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Posted by: Gabriel Canepa in Apache March 21st, 0 Views. In , it became the first web server software to serve more than million websites. Apache is developed and maintained by an open community of developers under the auspices of the Apache Software Foundation. Released under the Apache License, Apache is free and open-source software.

None is clearly superior to Apache when judged on its feature set and configurability. The roots of the Web—its protocols. High-performance servers like thttpd are a little like Formula One race cars: The server is made available for Unix and Linux operating systems only. Jef Poskanzer. Mathopd Minimization is taken to the extreme with Mathopd available from its author at www. The two areas in which these servers are legitimate contenders with Apache for market share are where the raw speed of delivering static Web pages is critical and when the most expensive multiprocessor hardware is used.

Mathopd uses the select system call in Unix. Apache itself is free. It is unlikely that your Internet server has a data pipe large enough to flood a single Web server with such a large number of requests that a server like thttpd is needed. If your company has an internal server attached to the network with a Gigabit Ethernet link.. The Free Servers Some of the best Web server software available is free software.. In most environments.

Why would anyone want to run Mathopd? The code is designed to handle a very large number of simultaneous connections. Under extreme loads. You are paying not so much for the product as for that company's expertise in setting up an SSL Web site. Mathopd offers no user authentication..

The Commercial Variety Commercial Web servers are in demand by a certain type of organization. This is unlike most Web servers. A cinch to install and configure. There are good reasons for these ecommerce Web sites to use commercial software. Here are several of the best commercial products. Boa is another of the nonforking. Boa turns in very good numbers for CGI scripts. These organizations demand commercial software.

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What it does. Mathopd at first seemed a very attractive alternative to Apache. Some organizations have a difficult time accepting that open-source software can have better quality and support than commercial software. The result is a very fast Web server. Probably the best reason to choose a commercial solution is for the support offered by the vendor. You should expect all the handholding necessary from these companies in getting your site up and running.

I realized that the server was too limiting for most administrators. If you go the commercial route. Boa The last server I'll mention in the free software category is Boa www. Upon reflection.. The performance gain apparently comes from the fact that output from CGI scripts spawned by Boa is sent directly to the client.

The industrial-strength iPlanet Web Server can still be purchased as a stand-alone product and is available for a wide variety of operating systems including Linux. What you're buying. Chapter 14 is all about SSL. With Apache 2. Sun's Java Web services application-development platform.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with this. You may well decide that the effort required to ''roll your own" pays off rich dividends in education and familiarity with your system.

Consider Stronghold if support from Red Hat and its consulting arm is important to you. If so. SSL support became a standard part of Apache. Stronghold is Apache server software.

For additional information on Stronghold. If you just want to save time in setting up Apache. As you will read later. And since Stronghold is Apache. Covalent's tight relationship with the Apache development team is a major point in its favor. The process can appear dauntingly complex. Most of the sites that use iPlanet in the future will be those who have chosen to run Sun's application server software on Sun hardware.

Consider using the SSL support in standard Apache if you need a secure server. In March Roxen Challenger offers no advantages over Apache. Roxen Challenger is the Web server and is available for free download. Subsequent releases of the product include a full list of advanced functions expected in a modern e-commerce Web server. Zeus competes well with Apache in nearly every area. The one area in which Zeus cannot best Apache is cost..

Online resources like those listed in Appendix B are often every bit as valuable as technical support for commercial software. Roxen Roxen is not actually a single Web server product. As a stand-alone server. The original version of Zeus was designed for raw speed. England www. Apache should be the first Web server you evaluate.

SiteBuilder concentrates on separating site display and content. Many IT managers in the past chose iPlanet or its predecessor. As attractive as these commercial servers are. Without the costly developers' tools. Roxen SiteBuilder is a workgroup environment that lets a group of Web site developers collaborate in designing a Web site. In my opinion.

Roxen Challenger. Such support can be quite valuable. Like most modern development systems. That version of Zeus is still available as version 1. Sweden www. Roxen Platform requires a serious financial commitment even though the Challenger Web server is free. IBM markets their server as being ''powered by Apache. IIS is a very respectable platform for Web site development. The performance of IIS 5. Since the Covalent servers were based on Apache.

The NT Option Pack can be downloaded from www. IBM Most of the Web servers discovered in my survey that did not fall into one of the big three Apache. Covalent began to assemble a team of "Apache experts" to work on the company's new Web server offerings. Several years ago. Covalent received a major shot in the arm in the form of a large cash infusion from several investment capital firms. Microsoft seems to be quite serious about the Web. IIS stands as an exception to the oversized..

Most of them are really running a special version of Apache. IBM stunned the computing world by announcing their intention to support Apache as a Web server included with their Internet commerce solutions.

Netscape were running on some type of IBM hardware. Zeus is available for Unix and Linux platforms. With this funding. Covalent may be the ticket for you. I even said nice things about Microsoft's IIS.

Any one of these servers is capable of adequately supporting a production Web server. A lot of marketing spin is used to distinguish the Covalent server from standard Apache. If you are attempting to set up a server with a fairly complex array of modules or a number of virtual hosts.

The Features of Apache OK. Certainly this was true of the final beta releases of Apache 2. I've said good things about all of the Web servers that compete with Apache for mind-share among Internet Web site developers and administrators. This server has SNMP agents that allow monitoring and configuration from a remote management console—very nice.

If the cost of Covalent doesn't appear high to you. While it is certainly true that Covalent servers have some add-on configuration and logging utilities that enhance the value of the underlying Apache engine. While Apache 2. Two things are for sure: Covalent will continue to be a major force in Apache development. Apache has strong support for all the improvements made to the HTTP protocol in version 1.

Partnership deals with several strong companies will also help Covalent. It can greatly simplify the task of setting up a new Apache server for someone who isn't familiar with the process. Covalent's Enterprise Ready Server. So why is Apache the most widely used Web server on the Internet? This section outlines the most important features. IBM Tivoli. The real advantage of using Covalent is that.

Apache logging is the subject of Chapter Another important feature is customizable logging. In other words. There are a few modules that cannot be dynamically linked to Apache and must be compiled into the Apache runtime. Scalability Apache provides support for large numbers of Web sites on a single machine. Programmability Apache provides support for server programming using a variety of languages and integration techniques.

The DSO mechanism will be preserved in future releases of Apache. The code to implement a minimal module is far smaller than one might think. Features can be added or removed without recompiling the server engine. Apache can cache files received from remote servers and serve them directly to clients who request these resources. Virtual hosting is the subject of Chapter 6 and is of particular interest to anyone who needs to host several Web sites on a single server.

Many commercial Web hosting services take full advantage of Apache's low cost and strong support for virtual hosting. Active Server Pages. Java servlets. Source code is completely available for examination or alteration. I will demonstrate how to compile it as a DSO and enable it for use when Apache is started. Also customizable in Apache are HTTP response headers for cache control and error reporting to the client browser.

The Apache license permits almost any use. This permits loading of extension modules at runtime. Multiple natural language support is a good example of how this is commonly used. Java Server Pages.

In Chapter The feature set alone. Further Benefits None of the major features outlined for the current Apache release is unique to Apache. For a software system as widely used as Apache. Apache will always support the leading security mechanisms. I haven't found that to be true at all. Some are programmers. There are. As a professional network administrator. Its security. That represents a huge vote of confidence in the software. Apache has been ranked by Netcraft the number one Web server on the Internet since April They include support for user authentication and the SSL protocol: Support for DBM and other databases such as Oracle or MySQL for user authentication allows very large lists of authorized users to be searched efficiently.

I show how to set up Secure Sockets Layer in Apache and configure it to use server certificates that are either self-generated or issued by a well-known certificate authority like VeriSign. I'll demonstrate two methods of user authentication against databases. Support for SSL allows the exchange of digital certificates and the encryption of data crossing the Internet.

Secure Sockets Layer is already a critical component of any Internet-based Web server used for commercial purposes. Security Apache's security features are the subject of Chapters 13 and In future years. Apache has unparalleled support from a tremendous group of individuals. While its popularity alone doesn't indicate its superiority. While it might seem logical to assume that support for no-cost software will necessarily be inferior to that provided by commercial software vendors. It also means Apache is thoroughly tested.

You'll learn about the most important of these in relevant chapters throughout this book. From these modules.. That sounds impressive. It is possible. Apache is under intense active development at all times.

A closer examination of what these superfast servers are capable of. There is simply no reason for Apache developers to rush to market with incomplete. I doubted the test results and then wondered why anyone would choose Apache over one of these speed-demon Web servers. Apache is highly configurable and extensible by virtue of its support for add-on modules. Many of these servers do. The upshot of all of this is that there are a wide variety of third-party modules available for Apache.

The Apache Application Program Interface API gives programmers access to Apache data structures and the ability to write routines to extend the Apache core functionality. It's a great alternative to programs bloated with functions that are never used.

Most of the standard modules provided with the basic server as distributed by the Apache Software Foundation are optional and can be removed from the server core if statically linked. The most compelling reason to use the Apache Web server is that. The Architecture of Apache I'll admit. The result is a tremendous benefit to administrators who are already stressed trying to roll out product upgrades on an almost continuous basis. I believe it is the not-for-profit motivation of its developers that is responsible for this degree of dependability in each revision.

Most of the fast. This means that the main server starts a pool of processes to handle client requests. Having the pooled processes already online and waiting idle greatly speeds up the process of serving requests. Apache 1. A number of criteria should be used to determine the applicability of Web server software to the needs of the business.

A major new feature of Apache version 2 previewed later in this chapter is the use of multiple-processing modules.

Anything faster is simply unnecessary. Unix systems traditionally schedule CPU time by process. Apache's use of a preforked process pool rather than a single process making use of select is not a bad design decision. Apache provides the administrator with some control over the Apache process swarm. This eliminates the possibility that a small memory leak in any process will grow into a big problem if that process is allowed to run for many days.

Apache on Linux systems is an example of a preforking server. A move to fully threaded code in Apache should result in significant performance enhancements without sacrificing functionality and versatility. The important thing to keep in mind about speed and Apache is just how unimportant raw speed is on most Web servers.

Perhaps a more valid criticism of Apache is that it uses a pool.. Development work on Apache and all thirdparty Apache modules will be for Apache 2. The second change is also intended for programmers. A few new modules were added to Apache 2. The differences between Apache 1. Most of the text is also applicable to version 1. The first of these changes involves moving the multiprocessing capability of Apache currently implemented in Unix by one server process per client connection.

This enhancement is designed to improve the scalability of Apache. As of mid-year The programmer will need to learn only how to spawn or fork a process in the Apache Run-Time to produce code that works identically on both platforms. Since that time. The stability and excellent performance of Apache 1. These are responsible for mapping client requests to either a thread or a process. Apache version 2. Programmers working on Apache 2. The APR completely masks fundamental differences in the way platforms handle things like process forking and socket connections.

The most significant changes to Apache in version 2. Here again.. These first two chapters have served as an extended introduction to Apache and its foundations. Before moving your site to Apache 2. The major Web servers that compete with Apache have some strong features. Only on the very largest Internet sites does Apache yield prominence to commercial engines. Beginning in the next chapter. Ports of the core modules will probably be released along with version 2.

Simply upgrading to have the very latest version is a time-consuming. Consider all the angles before making your decision to update. In Sum In this chapter. As with all software in production use. The question is when would be the best time to upgrade to Apache 2. A move to Apache 2. One of the important things to realize about installing Apache is that there are two completely different ways to do it.. One of the reasons most often cited for the success of open-source software like Apache and Linux is that the source code is available for inspection and custom modification.

The topics of installing. The Decision to Compile Before proceeding with this chapter.

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There are a number of very good reasons to start with the source code and build your own personalized copy of Apache. Both methods of installation have merit. Follow the instructions in this chapter. The installation of a basic Apache server is a straightforward process. You can choose to download the source code and compile it on your own machine..

Figure 3. In the unlikely circumstance that your operating system is missing from this list. Patches are essentially files that contain changes to a source code base and are usually created by diffing modified source to the original—in other words. Patches make it possible for nonprogrammers to make often quite sophisticated changes to source code and then compile it themselves. Another user acquires the patch. Depending on your particular platform. Compiling Apache from the source code makes it possible to add user-written modifications or patches to the code.

Without the ability to patch the source and compile it yourself. This consideration is by no means as important as it was once.

Another reason to compile from source code is that it allows you to take advantage of compiler optimizations for your hardware platform and operating system. The vast majority of us. Most were drawn to Linux and open-source software for exactly that reason.

If you want to stay on the ''bleeding edge" of changes. To be honest. The Easiest Route: Precompiled Binaries One word of warning about using binaries is in order. Most binaries are already optimized for a given type of hardware. If the fastest possible system performance is your goal. You may even be authoring your own Apache modules. Discard any notions you may have that compiling Apache is an arduous process fraught with danger especially if you've been around long enough remember how painful the process was a decade ago.

Another reason to compile your Apache server is to take advantage of the very latest functionality of Apache modules that have rapid development cycles. The real reason most Apache administrators compile from source. A compiler designed to optimize code to run on an Intel processor was probably used to create the binary.

A tremendous amount of work has gone into the scripts that Apache uses to determine how best to compile itself on your platform and to optimize its performance for your hardware. Chances are slim that you will need to compile Apache from source for either of these reasons. Some companies offer Linux distributions that are optimized for performance on Pentium-class Intel processors Mandrake Linux is one such distribution: You will need the Apache source to use Apache modules that require Apache source-code patching.

I believe the best reason to compile Apache from source code is because you want to. There are very few modules that require source-code patching today and even fewer programmers who actually modify the Apache source.. It is unlikely that your compiler will produce code that performs significantly better. The information on compiling Apache will always be here if you need it in the future. And when you are done. If you intend to roll out Apache to a number of servers. If this is you.. You'll be guaranteed that it's going to start and run.

Every major Linux distribution contains a binary copy of Apache. If all the functionality you require is available in the set of standard Apache modules and your operating system is supported.. You can pick and choose the ones you want. Download the latest Apache.

How to Administrate the Apache Web Server Using "Apache GUI" Tool

Such a binary distribution will contain all standard Apache modules compiled separately from the server as DSO dynamic shared object modules. The Apache 2. You're also willing to wait on new program enhancements until these are tested and proven. Two major benefits of using binary distributions are standardization and speed. While compiling Apache on most of today's systems is a pretty quick process. Even if you require a few modules not included with the binary distribution.

If that Apache version completely satisfies your requirements for a Web server. If you decide to compile Apache. When the operation is finished. One enhancement of Apache that appeared in version 1. For Apache 2. If you install Apache from source. This directory is distinct from the Apache installation directory. To compile Apache successfully.

All 1. Autoconf also performs a number of tests in order to ascertain details about your system hardware and operating system that are relevant to the Apache source compilation. Compiling Apache The very oldest pre The Autoconf Utility Autoconf provides an easy way to configure the Apache source prior to compilation in order to specify certain compiler options and the inclusion or exclusion of Apache modules. The configure Script You'll find a shell script named configure in the top-level Apache source directory.

Once configure determines that it can build Apache on your system. In this file it stores information specific to your system including build options you specify to configure and information on how to create the makefiles necessary to build Apache entirely from scratch.. The configure script may warn you that it can't build Apache. Autoconf is used to generate a configure script for an application that can..

If the configure script is unable to locate a suitable compiler. On most systems running a fairly recent version of Linux. Binary distributions of gcc are well optimized. This is not a big deal. This script does not compile the Apache server. The information it gathers and the decisions it makes about configuring Apache for your system are written into a special file that you'll find stored in config.

In compiling Apache. The Free Software Foundation makes binary distributions available for Linux and a large number of Unix platforms. Its most important task is to create the makefiles that are used by the Linux make utility to direct the C compiler how to proceed. For that reason.

Configuring Apache with default settings. The next few sections will show you how to specify additional options to configure. This section of the file will be used to set default values for the directories where Apache files will be stored.

The Apache layout is the most commonly used. This is a procedure you'll return to many times. Any one of the default values provided by config. This is probably not what you really want. It's a handy trick for manually entering long command lines. Another reason you may want to install Apache into an alternate directory is to preserve the default locations used by a Linux distribution.

Linux Apache Web Server Administration, Second Edition

I have five versions of Apache on my server for testing purposes. The following configure statement compiles Apache version 2. There are many times you may want to install into an alternate directory—for example. Note that this is a single Linux command with three arguments. To enable support for DSOs.

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For standard file location layouts. Table 3. If you need one or more of these. On Linux systems. In virtually all cases. This problem does not occur in earlier or later versions of the Red Hat Linux distribution. DLLs are used to provide this functionality in the Windows version of Apache. The extension of Apache Server through the use of modules has always been part of its design. Red Hat Linux 7. These dynamic shared objects are available in Apache on Linux and other operating systems that support the necessary system functions for a program to load a module into its address space with a system call..

The use of DSO modules in Apache has several advantages. There are a few modules see Table 3. Linux administrators should build their Apache server to make maximum use of DSO modules. Apache This tools is a free and open source package designed for system administrators to manage the functionality of Apache Web Server from a browser, such as: Edit your web server configuration files right from your browser. Edit your web documents right from your browser.

Download, search and visualize Apache Logs in real time. Install, edit or remove Apache modules. Manage global server settings. Manage and view all VirtualHosts in a tree view. Apache Web Administartion Tool. Download ApacheGUI. Open Port on Firewall. Apache GUI Configuration.

ApacheGUI Settings. Apache Server Information. ApacheGUI init Script. Stay Connected to: Twitter Facebook Google Plus Subscribe to our email updates: Support us by taking our online Linux courses We are thankful for your never ending support. Aron says: In this tutorial we will build on these concepts and share other examples of URL rewriting you should have handy as a system administrator. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

He works for a worldwide leading consumer product company and takes great pleasure in using FOSS tools to increase productivity in all areas of his daily work.

When he's not typing commands or writing code or articles, he enjoys telling bedtime stories with his wife to his two little daughters and playing with them, the great pleasure of his life. Do you want to know how to develop your skillset to become a sysadmin Rockstar?

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