The connection is only accepted if there's a thread to handle it.
Yes, but not from the normal pool... it looks like there are acceptor threads that do nothing but accept socket connections.
I just confirmed that setting the acceptQueueSize does not work to reject connections.
I put in a configurable sleep in the search handler and made requests until they started blocking. Requests were still accepted and just hung... netstat showed them to be "ESTABLISHED".
Further, setting a really low acceptQueueSize runs the risk of having connections rejected even in a low-load situation because jetty doesn't accept them fast enough.