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I'm looking to migrate a custom web-based application written for Tomcat 4 to a new CentOS system. The old Debian 3.1 system is starting to have issues with it's storage. I'm well versed in Linux Server Administration. But this is the first time I've dealt with Tomcat. My understanding is that the latest Tomcat release is much different from Tomcat 4. Normally I would just dupe and replace the disk, but the system is 3000 miles away. Outsourcing is not an option I can afford.

Can anyone give me a few pointers on what would be the best path to migrate, then update this Tomcat install? Updating the current system is not an option since it's used in a Live environment.

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Tomcat 5.5 is nearing EoL. At you can find migration paths from 5.5 to newer versions. Googling a litte bit found this report about migrating from 4x to 55. I would recommend to go straight further up into Tomcat 7.0 – Nils Mar 8 '12 at 21:51

You should be able to just back a backup of the $TOMCAT_HOME directory and pull that over the wire. Also be sure to install the same version of the JDK onto the new server - it will probably have a newer one in repo so you'll most likely have to manually install the correct JDK. Also create any service accounts it is run under.

A simple procedure should look like:

  1. Backup $TOMCAT_HOME
  2. Install matching JDK version
  3. Create users
  4. Restore the $TOMCAT_HOME folder to new server
  5. Start tomcat, watch the logs for errors, and fix any that come up.
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