Configuring a MySQL Data source in tomcat 4.1.31

This article tells how to configure a MySQL data source in Tomcat 4.1 server. This article assumes that you have installed the proper versions of MySQL and tomcat.  Here we assume that you have installed Tomcat to C:\Tomcat. The name of web application that we are going to configure is Test. The JNDI name used for configuring the data source id jdbc/Test.

System Requirements

  • Apache tomcat 4.1.31
  • MySQL
  • Ensure that you have the following files in your lib folder.
    1. commons-collections.jar
    2. commons-dbcp-xx.jar
    3. commons-logging-api.jar
    4. commons-pool-xx.jar
    5. naming-common.jar
    6. naming-factory.jar
    7. naming-resources.jar

Download and Install drivers

  • Download the MySQL 3.12 JDBC driver from
  • Unpack the file you have downloaded. 
  • Copy mysql-connector-java-xxxxx.jar file into the common/lib directory of your Tomcat installation directory. Not to your web application's lib directory.

Shut down Tomcat

  • Run bin/ or bin/shutdown.bat to shut down Tomcat.

Edit server.xml

  • Edit the conf/server.xml file in your Tomcat installation.
  • Find the lines starting with <Host ...>
  • Directly after this tag add these lines

<Context className="org.apache.catalina.core.StandardContext" cachingAllowed="false" charsetMapperClass="org.apache.catalina.util.CharsetMapper" cookies="true" crossContext="false" debug="0" docBase="C:\Tomcat\webapps\Test" mapperClass="org.apache.catalina.core.StandardContextMapper" path="/Test" privileged="false" reloadable="true" swallowOutput="false" useNaming="true" workDir="work\Standalone\localhost\Test" wrapperClass="org.apache.catalina.core.StandardWrapper">

     <Logger className="org.apache.catalina.logger.FileLogger" prefix="localhost_test_log." suffix=".txt" timestamp="true"/>

     <Resource auth="Container" description="Tomcat-MySQL Test" name="jdbc/Test" scope="Shareable" type="javax.sql.DataSource"/>

     <ResourceParams name="jdbc/Test">









    Where maxActive is the maximum number of database connections in pool. Setting this value to zero means no limit. maxIdle is the maximum number of idle connections in pool. maxWait is the maximum time to wait for a database connection to become available in ms,  An Exception is thrown if this timeout is exceeded. A value -1 means waiting indefinitely. username and password is the username and password to connect to MySQL database. url is the JDBC connection URL. Replace  the values with the correct parameters to connect to database.

Configure web application (web.xml configuration).

  • Edit Test/WEB-INF/web.xml. Add the following lines just before </web-app>
       <description>Tomcat- MySQL Test</description>

Test Code

  • Create a jsp file to test our database connection.
javax.naming.Context ctx = new javax.naming.InitialContext();
javax.sql.DataSource ds = (DataSource)ctx.lookup("java:comp/env/jdbc/Test");
java.sql.Connection con = ds.getConnection();

out.println("Successfully connected to MySQL Database.");

Restart Tomcat

  • Run bin/ or bin/startup.bat to start Tomcat with the new settings.
 Now you can execute your code.

 Note: When starting Tomcat, if your console just vanishing away, make sure that you don't have a context with the name 'Test' already defined. If you are getting a ServletException 'javax.servlet.ServletException: Cannot create JDBC driver of class '' for connect URL 'null', cause: No suitable driver', please recheck your server.xml. Still if you are unable to connect to the database, please contact us indicating the error messages you are getting. 
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