Ask many server administrators if Microsoft’s IIS Web server can be used with Java servers, and you will probably hear a quick “No way!” with an optional sniff or chuckle, depending on your server preference. Starting with Windows Server 2008 and later, you can set up IIS7 as the Web serving tier in a three-tier deployment to IIS or Java servers on the backend.
Customers are taking advantage of this functionality today if they have an existing Java investment:
- Front-end IIS Web server delivering requests to backend WebLogic server running a Deltek time entry system
- A major insurance provider using an IIS Web server to deliver requests to TomCat application servers.
The key component is IIS Application Request Routing (ARR), which we ship as a fully supported, free Web extension for Windows Server 2008 and later. If you have Windows Server 2008 or later, ARR 1.0 gives you:
- IIS as an option in a three-tier configuration with WebLogic and TomCat backends. It should work with WebSphere too – if you try it, blog about it and let us know!
- application load balancing that you can configure easily using rules
- dynamic scale your Web app to different servers in a server farm, based on memory and other factors
- rules-based ability to bind client requests to specific servers with cookies
- centralized configuration management and health monitoring for nodes in a server
In the next few weeks, we will release ARR 2.0, which adds advanced support for Edge serving to distributed cache hierarchies. ARR 2.0 as a pre-release has been running in production for several major content delivery networks as a high-performance Squid alternative on the network Edge.