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All servers in my project are running multiple instances of tomcat. I personally feel this setup would cause a JVM overhead. Is there any advantage of running multiple instances of tomcat over using virtual host feature?

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If all applications are stable there is no win in having multiple tomcats.

If not some pros (for multiple tomcats):

  • You can kill the JVMs with OS-means, and hit only one application
  • More security separation is possible, if each tomcat runs with a different account
  • You can have different Tomcat-versions on the same server
  • You can have different Java-versions for each Tomcat.

Some cons:

  • You have to take care that the init-scripts (or services, if running on Win) do not influence each other
  • You have to patch each Tomcat on its own
  • You have to administer each Tomcat on its own
  • Possible more memory overhead (depends on the OS)
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