Setup Java Environment Variables

Open Computer - Properties

Setup Java Environment Variables

This article provides you with detailed steps on how to setup Java environment variables – mainly JAVA_HOME and PATH variables. These environment variables point to the folder location where Java is installed. These variables are mainly required by some external programs and tools to figure out where Java is installed on your machine.

In our previous article on Java Download and Installation, you would have seen that it’s very likely to have multiple versions of Java installed on your machine. In such a scenario, setting up Java environment variables becomes more important so that you can point to the exact location of the latest version of Java. Let us now check the detailed steps on how to setup these variables.

Multiple Java versions installedMultiple Java versions installed

Java Environment Variables – Setup JAVA_HOME

1. As the first step, please copy the folder location where the latest version of JDK is installed. In our previous article on downloading and installing Java, we had installed JDK at the default location (C:Program FilesJava). If you have also done the same then open that location


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Java Environment Variables - JDK folder in JavaJava Environment Variables - JDK folder in Java

2. Now open the JDK folder. If you have multiple JDK folders, then open the one which represents the latest version, and copy the folder location. As per the below screenshot, we are copying this folder location – C:Program FilesJavajdk-17

Copy JDK folder location for JAVA_HOMECopy JDK folder location for JAVA_HOME

3. You have to now open environment variables window in your machine. To do this, click on Search icon and then type environment variables in the search bar. Click on Edit the system environment variables option to open it

Open Computer - PropertiesOpen Computer - Properties

4. This would open the System Properties window as shown below. Now from the Advanced Tab, click on Environment Variables button


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Environment Variables button in Advanced TabEnvironment Variables button in Advanced Tab

5. From the Environment Variables window, click on New button from System variables section

Add new value (JAVA_HOME) in System VariablesAdd new value (JAVA_HOME) in System Variables

6. Enter JAVA_HOME in Variable Name field and JDK folder location (C:Program FilesJavajdk-17) in Variable value field as shown in below image. Please enter the correct folder location that you have in your machine

Set JAVA_HOME variable and its pathSet JAVA_HOME variable and its path

7. Click on OK button. You will see that JAVA_HOME variable has now been added in System Variables.

JAVA_HOME variable added to System variablesJAVA_HOME variable added to System variables

If you already have JAVA_HOME previously set, then you can click on Edit button to modify its value. You have now successfully setup JAVA_HOME variable. Let us now check how to setup the Path variable.

Setup Path variable

Path variable refers to the location of the bin folder inside the JDK folder. Since you have already setup the JDK folder location using JAVA_HOME variable, you can use JAVA_HOME reference to setup the bin folder location. Let’s see the steps to do this –

1. Open your latest JDK folder and check that it has bin folder in it

JDK bin folder for PATH variableJDK bin folder for PATH variable

2. Now open this bin folder and copy the entire folder location. For us, this folder location is – C:Program FilesJavajdk-17bin

Copy bin folder location in JDKCopy bin folder location in JDK

3. Since the JDK folder location is already represented by JAVA_HOME variable, so we can replace the location of JDK folder with JAVA_HOME like this – %JAVA_HOME%bin

4. In the Environment variables window, check that there is a variable called Path under System variables. Please note that Path is an existing variable and we would edit it to add the bin folder location

PATH variable in System variablesPATH variable in System variables

5. Select the Path variable and click on Edit button. Edit environment variable window would be opened

6. Click on New button. A new line is highlighted in the window. Add JDK bin path %JAVA_HOME%bin as shown in the below image

Add bin folder location to PATH variableAdd bin folder location to PATH variable

7. Click on Ok button. bin folder location is now added in the Path variable

8. Close the Environment variable window by clicking on Ok button. With this, we have now successfully setup Path variable as well

Verify that JAVA_HOME and Path variables are set correctly

After you have added JAVA_HOME and Path variables, it’s time to check if the variables are set correctly. Follow the steps given below to check this –

1. Open command prompt

2. Run the command javac -version. This should show the javac version number. Verify that this version number is same as the latest JDK version (from JDK folder name). You can also run the command where javac. This command should show the JDK bin folder location. This should be the same folder location that you had set in the Path variable

javac -version and where javac commandsjavac -version and where javac commands

Both these commands verify that JAVA_HOME and Path variables have been setup correctly. With this, we complete our section of Java download, install and setup.

If you face issues with any of the steps mentioned in this article, then please feel free to contact us using the comments section.

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