Apache Http Server Open Source

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The best alternative is XAMPP, which is both free and Open Source. Other great apps like Portable Webserver are Apache HTTP Server (Free, Open Source), WampServer (Free, Open Source), BitNami Application Stacks (Free, Open Source) and Caddy (Free Personal, Open Source). The list of alternatives was last updated Jan 15, 2021. This project is used to provide a free java based open source Apache Http Server GUI. The solution is deployed as a web application that is accessible through a web browser. The solution is designed to be compatible with modern Windows and IX operating systems. Source code for this project is hosted on github https://github.com/jrossi227/ApacheGUI. Apache HTTP Server, mainly known as Apache is free and open-source cross-platform web server. Highly scalable, Reverse proxy with caching, IPv6-compatible, HTTP/2 protocol support, gzip compression and decompression. Apache provides a variety of MultiProcessing Modules. The Apache Software Foundation provides support for the Apache community of open-source software projects. The Apache projects are defined by collaborative consensus based processes, an open, pragmatic software license and a desire to create high quality software that leads the way in its field. Apache Traffic Server™ software is a fast, scalable and extensible HTTP/1.1 and HTTP/2 compliant caching proxy server. Formerly a commercial product, Yahoo! Donated it to the Apache Foundation, and currently used by several major CDNs and content owners.

What is Apache Web Server?

Apache HTTP Server is a free and open-source web server that delivers web content through the internet. It is commonly referred to as Apache and after development, it quickly became the most popular HTTP client on the web. It’s widely thought that Apache gets its name from its development history and process of improvement through applied patches and modules but that was corrected back in 2000. It was revealed that the name originated from the respect of the Native American tribe for its resiliency and durability.

Now, before we get too in depth on Apache, we should first go over what a web application is and the standard architecture usually found in web apps.

Apache Web Application Architecture

Apache is just one component that is needed in a web application stack to deliver web content. One of the most common web application stacks involves LAMP, or Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP.

Linux is the operating system that handles the operations of the application. Apache is the web server that processes requests and serves web assets and content via HTTP. MySQL is the database that stores all your information in an easily queried format. PHP is the programming language that works with apache to help create dynamic web content.

While actual statistics may vary, it’s fair to say a large portion of web applications run on some form of the LAMP stack because it is easy to build and also free to use. For the most part, web applications tend to generally have similar architecture and structure even though they serve many different functions and purposes. Most web applications also benefit from Firewalls, Load Balancers, Web Servers, Content Delivery Networks, and Database Servers.

Firewalls help protect the web application from both external threats and internal vulnerabilities depending on where the firewalls are configured. Load Balancers help distribute traffic across the web servers which handle the HTTP(S) requests (this is where Apache comes in) and application servers (servers that handle the functionality and workload of the web app.) We also have Database Servers, which handle asset storage and backups. Depending on your infrastructure, your database and application can both live on the same server although it’s recommended to keep those separate.

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Web Server Landscape

The internet is comprised of many different technologies and not all of them are the same. While Apache is arguably one of the most popular web servers out there on the net, there are many other players and the landscape is always changing. Back in the late 90s and early 2000s, Apache’s dominance was very strong, serving over 50% of the internet's active websites. Microsoft's IIS (Internet Information Services) was also an option but not nearly as popular.

Today, Apache still serves a large portion of the active websites but their share of the field has shrunk from 50% to just under 40% as of 2018 and NGINX, a relatively new player to the web server playing field, is in second place with roughly 35% and Microsoft IIS hovering around 8-10%. Every year there’s a new crop of web applications with new stacks and servers so the landscape is always changing.

Why Apache Web Servers?

Apache is considered open source software, which means the original source code is freely available for viewing and collaboration. Being open source has made Apache very popular with developers who have built and configured their own modules to apply specific functionality and improve on its core features. Apache has been around since 1995 and is responsible as a core technology that helped spur the initial growth of the internet in its infancy.

One of the pros of Apache is its ability to handle large amounts of traffic with minimal configuration. It scales with ease and with its modular functionality at its core, you can configure Apache to do what you want, how you want it. You can also remove unwanted modules to make Apache more lightweight and efficient.

Some of the most popular modules that can be added are SSL, Server Side Programming Support (PHP), and Load Balancing configs to handle large amounts of traffic. Apache can also be deployed on Linux, MacOS, and Windows. If you learn how to configure Apache on Linux, you can administer Apache on Windows and Mac. The only difference would be directory paths and installation processes.

Features of Apache Web Server

  • Handling of static files
  • Loadable dynamic modules
  • Auto-indexing
  • .htaccess
  • Compatible with IPv6
  • Supports HTTP/2
  • FTP connections
  • Gzip compression and decompression
  • Bandwidth throttling
  • Perl, PHP, Lua scripts
  • Load balancing
  • Session tracking
  • URL rewriting
  • Geolocation based on IP address

How does Apache Web Server Work?

Apache functions as a way to communicate over networks from client to server using the TCP/IP protocol. Apache can be used for a wide variety of protocols, but the most common is HTTP/S. HTTP/S or Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (S stands for Secure) is one of the main protocols on the web, and the one protocol Apache is most known for.

HTTP/S is used to define how messages are formatted and transmitted across the web, with instructions for browsers and servers on how to respond to various requests and commands. Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure is usually through port 443 with the unsecured protocol being through port 80.

The Apache server is configured via config files in which modules are used to control its behavior. By default, Apache listens to the IP addresses configured in its config files that are being requested. This is where one of Apaches many strengths come into play.

With the Listen directive, Apache can accept and route specific traffic to certain ports and domains based on specific address-port combination requests. By default, Listen runs on port 80 but Apache can be bound to different ports for different domains, allowing for many different websites and domains to be hosted and a single server. You can have domain1.com listening on port 80, domain2.com on port 8080 and domain3.com on port 443 using HTTPS all on Apache.

Once a message reaches its destination or recipient, it sends a notice, or ACK message, basically giving acknowledgment to the original sender that their data has successfully arrived. If there’s an error in receiving data, or some packets were lost in transit, the destination host or client sends a Not Acknowledged, or NAK message, to inform the sender that the data needs to be retransmitted.

Who Uses Apache Web Server?

Apache HTTP web servers are used by over 67% of all web servers in the world. Apache web servers are easy to customize environments, they’re fast, reliable, and highly secure. This makes Apache web servers a common choice by best-in-class companies.

Alternatives for Apache HTTP Server

While Apache web servers are very popular, they’re not the only web servers on the market. Below are a number of alternatives for Apache HTTP servers.

  • Nginx
  • Apache Tomcat
  • Node.js
  • Lighttpd
  • Cherokee
  • Microsoft IIS
  • Appweb
  • Hiawatha

Apache HTTP Server vs Tomcat

Simply put, Apache HTTP server is a web server designed to serve static web pages. Whereas, Apache Tomcat is an application server built to serve java applications. Web pages can still be served through Apache Tomcat, but it will be less efficient than using an Apache HTTP server.

Conclusion: Apache Web Server

Throughout the last few decades, Apache has proven to be a staple in many popular stacks and the backbone of the early internet year. While it’s popularity is declining and the options of web server choices are increasing, Apache still plays a pivotal role in many technology stacks and companies system infrastructure. Even with new technologies and servers coming out nonstop, Apache is still a technology every developer should learn how to handle and configure.

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This tutorial explains about Apache HTTP Server( Apache Web Server) Installation. Let us learn about what Apache HTTP Server is and how to install and configure it on a Linux Machine.

Apache http Server

Apache is a very well known open-source Web Server. It is not only popular but also very old Web Server. Like any other Web Servers, Apache also accepts requests from the clients, search for the requested queries and then send the response back to them.

Also Read : How to install Anaconda on Linux

&& Install Redis on Linux from source

Apache HTTP Server Installation

Step 1- Update your Linux Box

$ yum update -y

Step 2- Install Apache Web Server

$ yum install httpd -y

Apache Open Source Software Download

Step 3- Start httpd service

$ service httpd start

Step 5- check the httpd service status

$ service httpd status

Step 6- Run chkconfig command to run the httpd service automatically after a system reboot

$ chkconfig httpd on

Step 7- To browse website from the Internet, open port 80 for http and 443 for https in your Server firewall , Network Firewall and Security Group (If using AWS or any other cloud service)

Now your Apache-Server is installed and ready.

Configuring Apache HTTP Server

Let us understand the ApacheHtTTPServer step by step from basic to advanced.

As soon as your installation is done and port is opened in the security group, without doing any configuration change just enter the public IP in the web browser of any computer. You will see the default page as shown below.

To access the server from your domain name, create A record for your web server in your DNS zone configuration.If you are not managing your DNS Server please take help of your DNS team/IT Team to do so.

I have created A record for my domain as follows:

devopsmyway.in ————–> IP Address of my Server.

Now I can browse the Apache Web Server from my domain name i.e devopsmyway.in. The same test page will come as I did not change any configuration yet.

Basic Configuration of Apache HTTP Server

Let’s do some basic changes to open your Web Server (Web Site) as per your configuration.

Create an index.html file in “/var/www/html” directory and write some content in this to serve in the web browser. I am using echo command here to create and write content in index.html.

$ echo “Hello , Welcome to Devopsmyway.in ” > /var/www/html/index.html

As soon as you create and write content in index.html file in Document Directory“/var/www/html” your website will start serving the content written in index.html.

Now we have done the basic configuration of Apache Web Server. Let us move ahead and learn some advanced settings.

Virtual Host

Virtual host comes into picture when you want to host multiple Websites on a Single Server. Virtual host are of two types:

  1. Name-based virtual host
  2. IP based virtual host

Name-based Virtual Host

Name-based Virtual Host is used to configure multiple websites on a Single Server having a single IP Address. To configure Name-based Virtual hosts we need to do configuration changes in Apache Configuration file.

Apache Configuration file : /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf

Let us configure two websites www.devopsmyway.in and www.devopsmyway.net on the same Server with same IP address. To do so , open /etc/http/conf/httpd.conf and add the following lines at the bottom of the file.

$ vi /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf

ServerAdmin [email protected]
DocumentRoot /var/www/html/devopsmyway.in
ServerName www.devopsmyway.in
ErrorLog logs/www.devopsmywa.in-error_log
CustomLog logs/www.devopsmyway.in-access_log common

ServerAdmin [email protected]
DocumentRoot /var/www/html/devopsmyway.net
ServerName www.devopsmyway.net
ErrorLog logs/www.devopsmyway.net-error_log
CustomLog logs/www.devopsmyway.net-access_log common

Now Create to Directories as follows:

$ mkdir -p /var/www/html/devopmyway.net

$ mkdir -p /var/www/html/devopmyway.in

Create index.html file in each folder and add some content in it.

$ echo “Hello , Welcome to Devopsmyway.in ” > /var/www/html/devopsmyway.in/index.html

$ echo “Hello , Welcome to Devopsmyway.net ” > /var/www/html/devopsmyway.net/index.html

Now check the configuration and restart the httpd service

$ httpd -t

$ service httpd restart

Note: If you donot have two websites in Public DNS , you can do host entry in /etc/hosts on the same server as follows for testing

Now you will able to browse both the URL.

IP based virtual host


IP bases virtual host is used to configure multiple websites on a Single Server with multiple IP Addresses. To configure IP-based Virtual hosts we need to do the following configuration changes in the Apache configuration file.

Apache Http Server Open Source Download

Let us configure two websites www.devopsmyway.in and www.devopsmyway.net on the same Server on two IP addresses. To do so , open /etc/http/conf/httpd.conf and add the following lines at the bottom of the file.

ServerAdmin [email protected]
DocumentRoot /var/www/html/devopsmyway.in
ServerName www.devopsmyway.in
ErrorLog logs/www.devopsmywa.in-error_log
CustomLog logs/www.devopsmyway.in-access_log common

Apache Http Server Open Source Server

ServerAdmin [email protected]
DocumentRoot /var/www/html/devopsmyway.net
ServerName www.devopsmyway.net
ErrorLog logs/www.devopsmyway.net-error_log
CustomLog logs/www.devopsmyway.net-access_log common

Apache Web Server Monitoring Tools Open Source

Again check your configuration, restart the httpd service and browse both the sites using the curl command.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and learned to launch Apache http Server on AWS . If you think this is really helpful, please do share my website https://devopsmyway.com to others as well. I will continue for the tutorial for Apache in my next blog. Also, please give your valuable feedback in the comment box.

Apache Http Server Open Sourced

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