This is the perfect time to raise this point — just as Spring Native is coming to the forefront. Is it time to move to GraalVM? Spoiler: it depends. Yes, if you’re building serverless, probably no if you’re building pretty much anything else — with a few exceptions for some microservices.

Before I begin, I want to qualify that I’m talking about native image (SubstrateVM) which is what most people mean when they say GraalVM. That specific feature took over a much larger and more ambitious project that includes some amazing capabilities such as polyglot programming. GraalVM native images let us compile our Java projects to native code. It performs analysis and removes unnecessary stuff, it can reduce the size and startup time of a binary significantly. I’ve seen 10-20x improvement to startup time, that’s a lot. Ram usage is also much lower sometimes by a similar scale but usually not as significant.

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