Inside a Debian 10 VM I have first installed OpenJDK 11, and it was all OK. Then I have installed Oracle JDK 13 according to instructions posted in Computing for geeks, that means wget-ting the .deb file and install it with dpkg -i.

I have got no errors, but when running update-alternatives --config java I get this answer:

There is only one alternative in link group java (providing /usr/bin/java): /usr/lib/jvm/java-11-openjdk-amd64/bin/java

Why? How can I switch from one JDK to the other?


The alternatives are handled by pre- and post-install hooks. There seems to be no hook included in the package you downloaded, but you can easily add an alternative manually:

# update-alternatives --install /usr/bin/java java /path/to/OracleJDKs/java 2
# update-alternatives --install /usr/bin/javac javac /path/to/OracleJDKs/javac 2

Afterwards you should be able to select a Java version by running update-alternatives --config java and update-alternatives --config javac.

However, the java-package package always provided an easy way to install Oracle JDK on a Debian system. Since I have not used it for quiet a while I can not say if it is still compatible with current Java releases.

  • :Doesn't work. After entering these command (with sudo), I'm still getting a "There is only one alternative in link group java (providing /usr/bin/java): /usr/lib/jvm/java-11-openjdk-amd64/bin/java ". Needless to say I've modified paths to java-11-jdk because it's the one I actually have.
    – Sandman42
    Oct 2 '19 at 10:08
  • Sorry my mistake: you have to adapt the third parameter to point to Oracle JDK's java and javac binaries .
    – dirdi
    Oct 2 '19 at 10:12
  • Yeah, it works. Thanks!
    – Sandman42
    Oct 2 '19 at 10:15

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