You can configure the Apache web server to forward requests to Tomcat. Thus, you can speak to both servers on ports 80 or 443 and get rid of the :8080 for your Tomcat applications. I’m somehow doing that very often, so here is small how-to for copy&paste purposes.

## Install jk

As you might know, while Tomcat is Java stuff Apache is written in C. So in general it’s not that easy to get them talking to each other. The key to achieve an integration is called mod_jk (see The Apache Tomcat Connector). So first of all you need to install it:

If it is installed you can configure an AJP worker in /etc/libapache2-mod-jk/workers.properties  :

As soon as this is done the bridge is ready to close the gap between Apache and Tomcat.

## Configure Tomcat

We need to configure an AJP connector on port 8009 . So open /etc/tomcat7/server.xml and add another connector next to the other ones:

If you’re lucky there is already such a connector defined in the comments. So just remove the comment…

## Configure Apache to speak through jk

Here I’ll show you how to setup a virtual host. For example, copy the following to /etc/apache2/sites-available/012-yourapp.conf :

Ok, let me shortly explain what I did there.

1. Everything that arrives at this vhost gets forwarded to our previously defined AJP worker (line 9)
2. I assume your Tomcat webapp is running on server:8080/YourApp , therefor I configured a substitution of the URL to insert /YourApp (line 7). Of course you need to have mod_rewrite installed and enabled. (You may skip this line if you’re fine with having /YourApp in all your URLs)
3. The rest should be clear. The vhost is available at http://yourapp.yourserver.tld , as well as at http://ya.yourserver.tld (lines 3&4). You can also use SSL, just configure line 1 to listen at *:433 and add the SSL stuff to the body of your vhost. (SSL exmaple)

Afterwards, enable the vhost to populate it:

## Give it a try

If this is done just restart everything:

Now Apache forwards all requests to http://yourapp.yourserver.tld to your Tomcat webapp at http://yourserver.tld:8080/YourApp .

I use mod_proxy for it and configure a reverse proxy. It works fine with Tomcat 6 and Apache, Nginx and HAProxy. If Tomcat talks to Apache via HTTP instead of AJP Connector, then there are some limitations like no domain model clustering and no large packages (>8k)