Apache Tomcat Directory Structure

What is Apache Tomcat?

Apache Tomcat is an application server from the Apache Software Foundation that executes Java servlets and renders Web pages that include Java Server Page coding. Tomcat is one of several open source collaborations that are collectively known as Jakarta.

Now, lets see the Layout and Directory Structure of Apache Tomcat

Tomcat layout

The keys to building a scalable tomcat solution includes the understanding of two key environment properties used by tomcat and what they mean.

CATALINA_HOME – represents the static files used by tomcat server such as the lib and bin directories.
CATALINA_BASE – by default is set to CATALINA_HOME. CATALINA_BASE allows for the logical separation of tomcat and line-of-business applications.

Apache Tomcat Directory Structure


This directory is never used during runtime. It’s sole purpose is to store scripts and to startup and shutdown tomcat along with resolve classpaths.

Contains the jars that make up Tomcat Server and any dependencies Tomcat server has.

By default a folder that does not exist when Tomcat is first downloaded. It is a reserved folder that when created allows for global level JARs to be placed and loaded by all Tomcat instances. It is best practice for JDBC drivers and any other classes that may utilize the J2SE 1.4 endorsed feature. In short, there are some package names from which classes are only loaded if the package files are located in the endorsed directory.


This directory contains configuration information for the specified application.

This is where you place your applications that run within TC. (defined by server.xml)

This is a server level working directory for your web applications. (defined by server.xml)

Runtime logs generated when you run tomcat. (defined by logging.properties)

This directory is used by the JVM for temporary files. (defined by java.io.tmpdir)

Tomcat Directory Structure

Refer below chart for tomcat directory structure,

Apache Tomcat Directory Structure

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