Can anyone tell me the advantages and disadvantages between Tomcat, JRun, and JServ for Apache Web Server?

Christopher Schultz

Here's some quick-n-dirty facts:

  • Free as in both beer and speech
  • Active open-source development effort
  • Very current in terms of servlet API compliance
  • Not the fastest implementation on the planet
  • You're on your own for support
  • Free as in beer for developers
  • Relatively speedy
  • Supported by Allaire (Macromedia)
  • Costs money for production use
  • Versions that I've used (pre-3.0) had lots of configuration headaches
  • Slightly behind the times with updates (compared to open source projects)
Apache JServ Free as in both beer and speech
  • No longer in active development (Tomcat inherited this effort)
  • Has some thread-leaking issues, in my experience
  • Only supports servlet API 2.0 (not later)
  • You're on your own for support

Realistically, the support issues with Tomcat and JServ aren't really a problem. If you write good code, you'll never trip up these servers.

Configuration management is fully documented, as is installation and troubleshooting for all of these products, online.

My choice would be Tomcat, since it's an Open Source project (making it free and giving you access to the source code if necessary), stays on top of the servlet API developments, and works very well (I've never had any problems).

I would personally stay away from JRun for the counterpoint reasons listed above, but have no technical reasons to poo-poo JRun. Allaire has good products, and I've heard that JRun 3.0 and above is a lot easier to work with in terms of configuration, etc.

Hope that helps,