With some help from friends at several of my (now-ex) consulting clients, I've been trying out the latest build of Tomcat 7 on some of the "problem applications" we ran into over the years...many of them while transitioning applications from JEE application servers to the "highly distributed services architectures" (now widely called the "Cloud") that I have been discussing and building for the last 6-7 years.

In a word, WOW!

Of the 11 "problem" applications we've tried on Tomcat 7:

  • 100% of them worked
  • 9 of the 11 exposed coding problems that had led to development and production problems previously.
  • All 9 were readily fixed, and they now run properly on 6.5, as well as on 7
  • The other two simply ran reliably on Tomcat 7, while they required frequent re-starts on 6.5
  • 7 of the 11 ran faster, with the best seeing approximately a 6% performance gain

I've been closely tracking the progress on Tomcat 7 for more than a year, have previously blogged (here and elsewhere) about its features and behavior, on how to decide when to adopt Tomcat 7 into your development projects, and have watched it finding its way into development and even some production systems through my former consulting clients. As previously noted, there is a lot to like about Tomcat 7 features, and I'm hopeful I can find the time to try the Servlet 3 capabilities. That said, it's the stability, performance, and application cleanup assistance that make this one compelling.


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