Apache is an HTTP/1.1 compliant Web server and Tomcat is a servlet container and JSP engine. They are often used together to optimize static and dynamic content handling. When running them together, Tomcat is typically configured as an add-on to the Apache Web server to handle JSPs and servlets.
When using Apache and Tomcat together, the scenario usually goes like this:
- Apache listens for HTTP requests.
- When a request arrives, Apache checks whether it is a servlet request, a request for a JavaServer Page or a request for static content.
- If the request targets a servlet or JSP page, Apache forwards the request to Tomcat.
- If the request is for static content (non-servlet or JSP), Apache handles the request.
This was first published in February 2003