Differences between JDK, JRE AND JVM

Differences between JDK,JRE and JVM .

A software development environment called Java Development Kit (JDK) is used to create Java programs and applets. The Java Runtime Environment (JRE), a Java interpreter/loader, a Java compiler, a Java archiver (jar), a Javadoc documentation generator, and other tools  are essential for Java development are all included.

differences between jdk vs jvm vs jre


  • JDK is an acronym for Java Development Kit, a software package employed for creating a java based apps and applets.
  • It is an overall package that is used to both develop and run a program in java.
  • In addition with JVM and JRE it also contains Java source compilers, Java debuggers, bundling and deployment tools.
  • Developers new to Java often confuse the Java Development Kit and the Java Runtime Environment. The distinction is that the JDK is a package of tools for developing Java-based software, whereas the JRE is a package of tools for running Java code.
  • The JDK has as its primary components a collection of programming tools, including:

    • appletviewer – this tool can be used to run and debug Java applets without a web browser
    • apt – the annotation-processing tool.
    • extcheck – a utility that detects JAR file conflicts
    • idlj – the IDL-to-Java compiler. This utility generates Java bindings from a given Java IDL file.

    Experimental tools may not be available in future versions of the JDK.

JRE / Java RTE

  • JRE stands for Java Runtime Environment, the component that fulfils the minimum requirements for the execution of a Java Application.
  • It is considered as an implementation of a JVM which physically exists.. It consists of a JVM, library sets, java Core Classes, and supporting files, but contains no compiler, no debugger, and no tools.
  • It basically serves the sole purpose of execution of a Java program/ application. It cannot be used to develop an app.
  • Some of the utilities contained in a JRE are-
    • Java 2D: An Application Programming Interface (API) used for drawing two-dimensional graphics in Java language. Developers can create rich user interfaces, special effects, games, and animations.
    • Abstract Window Toolkit (AWT): A GUI (Graphical User Interface) used to create objects, buttons, scroll bars, and windows.
    • Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) API: Provides tools for developers to write applications with access to remote relationship databases, flat files, and spreadsheets.
    • Preferences API: A lightweight, cross-platform persistent API that enables multiple users on the same machine to define their own group of application preferences.
    • Logging: Produces log reports—such as security failures, configuration errors, and performance issues—for further analysis.
    • Java Archive (JAR): A platform-independent file format that enables multiple files to be bundled in JAR format, significantly improving download speed and reducing file size.


  • JVM stands for Java Virtual Machine, an abstract platform – dependent computing mechanism.
  • It is the core of Java Programming language and is one of the most integral part of both the JRE and JDK since it is already in-built or contained in them.
  • Every program we build by using JRE and JDK are brought to the JVM for the correct execution. It executes a program line- by – line.
  • We can thus also call it a Runtime Interpreter, which becomes an instance of JRE.
  • The main tasks of a JVM constitute-
    • Loading the code.
    • Verifying it.
    • Implementing it..

Differences between JDK,JRE and JVM

Aspect JDK (Java Development Kit) JRE (Java Runtime Environment) JVM (Java Virtual Machine)
Purpose Used for Java development, including writing, compiling, and debugging code. Used for executing Java applications. It contains the necessary runtime environment. Executes Java bytecode on a specific platform.
Components – Compiler (javac) for source code to bytecode conversion. – Debugger (jdb) for debugging. – Various tools and utilities. – Java libraries and core classes. – JVM (Java Virtual Machine) for running Java bytecode. – Responsible for executing Java bytecode. – Different implementations for various platforms.
Necessity for Running Java Code Not required on the end-user’s machine to run Java applications. Required on the end-user’s machine to run Java applications. Required on the end-user’s machine to execute Java applications.
Platform Independence Code can be developed on one platform and executed on another with the appropriate JRE. Provides the runtime environment needed to run Java applications on a specific platform. Executes Java bytecode on the user’s machine, making it platform-dependent.
Use in Development Essential for writing and compiling Java code. Not used during development but needed for running Java applications. Not used directly in development, as it’s responsible for executing compiled Java bytecode.

Prime Course Trailer

Related Banners

Get PrepInsta Prime & get Access to all 200+ courses offered by PrepInsta in One Subscription

Get over 200+ course One Subscription

Courses like AI/ML, Cloud Computing, Ethical Hacking, C, C++, Java, Python, DSA (All Languages), Competitive Coding (All Languages), TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Amazon, DBMS, SQL and others

Checkout list of all the video courses in PrepInsta Prime Subscription

Checkout list of all the video courses in PrepInsta Prime Subscription