Migrating NPAPI based Java applications to the web

Marcus Hellberg
Marcus Hellberg
On Dec 21, 2015 6:00:00 PM

UPDATE Jan 27, 2016: Oracle has announced that they are discontinuing the Java browser plugin as of Java 9.

Google, Mozilla and Microsoft have all dropped support for NPAPI in their latest browsers. This means that if your business is using an application that relies on the Java browser plugin, you’re now faced with a decision of how to keep the application accessible to your users.

Security and performance concerns have been the driver for dropping support for heavyweight legacy plugins using NPAPI. Chrome dropped support for the Java plugin with the release of the version 45 in September 2015. 64 bit versions of Firefox have already dropped support for Java, and remaining versions will follow suit by the end of 2016. While legacy versions of Internet Explorer will continue to support Java for some time, Microsoft Edge will no longer support it. With all major browser vendors on track to drop support within the next year, it is becoming urgent to begin migrating to ensure access to the application after the transition.

The deprecation of NPAPI will affect all Java applets, JavaFX, and Silverlight browser applications. In order to keep your application accessible through a browser in the future, it will need to use native browser technologies (HTML5, JavaScript and CSS).

Vaadin offers a component based Java API for building HTML5 web apps that run natively in desktop and mobile browsers without the need for any plugins. The framework automates all server-client communication and browser rendering so you can focus on solving business requirements.

Vaadin Java API makes it easy to migrate Java apps to the cloud

The programming model in Vaadin is similar to Java Swing and JavaFX, so you will be able to continue using the same tools and programming patterns you are used to, but as an added bonus, your UI is 100% HTML5 and doesn’t require any plugins. As Vaadin is fully Java based, you’ll also be able to reuse most of your existing business logic when migrating your application using Vaadin.

Below, we have put together resources for helping you migrate your existing Java plugin based applications to the web with Vaadin. You can find example applications, documentation and read our customer’s success stories in migrating their old plugin based apps to HTML5.

Learn more about Swing migrations

Marcus Hellberg
Marcus Hellberg
Marcus is the VP of Developer Relations at Vaadin. His daily work includes everything from writing blogs and tech demos to attending events and giving presentations on all things Vaadin and web-related. You can reach out to him on Twitter @marcushellberg.
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