The table below compares key features and enhancements introduced in Java 8, Java 11, Java 17, and the expected Java 21 release. Each version has brought notable improvements in language features, security, performance, and modularity, catering to the evolving needs of Java developers.

FeatureJava 8Java 11Java 17Java 21
Release Year2014201820212023
LTS VersionNoYesYesYes
Language FeaturesLambdas, Streams, Java.time APILocal-Variable Syntax for Lambda Parameters, HTTP Client API, Flight Recorder, Epsilon Garbage CollectorPattern Matching for instanceof, Sealed Classes, Records, Vector APIRecords Enhancement, Second Preview feature for Pattern Matching, Production Ready for Guidelines
Security Enhancements-TLS 1.3, Certificate Transparency, Key Agreement APIsAligned RSA PKCS#1 to RFC 8017, Additional Certificate Formats, New KeyStore MechanismsOpaque Predicates in java.util, Enhanced Password Hash, Updated certificate formats
Performance Improvements-Low Latency Z Garbage Collector, Epsilon Garbage Collector, Enhanced Graal CompilerJava HTTP/2 Client Push, Graal as the JIT compiler, JMH MicrobenchmarkingContinuous Appraisal Enhancements, Ongoing JIT Compilation Review
ModularityIntroduces modularity with the module systemResolve modules and dependencies more efficientlyJigsaw enhances the module systemConcurrency modules reviewed and updated
APIsJavaFX includedJavaFX removed, HTTP Client added
Tool SupportMay require updates for newer plugins and toolsEnhanced tooling support
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