Apache Web Server

Apache helps power the internet

Illuminated server room panel

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Apache HTTP Server (usually called Apache) is a fast and secure software package that provides a full range of features, including CGI, ​SSL, and virtual domains. It also supports plug-in modules for extensibility. The Apache web server runs more than half of the web servers around the globe. It's been the world's most popular web server since 1996, one year after it was first released.

Apache is open-source software distributed by the Apache Software Foundation, which promotes other free and open-source advanced web technologies. Although Apache was designed for Unix environments, more than 90% of installations run on Linux. It's also available for Windows and other operating systems.

What Is an HTTP Server?

A server is a remote computer that serves files to requesting clients. A web server is an environment in which a website runs; it's the computer that serves the website.

A web server delivers content using the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). For example, when you visit Lifewire.com in a web browser, you're contacting the web server that hosts this website so that you can communicate with it, request web pages, and view those pages in a web browser.

Why Use Apache HTTP Server?

One of the most significant benefits to Apache is that it's free for both personal and commercial uses, so you never pay for it. Along with being free, Apache is a reliable software framework that is actively maintained. Frequent feature upgrades, security patches, and vulnerability improvements are ongoing. Apache is one of the most feature-filled HTTP web servers available, which is another reason it's popular.

Apache Extensibility

Modules add more functions to the software. Apache supports:

  • Password authentication and digital certificates
  • Customizable error messages
  • Virtual hosting capabilities
  • Proxy services
  • SSL and TLS
  • GZIP compression to speed up web pages

Apache Features

Here's a handful of Apache's other features:

If you're new to Apache, you'll find answers to virtually any question online in the users' forums and websites. If you're experienced with Apache, check in with the forums and websites to stay current. Apache is a regularly updated solution that continues to evolve along with the internet.