This is very good article and provide a solid base to start using Tomcat 5.0 for clustering and load balancing. As it was pointed out in this article that the default balancer (bundled with Tomcat 5.0) does not handle fail over. I tried using your utility class, it works but it throws error and need some improvements. I may probably come up with improvements. Let me know where and how to publish the improved fail over.
Anther point I wanted to bring up is that URL redirecting is not really transparent to end client (web browser), what if the load balancer is redirecting response (with encoded URL) to some other server (on LAN) that is not exposed to external network, how will it work. I am confused....any idea ?