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we have tomcat on a windows server that everyone on the devteam can access. on this machine the stylesheet/.js links work fine. i copied the war down to my local machine and installed apache on my local machine. Now i can connect to the site at localhost:8080 and the html is served and database connection works but... it does not apply any of the styles/.js .

the other strange thing is that if i browse to the site and view source (at my local machine and at shared machine). the links to the stylesheet look like

href="/project folder/static/styles sub-folder/sub-folder/style-page.css"

there is no "static" folder on either machine. Is this a jsp convention of some sort?

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The general convention is to host the "static" stuff on a dedicated web server like Apache and keep the dynamic JSPs etc on the Tomcat.

If you don't see a "static" folder on the source Tomcat server - then I suspect it's sitting under an Apache web server and the URL /static has been mapped in the Tomcat server.xml using a <Context> element.

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we have the following in web.xml ... would i have to change this in order for it to display properly @ localhost? – Bdawg Jun 6 '11 at 16:12
oops here is the xml..... <servlet-mapping> <servlet-name>default</servlet-name> <url-pattern>/static/*</url-pattern> </servlet-mapping> – Bdawg Jun 6 '11 at 16:12
okay this says the /static is mapped to a default servlet - this suggests that this folder should exist on tomcat itself. What is the actual servletclass for the default servlet? Is there any Apache web server fronting this Tomcat that you're aware of? – JoseK Jun 6 '11 at 16:25
there is an apache service. if it is stopped the app no longer works. I don't think anyone intentionally used it though. the css and js is located under the webapps/name_of_app/styles folder. How would i tell what the default servlet? in web.xml there are several items mapped to /*? sorry for all the newbie questions. thanks for tyhe help – Bdawg Jun 6 '11 at 17:51
so /static/styles gets mapped to webapps/name_of_app/styles in short, or rather /static itself is pointing your webapp-context-root i.e. webapps/<name_of_yourapp>. Have you checked server.xml in Tomcat folder for any mapping named /static? This file sits outside the war and in the conf directory, so this could be the problem. I assume you have definitely copied all the war contents and styles onto your local machine as well and kept them in the same path. – JoseK Jun 6 '11 at 18:04

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