I strongly recommend to download a tar.gz package from tomcat.apache.org and decompress it into a single directory. The issue with linux packages are that they put Tomcat all over the system and then you have VERY hard time understanding where is your configurations, where are your libs where are your webapps ad most importantly where are your context files. With tarball installation you have EVERYTHING in the same directory.
So to "install" the tarball, download it from tomcat.apache.org, then either uncompress it to your home directory or if you wish to put in into /usr/local or /opt for example, you need to login as root and copy the file over to desired directory and uncompress it there. However then you also have to fiddle with group permissions: you need to add for example group named tomcat, make yourself a member of that group, logout/login so that the changes activate and then add group read/write permissions to the tomcat folder. So if you are not that strong linux user yet and what I described seems totally over your head, then uncompressing to home directory is the easiest way to go.
Also make sure you have environment variable JAVA_HOME pointing to JDK installation and not JRE. Lots of linuxes ship with JRE and Tomcat is unable to rune with it. You may need to download JDK from java.oracle.com
Last edited by wigry; 01-13-2013 at 03:43 AM.