Java for OS X 2012-006 and Java for Mac OS X 10.6 Update 11
Apple has released Java updates for Mac OS X 10.6, 10.7.x and 10.8.x. There’s good news and bad news with these updates, so I’m going to lead off with the good news.
Java for Mac OS X 10.6 Update 11 updates Java SE 6 to 1.6.0_37 and otherwise has the same behavior of Java for Mac OS X 10.6 Update 10.
If you’re using my Java enabler script to make sure that the Java plug-in is active for your web browsers, I’ve verified that this script continues to work.
Java for OS X 2012-006 uninstalls the Apple-provided Java applet plug-in from /Library/Internet Plug-Ins, which means that web browsers will not be able to launch Java applets from inside the browser. It also removes the Java Preferences application from /Applications/Utilities.
The rest of the Java 6 framework is still installed, so CrashPlan and other applications that use Java 6 outside of a browser will still work fine.
However, if you try to access a Java application in a web browser, you will see a Missing Plug-In message.
The fix is to click on the Missing Plug-In message and be directed to Oracle’s Java download page for Mac OS X. From there, the Java installer will need to be downloaded and installed.
It’s important to note that this process no longer taps into Apple’s Software Update mechanism to install Java. Instead, you would download a disk image from the Oracle website and install an installer package stored inside the disk image.
Update – 10-22-2012:
Apple has released a KBase article on how to re-enable the Apple-provided Java SE 6 applet plug-in and Web Start functionality: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5559
Oracle’s installer can be installed silently from the command line and does not require a reboot. Oracle has built in a Sparkle-based update mechanism to handle Java updates from Oracle.
If you need to update multiple Macs, you should be able to distribute the Oracle Java installer package using your system management tools. Any tool that can install a standard Apple installer package should be able to distribute the new Java installer.