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The Java® Language Specification, Java SE 7 Edition, Fourth Edition by Alex Buckley, Gilad Bracha, Guy Steele, Bill Joy, James Gosling

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7.2. Host Support for Packages

Each host system determines how packages and compilation units are created and stored.

Each host system also determines which compilation units are observable (§7.3) in a particular compilation. The observability of compilation units in turn determines which packages are observable, and which packages are in scope.

In simple implementations of the Java SE platform, packages and compilation units may be stored in a local file system. Other implementations may store them using a distributed file system or some form of database.

If a host system stores packages and compilation units in a database, then the database must not impose the optional restrictions (§7.6) on compilation units permissible in file-based implementations. ...

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