Apache ? An Overview
Apache is a freely available Web server that is distributed under an “open source” license.
It is used by web servers to handle web requests and serve up web resources.Currently the most popular web server on the Internet. Apache powers more than 50 percent of all web hosts, a market position it has maintained for more than a decade.
History: Apache was actually developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The first public release of the software was in April 1995. After some refinements, programmers released version 1.0 that December.
Multiplatform: Apache was originally developed for Unix and operating systems such as Linux. It can also run on Windows 2000 or newer versions of Windows. It supports PERL and PHP too. It boasts many powerful add-ons.
Because the source code is freely available, anyone can adapt the server for specific needs, and there is a large public library of Apache add-ons.
Features and Modules: Apache has several advantages over other web-host services. Apache provides a fully customizable interface, portability, up-to-date features, plenty of support and flexibility to provide support on common operating systems.
Apache can accommodate various modules that enable features that are not a part of the server itself.
Compared to other servers Apache has several advantages:
Scalability: Apache host services allow administrator to install the application on any Unix, Linux or Windows machine. Apache supports the common operating systems, so administrators are able to implement the web host on any server. Apache is free, so obtaining the latest copy of the Apache-service software only requires a free download from the official website. Apache also supports the latest PHP plug-ins for blogs and dynamic content, so an administrator can support several users with blogs and other social-network content. Apache server allows hosting one or several websites, which is why some hosting companies offer it for clients.
Administration: Apache administration requires changes to the plain text file called “httpd.conf.” This makes administration quick and simple, and there are no expensive or confusing administration tools required. The server is completely configured within this file, and Windows users edit the file during the installation process. This means no extra settings are needed, and the httpd.conf file is ready for use after the installation process. Added services such as file transfer protocol (FTP) are also configurable in the httpd.conf file. User permissions, services, port settings and encryption are all configured in one central location, which makes administration easier.
Support: Apache is an open-source application. This means users are able to view the source and add to it. It also makes Apache widely supported by several server gurus. Support is found freely on the Internet, or a business can easily find an internal employee to help support web services for the Apache application. The open-source application can be customized by someone who understand the Apache language. For businesses or individuals who cannot afford expensive server personnel, plenty of reference and information guides are available to help someone administer the server without spending money on expensive classes or books.
Log files : In order to effectively manage a web server, it is necessary to get feedback about the activity and performance of the server as well as any problems that may be occuring. The Apache HTTP Server provides very comprehensive and flexible logging capabilities. This document describes how to configure its logging capabilities, and how to understand what the logs contain.
Security:The Apache HTTP Server has a good record for security and a developer community highly concerned about security issues. But it is inevitable that some problems — small or large — will be discovered in software after it is released. For this reason, it is crucial to keep aware of updates to the software with security.To encrypt the connection to the website, SSL certificates are commonly used to establish a secure connection.
Latest News About Apache: The Apache Software Foundation (ASF), the all-volunteer developers, stewards, and incubators of nearly 150 Open Source projects and initiatives, on Jan 11th,2011 announced Apache Pivot 2.0, the full-featured, Open Source platform for building installable Internet applications (IIAs). Apache Pivot provides a professional-grade foundation for easily building and deploying sophisticated and engaging GUI applications that can be downloaded and installed like traditional desktop or mobile applications.
“With Pivot, developers use the languages, tools, and APIs they already know, thereby reducing technology sprawl and streamlining solution technology stacks,” said Greg Brown, Vice President of Apache Pivot. “It’s a truly open solution for creating visually rich, highly functional desktop or Web-based applications.
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