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What is a web server?


What is a web server?

What is a web server? Since I know you already know and understand the difference between a web page and a website, it may be a good time to learn what a web server is and how it works, in general. This is what we will do in this article, in addition to understanding why a web server is important. So What is a web server? I will discuss this here.

When we talk about a web server, we may be referring to software or hardware, or even software and hardware working together.

What is a web server?
What is a web server?

What is a web server on hardware?

On the hardware side, the webserver is a computer that stores your web server software - sorry for the redundancy - and the website files: HTML documents, images, CSS, JavaScript, etc ...

Normally you want your webserver to be connected to the Internet and support the exchange of physical data with other devices on the web. Obviously, you could have all the files on your computer, but on a dedicated web server, you win in terms of availability, and maintenance, for example. That is why it is worth hiring a service that meets your needs.

What is a web server in software?

On the software side, the webserver controls how web users access the hosted files. It is usually an HTTP server that understands URLs (web addresses) and HTTP / HTTPs (the protocol your browser uses to view a web page). You can access the HTTP server through a domain name from a website.

How do they work at the most basic level?

If a browser needs a file hosted on a web server, the browser requests it through HTTP. The request reaches the webserver (hardware), and the HTTP server (software) accepts the request, finding the requested document, and sending it back to the browser via HTTP.

The famous 404 error occurs when the server cannot find the document.

Web server types

You can publish your website on a static or dynamic web server. The following are some of its features:

  • Static web server: computer (hardware) with an HTTP server (software), whose server sends its files as is to the browser. 
  • Dynamic web server - Static web server with additional application software and a database. These types of servers are "dynamic" because the files hosted are updated before sending the content to the browser. Most major websites have thousands of web pages, therefore they are developed with few HTML templates (documents) and large databases. This simplifies maintenance and content delivery.


As you can see, a web server is an essential part, not only of your business but of the web itself. It is the system that lets us know that your website exists. Therefore, having a web server adapted to the characteristics of your business is key to the positioning of your website. In the end, I hope you understand what is web server in this article.


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