- extract configuration info from server.xml through some mechanism without starting any part of the server.  IIUC this is roughly what happens now since spring doesn't actually start anything, just get it ready for something else to call init on.

David I am a bit worried about Spring now doing more.  Originally I was sold and committed on the idea of
using Spring to wire the server's components directly but now we're slowly creeping towards other things
that Spring will be doing like starting everything up.  Not saying this is bad or rejecting the idea though.  I
am just worried about how much more it's going to tap into my time wrestling with things like this tools
module now. 

I don't want to again make the mistake of delaying or not listening to your very good ideas which I keep hitting
myself for not taking up earlier.  This wiring thing is helping a lot and I keep telling myself that you know this
whole Spring stuff better than any of us.  However now I'm encountering unforeseen problems like this tools jar
and more requirements are popping up like having to start the server using Spring.  I'm just a bit worried is all
I want to tell you so I can give you the chance to make me feel better some how :).

Alex