Updating to Java 8 and NetBeans 8 on Ubuntu

Just some notes on how I updated to the recent releases of Java 8 and NetBeans 8 on Ubuntu 13.10 (64 bit) running the Xfce desktop environment (Xubuntu).

Download and install the new JDK

As described here. The gist is to install from a PPA, not the Oracle downloads. At a Linux command prompt, run and complete the following commands (output is elided):

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install oracle-java8-installer

When complete, verify correct installation with the command

java -version

On my system, the output was:

java version "1.8.0"
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.8.0-b132)
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 25.0-b70, mixed mode)

Note that this also updates the java alternatives. On my system sudo update-java-alternatives -l produces the following output:

java-7-oracle 1 /usr/lib/jvm/java-7-oracle
java-8-oracle 2 /usr/lib/jvm/java-8-oracle

You can also set the Java environment variables to default to Java 8 versions with sudo apt-get install oracle-java8-set-default.

Download and Install NetBeans

Download and install from the Oracle download page, then follow the installation instructions.To create a desktop icon (and include NetBeans in your Applications Menu) add a desktop file as described here. This works for Xubuntu as well as the Unity desktop. The contents of my desktop file are:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=NetBeans IDE 8.0
Comment=The Smarter Way to Code
Exec=/bin/sh "/usr/local/netbeans-8.0/bin/netbeans"

That’s it. Seems to work Ok for me.