How to Update or Install Java - Macintosh

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Macintosh Users

Before you proceed with updating or installing Java, you need to know the version of the Macintosh operating system you are using. 

  1. Click on the Apple menu (upper left corner of your screen) and choose About this Mac.
  2. The version is listed directly below "Mac OS X "
  3. Close the window and proceed with the appropriate instructions below.

Macintosh OS 10.7.3 and above (higher versions of Lion, and all versions of Mountain Lion)

  1. From your desktop, click on the Apple menu (upper left corner of your screen) and choose System Preferences
  2. In the Preferences screen, choose the Java preference (found in the bottom row of icons) and click to open it. NOTE: If no Java preference icon appears, you either do not have Java installed, it is installed but under a different user ID, or your version of OS X falls below 10.7.3.
    1. If you are the only user of your computer and Java is not installed, please go to http://www.java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp for installation instructions.
    2. If others use your computer, you can confirm whether Java is already installed by searching for Java in spotlight.  If it is found, you should open the preference and proceed to step 3.
  3. In the Java preference window, click on the Update tab.
    1. If Java is already up-to-date, you will see, "Your system has the recommended version of Java 7".  You can proceed to step 3.b.iv below.
    2. If Java is not up-to-date, you will see, "A critical Java security update is available".
      1. Click on the "Update Now" button
      2. Click on the "Install Update" button
      3. The download will begin.  When it finishes, click on the "Install and Relaunch" button. Enter your computer login credentials if prompted to do so.
        1. NOTE: If your version of Java is more than one release behind, you may see a second window open that asks you to install the update.  If it appears, click on Continue, then click on Install.  Enter your credentials when prompted to do so.  When you see the screen that says your Install Succeeded, click to Reopen the Java Preference.  If the Java Preference indicates another update is available, repeat the steps above (beginning with step "i").  Otherwise, continue with step iv. below.
      4. Reopen the Java Preference.  If it says, "Your system has the recommended version of Java 7", click on OK and close the Java preference window.

Macintosh OS 10.7.2 and below (early versions of Lion, all versions of Snow Leopard and Leopard)

  1. From your desktop, click on the Apple menu (upper left corner of your screen).
  2. Choose Software Update...
  3. After your operating system finishes searching for updates it will open a window that either says you are up-to-date or it will indicate that updates are available.
    1. If software updates are available, but you don't see a list of the updates, click on the Details button to see them.  If no updates are available, you are finished. Proceed to step 5.
  4. Click on the button labeled Install x items (where "x" is a number).  Enter your computer credentials if prompted. The update will proceed automatically.  Please wait until it finishes. NOTE:  Some updates may require you to restart your computer.
  5. Return to step 2 to confirm there are no more updates.  If none are found, continue to step 6.  Otherwise, repeat step 4 - 6.
  6. Close the preference window.


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Last updated: June 7, 2016

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