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From Sriram Narayanan <>
Subject Re: Optimal Settings to use Tomcat as a HTTP File Server
Date Fri, 10 Jun 2011 17:49:38 GMT
On Fri, Jun 10, 2011 at 11:18 AM, Caldarale, Charles R
<> wrote:
>> From: Caldarale, Charles R
>> Subject: RE: Optimal Settings to use Tomcat as a HTTP File Server
>> > We plan to use tomcat to let users download static content
>> > ( media, executables etc.. ).
>> As much as I like Tomcat, I have to think it might be more
>> appropriate to use Apache httpd rather than Tomcat for pure
>> static content.
> I have to qualify my statement: if the *only* thing you're using Tomcat for is delivering
static content, then httpd would be better.  If you have other reasons to use Tomcat (e.g.,
running servlets or JSPs), then by all means use it as your static content server as well.
 You will generally see better performance overall by not having two servers in the mix forced
to communicate with each other.

Having one application serve static content, and having other
applications serve other content (accept http requests, perform some
processing, and send back responses, for e.g.), is actually a widely
accepted and tested mechanism of using various stacks for various
tasks. Given that we have binary communication between httpd and
tomcat, and that this allows for Tomcat to be installed and used in
all manner of ways (dedicated instances for specific web apps, or load
balanced instances, for e.g.), I don't think "forced" is the right
term at all.

In fact, the vast majority of websites out there specifically stick in
proxies and such in front of tomcat for  SSL termination, load
balancing, and static content serving.

-- Sriram

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