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From Bob DeRemer <bob.dere...@thingworx.com>
Subject RE: HOW TO: create custom Tomcat 6 connector to do port sharing
Date Thu, 30 Jun 2011 01:10:23 GMT
Chris,

Thanks for the feedback.  I haven't come across squid yet, so I will take a look.  With regard
to HTTP proxying, no, I don't want to do HTTP proxying.  I would like to insert a TCP-based
NIO request router in place of Tomcat's Connector.  Specifically, I would like to do something
similar to the Netty Port Unification sample, but with HTTP AND XMPP protocols.  Netty has
the ability to inspect the incoming request and then get outta the way - adding the appropriate
Channel for processing the request.  

The problem I'm facing is that we're using Tomcat as our App Server and we can't easily replace
that with a non-servlet based solution at this point.   As a result, I was trying to determine
if there is a way to create some type of Tomcat extension that where I could do the initial
request routing and pass HTTP request on to the Tomcat's plumbing without running the built-in
HTTP connector(s).

Thanks,
Bob

-----Original Message-----
From: Christopher Schultz [mailto:chris@christopherschultz.net] 
Sent: Wednesday, June 29, 2011 2:51 PM
To: Tomcat Users List
Subject: Re: HOW TO: create custom Tomcat 6 connector to do port sharing

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Bob,

On 6/29/2011 1:10 PM, Bob DeRemer wrote:
> I've scoured the net for information on how to do port sharing within 
> the context of a Tomcat Servlet-based web application process.
> While there's some discussion, there still doesn't appear to be any 
> solutions [YET] - that I could find yet.
> 
> What I need to do is the following:
> 
> * receive both HTTP and XMPP traffic on a single port [either 80 or
>   443 - depending on security configuration]
> 
> * route the HTTP traffic to Tomcat's HTTP Connector [or
>   sub-processing component] if possible
> 
> * route the XMPP to an embedded Vysper server

All of the above should be doable using something like Squid. Does Squid do pretty much everything?

> * ALL running in the context of a single Tomcat Server process

Oh.

You want Tomcat to do HTTP proxying? AFAIK, nobody has done that. Most people who want HTTP
proxying just use some other web server out in front of Tomcat (like Apache httpd, Squid,
Nginx, lighttpd, HTTP lb, etc.). I have to imagine that at least one of those products can
do content-detection to determine where to route messages.

Does it /have to/ be Tomcat-based?

> This will enable us to leverage the power/investment in our servlet 
> infrastructure and Vysper XMPP all together without having to open 
> multiple ports.
> 
> If this is possible in either Tomcat 6 or Tomcat 7, please let me know 
> how I should go about this:
> 
> * doing some custom extension in Tomcat (i.e. custom Tomcat
>   connector that uses Netty for example)
> 
> * or, some other approach ???

If you want to brute-force it, you could write a servlet Filter (or, better yet, a Tomcat-specific
Valve that runs before the request is mapped to a webapp) to intercept the messages and proxy
them over to your other service(s). You'll have to do the HTTP proxying yourself, though.

> please advise on how you would recommend achieving our goal.

Honestly, I'd look for a non-Tomcat-centric solution because it's probably already been built
elsewhere.

- -chris
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