I understand why gcj was made when I try to use Sun’s web-site and find a particular version of java that is needed. Navigating around the plethora of ‘latest and greatest’ to find a v5 is a pain.
I tried the java-compatible stuff for a while, including eclipse. It looks like it might work – but spending a few minutes thinking about it and 2 days this week sussing what minor point releases of libraries is causing my websphere portlet to die – makes it obvious why it won’t any time soon.
There is no 64 firefox plugin for java (due SE7). gcj does not help there though – so it does not provide an answer.
My real pain is in getting eclipse working under linux. Exactly like this: http://dev.eclipse.org/mhonarc/newsLists/news.eclipse.newcomer/msg17452.html.
It did work when I installed the machine. Maybe I did something stupid like ‘clean-up’ obsolete looking 32bit libraries – although I think I have put them all back. Maybe it is one of the gigabyte a month updates I applied to fc7. It would not be an eclipse plugin as I have started again. I tried java 6, java 5 32 and 64.
Upshot is that after spending half a day trying it on linux, I am now hacking around on Windows. I blame fragmentation – which could-possibly-but-didn’t give me the opportunity to fix one thing, and has created enough confusion to beat me. Stick to 32bit windows and only use 3Gb of the 4Gb on the machine -lah-de-dah.