What is the difference between java and javaw?

Everyday is a new learning opportunity. I have been a programmer for more than 5 years now, but I realized sometimes people tend to ignore smaller nice features – which you later repent you should have learned years ago. Here is what I learned today about java/javaw.

The javaw command is identical to java, except that with javaw there is no associated console window. Use javaw when you don’t want a command prompt window to appear. The javaw launcher will, however, display a dialog box with error information if a launch fails for some reason.

Just giving you  a background on why it was useful to me: I was working on a shared machine with my co-workers and I used to leave one of my tools running in the console. This tool was supposed to stay alive all the time to serve its purpose of polling the logged users – but sometimes it used to get killed by some other users (and sometimes myself too) in ignorance. Then when I learned using ‘javaw’ I didnt have to care even if I myself or my co-workers killed the console, the program ran on the background anyways.

You could run your programs as a service anyways – but I am not going to advocate about those ideas in this post today.