Really long classpa…!
The maximum classpath length that Java can handle depends on many factors, including platform and JDK implementation. As far as I can tell, the limit is usually undocumented, but can be as low as a few thousand characters. Additionally, elements beyond Java’s control, such as the shell, can also affect how many characters can safely be used in a classpath.
In practice, this means that the classpath you request can be truncated before the JRE processes it… and you might not find out until you get a very confusing ClassNotFoundException.
If circumstances dictate an uncomfortably long classpath at launch time, there are a few ways to condense it without resorting to single-character symbolic links.