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I want to deploy multiple versions of an app server on my local machine for development purposes (testing for compatibility, etc). I've got about 5 that I'll want to have installed at any given time, but really only need 1 or 2 of them on a day to day basis. I'd rather turn on/off the others on demand.

Originally I had problems deploying them all when I ran into memory issues, but setting -XX:MaxPermSize=256m took care of that. Now I've realized I don't need them all at once.

Is there a way to specify that certain applications should not auto-start?

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You should be using the host-manager or the Tomcat manager for this. Also, in the server.xml file, you can turn off the ones you don't wanted started up by using this: DeployOnStartup="false"

Example:

<Host name="learn" appBase="webapps" unpackWARs="true" autoDeploy="true" xmlValidation="false" xmlNamespaceAware="false" DeployOnStartup="false">
    <Context path="" docBase="C:/Dev/web/learn/www" />
  </Host>

Reference: - http://stackoverflow.com/questions/5067062/how-to-disable-specific-apps-in-tomcat

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I know I can use the manager app(s) to start+stop each server, but the most important part is preventing auto-start. I'll check this out, thanks! –  Adam Tuttle Nov 22 '11 at 20:37
    
Hmm, I hadn't made any modifications to or duplications of the <host> tag. Should I? Is that preferable over using Apache VHosts and proxying each of them to a different context root? –  Adam Tuttle Nov 22 '11 at 20:41
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