. These tools are different from the Java applets used in web pages and browser plug-ins. CrashPlan has a strong security history and has never used Java applets. In fact, you can disable Java in your web browser to eliminate the security risk of web-based applets without affecting the CrashPlan app or the CrashPlan web app at all.
The CrashPlan app has passed numerous independent security analyses and has been used for years in many security-conscious industries, including health care, biotechnology, aerospace engineering, higher education, and software development.
How is CrashPlan packaged with Java?
CrashPlan app versions 3.6.3 and later
- Windows: The CrashPlan installer includes Java and it is automatically installed with the app.
- Versions OS X 10.7.3 or later: The CrashPlan installer includes Java and it is automatically installed with the app.
- Versions OS X 10.7.2 or earlier: CrashPlan relies on the system's version of Java. If Java is not found, you will be prompted to install it.
- Linux: The CrashPlan installer includes Java and it is automatically installed with the app.
OS X and Linux: If you installed CrashPlan prior to version 3.6.3, the version of Java installed on your system will not change when your app automatically upgrades to 3.6.3. If your computer meets the requirements for using the newer version of Java bundled with CrashPlan 3.6.3, and you would like to update to the newer version of Java, you can uninstall and reinstall the CrashPlan app.
CrashPlan app versions 3.6.2 and earlier
- Windows: The CrashPlan installer includes Java and will be automatically installed.
- Mac: CrashPlan relies on the system's version of Java. If Java is not found, you will be prompted to install it.
- Linux: The installer looks for a supported version of Java. If no version is present, CrashPlan prompts you to download a supported version.
Updates to Java depend on how Java is packaged with your version of the CrashPlan app:
- Java included with the app: Updates to Java, if applicable, will be included in new installers when the CrashPlan app is updated. These updates typically are not applied to existing installations of the CrashPlan app as part of the automatic upgrade to the latest version. However, if you would like to upgrade to the latest Java version, you can uninstall and reinstall the CrashPlan app.
- Computer's version of Java: Updates to Java are independent of updates to the CrashPlan app and depend on your operating system preferences.