Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm trying to deploy my play! 2.0 application on an Ubuntu 11.10 server and I have been running into error after error and hope someone can help me here. I am try to deploy my Play! application using a reverse proxy on Apache 2. I have enabled the apache proxy modules and configured the proxy.conf file in mods_enabled. The vhost for my domain looks like this:

<Directory /var/www/>
    AllowOverride None
    Order Deny,Allow
    Deny from all

<VirtualHost *:80>

    DocumentRoot /var/www/


#    ProxyRequests Off
#    ProxyPreserveHost On
     <Proxy *>
        Order allow,deny
            Allow from all
#    ProxyVia On
#    ProxyPass /play/ http://localhost:9000/
#    ProxyPassReverse /play/ http://localhost:9000/

    ErrorLog /var/log/ispconfig/httpd/

    ErrorDocument 400 /error/400.html
    ErrorDocument 401 /error/401.html
    ErrorDocument 403 /error/403.html
    ErrorDocument 404 /error/404.html
    ErrorDocument 405 /error/405.html
    ErrorDocument 500 /error/500.html
    ErrorDocument 502 /error/502.html
    ErrorDocument 503 /error/503.html

    <IfModule mod_ssl.c>
    <Directory /var/www/>
        Options FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride All
        Order allow,deny
        Allow from all
    <Directory /var/www/clients/client2/web7/web>
        Options FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride All
        Order allow,deny
        Allow from all

    # Clear PHP settings of this website
    <FilesMatch "\.ph(p3?|tml)$">
        SetHandler None
    # mod_php enabled
    AddType application/x-httpd-php .php .php3 .php4 .php5
    php_admin_value sendmail_path "/usr/sbin/sendmail -t -i"
    php_admin_value upload_tmp_dir /var/www/clients/client2/web7/tmp
    php_admin_value session.save_path /var/www/clients/client2/web7/tmp
        # PHPIniDir /var/www/conf/web7
    php_admin_value open_basedir /var/www/clients/client2/web7/:/var/www/clients/client2/web7/web:/va$

    # add support for apache mpm_itk
    <IfModule mpm_itk_module>
      AssignUserId web7 client2

    <IfModule mod_dav_fs.c>
          # Do not execute PHP files in webdav directory
      <Directory /var/www/clients/client2/web7/webdav>
            <FilesMatch "\.ph(p3?|tml)$">
          SetHandler None
      # WEBDAV END
#       <Location /play/>
#               ProxyPass http://localhost:9000/
#               SetEnv force-proxy-request-1.0 1
#               SetEnv proxy-nokeepalive 1
#       </Location>   
        ProxyRequests Off
        ProxyPass /play/ http://localhost:9000/  
        ProxyPassReverse /play/ localhost:9000/
        ProxyPass /play http://localhost:9000/
ProxyPassReverse /play http://localhost:9000/

#       SetEnv force-proxy-request-1.0 1
#       SetEnv proxy-nokeepalive 1

This vhost file was generated by ispconfig and I have not touched anything that was there before just added onto. As you can see by the commented out parts I have tried a lot of different things based on random tutorials I have found but all of them have ended up in Internal Server Error, 503 and most often a '502 Bad Gateway`.

I can start play and it does connect successfully to my database. I can get a page to show up when there is an error and the play! stack trace error pages comes up but where everything is fine I get one of the errors above.

My application.conf file looks like this:

db info

# Logger used by the framework:

# Logger provided to your application:


And my hosts file looks like this (I have never changed or added anything to the host file):       localhost       matrix

# The following lines are desirable for IPv6 capable hosts
::1     ip6-localhost ip6-loopback
fe00::0 ip6-localnet
ff00::0 ip6-mcastprefix
ff02::1 ip6-allnodes
ff02::2 ip6-allrouters

Any insights onto what I might be doing wrong or if theres anything I can try please let me know! Thanks!!


Again the reverse proxy will work (I checked with sending to to Its when there is a successful connection to Netty. It's like Netty refuses the connection to the page.

Edit 2

output from apachectl -S

_default_:8081 (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-apps.vhost:10)
*:8090                 is a NameVirtualHost
         default server (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-ispconfig.vhost:10)
         port 8090 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-ispconfig.vhost:10)
*:80                   is a NameVirtualHost
         default server (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-default:1)
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-default:1)
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
         port 80 namevhost (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/
share|improve this question
Please can you provide the output from apachectl -S? – Alex Leach May 9 '12 at 17:30
@AlexLeach updated in question – locrizak May 9 '12 at 19:36

I've found the best way to proxy incoming connections is to do so using mod_rewrite. Can't guaratee anything, but something like what's below might work for you. Of course you'll need to enable mod_rewrite in the server settings.

<Location /play>
    Order deny,allow
    Allow from all
RewriteEngine on
RewriteRule ^https?://%{SERVER_NAME}/play/?(.*)$ http://localhost:9100/$1 [P,L]

Another thing you'll need to make sure of, is that any virtual server listening on port 80 is a name-based virtual host. apachectl -S should tell you whether there's multiple hosts listening on port 80.

share|improve this answer
The problem isn't with the proxy (it works) its more with connecting to port 9000 either as localhost:9000 in lynx or / in the browser – locrizak May 9 '12 at 19:45

Start with the basics in your vhost:

ProxyPreserveHost On
ProxyPass /play http://localhost:9000/play
ProxyPassReverse /play http://localhost:9000/play

And you can add other directives once you have this portion working.

At the very least, these lines should proxy the main page. I imagine, you can get to http://localhost:9000/play without issue? To troubleshoot further, enable logging for mod_proxy:

share|improve this answer
I've updated my question. I cannot get localhost:9000/play to work. It returns Bad Gateway in the browser and in lynx if I type localhost:9000 the connection is refused and is aborted. – locrizak May 9 '12 at 19:43
if you can't connect to localhost:9000, then the Play server doesn't sound like it's listening, or accepting connections on that port. Check that port's actually being used, with sudo netstat -tulpn | grep 9000. For the proxy to work, I think you might need to provide application.conf with the IP address of the proxy server, as seen from the client. Quoting ""Play will change the request.remoteAddress from the proxy’s IP to the client’s IP. You have to list the IP addresses of your proxy servers for this to work."" – Alex Leach May 9 '12 at 20:36
(Sorry, wrong sub-post) – Alex Leach May 9 '12 at 20:55
That gives me this: tcp6 0 0 :::9000 :::* LISTEN 15847/java It looks like it is listening but it just get disconnected via jetty – locrizak May 10 '12 at 0:51
That's an IPv6 port, and your Apache process is proxying the connection through to the IPv4 localhost port. In firefox, you should be able to access this with the address http://[::1]:9000, but that won't help your proxy issues. Either reconfigure the proxy to point to ::1, or update your play app to listen on IPv4. – Alex Leach May 11 '12 at 11:52

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.