Java is an object-oriented programming language based on the syntax of the C and C++ languages. Programmers who develop Java applications compile them into class files, which run on any computer with the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) software installed. Downloading and installing the most current version of the JRE on your computer, and then verifying your Java settings, are quick processes on both Windows and Mac OS X systems.
Open a web browser window and navigate to the Java website (see Resources).
Click "Downloads" at the top of the screen, then select the "Manual Download" option.
Click the "Download" link, and save the resulting installer file to your computer when prompted.
Close the web browser window.
Double-click the installer file you downloaded in Step 3.
Select the "Typical Setup" option. Click "Accept" to confirm your choice and consent to the software's licensing agreement.
Check the "Google Toolbar" and "Google Desktop" boxes if you want to install either piece of software on your computer. You do not have to install either application for Java to function properly. Click "Next" after making your selections. This screen only appears if Microsoft Internet Explorer is your system's default browser.
Allow the installation process to complete. A message reading "Installation Completed OK" appears after the JRE package is successfully installed.
Click the Windows "Start" button and select "Control Panel." Double-click the "Java" icon on the Control Panel screen to view your Java settings. If you use the Mac OS X operating system, open the "Applications" and "Utilities" folders, then double-click the "Java" icon to view your Java settings.
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