Eclipse & Windows 64-Bit: Resolve “Java Runtime Environment (JRE) or Java Development Kit (JDK) must be available…” and “Java was started but returned exit code= 13…”

It’s been a while I’ve set up Eclipse the last time and today I tried to run Eclipse (“Eclipse Classic 4.2.1 / 64 Bit” downloaded from here to be precise) on my fresh installed Windows 8. After extracting the zip folder and starting eclipse.exe I got the error message:

Java Runtime Environment (JRE) or Java Development Kit (JDK) must be available in order to run Eclipse…

I haven’t had installed Java yet, so I googled for “Java download”, downloaded and installed Java from http://www.java.com/de/download/. I tried starting Eclipse again, but surprisingly I got the same “Java not found” error.

My next step was to edit the eclipse.ini file as described in the Eclipse FAQ and added (just before the “-vmargs” line):

-vm
c:\Program Files (x86)\Java\jre7\bin\javaw.exe

After restarting Eclipse with the modified eclispe.ini I got a new error message saying:

Java was started but returned exit code= 13…

Finally I found out, that the Java download page http://www.java.com/de/download/ redirected my Chrome browser to a 32-Bit Java download but a 64-Bit version of Java is needed in order to run the 64-Bit version of Eclipse.

So finally I was able to run Eclipse 64-Bit by:

  1. Downloading the 64-Bit Java version form here http://www.java.com/download/manual.jsp
  2. Adding the following two lines to my eclipse.ini file (just before the “-vmargs” line):
    -vm
    c:\Program Files\Java\jre7\bin\javaw.exe

Hope this helps somebody when trying to launch Eclipse 64-Bit. Happy programming…