Removal of browser java support means app headache

With the upcoming end of Java support in major internet browsers, business leaders face significant risk to their IT infrastructures which rely upon Java applications. Without taking steps to mitigate this, businesses could face severe business continuity issues says enterprise software company Flynet.

Towards the end of 2015, a number of major consumer and business web browsers (including Firefox, Chrome and Oracle) announced that they would no longer be supporting plugins like Java or Silverlight from the end of 2016. While such plugins have traditionally been used to give organisations access to their legacy applications on a variety of browsers and devices, they have come to present unacceptable security vulnerabilities, stability issues and performance drawbacks in recent years.

However, this move could cause havoc among businesses who rely upon Java applications to sustain their business. For those using a java-based terminal emulator to connect to legacy hardware such as mainframes, IBM I, Unix, MultiValue, VAX, VMS and PICK, this removal of Java support could completely prevent application access. This problem is particularly acute for application vendors who cannot dictate the timescale of their customer’s browser updates.

Christian Rule, director of business transformation at Flynet, urges businesses to consider moving to pure HTML terminal emulation solutions as soon as possible to prevent disruption: “Over the past month or so, we’ve been hearing a lot of concerns about the upcoming removal of Java support from our customers and clients. While the news was announced a little while ago, many businesses are only now recognising how devastating the change could be to their organisations. Many did not realise that their terminal emulators relied so heavily on Java applets, or the infancy of many vendors’ HTML alternatives. Over the past couple of months we have been receiving increasingly urgent calls from application vendors seeking a robust, established HTML solution.”

“It is imperative that organisations operating on legacy hardware, especially ‘big iron’ mainframe systems, audit their business to discover Java applets that could cause their business serious problems over the next couple of months. A typical evaluation, procurement and implementation cycle to move from a java-based emulator to a HTML emulator takes at least three months, so it is vital organisations engage in the cycle at the earliest opportunity!”