To spare you the sanity, if you need to debug your java applets, since JDK 1.4 there is a new syntax required in the runtime parameters in the control panel applet side:
Old Evil format:
-Xdebug -Xnoagent -Xrunjdwp:transport=dt_socket,address=5555,server=y,suspend=n
There is a bug with the -XDebug parameter that causes multiple java consoles to open for each applet you load and thus you cannot connect to the right JVM session (most of the time) and you lose your mind trying to determine what is going on. You can connect to the debugger but stepping through breakpoints does not work.