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From "Lessie Z. Mitch" <>
Subject RE: Virtual Hosts: path="/" without using ROOT folder?
Date Wed, 27 Feb 2008 17:43:12 GMT

And now I hear many software vendors screaming in agony. 

Our packaged ecommerce software came with instructions to work with the bug
- without mentioning it was a bug.

This explains a lot. Thank you. ^.^


-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Thomas [] 
Sent: Tuesday, February 26, 2008 10:06 PM
To: Tomcat Users List
Subject: Re: Virtual Hosts: path="/" without using ROOT folder?

Lessie Z. Mitch wrote:
> Why does my original configuration not work anymore? I will keep Mark's
> recommended configuration but would like to know they "why" behind the
> "how". Helps me understand when launching other sites on this server
> will be another 4 virtual hosts, each serving up 3 or 4 webapps).

The 2.5 servlet spec relaxed the rules on what could be deployed as a
webapp to include a dir with just static files and/or JSPs. To support
this, Tomcat deploys any dir under a host's appBase as a webapp. This was
ported back to 5.5 since it doesn't break the spec and was viewed as useful.

Setting appBase==docBase was invalid and never supported but, as the
side-effect of a bug, actually worked. A number of how-to guides suggested
this config and people started to use it. When the bug was fixed the
invalid configuration stopped working. This fix combined with the
auto-deployment of any dir in an appBase created all sorts of weirdness.

Hope this explains some of the background.



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