Should I use upsterm for a tomcat, without having 2 tomcats?

Robert Gabriel lists at
Thu Jan 22 19:29:07 MSK 2009

I have a single server, running a single tomcat instance. I have set it
up like this:

upstream tomcat {

server {
  listen   80;
  server_name *;

  access_log  /var/log/nginx/webmail-access_log;
  error_log  /var/log/nginx/webmail-error_log info;

  location / {
    root   /srv/www/;
    index  index.jsp index.php index.html index.htm;
    rewrite ^ /intouch/ redirect;

  location /intouch {
    proxy_pass http://tomcat/intouch;
    include /etc/nginx/proxy.conf;

  error_page   500 502 503 504  /50x.html;
  location = /50x.html {
    root   /var/www/nginx-default;


Now I know that upstream should be used for load balancing, but does it
make a difference if I use tomcat only with proxy_pass or if I use it
with upstream and proxy_pass?

Can anyone tell me the difference, besides load balancing idea?
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