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From kroekle <>
Subject Re: Context deletion on redeploy
Date Wed, 05 Dec 2007 16:54:19 GMT

I'll give my example.  I have one war file that I'm trying to deploy to
multiple environments where the only difference is the database (I have
other environment specific properties in a database table).  On top of that,
I don't know the user/password for the production environment, so I wouldn't
be able to put it in the meta-inf/context.xml if I wanted to (which I
don't).  And having an admin update the conf/Catalina/localhost/<app
name>.xml every time there is a deployment just isn't a good process and
makes a quick fix impossible.  Every "application server" I know keeps this
configuration information between deployments.

I understand that some may like the current behavior, but there are many
that do not.  I think all that anyone is asking for is to make this
configurable.  I would love to use the manager ant task with a
removeOldContext=false option, this is all I need.  Others, I think, would
like to have an option on the host removeOldContextOnUndeploy=false.  

But since this isn't going to happen overnight, can anyone offer a
suggestion to mimic this behavior now (I'm using 5.5)?  I would like to use
the ant task (which uses the manager application) to do deploys with keeping
the existing context.  Using the default context or conf/context.xml does
not work because each context has it's own realm to authenticate.

Thanks in advance.


Christopher Schultz-2 wrote:
> Hash: SHA1
> Mark,
> Mark H. Wood wrote:
>> On Wed, Sep 12, 2007 at 09:38:45AM -0400, Christopher Schultz wrote:
>>> Bal√°zs,
>>> wrote:
>>>> 4. Using Tomcat Administrator application the admin changes
>>>> environment settings defined in
>>>> conf/Catalina/localhost/warname.xml (which was extracted from the
>>>> war).
>>> Why would you make an administrator do this when you can make it
>>> part of the deployment process?
>> Why would you make the deployment process so hostile when you could 
>> let the administrator control his own machine?
> According to the OP, the administrator doesn't want to do his job. IF
> it's got to be done, and the admin won't do it, then someone else has to.
>>>> The only way was to put resource links to the
>>>> war/META-INF/context.xml that link to GlobalResources.
>>> This isn't true. You can put "real" resources into
>>> META-INF/context.xml. Why not just do that?
>> Perhaps because one is deploying on several different hosts and each 
>> needs different settings?
> I think you're missing the point: I'm suggesting that he automatically
> configure whatever he needs on the fly.
>>>> But now I have to deploy the same unmodified war many times to
>>>> the same tomcat so I have to use different settings at each
>>>> webapp.
>>> I would highly recommend changing your deployment strategy so that
>>> you are deploying a /modified/ copy of your WAR file each time --
>>> one that has the correct settings for your environment.
>> Ewww.
>> I've seen this come up several times (and brought it up myself), and 
>> everyone is dancing around the real issue:  Tomcat seriously violates
>> the Principle of Least Surprise.
> So, you think it's surprising that when you have to work around the
> standard deployment procedure (use of META-INF/context.xml) it becomes a
> real PITA? That's not surprising to me at all.. an exception case is an
> exception case.
>> Programs should not muck with their own configurations on their own
>> initiative.  Sysadmins expect the settings they make to stay set.
> These settings /do/ stay set, unless you re-deploy the application, at
> which point the old deployment information is stale and ought to be
> refreshed.
>> If they need to override default values within a .war, their changes
>> shouldn't be blown away with every redeployment.
> Except that anyone who /wants/ this behavior would have the opposite
> complaint.
> - -chris
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> Comment: Using GnuPG with Mozilla -
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> =tvUt
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