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How to setup virtualhost in Tomcat June 28, 2009

Posted by Anoop Somasundaran in Java, Tomcat.
Tags: ,

I recently had to configure a couple of different tomcat web applications as virtual hosts each one with its own domain. I was accessing these applications using the URL http://localhost:8080/app1 and http://localhost:8080/app2. The basic intention behind the virtual host setup was to avoid the web application name from the url (app1/app2) and the applications to be accessed using http://www.domain1.com and http://www.domain2.com/ . If there was only one web application I could have achieved it by keeping the web application inside webapps/ROOT folder.

Though I am using Apache as front server which was used to forward the dynamic content request to tomcat, I am not describing the Apache-Tomcat configuration in this article. I have described the Apache-Virtualhost-Tomcat-configuration in another article.

Step 1: Configuring Tomcat server.xml

Add the following entry in server.xml (TOMCAT_HOME/conf/server.xml). This should be added below to <Host name=”localhost” ..>…….</Host>

<Host name="www.domain1.com" appBase="/opt/tomcat/www.domain1.com" unpackWARs="true" autoDeploy="true" xmlValidation="false" xmlNamespaceAware="false"/>

<Host name="www.domain2.com" appBase="/opt/tomcat/www.domain2.com" unpackWARs="true" autoDeploy="true" xmlValidation="false" xmlNamespaceAware="false"/>

Step 2: Deploying the applications

Create folders http://www.domain1.com and http://www.domain2.com inside TOMCAT_HOME. Copy the webapp1 to http://www.domain1.com and webapp2 to http://www.domain2.com. Rename both webapp1 and webapp2 to ROOT (ensure ROOT should be in uppercase).

The following should exist after the completion of step2.


Step 3: Enabling Tomcat Manager Console for the new hosts

The default tomcat manager console (http://localhost:8080/manager/html) will not be available for the new hosts. Manager Console needs to be enabled for the application deployed under each virtual host. This can be done by following the below steps.

Create folders http://www.domain1.com and http://www.domain2.com under TOMCAT_HOME/conf/Catalina/. Copy manager.xml from TOMCAT_HOME/conf/Catalina/localhost/ to TOMCAT_HOME/conf/Catalina/www.domain1.com/ and TOMCAT_HOME/conf/Catalina/www.domain1.com/.

The tomcat manager console for the hosts http://www.domain1.com and http://www.domain2.com can be accessed using the URLs http://www.domain1.com:8080/manager/html and http://www.domain2.com:8080/manager/html respectively.

Step 4: Adding host entry for each virtualhost

In production/staging environments normally the domain would be mapped to the IP of the machine. However in development environments we need to map the IP with the virtualhost. This can be done by adding a host entry in the host file. The ‘hosts’ file is typically located at C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc\hosts on windows and /etc/hosts on UNIX

Machine-IP http://www.domain1.com
Machine-IP http://www.domain2.com

Step 5: verifying the virtualhosts

Restart the Tomcat Server and check whether the webapp1 and webapp2 are accessible using the URLs http://www.domain1.com:8080 and http://www.domain2.com:8080 respectively.

If you are using Apache web server and Tomcat, you can leave Tomcat running on port 8080. Otherwise simply change the port of tomcat from 8080 to 80.



1. Gaz - June 30, 2011

it seems like this method is not working for me it, when i follow these steps and enter the url it just display a empty screen.
just like no website is present.

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