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From "Joe Riopel" <>
Subject Re: Apache 2.2.3 Tomcat 5.5.20 - mod_jk or proxy?
Date Thu, 16 Nov 2006 14:40:37 GMT
I am not saying this is 100% correct, or the best documentation ever
but I wrote a small install guide for Apache 2.2 and Tomcat 5.5 with
mod_jk. I used the same steps on a RH7.3 box and a Slackware 10.2 box.

On 11/16/06, Christopher Schultz <> wrote:
> Hash: SHA1
> Michael,
> wrote:
> > All I can say is that I googled around extensively, trying to learn
> > how to set up Tomcat 5.5 with Apache 2.2 as the front end, and found
> > many sites saying to stay away from mod_jk, along with mailing list
> > messages about the problems people were having with it.
> I have no idea why so many people have problems with mod_jk. I have
> never had a single problem with it. It's stupid simple to install:
> 1. Download and untar (gnu tar!)
> 2. $cd native
> 3. ./configure --with-apxs=/path/to/apxs
> 4. make
> 5. make install (as root)
> It works for me every time. Setup is slightly more complex, because you
> need to have a "workers" file (but you can avoid that in recent versions
> of mod_jk) which trips some folks up.
> > It goes
> > without saying, that when you have to depend on mailing list messages
> > for documentation of any problem, you have a high likelihood of
> > getting it wrong.
> This list is highly active, and with Rainer Jung on the list (who knows
> more than anyone really should about mod_jk ;) ), you should always be
> able to get good advise.
> > Especially when you are under the gun and trying to
> > complete a project and not wanting to spend all this time figuring out
> > how to do what ought to be quite straightforward.
> Agreed. At this point, since it's been a few days, you have probably
> tried something already. What did you try and how did it go?
> > The Apache Software Foundation produces some of the best and most
> > useful software in the world.  They simultaneously produce some of the
> > worst user documentation for that software.
> I completely agree. Many software developers are simply terrible
> writers. It's not their fault, it's just the truth. Most folks who get
> into OSS are coders because, well, software is the name of the game.
> There aren't too many professors of literature on these projects ;)
> > If you want to achieve a
> > shortlived feeling of amazement, go to and
> > search for the expression mod_jk.  You'll get four hits for
> > mod_proxy.  Now search for "mod_jk" (with quotation marks).  You'll
> > get two mailing list messages from the httpd mailing list.  I can but
> > shake my head.
> Aah. I think the problem is that you were searching,
> instead of the Tomcat-related pages. Yes, mod_jk is an Apache httpd
> module, but it's a non-standard module (that is, it isn't bundled with
> the source or binary distributions). It should be considered a 3rd-party
> module.
> Essentially all information about mod_jk is available through the Tomcat
> website, not Sorry about that. :(
> > Well, good luck.  I wanted to set up Apache 2.2 with Tomcat 5.5, to
> > proxy user directories (/home/user/public_html) with Apache to serve
> > static content and Tomcat to serve JSP/servlets.  Nothing.
> > Zip. Nada.  I know I'm not the only person that ever wanted to do
> > this.  But I could not find documentation anywhere.  Hell, I'd buy the
> > book if there was one available.
> I had the same experience. One of the engineers on my team decided to
> install all the latest versions of everything on his dev environment
> instead of matching production. That meant using Apache httpd 2.2
> instead 2.0, and he pointed out that somewhere, there was the wild-ass
> claim that mod_proxy_ajp was the way to connect to Tomcat in 2.2.
> Well, we looked for documentation on how to connect them and it just
> doesn't exist. Just a lot of people saying "yeah, yeah... use
> mod_proxy_ajp". mod_proxy_ajp has (or at least had) no documentation
> whatsoever and so you have to read all about mod_proxy. No problem. You
> read all about mod_proxy and it's all about proxying HTTP, not ajp13.
> So, on a hunch, I simply changed the example do something like this:
> Proxy /someURI ajp13://localhost/someOtherURI
> and it worked. Lucky guess without any indication from the mod_proxy
> documentation that this was even possible.
> After getting that simple thing set up, we tried some of our more exotic
> configuration settings. For instance, we have /most/ of our webapp's
> URIs going to one worker (Tomcat running our app), but some of them need
> to go to another worker (Cocoon running in a separate Tomcat instance).
> It appears that mod_proxy only supports blindly proxying everything in a
> particular URL space, so we were out of luck.
> Not to be beaten by mod_proxy, we came up with a solution that involved
> re-writing the URIs using mod_rewrite so that the URL was outside of the
> URI space of the webapp, and then proxying it appropriately. Something
> like this (forgive the completely incorrect syntax):
> RewriteRule /myApp/something/special -> /outside/something/special
> Proxy /myApp ajp13://localhost:8185/myApp
> Proxy /outside ajp13://localhost:8285/myApp
> Since we had like a dozen special URIs like this, we had re-writes all
> over the place. When we looked at the final configuration, we both
> nearly vomited and just went back to using mod_jk, which does patch
> matching.
> I hope this gives you some more insight into why I prefer mod_jk and why
> I think doesn't deserve the bogeyman reputation it has.
> - -chris
> Version: GnuPG v1.4.5 (MingW32)
> Comment: Using GnuPG with Mozilla -
> N6+ycSaSQYeg7bhNbee0cQQ=
> =c+ce
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