Setting up multiple versions of Java and NodeJS on a Mac

Some developers may need to use different versions of Java or NodeJS on their machine and below are some hints do get it working.


To start with here are 2 instructions to install and get homebrew up to date:

/usr/bin/ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"

brew update

installing cask extension

brew tap caskroom/cask

allow brew to lookup versions

brew tap homebrew/cask-versions


List available java versions

brew search java

To find out info

brew cask info java8

brew cask info java => Java 13

Install Java 13

brew cask install java


brew cask install java8 => java 8


Tool to set JAVA_HOME

brew install jenv

Edit your ~/.bash_profile and add

# To use Homebrew's directories rather than ~/.jenv add to your profile:

export JENV_ROOT=/usr/local/opt/jenv

# To enable shims and autocompletion add to your profile:

if which jenv > /dev/null; then eval "$(jenv init -)"; fi

List all your java versions

/usr/libexec/java_home -V

should give you such output

Matching Java Virtual Machines (3):
13.0.2, x86_64:     "OpenJDK 13.0.2"        /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/openjdk-13.0.2.jdk/Contents/Home
11.0.6, x86_64:     "Java SE 11.0.6"        /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/jdk-11.0.6.jdk/Contents/Home
1.8.0_231, x86_64:  "Java SE 8"     /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/jdk1.8.0_231.jdk/Contents/Home

registering your java versions to jenv

jenv add /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/openjdk-13.0.2.jdk/Contents/Home
jenv add /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/jdk-11.0.6.jdk/Contents/Home
jenv add /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/jdk1.8.0_231.jdk/Contents/Home

List versions

jenv versions

Switch to another version

jenv global 13.0.2

or locally

jenv local 13.0.2


brew install nvm

edit your ~/.bash_profile and add

export NVM_DIR="$HOME/.nvm"

[ -s "$NVM_DIR/" ] && \. "$NVM_DIR/"  # This loads nvm

[ -s "$NVM_DIR/bash_completion" ] && \. "$NVM_DIR/bash_completion"  # This loads nvm bash_completion

get list of available nodejs versions

nvm ls-remote

or to filter only v10 versions

nvm ls-remote | grep v10 

installing a specific version

nvm install v10.18.0

seeing installed versions

nvm list

using specific version

nvm use v8.17.0
mvn use system


This type of setup should save you some time to work on different projects using different Java NodeJS versions, happy coding all!


installing multiple java versions with cask

switching java versions with jenv

nodejs version manager with nvm

Tags: Java NodeJS NVM jenv

Written on hey March 4, 2020