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Free version of BikeCAD and Java 1.8 Security

A couple years ago, I posted a note about how web browsers were starting to impose restrictions affecting the deployment of Java applets. These changes have made it a bit more involved to run the free version of BikeCAD. That Forum thread has grown pretty long and much of the information there is now obsolete, so I thought I would start a new thread to explain the current state of things.

First of all, I am continuing to port my code to a new platform that will not require a plugin. I am very much looking forward to getting that done as it will eliminate all the hassles involved in launching the Java applet and will allow BikeCAD to run on smart phones and tablets.

In the meantime, there are two options for accessing BikeCAD. The first option is to purchase BikeCAD Pro which is a standalone Java application that does not require a browser plugin. BikeCAD Pro runs on Mac OS X, all Windows desktops and laptops as well as Linux. Owners of BikeCAD Pro receive all future updates at no extra charge so the cost of the program is truly a one time fee.

The second option is to run the free version of BikeCAD in a web browser that supports the Java plugin. Currently Chrome and Microsoft Edge do not support the Java plugin. Therefore, you will have to use either Microsoft Internet Explorer, Firefox or Safari.

To run the free version, you will need to add https://bikecad.ca and https://www.bikecad.ca to your Java Exception Site list. For more on this see: www.java.com/en/download/faq/exception_sitelist.xml. Note that it used to be that you had to add http://... but as of June 28, 2016, you'll need to use https://

An example of the Java control panel in Windows 10 is shown below. Note that you will need to use the "High" security level as the "Very high" level will not allow the applet to run. (These instructions only apply to the free version of BikeCAD).

Be aware that the free version may take a while to appear on the screen. If all you see is a blank white screen, be patient, the applet is probably just loading. In some extreme cases, I've heard of it taking up to 10 minutes to appear, though a few seconds is more typical.


Hi Brent, and firts of all thanks a lot for your software!


I´m haveing an issue while trying to use bikecad free version, the java alows it to work but then it shows an error ClassNotFoundException basic.bikeCADPro, I have done everything, about the security, expection list and also deleting temporary fies at java, but is not working. I´m working on a mac if needed to know.

Please would you have any answer for this?



Java console

I'm sorry to hear about this problem. I'd be curious to know what additional information might be presented when you try loading the applet with the Java console turned on. There's info about showing the Java console at: java.com/en/download/help/javaconsole.xml.

Java Console

Sure, I´ve attached here the pictures about configuration and java console.


Thanks for your time.


Java console

Thanks for the thorough set of screen captures.

As of June 28, 2016 it is no longer necessary to list http://bikecad.ca in your Java Exception Site list. It is only necessary to list https://bikecad.ca.

You also don't need to include /quickapplet in the exception site list. Only the domain name is required. Any folders and files within that domain are automatically covered. However, it does seem helpful to include both https://bikecad.ca and https://www.bikecad.ca.

Still, it shouldn't hurt that you've included these extra URLs, so this doesn't explain why the applet is not working for you.

Although it used to be that the Java console would list all sorts of info as the applet was loading. Now it will not do that unless you increase the trace level. You can do that by clicking in the Java console and typing the number 5. Note that you can type any number between 0 and 5 to select the desired trace level. 5 will give you the most info. Below is an example of the Java console as I loaded the free version of BikeCAD in Firefox with a trace level of 5. I'm not sure what browser you are using, but it might be worth trying a different browser. Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari all work for me.

Hi brent, here is a screen

Hi brent, here is a screen shot of my java console typeing 5 once and then re loadeing it but nothing happend, I´m useing Safari, but then I tryed at firefox and the same hapend and then at chrom nothing happend, it has been already 2 hours but the free version doesn´t start.


I don´t want to make you waste time, I´m sorry but I think I wount be able to use it..

Java console

I'm sorry I'm not able to offer any more insights about what might be going on there. Although I should reiterate that the Chrome browser no longer supports the Java plugin, so you will definitely not have any luck using Chrome.

Because there are a lot of people that continue to make regular use of the free version, I'm not inclined to take it offline. However, I regret any frustration it may cause for those that struggle unsuccessfully to get it up and running. I hope you will understand that these issues are limited to the free version and that BikeCAD Pro runs easily and reliably on any Windows, Mac or Linux laptop or desktop computer.

Thanks a lot for your help

Thanks a lot for your help Brent, don´t worry I will figure something ut to make it work.

Is an excelent software, congratulations! 

My suggestion: Download the

My suggestion: Download the latest version of Java (July 19, 2016) and use Mozilla Firefox. Be sure all Windows or Mac updates are done!


Hope this will work out.



I will try doing that, thanks

I will try doing that, thanks!

Same issue

Having the same issue, and can't seem to get the applet to load... just chiming in to let yah know:)



I use 64bit Windows7 with 32bit Java v.1.8.0_111 and a 32bit browser with the same problem with ClassNotFoudException. My colleague find the solution, check the picture! I hope it will help you too.

You must add this sting to the Java Configuraion, save than close and reopen your browser:
-Dhttps.protocols=SSLv3,TLSv1,SSLv2Hello -Djava.security.debug=jar


I tried everything I could think of

I tried everything trying to get the free version working, unistalling and reinstalling java and browsers, messing with settings on everything, and could not get this running no matter what I did.

Tried this^ and it works a treat, thanks gerix! :D

I just get a black background

I just get a black background with 'A pluggin is needed to dsplay this content.'
Firefox 49.0.2
Java upto date (last done 1/11/16)

Windows 7 64

Java plugin

It's good that you have Java installed, but you also need to enable the Java plugin. What do you see when you go to about:addons and choose plugins in Firefox?

This is what I see in Windows 7:

I also get the black screen

I also get the black screen with plug in needed. I have java updated but does not show in firefox. sugesstions

Running free version

Unless you're able to be more specific about the steps you've taken, I can only assume the many suggestions listed above will resolve this issue.

For making it work on linux

For making it work on linux (arch based) you need "icedtea-web" installed and use firefox. https://www.archlinux.org/packages/extra/x86_64/icedtea-web/

You might also need jre8-openjdk https://www.archlinux.org/packages/extra/x86_64/jre8-openjdk/

I just made mine working that way.

M M's picture
Bla bla


nothing works ...

all java setting are correct ... 

For more info

I'm sorry to hear about your troubles. I'd be curious to know what additional information might be presented when you try loading the applet with the Java console turned on. There's info about showing the Java console at: java.com/en/download/help/javaconsole.xml. For notes about setting the trace level, see above.

Edge is not IE

For anyone wondering how Johan got along with the free version of BikeCAD, he got it running on Firefox. I'm not certain, but the confusion may have been with Microsoft's new Edge browser. The Edge browser does not support the Java plugin. The Internet Explorer browser does still support the Java plugin, but it is not the default browser on Windows 10.

Firefox support

Starting in the latest versions of Firefox, java is no longer supported:



Where do we go from here?

Firefox ESR

You can still run the free version of BikeCAD in the 32bit ESR release of Firefox. You can also run it in Internet Explorer (remember Internet Explorer is not the same is Microsoft's new Edge browser). It will also run in Safari.

In the meantime, I am continuing to develop an alternative to the free version which will not require any sort of plugin. I regret that this project is taking so long, but it is just a huge job.

Of course, BikeCAD Pro will run on any modern PC or Mac and does not require Java. For older machines, there is also a version of BikeCAD Pro which requires the Java runtime environment (JRE). This version runs on Mac, PC or Linux. The JRE is still a popular tool. Recent concerns with Java are mostly to do with the browser plugin, not the JRE itself.

I hope I can continue to develop BikeCAD and BikeCAD Pro for years to come, because I really do love it. However, sales of BikeCAD Pro are the only way I gain any monetary compensation for my efforts. Therefore, I am grateful to all those who choose to take the plunge and purchase BikeCAD Pro.

For the record, I also gain some revenue from Adsense ads, but this revenue is less than the hosting fees I pay to keep this site online.

Firefox update

Any workaround yet?


Firefox update

Your post was titled Firefox update and you ask about a workaround. As stated before, the 32 bit ESR version of Firefox still runs the free version of BikeCAD. I'm not sure what other workaround you might be waiting for. I am continuing to develop an alternative to the free version that does not require any plugin whatsoever. However, this is proving to be a huge job. For a sense of where I'm at with that, below is a model displayed in the current version of BikeCAD. Below that, is the same model rendered in a browser with no plugin. As you can see, I still have some elements to add to the new model.

Meanwhile, I am also continuing to develop new features in BikeCAD Pro. BikeCAD Pro is easy to install and run on any Mac, PC or Linux computer. The $500 Canadian cost is a one time fee. As new versions of BikeCAD are released, all owners of the program receive the new version at no extra cost. This is an investment that a high end shop such as yours could benefit greatly from. Let me know if you have any questions.

It won't work

I came to this to try and get it to work and i think i tried everything but couldnt get it to work. I have some screenshots if anyone could help me out.

Exception site list

I'd be curious to see a screen capture of your Java Exception Site List.

Same problem

I have the exact same problem. On my Java exception list is https://www.Bikecad.ca and https://Bikecad.ca

Java Exception Site list

Could you send me a screen capture of the Security tab in your Java Control Panel? Also, let me know what browser and OS you are using.

Thanks 4 the oportunity, L

Thanks 4 the oportunity, L'andante Bikes makes the bike of your dreams.

Inspirate, crea y rueda!

L'andante Bikes

Thanks 4 the oportunity, we makes the bike of your dreams!!

Inspirate, crea y rueda!

L'andante Bikes

what´s uuuuup!

what´s uuuuup!

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