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Tomcat is the #4 ranked solution in top Application Server tools. PeerSpot users give Tomcat an average rating of 8.2 out of 10. Tomcat is most commonly compared to Oracle WebLogic Server: Tomcat vs Oracle WebLogic Server. Tomcat is popular among the large enterprise segment, accounting for 73% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a financial services firm, accounting for 20% of all views.
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What is Tomcat?
Apache Tomcat is an open source software implementation of the Java Servlet, JavaServer Pages, Java Expression Language and Java WebSocket technologies. The Java Servlet, JavaServer Pages, Java Expression Language and Java WebSocket specifications are developed under the Java Community Process. Apache Tomcat powers numerous large-scale, mission-critical web applications across a diverse range of industries and organizations.
Tomcat Customers
Walmart.com, The Weather Channel, E*Trade, Delta Virtual Airlines, General Motors, AppFuse, Bonhams, CardinalHealth, CarGurus.com, FarmDirectory.org, Millenium Pharmaceuticals, RecipeLand.com, WebShots, QuickCreative.net, MyOtherDrive
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Archived Tomcat Reviews (more than two years old)

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Managing Consultant/ Enterprise Architect at a tech services company with 1-10 employees
Consultant
Top 20
Reliable, open-source, and has good documentation but the high availability is not robust
Pros and Cons
  • "The most valuable feature of this solution is that it supports Java Enterprise."
  • "The high availability is not as robust as the competition is such as WebLogic and Jboss."

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case of this solution is for application services and web services.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature of this solution is that it supports Java Enterprise. I don't have to worry about compliance. Once Java EE runs then it's good.

What needs improvement?

The high availability is not as robust as the competition is, such as WebLogic and Jboss.

At the moment, it is dependent on how Java is working. So if Java goes this way, then Apache Tomcat follows. Apache is very tightly coupled to Java. 

The question would more be where does Java need to be? Then Apache Tomcat will follow because it's Open-Source.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Apache Tomcat for three years.

I am using the latest version.

Buyer's Guide
Application Server
November 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about Apache, Oracle, Red Hat and others in Application Server. Updated: November 2022.
657,849 professionals have used our research since 2012.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This solution is stable. It has a lot of support because it is a part of the Apache Foundation, open source. 

I am a strong proponent of open source.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability on its own is getting there. With the Cloud, you can deploy and make it scalable, but on its own, not as much. Unless, along with the cloud, you put it in a Kubernetes cluster, then it's scalable.

How are customer service and support?

The first two projects from Apache were HTTP Daemon, Web Server, and then Tomcat. So it should have one of the richest support articles. Unless you're talking about and speaking with somebody personally, but the documentation for Tomcat is very good.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

This is an open-source product and it's free to use.

What other advice do I have?

Apache Tomcat is the application server, but the enterprise server that runs in it is Apache ServiceMix.

For anyone who is interested in using this solution, I would suggest knowing your use case, and knowing it very well.

If you can make it containerized, it's better, so that it can scale better. But, again, know your use case.

Because I have not used other hardware, there is nothing to compare with and it is hard to rate. In terms of my usage, I am happy with it.

I would rate Apache Tomcat a seven out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Ankur Sood - PeerSpot reviewer
Technical Architect at Photon Interactive
MSP
Light-weight, easy to use, good documentation, and integrates well with Eclipse

What is our primary use case?

Tomcat is a really light-weight Web Server.

How has it helped my organization?

Web applications with Spring can be utilized quite effectively with the help of Tomcat.

What is most valuable?

It is very easy to use for development as well as in a production environment.

It can be integrated with Eclipse as well, for rapid development.

Documentation is very good and is helpful in case of any issue.

Web apps are very easy to deploy.

What needs improvement?

I would personally like it if the admin console would show more information specifically about memory being used.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Tomcat for more than 12 years.

How are customer service and technical support?

Tomcat is widely accepted in tech communities because getting support is really easy.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Buyer's Guide
Application Server
November 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about Apache, Oracle, Red Hat and others in Application Server. Updated: November 2022.
657,849 professionals have used our research since 2012.
PeerSpot user
Director at a program development consultancy with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Helps developers build up their prototype system to evaluate their application design and feature testing

What is our primary use case?

  • Tomcat is a popular and easy-to-use open source web container.
  • It is easy for a developer to enter Java EE programming.

How has it helped my organization?

It helps the developers to build up their prototype system to evaluate their application design and feature testing.

What is most valuable?

  • Easy to deploy.
  • Developers can pack their application-needed library in a web application archive to deploy to Tomcat.

What needs improvement?

The enterprise support: Tomcat is an open source project, but for IT concerns, the enterprise support is needed when we encounter problems on it.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
PeerSpot user
Middleware specialist at a insurance company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
It allows rapid application deployment for Java web container applications, but clustering is complicated.

Valuable Features:

  • Simplicity
  • Speed of deployment

Improvements to My Organization:

  • It allows rapid application deployment for Java web container applications.
  • It provides a stable platform for the application to work with.

Room for Improvement:

  • The documentation can be better.
  • It also lacks the flexibility to configure files.
  • Clustering is complicated.

Use of Solution:

I managed it for approximately three years.

Deployment Issues:

No issues encountered.

Stability Issues:

No issues encountered.

Scalability Issues:

It's difficult to scale/cluster.

Initial Setup:

It was straightforward.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
PeerSpot user
Sr. Solution Development Engineer at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
It has some valuable features, such as realm database for role and user management, but it doesn't host J2EE applications.

What is most valuable?

- JSP/Servlet container

- Realm database for role and user management

For how long have I used the solution?

10 years

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Out-of-Memory issues, which can be solved by increasing the heap space.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Tomcat is a simple JSP/JSF container, but if you want to host J2EE applications you must switch to other solutions, such as JBOSS or Oracle Web Logic.

What about the implementation team?

In-house

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Tomcat is free and opensource.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
PeerSpot user
Solutions Architect at a transportation company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
​The configuration needs work, but we had no issues with stability.

What is most valuable?

It has a small footprint.

How has it helped my organization?

With this, we were able to deliver our products faster to our customers through packaging.

What needs improvement?

The configuration needs work.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've used it for six months.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

No issues encountered.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This depends on the load of the server. We had no issues, but we never ran more than application/site at a time.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues encountered.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

I've not used customer service.

Technical Support:

I've not used technical support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We switched because of the nature of the application and technology.

How was the initial setup?

I always design my systems simple and keep them simple as possible.

What about the implementation team?

We implemented it with in-house team. We like to keep the knowledge in-house.

What was our ROI?

It was crucial and it definitely paid off.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Keep the systems simple. Try to work with open-source solutions and pay for technical support and subscription to support the projects.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Yes I always and regularly evaluate. In case of Java we evaluated all Applications servers who support JEE full profile.

What other advice do I have?

I was using Apache Tomcat, JBoss AS (RedHat), WebMethods (Software AG) and IIS (Microsoft). All of them have their specialities, but depending on the goals and purpose it’s quiet easy to make a choice. Products based on Microsoft .NET do not give companies lot of options; either with Server Operating System shipped IIS, or the developer version called IIS Express. Applications written in Java, n opposite, can be accommodated on several fully-profiled or non-fully-profiled application or web servers.

Only have one application per server if possible. Do not over complicate it, and keep the variance in the configuration simple as possible.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
PeerSpot user
Analista de Sistemas de Tecnologia da Informação - Pleno at a government with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
It's maybe the easiest and simplest Java Web Server on the market, but its centralized management console needs work.

What is most valuable?

  • It’s an open source software project, developed under the Java community process and the Apache license version 2.
  • It has a big knowledge base.
  • It works very well with web projects that have a low budget.
  • Scalability
  • Simple configuration files

How has it helped my organization?

In my organization we have lots of technologies and we use Apache Tomcat for web projects that don’t need the EJB implementation. We use it because it is cheaper than other products, and we have in-house knowledge of the topic. Actually, we have large-scale and mission-critical web applications running in Apache Tomcat with a reasonable budget.

What needs improvement?

This product needs an improvement to its centralized management console that can apply configurations and deployments for large scale clusters and groups of servers without the need of accessing each server to apply the changes. Also, it would be nice to have multiple profiles pre-configured for specific utilization, like other products in the market.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Apache Tomcat since the beginning of 2010.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

If you have a nice development team, with best practices in mind and good code implementation technicians, everything will be OK.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

You only need to test and monitor to find the correct set of configurations for your system or situation. Beware of this, and with patience and some criteria you will find the best set of configurations to stabilize your application in a short time period.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Same as above, you just need to test and monitor to find your needs to attend your system or situation.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

There is no customer service, only the Apache Tomcat community, but there is a large knowledge base.

Technical Support:

There is no official technical support for this product and you don’t find the solution at the community, then you need to acquire consultant services from the market.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Once, we had a big cluster that needed complex configurations and we changed our option and now work with JBoss 6 EAP from Red Hat. This was because it has a centralized management console for cluster configuration and to apply changes to all the nodes at the same time that’s simplified a lot our work.

How was the initial setup?

Apache Tomcat, maybe the easiest and simplest Java Web Server on the market,as you just configure your environment and start it. The deployment depends on your needs, but it can be one server or a hundred, but if you don’t need the EJB implementation you can go without it. To deploy your application just go to the console or just copy the file to all the nodes from the group. It's really easy.

What about the implementation team?

We always do implementations with our in-house teams. Our level of knowledge of this product is very high, and the community people always help with your project, or you just find the answer when you need.

What was our ROI?

To calculate the ROI of this product, it depends on your knowledge. If you have the knowledge in-house, it is just free, there is no investment, just the infrastructure you need to operate it and with the market there are plenty of nice cloud vendors. It's easy to find a solution on a budget.

If you don’t have the knowledge in-house, there are other vendors in the market that are Tomcat based and have other features like centralized management, modular functionality, customer services, technical global support, SLA and can fully attend the JAVA EE 6 and 7 specifications. For example, we have JBoss EAP from Red Hat, which is, maybe, the best correlation between price/performance/support at the market.

If Apache Tomcat works with your application and you have the knowledge, you can use it without fear. Just test, monitor and deploy.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

If you don’t have the knowledge in-house, there are other vendors in the market that are Tomcat based and have other features like centralized management, modular functionality, customer services, technical global support, SLA and can fully attend the JAVA EE 6 and 7 specifications. For example we have JBoss EAP from Red Hat, which is, maybe, the best correlation between price/performance/support at the market.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Tomcat is the best product in this category. If you have low budget and if you just need Java server pages, servlets and basic pages, it does the job. Apache Tomcat powers numerous large-scale, mission-critical web applications across a diverse range of industries and organizations, but always remember that you need to have in-house knowledge to work with it!

What other advice do I have?

You don’t need to have fear. It is simple and efficient. Just search the community and you will find your answers.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
it_user281919 - PeerSpot reviewer
it_user281919Consultor en Gestión de Información at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant

Thanks for your review, it's so useful. I'm a real user too, I have two entrepreneurships and both use Tomcat as Java web server, one has a core API on RoR, the other one is fully developed on Java. I've managed cluster of tomcats with great results (+13,500 active user sessions and +32,500 pages per minute). Greetings...

See all 4 comments
PeerSpot user
President at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
We have to bounce the servers every three months but there's no investment and a huge return. ​

What is most valuable?

It's a rock solid Java host.

How has it helped my organization?

It is at the core of our production application server environment.

What needs improvement?

None that I can think of.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using it for 10 years,

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

No, it's rock solid.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The server needs to be bounced every three months. We reboot on schedule whether we need to or not.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues encountered.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

It's open source and the community is very helpful.

Technical Support:

It's open source and the community is very helpful.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We used IBM WebSphere, but the cost drove us to Tomcat.

How was the initial setup?

It's drop dead easy.

What about the implementation team?

We did it all in-house.

What was our ROI?

No investment, and a huge return.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We bounce the servers every three months, but other than that the costs are trivial.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at other products from IBM, Sun, BEA and a couple others.

What other advice do I have?

Do it. Drop it in and if you have huge traffic requirements, drop it on a couple of machines and run a network balancer.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Diego Hidalgo - PeerSpot reviewer
QA Manager at Tandicorp
Real User
Top 20Leaderboard
It has sufficient documentation for application development but it needs to be improved to handle JNDI resources.

Valuable Features:

  • Lightweight
  • Configurable
  • High-performance
  • Cross-platform
  • Open source 
  • It has sufficient documentation for application development

Room for Improvement:

The cluster management and load balancing is a bit complex. Also, they need to improve the documentation to handle JNDI resources.

Use of Solution:

I've used it for 10 years.

Deployment Issues:

Deployment is simple, however, a limitation is hot deployment.

Stability Issues:

No issues encountered.

Cost and Licensing Advice:

No costs.

Other Solutions Considered:

If you were to have no JEE applications, then it is advisable, otherwise the application server falls short.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
it_user4032 - PeerSpot reviewer
CTO with 11-50 employees
Vendor
Enterprise ready JSP/Servlet Server and ready for High Loads

Valuable Features:

Easy setup Easy configuration Reliability Stability Scalability Performance Well documented Great time to value and pricing.

Room for Improvement:

Deployment automation needs some custom tooling.

Other Advice:

I started using tomcat since version 4.X as development server with Eclipse. Then I used it as a Production server for medium to large Enterprise intranets. And finally I have setup deployments with Clustering for large ECommerce web sites with Apache HTTP Server as Front End. From these experiences I can say that Tomcat is a really performing and PRODUCTION ready server. Well tuned it can take very high loads provided underlying deployed applications are well coded as with any other JSP/Servlet Server.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
it_user1020 - PeerSpot reviewer
Head of Data Center at a tech company with 51-200 employees
Vendor
A reliable web server for developing Java and Android web and application development.

Valuable Features:

Apache Tomcat has become almost the defacto server for serving Java-based applications on the internet. We use Tomcat for our Java web applications and just recently also for our Android software development classes.We chose Tomcat as it was the most widely-used Java web application programming server at that time. Also, most of our resources were tailored to work with Tomcat, and our colleagues who underwent Java web application development was also taught using Tomcat.Features-wise, it's a complete solution. Plus, a lot of other developers are also using it, and the project has been steadily supported by Apache.

Room for Improvement:

The main gripe that I have with Tomcat is it's speed and size. Understandably, Java-based systems have the pre-conceived notion of being slow. However, being exposed to other web servers like the Apache web server really makes you wish Tomcat is as fast as it is. It does take time to load even on current hardware and newly-deployed applications also tend to load slowly during first access.Another grip is size. Size in terms of its memory usage and its installation. Again, compared to Apache, Tomcat really takes-up a lot of memory resources. As a rule of thumb, you need to have a lot of memory on the server which will run Tomcat. Installation size is also big, and it can take a while to download the installation package.

Other Advice:

Overall, Tomcat is still a recommended product for use with Java web application development and Android application development. Though it has speed and size issues, it's still the most widely-used development web server for Java and Android web and application development. Just make sure you have a server that has more than enough memory if you use Tomcat, as it tends to use a lot of it.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
it_user1227 - PeerSpot reviewer
Tech Support Staff at a tech company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
One of the best open source Application Servers & Servlet Container

Valuable Features:

Tomcat Application Serve is an open source Application Server. Compared to other application servers like Jetty, Weblogic etc. this is very light weight Tomcat can be very easily configured to suit your needs. A large number of ever growing web community is there to help you out, in case you face any issue. Tomcat has been known to be very stable and has been deployed and used by many well known organizations. Also, it does not require too much of memory(RAM) to start with. It can start running in a very low memory and uses memory on as needed basis.

Room for Improvement:

There are certain well known compatibility issues with some implementations of JDK Tomcat doesn't give you a performance like Apache when you have static HTML contents. And it is more suitable for hosting servlets and works best as a servlet container. Scalability is a major problem with Tomcat. When your application grows out of proportion and you have applications that draws heavy traffic, then Tomcat is not the right option and you might have to look for other options.

Other Advice:

Tomcat is one of the best application servers and servlet container. It is very light weight and application startup consumes very low memory and it uses memory on as needed basis. Can be run on various platforms like Windows, Linux etc. Not suitable for hosting static HTML content and Scalability is a major problem with Tomcat.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
it_user4401 - PeerSpot reviewer
it_user4401Developer at a transportation company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor

Some other advantages of Tomcat are: It is easier to embed Tomcat in applications (e.g. in JBoss), it implements the Servlet 3.0., JSP 2.2. and JSP-EL 2.2. support and it is easy integrated with other applications such as Spring.

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Updated: November 2022
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