Set Java version with update-alternatives

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Java runtime version can be switched without sudo as follows.

  1. (one-time) Setup your Bash shell to use ~/.local/bin instead of system-wide /usr
    mkdir ~/.local/bin

    Edit ~/.bashrc, adding the line:

    export PATH="$HOME/.local/bin:$PATH"
  2. (one-time setup) enable switching Java version, for example
    update-alternatives --install $HOME/.local/bin/java java /usr/lib/jvm/java-11-openjdk-amd64/bin/java*
    update-alternatives --install $HOME/.local/bin/java java /usr/lib/jvm/java-10-openjdk-amd64/bin/java*
  3. At any time, switch Java version:
    update-alternatives --config java

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