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Pat Shuff's Blog

installing Tomcat on Oracle

In our last entry we installed Tomcat onto the Oracle Compute Cloud using Bitnami. Just as a reminder, it was easy, it was simple, and it took 15 minutes. In this entry we are going to go through the manual process and show what has to happen on the server side and what has to happen on the cloud side. The steps that we will follow are
  • Install Oracle Enterprise Linux on the Oracle Compute Cloud Service
  • ssh into the box and install/update
    • Java 7
    • Tomcat
    • iptables to open port 80 and 443
  • Start the service and verify localhost:8080 works
  • Configure the ports on the cloud side so that 80 and 443 pass through

Installing Oracle Enterprise Linux has been done in a previous blog. We won't go through the screen shots for this other than to say that we called the box prsTomcat (as we did in the previous example) and requested OEL 6.6 with a 60 GB hard drive because this was the default installation and configuration. We selected the 60 GB hard drive because we had one preconfigured and it would reduce the creation time by not having to create and populate a new hard drive.

To ssh into the instance we need to go to the compute page and find the ip address. We need to login as opc so that we can execute sudo and install packages.


Once we have logged in we first need to verify that java is installed and configured. We do this with

java -version

This command verified that Java is properly installed. The next step is to download tomcat. To get the correct version and location to download it from we must go to tomcat.apache.org and figure out what version to install. This is a little confusing because there are numerous versions and numerous dot releases. We are looking for Tomcat 7 so we scroll down and download it from tar.gz binary distribution.

We look for Tomcat 7 and follow the download link.


Once we had downloaded the binary bundle we need to unzip this into a location that we want to run it from. In this example we are going to install it in /usr/local/apache-tomcat-version_number. This is done with

"w g e t " http://www-us.apache.org/dist/tomcat/tomcat-7/v7.0.68/bin/apache-tomcat-7.0.68.tar.gz
cd /usr/local
sudo tar xvzf /home/opc/apache-tomcat-7.0.68.tar.gz

Now that we have the binary downloaded, we have to start the server. This is done with the bin/startup.sh command. It is important to note that we will still need to install and configure an init script in /etc/rc3.d/S99tomcat to start and stop the service. This requires hand editing of the file to run the startup.sh script. Once we have Tomcat installed and running we can use "w g e t" to verify that the server is running

sudo /usr/local/apache-tomcat-7.0.68
"w g e t" http://localhost:8080

This should return the html page served by the Tomcat server. If it does not, we have an issue with the server starting or running.

Now that we have the server up and running, we need to update the iptables to add ports 80, 8080, and 443 as pass through ports. This is done by

sudo iptables -A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 80 -j ACCEPT
sudo iptables -A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 443 -j ACCEPT
sudo iptables -A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 8080 -j ACCEPT
sudo service iptables restart

Once we have the ports properly running at the operating system layer we need to go back to our compute cloud console and create the security rules for these ports. This is done by going into the instance and clicking on the network tab at the top of the screen.

We open up port 80 first from the public internet to the instance.

We then open up port 443 similarly

The final configuration should look like

We also need to add port 8080 which is by default not installed and configured. We do this by defining a new Security Application from the Networking tab. We add port 8080 then we have to add it as a security rule.



From this point we should be able to look from our desktop to the cloud instance and see port 80, 8080, and 443. We can test port 443 by logging into the management console as we did with the bitnami configuration. We can test port 8080 by going to the default link for our server ip address.

In summary, it took 5-6 minutes to get Linux installed. It took 5-10 minutes to do the y um install based on how many packages were out of sync and needed updating. It took 4-5 minutes to open up the ports and reconfigure the network access. To get the same configuration we would have to edit the catalina.conf file and redirect the browser from port 8080 to port 80 as well as create a startup script to initialize the server at boot time. Overall this method took us about 50% longer to install and configured the exact same thing as we did with Bitnami. The benefits to doing the configuration ourselves is that we could script it with tools like Puppet and Chef. We could automate this easily and make sure it is done the same way every time. Doing it by hand and creating the instance, logging in, and using a graphic interface to configure everything leads to error and divergence as time goes on.

Note that the "w g e t" should be one word but again, our blogging software does not allow me to use that word in the blog. Grrr!

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