Tomcat: Enabling SSI

In this post in my series on standing up a Tomcat/ACF10 development environment, we look at enabling SSI within the Tomcat built-in Web server.

This is the fifth in my series detailing my efforts to stand up a Tomcat/ACF10 development environment next to my existing Apache/JRun/ACF9 stack. For background, see the first post in the series.

Enabling Tomcat’s ability to process server-side includes (SSI) requires changes to two configuration files. File ./cfusion/runtime/conf/web.xml contains definitions for both a filter and a servlet for processing SSI’s, as well as a pair of corresponding servlet-mapping and filter-mapping definitions for filenames matching the *.shtml pattern. Uncomment either the filter or the servlet element (but not both), and the corresponding -mapping element. Modify the -mapping element based on the naming conventions you use and/or add additional -mapping elements, as needed.

If you decide to go the filter route on this, you should also note that the default web.xml file’s definition of the filter determines whether to run files through the SSI processing based on the MIME-type of the file. You will almost certainly have to also uncomment, and possibly supplement, the entry/entries in the MIME-type mappings in the same file.

The second file that requires a tweak, per the Tomcat SSI How-To, is ./cfusion/runtime/conf/server.xml. As noted in the docs, only contexts configured as “privileged” can use the SSI capabilities. Add the privileged="true" attribute to Context element for the ColdFusion context:


Throw together a quick test SSI file, bounce your server, and verify that it works.

I clearly have some additional homework to do on this one, as I dont yet understand the benefits and drawbacks of the filter-vs-servlet choice above. More to come on that.