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From "Craig R. McClanahan" <>
Subject Re: Any reason to use Apache w/ Tomcat for webapp with all dynamic web pages?
Date Tue, 02 Oct 2001 04:25:57 GMT

On Mon, 1 Oct 2001, David Wall wrote:

> Date: Mon, 1 Oct 2001 20:18:37 -0700
> From: David Wall <>
> Reply-To:, David Wall <>
> To:
> Subject: Re: Any reason to use Apache w/ Tomcat for webapp with all
>     dynamic web pages?
> > * If you have Apache already installed, and don't want users to use
> >   a non-port-80 URL for JSP/servlet based applications.
> Very true, otherwise you need to run Tomcat as root.
> Also, Apache itself has some nice features, like mod_rewrite that can be
> helpful to handles changes in structure and such.
> I guess these days we also need to know if we're talking about the 3.2 or
> 4.0 versions of Tomcat since there are things like HTTP 1.1 in Tomcat 4.0.
> I'm still in 3.2 land and investigating whether 3.3 or 4.0 will work better
> for me in the future.  The "fear" is that 4.0 is not as well tested yet.

If download counts are any indication, 4.0 had more than 5 times as many
as 3.3, even before the final release (the ratio is *much* higher now).
I also know of lots of other projects that are embedding 4.0 into their
environments, but don't personally know of any embedding 3.3 (that is not
conclusive, because for obvious reasons I only notice the 4.0 ones, but
4.0's momentum is pretty clear :-).

Now that the Servlet 2.3 and JSP 1.2 specs are final, you will also see
releases from other containers that support them -- and the new features
are very compelling for many application use cases.

> I also recall that there was (is?) a problem if lots of concurrent requests
> came in and Tomcat had to service them all using threads, whereas Apache
> will stop at a maximum rather than continue to try to service.  DoS attacks
> are nasty no matter what, though.

Dealing with this is a matter of appropriate configuration, no matter what
technology you are using.

> Also, if you use tools like WebTrends and such, they all know how to work
> off of Apache log files, so that format of log message can be quite
> important to analyze a site's usage, errors and performance.  And can you
> roll log files with Tomcat yet?  With Apache you can roll your log files so
> that they don't just keep getting bigger.

Tomcat 4 does this too :-).  By default, it creates "access_log" format
log files in a format consistent with web analysis software like WebTrends
(you can also customize the format like you can with Apache).  It also
automatically rolls log files on the first request after midnight --
without restarting -- which is better than even Apache can claim.

> David


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