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From Gordan Krešić <>
Subject Upgrading context - requires Tomcat restart?
Date Mon, 15 Oct 2007 13:34:26 GMT
Hi to all,

I'm running multiple webapps on several hosts, usually one webapp per host
as root context. Webapps are located in /usr/local/webapps and I provide my
custom context files in $CATALINA_HOME/cont/Catalina/[host]/ROOT.xml

In /usr/local/webapps I save my applications in folders webapp_name-version
and then symlink webapp_name to apropriate version. For example:

gkresic@koka:/usr/local/webapps$ dir
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   10 2007-10-15 12:14 jura -> jura-1.2.1
drwxr-xr-x 3 root root 4096 2007-07-05 13:28 jura-1.2.1
drwxr-xr-x 3 root root 4096 2007-10-15 12:06 jura-1.2.2

"jura-1.2.1" - application currently running
"jura-1.2.2" - newely uploaded version

In context file ($CATALINA_HOME/cont/Catalina/[host]/ROOT.xml) I've
configured docBase to point to /usr/local/webapps/jura (symlink). My idea
was to perform upgrade in safe fashion:

1. upload new application fo folder webapp-version (jura-1.2.2 in upper example)
2. symlink webapp to point to webapp-version (jura -> jura-1.2.2)
3. reload application

Unfortunally, this does not work. After reload, Tomcat still loads old
application (that symlink pointed to before upgrade). Question is why and
how to force Tomcat to load upgraded application?

Of course, if I restart Tomcat new application version is propery started.

If I remember correctly, this worked in Tomcat 5.0, In Tomcat 5.5 required
one "touch" on application's context file to trigger reload, but on Tomcat 6
I can't find any way to force Tomcat to re-read webapps dir.

Both "reloadable" and "allowLinking" attribute in context file seems to have
no effect.

I've even tried to change docBase in context file (ROOT.xml) to point to
real webapp's directory (instead of symlink), but after every reload, Tomcat
still loads webapp that context file pointed to when Tomcat was started.

Any other ideas? How do you perform webapp's upgrade?

My setup:

Debian Etch
Stock (not-from-repository) Tomcat 6.0.13
Starting Tomcat via jsvc
J2SE 1.6

Tny in advance,


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