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Tomcat: The Definitive Guide [Paperback]

Jason Brittain , Ian F. Darwin
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

23 Jun 2003 0596003188 978-0596003180 1

Jakarta Tomcat is not only the most commonly used open source servlet engine today, it's become the de facto standard by which other servlet engines are measured. Powerful and flexible, it can be used as a stand-alone web server or in conjunction with another server, like Apache or IIS, to run servlets or JSPs. But mastery of Tomcat is not easy: because it's as complex as it is complete. Tomcat: The Definitive Guide answers vexing questions that users, administrators, and developers alike have been asking. This concise guide provides much needed information to help harness Tomcat's power and wealth of features.Tomcat: The Definitive Guide offers something for everyone who uses Tomcat. System and network administrators will find detailed instructions on installation, configuration, and maintenance. For users, it supplies insightful information on how to deploy Tomcat. And seasoned enterprise Java developers will have a complete reference to setting up, running, and using this powerful softwareThe book begins with an introduction to the Tomcat server and includes an overview of the three types of server configurations: stand-alone, in-process, and out-of-process. The authors show how directories are laid out, cover the initial setup, and describe how to set the environment variables and modify the configuration files, concluding with common errors, problems, and solutions. In subsequent chapters, they cover:

  • The server.xml configuration file
  • Java Security manager
  • Authentication schemes and Tomcat users
  • The Secure Socket Layer (SSL)
  • Tomcat JDBC Realms
  • Installing servlets and Java Server Pages
  • Integrating Tomcat with Apache
  • Advanced Tomcat configuration
and much more.Tomcat: The Definitive Guide covers all major platforms, including Windows, Solaris, Linux, and Mac OS X, contains details on Tomcat configuration files, and has a quick-start guide to get developers up and running with Java servlets and JavaServer Pages. If you've struggled with this powerful yet demanding technology in the past, this book will provide the answers you need.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (23 Jun 2003)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 0596003188
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596003180
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 17.8 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,046,993 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Authors

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Product Description

Book Description

Vital Information for Tomcat Programmers & Administrators --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Jason Brittain is a Senior Software Engineer at CollabNet Inc., where he works on collaborative software-project-hosting-infrastructure software made up of more than 50 open source software package codebases. Jason's specialties include dynamic web development, Java application servers, high availability and fault tolerance, clustering, and Jakarta Ant build systems. He has contributed to many Apache Jakarta projects and has been an active open source software developer for several years.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful book 31 Aug 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I quite like this book, not too terse and not too verbose. Useful as a reference book but with enough explanation to get you going if you're not familiar with the topic. Light years better than the online documentation but, given that the online documentation is often unreadable, that's not a particularly demanding benchmark. A useful and reliable guide.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gets you started 7 Feb 2004
Nitpick: Many examples are literally the content of files as shipped from getting the admin application going required a bit of role name guesswork or a trawl through the the online docs.
Gives you the options on the configuring,connecting to db's/apache etc. Not really a tutorial, more of an ideas cookbook. Something I shall refer to as I demand more from Tomcat.
It is nice to have a concise text in one place on the subject.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  24 reviews
47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most concise Tomcat book yet 7 July 2003
By Kip Perkins - Published on
I just got this book saturday (it's now monday) and this book has already helped me solve two problems and clairify my Tomcat thinking. This book is the best Tomcat book yet for Administrators. I have used the others (Professional Apache-Tomcat, Mastering Tomcat Development, and Apache-Jakarta Tomcat), but this one has been the best. It is very well organized and has some great helps in it. It does not try to cover everything, but it focuses on some. For example, Tomcat 3 is not covered by this book. Mod_webapp is not covered, but mod_jk2 is very well covered. The authors covers how to secure Tomcat through chroot (using a special file they ported from OpenBSD called jbchroot.c), run Tomcat as an unpriviledged user on port 80, Clustering with or without Apache, Apache integration is given REAL coverage. The best thing about this book is the focus on Administration and not development, this is obviously for administrators. The other books were focused on developers and were either way to short or had way too much scattered and confused information. Admins like things well organized and consistant.
If you are a Sys Admin and need a book on Tomcat administration, get this book and forget about the rest.
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Great O'Reilly Title 2 Aug 2003
By Timothy E. McGuire - Published on
Until I bought this book I had an agreement with Tomcat. Tomcat would serve my servlets like it was supposed to and I wouldn't try to pull any stunts. If I ran into something that wasn't working because of some setting or another in Tomcat, I avoided it. Now that I have this book, the agreement is off. This book is chock full of neat and useful tricks with some excellent examples. The book is very well written in true O'Reilly style (They even found a way to use the word "laconic" which I have never seen used in a computer book before). It illuminated various things I was unaware of, such as:
** How to run the web based Tomcat admin application
** Tomcat restart issues - this was especially interesting and gets to the heart of what java and tomcat really are.
** How to enable Tomcat's SSI servlet so that it will use your existing server-side includes
The book has lots of hints of the "I know how to do this in Apache httpd, but how do I do it in Tomcat?" variety. This is in addition to an entire chapter devoted to connecting Tomcat to Apache httpd.
The subject of a java web server will automatically bleed over into the subjects of Java and Unix and the book does a great job exposing the timid to Unix and Java concepts that help in understanding these technologies. For example, the book gives detailed instructions for setting up a chroot jail on a Unix type system.
I read the chapter on security several times because it is really foundational. It gets at the excellent security abilities of Java and explains them better than I have seen them explained elsewhere. It also gives the basics of possible vulnerabilities of any web application. The stuff in this section applies broadly to any Servlet container, but has a lot of specifics for Tomcat.
Obviously, all of the stuff in the book is available from the Java, Unix, or Tomcat documentation, but the book acts as a guide, pointing out key things in the documentation.
The only limitation of the book that I could tell was that the authors are exclusively from a Unix background. This has the result of making the book slanted towards Linux/Unix. There are a couple of things that the authors show how to do on Unix but leave the impression that there is no way to do it on Windows. For example they say, "Unix type operating systems, run netstat from the command line to see the open ports. You can do this on Windows as well. They also give a Unix shell script that organizes log files so that they look like Apache httpd log files. It would have been nice to offer one for windows as well or at least give a hint for how to do so. A lot of people use Tomcat on windows as a development environment and they should not be ignored.
In summary, the book succeeds in both broad concepts that deal with running any java web server and in exposing the finer details of Tomcat in particular. Another reviewer asked if this was really "Vital Information for Tomcat Programmers and Administrators" as the subtitle says. I would say yes. You get details of programming Tomcat through the configuration files and crucial details for how Tomcat settings affects how your servlets behave. Perhaps they are asking about messing around with the source code of Tomcat? Then no, it is not about programming Tomcat in that sense.
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE Tomcat Bible - A must own book for anyone using Tomcat 7 Sep 2003
By Vinny Carpenter - Published on
Tomcat: The Definitive Guide is a great book about the most commonly used open-source servlet/JSP container. Tomcat is the official Reference Implementation for the Java Servlet and JavaServer Pages technologies. Tomcat is really powerful and flexible, but you really need a good book to figure out how to integrate Tomcat with Apache, how to set load-balancers, clustering, etc on all of the major platforms, including Windows, Solaris, Linux, and Mac OS X.
This is where Tomcat: The Definitive Guide comes in. This really well written book makes it easy to follow for the developer as well as non-developer admin. The book starts with an introduction of Tomcat (v4.0) where you learn how to stop/start the server, learn about the directory structure, and learn to modify the start/stop scripts as well as the configuration settings. I really like the treatment given to security, realms and JAAS in the second chapter with more details in the sixth chapter. Most books of this type will leave out security and this book deals with it in the second chapter. Kudos to the authors for that.
I also really like the chapter on performance tuning that deals with real-world applications. The chapter on integration with the Apache webserver is really well written. Most people that deploy Tomcat in production will want to put Apache webserver in front of Tomcat to serve up static content like html and images while letting Tomcat handle servlets and JSPs. Most of the documentation about this Apache httpd - Tomcat integration on the Internet deals with v1.3 of Apache httpd. However, the book deals with Apache 2.0, which is another plus for the book.
I can go on and on - If you are using Tomcat, planning on using Tomcat or just want to learn more about the server, this book will provide you with all of the information to help harness Tomcat's power and wealth of features. I would highly recommend this book as a companion to any servlet/JSP programming book.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good thorugh reference for all aspects of tomcat admin 12 Nov 2004
By Ben Iglauer - Published on
First note that this book is for tomcat 4, not 5. Hopefully there will soon be an up to date version of this book available.

Note also that this book is from an administrator's perspective, not a developer's. You won't learn how to write custom tag libs from reading this.

Note also that if you are new to tomcat, and just want to get the thing running, there is sufficient on line documentation to do this at the jakarta site. Don't spend money on this book unless you want a solid administration reference.

That being said, it is an great reference to all aspects of tomcat administration. Every element of every configuration file is explained. Also, there is an excellent chapter on tomcat security.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy to Understand 21 May 2004
By Josh Abbott - Published on
I found this easy to understand and comprehensive. Instructions are easy to follow. You can get started in less than 10 minutes. The first chapter covers the installation in almost all operating systems where Java is available, which is good especially if you are not using the mainstream OS's.
Most material can probably be found in Tomcat's website itself, but this book still has good value for money. You might also want to look at Wrox' "Professional Apache Tomcat", which is equally good. For advanced users, you might want to check "How TOmcat Works" (download sample chapters from the publisher's site first because as I said this is not for beginners) that covers beyond configuration and administration.
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