Java Path Vs Java Classpath

The "Path" serves as a communication channel between the programmer and the operating system, informing the location of binary files. On the other hand, the "Classpath" acts as an intermediary between the programmer and the compiler, specifying the location of library files utilized in the source code.

In essence, the path environment variable enables the operating system to locate any binary or command entered in the shell, whereas the classpath exclusively facilitates Java ClassLoaders in loading class files.

Java Path

How to set path in java
  1. The "Path" refers to the file system path or the location of a specific file or directory on the operating system.
  2. It represents the physical location of a file or directory on the computer's file system.
  3. In Java, the Path class, available in the java.nio.file package, provides methods for working with file paths, such as resolving, comparing, and manipulating them.
  4. Paths are typically used for file operations, such as reading, writing, or manipulating files on the file system.

Java Classpath

How to set classpath in java
  1. The "Classpath" is a parameter that tells the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) where to look for classes and resources during runtime.
  2. It is a list of directories and JAR files that the JVM searches to find classes and resources required by the Java program.
  3. The Classpath is used by the JVM to locate and load classes when they are referenced in the code.
  4. It can be set using environment variables, command-line options, or programmatically within the Java code.
  5. The Classpath is essential for the JVM to find and load the necessary classes and resources at runtime, especially for libraries or external dependencies used by the application.


The "Path" refers to the file system location of a specific file or directory, while the "Classpath" is a parameter that specifies the locations where the JVM should search for classes and resources during runtime. The Path is about the physical file system, whereas the Classpath is about locating and loading classes and resources in the Java application.