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Apache Webserver Surpasses 50 Million Website Mark 202

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the but-who-is-counting dept.
chris81 writes "For the first time ever, the Apache Web Server is powering more than 50 million websites, according to Netcraft's Web Server Survey for October. Although relative share fell by 0.67 percent, the total number of sites powered by Apache grew to over 52 million. Microsoft's IIS finished second with more than 15 million sites served."
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Apache Webserver Surpasses 50 Million Website Mark

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  • ...and (Score:4, Funny)

    by Neo-Rio-101 (700494) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:33AM (#13878962)
    Netcraft confirms it
    • Re:...and (Score:5, Interesting)

      by KiloByte (825081) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:43AM (#13878997)
      I wonder how they count it when you have different names for a single site:

      <VirtualHost *>
                      ServerName urukpr0n.angband.pl
                      ServerAlias urukporn.angband.pl urukp0rn.angband.pl urukpron.angband.pl
      [...]
      (No, this site [angband.pl] isn't what you think.)

      This is especially important if you count the fact that in a lot of cases www.$SITE is a CNAME for $SITE.
      • Re:...and (Score:3, Informative)

        That's what the "active sites" means I think - and that would make 23 millions of real apache servers

        http://survey.netcraft.com/index-200007.html#activ e [netcraft.com]
        • Re:...and (Score:5, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @06:14AM (#13879209)
          Not 23 million actual servers, just 23 million different sites. Probably hosted on just a few hundred thousand physical servers. Netcraft "active sites" calculation is based on an estimate from contacting each server IP address a few times using a selection of the registered names and then comparing them. e.g. if you host 4000 domains which all say "We own this domain $domain, why not offer us money for it?" Netcraft will notice that 4000 names lead to that IP address, connect say 14 times, get a very similar response each time and conclude that there is only one active site.

          23 million servers would represent almost 1% of all unicast IPv4 addresses (and AFAIK Netcraft don't look for IPv6-only servers)
  • Err.... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:35AM (#13878967)
    >>Microsoft's IIS finished second with more than 15 million sites served.
    Now did they try to find how many actually work ;)
    • Re:Err.... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Skiron (735617)
      12,000,000 of them are within microsoft.com domain (spoofed Apache httpd)...
    • since they were detected, I assume all of them?
    • by soloport (312487) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @08:53AM (#13879760) Homepage
      Look. Apache is targeted by all the script kiddies because it's SO popular. I mean, if you were a script kiddie and saw such a huge target as Apache, compared to the IIS install base, which one would YOU go after? You IIS *zealots* are a big turn-off to the rest of the web serving community.
  • I'm impressed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Killjoy_NL (719667) <slashdot&remco,palli,nl> on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:36AM (#13878971)
    Not just that so many people and companies host websites on Apache, I'm more impressed that there are so many websites?

    Such an enormous collection of data, it boggles my mind.
    • by AvantLegion (595806) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:43AM (#13878996) Journal
      True. But once you remove the porn, there's only about 500 or so.

    • Re:I'm impressed (Score:3, Insightful)

      by rolfwind (528248)
      I would be interested to see what OSes those sites are running on, I'd suspect it would kill the "Linux is just as insecure as Microsoft" myth.

      BTW, does Netcraft have a version of the DowJones 500 to see what the top 500 sites are running? I can't seem to find anything....
      • It's no myth.

      • by SgtChaireBourne (457691) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:56AM (#13879168) Homepage
        I would be interested to see what OSes those sites are running on
        Netcraft used to show a summary with that information. I'm not sure why they stopped showing it, since they do still collect it and show it for individual site queries. I suppose if enough people ask them to reinstate it, they might actually reply to one of the messages and explain the rationale. More likely than not it probably made it evident that one of their major advertisers **cough**MS**cough was losing market share to both other http servers and other platforms.

        Along the same lines, I saw a recent IDC report that showed (if one looked at the data oneself) that MS was continuing to lose market share in the server room, at least percentage wise. My guess is that they took most of Novell's share around 2000 when they ran the smear campaign against Netware and then have been slowly hemorrhaging marketshare since then.

        • Some of the OS numbers used to get bent out of shape by people front ending Windows machines with Linux based cache or content distribution networks (Akamai being a notable one). Which is why MS used to show up as running Linux for www.microsoft.com. The methodology has probably improved since.

          Ian W.

      • I would be interested to see what OSes those sites are running on, I'd suspect it would kill the "Linux is just as insecure as Microsoft" myth.

        BTW, does Netcraft have a version of the DowJones 500 to see what the top 500 sites are running? I can't seem to find anything....

        There's the What's that site running? [netcraft.com] page, the Longest uptime [netcraft.com] page and the monthly most reliable hosting [netcraft.com] page.

    • by aussie_a (778472) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:46AM (#13879007) Journal
      Such an enormous collection of data, it boggles my mind.

      Here's a list of what the sites are (from most populous): 1: Porn sites
      2: Spam sites
      3: Spyware sites
      4: Scamming sites
      5: Warez sites
      6: Blogs
      7: Message boards
      8: Wikipedia duplicates (where they copy and paste Wikipedia entries)
      9: Software related sites
      10: Other business related sites
      11: Education-related websites.

      As you can see, most of it is just rubbish.
      • It's a pitty you've been modded funny, i would have modded you insightful
        • It's a pitty you've been modded funny, i would have modded you insightful

          Quote the GP:
          "Here's a list of what the sites are (from most populous): 1: Porn sites
          (...)
          As you can see, most of it is just rubbish."

          <slashbot>Pr0n is rubbish? It must be a joke, +1 Funny.</slashbot>
      • 1: Porn sites
        2: Spam sites
        3: Spyware sites
        4: Scamming sites
        5: Warez sites


        What are the differences between these five ?

        You also forgot ad-serving sites between 5 and 6.
        It's not because you have an ad-blocker that they don't exist ;)
      • I know! Who cares about 2 through 11 anyway. We should convert those other sites to porn sites!
  • Oh! (Score:2, Funny)

    by Martz (861209)
    Isn't that the number of servers required just to power /.?

    I smell a rat!
  • by kryten_nl (863119) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:41AM (#13878993)
    Microsoft salesrep: "You know, Apache's relative share fell by *cough*0.*cough* 67 percent!!!"
    • by krygny (473134)

      "Although relative share fell by 0.67 percent, the total number of sites powered by Apache grew to over 52 million."

      From September to October, Apache's share went from 69.15% to 69.89% (+0.74%).

  • In the graphs acceleration compared to 2001/2002? :)
  • Actually... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DavidHOzAu (925585) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:43AM (#13878995)
    It's because of php's increasing popularity, as this page [php.net] shows.
    • by QuantumG (50515) <qg@biodome.org> on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:02AM (#13879044) Homepage Journal
      I wonder how it compares to this graph [venganza.org].
    • Re:Actually... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by hostpure (918706)
      It is most likely because of PHP and a fair collection of PHP Blogging scripts which are available. I mean just look at the sheer number of blogs at the moment and it isn't hard to understand just how many new sites there are now. Must be a dot blog boom (I doubt it will be too long before we see the .blog TLD)
    • Re:Actually... (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      PHP has nothing to do with Apache. You can run it also inside IIS.
      • You can, but there are quite a few Apache-specific features which are not available under IIS. Also, most PHP tutorials suggest Apache for a server (and MySQL for a database), and most preconfigured packages available are Apache/PHP/MySQL.
    • Just out of interest, here's the mod_perl graph [apache.org] (a little out of date though). *sigh*

      Also, here's SecuritySpace's Apache module survey [securityspace.com] which covers everything else.

    • Re:Actually... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Adhemar (679794)

      I have the feeling that the reason why Java-based web programming never really took off, and PHP is being widely used so widely, lies in the fact that PHP is freely shipped with the most popular web server.

      So, the popularity of PHP (compared to Java) is more due to the popularity of Apache than the other way around.

      • Apache HTTPD does not come with PHP. PHP is not an Apache project. Tomcat (a Java servlet runner) is an Apache project, although it isn't shipped with the httpd either.
  • Odd lines in chart (Score:5, Interesting)

    by inkswamp (233692) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:44AM (#13879000)
    The chart marked "Market Share for Top Servers Across All Domains August 1995 - October 2005" is interesting. I'm not entirely sure I understand what it means, but July 2001 and June 2004 show an almost mirror image in terms of the blue and red lines (Apache and MS.) When one goes up, the other goes down and vice-versa. Strange. I wonder what exactly was happening during that time period to cause that.

    • by Kjella (173770) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:01AM (#13879040) Homepage
      I'm not entirely sure I understand what it means, but July 2001 and June 2004 show an almost mirror image in terms of the blue and red lines (Apache and MS.) When one goes up, the other goes down and vice-versa. Strange. I wonder what exactly was happening during that time period to cause that.

      Several big hosting providers were trying to switch their hosting between Apache and IIS. Providers that are big enough to actually make those kinds of dents in the graph. As you can see from the final result, most of them figured out Apache was the better solution. I wouldn't use IIS to serve HTML either, only if the content required .NET and you didn't really have a choice.

      Kjella
      • by inkswamp (233692)
        That makes sense. Thanks for explaining.

        I wouldn't use IIS to serve HTML either,

        I've dealt with both Apache and IIS professionally and by far--by far!--I have encountered the most issues with IIS, from little annoyances to full-blown meltdowns. I'm not sure how IIS survives in the market place when its competitor is more robust, functions better and is free. Chalk one up to the marketing people at MS, I guess.

        • by odie_q (130040)
          Their selling point is integration. I have a client who design, sell and admin content management systems, and they are a pure MS shop. Their products rely heavily on the integration between IIS, Exchange, .Net and Active Directory. From what I have seen they would have a lot less hassle with a system of separate components that actually work and fit with their product instead of shoehorning their stuff into the MS conventions, but they are convinced that the superior integration of Microsoft's offerings gi
        • by guruevi (827432) <evi @ s m o k i n g c u be.be> on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @06:08AM (#13879191) Homepage
          Well. That is because of the contracts running with Microsoft. We have a contract (as hostingprovider) that x-% of the servers has to be Windows based so we recompiled Apache to show up as IIS and the next month Netcraft confirmed it, we moved 15000 sites (URL-forwarding) to IIS.
        • by RoLi (141856) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @07:32AM (#13879417)
          I'm not sure how IIS survives in the market place

          They survive because of customer lock-in (aka "Integration" in salesspeak), "standardization" (with desktop systems) and the delusion (which is interestingly put forward by both pro- and anti Microsoft people) that "sooner or later" Microsoft will dominate every market and so it's better to bet on the winner.

          However, with years of IIS being pretty stagnant or slowly losing marketshare, this delusion cannot be sustained forever, more and more people realize that OSS is not just a fad and is here to stay.

          Also with each round of forced upgrades on the IIS-side, some jump ship.

          It will probably will take a decade or two, but then IIS-fans will find themselves in the very situation they wanted to avoid: Being a tiny minority, fighting with bad 3rd party support and being frowned upon.

          In some countries it already happened: In Germany, IIS runs only 5.56% [securityspace.com] of domains (down from over 20% 5 years ago) - cheap German webhosters don't offer Windows anymore at all, some webhosters charge extra for Windows and only few charge the same (however those are usually the most expensive webhosters anyway)

      • by larien (5608) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:10AM (#13879066) Homepage Journal
        The big movers are the domain registrars; they'll host several hundred parked domains on a single server. While they're all using the same content (probably the same files, even), they'll show up as hundreds of sites. If they move from Apache to IIS (or vice versa), several hundred (or thousand?) websites appear to switch.
        • Domain registrars (Score:3, Informative)

          by miller60 (554835)
          Larien is correct. The changes indicate infrastructure shifts at domain registrars, specifically Network Solutions and Namezero (as alluded to in this Netcraft post [netcraft.com] from 2003 and this one [netcraft.com] from 2001. Both briefly shifted from Solaris to Windows, and then back again.
        • Domain Registrar (Score:2, Interesting)

          by drasfr (219085)
          Yup. I can confirm this. I used to work at a major domain registrar, using Linux/Apache and Microsoft visited us and asked for us to migrate our servers to Window/IIS for the sole purpose of increasing the netcraft numbers... We were doing URL forwarding. By the way, the conversion was VERY painful... even though they engineers came on site to work on the code for this.
    • "July 2001 and June 2004 show an almost mirror image in terms of the blue and red lines (Apache and MS.) When one goes up, the other goes down and vice-versa. Strange. I wonder what exactly was happening during that time period to cause that."

      I suspect that red "hump" on the Microsoft graph coincides with major version releases of their IIS and Windows Server 2003. People and companies tried it out, then switched back to Apache over time.

      Some of the sharper spikes are sometimes due to large ISPs with thousa
  • by Viol8 (599362) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @04:46AM (#13879010)
    Just curious. Also would be nice to see the current amount of WAIS
    and Archie servers left! :o)
  • by linumax (910946) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:04AM (#13879048)
    Well, actually they have their own plans [com.com].
    and part of the plan is giving some for free! See SQL Server 2005 Express Edition's Pricing Policy [microsoft.com] and the same for Visual Studio Express Edition which will be free.
    I don't do much open-source programming but I'd like to thank all those guys who do, cuz if it was not for their efforts, M$ would have never given something for free (at least as in beer!!)
    Anyway, the point is that some small businesses might be attracted to M$'s side by giving these development tools for free and this might have an effect on Apache and as a whole LAMP's market share.
    • 4 GB maximum database size

      Looks a bit like MS SQL Desktop Engine. That's been around for a while - originally bundled with Visual Studio, some Office versions and other MS stuff, but downloadable recently-ish from MS for free.
    • Quality issue (Score:3, Insightful)

      Yes, it's interesting to see that competition forced a reduction in price from MS' side, but you still have the problem of quality.

      Qualitywise, MS SQL Server is the IIS of the database world. Only if you somehow got locked into .NET or some other proprietary hook into MS would you need MS SQL over an industry standard like Postgresql [postgresql.org] or MySQL [mysql.com] which are in approximately the same niche. Those two are even starting to nibble at the heels of Oracle in some contexts, unlike MS SQL.

      MS has tried give aways b

    • I think this is awesome. Open source is forcing MS to give away software they would normally charge thousands of dollars for. This certainly will not help their bottom line. Every penny MS doesn't make is one less penny going to kill open source or lobbying govt. Whoo Hoo.
  • by Xiph (723935) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:05AM (#13879051)
    I really can't see this as anything that'll come as a surprise to anyone, nor the fact that apache came first. I also have a feeling that the apache guys see this the same way, as it is nowhere to be found at http://apache.org/foundation/news.html/ [apache.org]. but i guess any round number is worth celebrating, after all free as in drunk, is as important as any other freedom ;)
  • by sosume (680416) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:18AM (#13879083) Journal
    What would be really interesting would be a figure of total pages served (over the entire internet), grouped by server type. Or the average return opn investement, per server type. Number of hostnames really says nothing, I can add a few thousand myself with no trouble at all.
    • I agree, hostnames alone is pretty worthless. Personally I would like to see statistics based on IP address and not host names.

      It's pretty easy for any person to colo a LAMP setup and host the webpage of everyone they know who doesn't want to be on geocities anymore... far easier than plunking down the cash for a Windows 2003 install with IIS6.

      Of course, there are always studies like that of Port 80 software who found that 53.7% of corporate web servers were running IIS, vs the 22.7% of Apache.

      See http://ww [port80software.com]
  • Three considerations (Score:5, Interesting)

    by VincenzoRomano (881055) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @05:41AM (#13879133) Homepage Journal
    #1. Sites vs servers.
    Netcraft states they count the sites while they don't mention whether they count 2nd level domains (foo.com), 3rd level domains (www.foo.com, support.foo.com) or what else. They just say they "received responses from 74,409,971 sites" while not defining what a site actually is.

    #2. Growth.
    There has been a growth of about 3.73% in the number of (so called) web sites. There must be some hidden winner(s). That is, there must be some group of web servers that is getting the great part of the growth all at once! Netcraft is failing to mention who they are!

    #3. Webserver (or website) identification.
    It's all but trivial to identify web servers. Are they using some special tool like amap [thc.org] and nmap [insecure.org] or just looking at the server response content? How accurate this identification can be?
  • This is really good news for the OS community, it shows a community product being chosen over a commerical application in the industry.

    But keep in mind just because the server is not IIS and is Apache doesnt mean they arent running Windows Apache, I find lots of Windows admins leaning to Apache even when they have IIS readily available.

  • by peterpi (585134) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @06:47AM (#13879292)
    I'm just updating my fanboyism and I need to check some figures.
    • IIS' 20% market share is rubbish.
    • Firefox's 10% share is the greatest thing evar.
  • Now, I'm not trying to be a troll. I just want to understand the reasons that make someone choose IIS over Apache, since (AFAIK) the later is more secure, more capable, and performs better under heavy load.

    Can anyone point me some?
    • Re:Why use IIS? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Now, I'm not trying to be a troll. I just want to understand the reasons that make someone choose IIS over Apache, since (AFAIK) the later is more secure, more capable, and performs better under heavy load.

      Can anyone point me some?

      Sure! Microsoft can:

      For reasons, see these case studies:
      http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/iis/eva luation/casestudies/default.mspx [microsoft.com]
      - better uptime
      - better TCO
      - easier to maintain
      - more secure
      - improved leveragement of potential monetizement of business platform migration

    • by ooh456 (122890) on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @08:28AM (#13879614) Homepage
      Here are the top 10 reasons people choose IIS over Apache:

      10. Because they don't know what they are doing.
      9. Because their customers don't know what they're doing.
      8. Because they are partnered with MS.
      7. Because they are racist against Native Americans.
      6. Because they get some orgasmic thrill from spending money on slower, inferior products and services.
      5. Because the same reason they use Hotmail over Gmail.
      6. Because they are really using Apache... but configure it to report itself as IIS to confuse attackers.
      5. Because they are originally from another dimension where IIS works better than Apache.
      4. Because they were playing a practical joke on their users and then died suddenly.
      3. Because they are brainwashed from listening to too many Steve Balmer speeches.
      2. Because really all those IIS servers out there are just Microsoft's own servers trying to keep MSN.com running.
      1. Because they smoke a lot of crack.
    • Re:Why use IIS? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ggeens (53767)

      One word: ASP.

      Many corporate sites start of as a set of static pages with a "Contact us" web form. ASP is typically used for that as it requires only minimal programming effort.

      Later on, when more dynamic content is added, they will often stick with IIS since they already know it.

      • Re:Why use IIS? (Score:2, Informative)

        by ajs318 (655362)
        ASP requires only minimal effort? HAH!

        PHP requires just as little effort if you turn register_globals back on.

        It's only insecure if you let it be insecure. Blindly doing an iteration such as

        foreach ($_POST as $i => $_) { ${$i} = $_; };
        foreach ($_GET as $i => $_) { ${$i} = $_; };

        is really no more secure than having register_globals turned on in the first place. The real insecurity came from the order in which the variable sources were processed; by default a query string in a GET request woul

    • Think corporate ... actually think american corporation mindsets?

      They want to support only one platform that everyone is trained to use. Now which company do you think that is?

      Revised (serious list) from the other guy posting ...
      1.) Corporations already have Visual Studio.net and guess what? It includes C#.net. Now which webserver do you think it runs on?
      2.) IIS is already included on the cdrom with windows
      3.) MCSE's know how to or could learn how to use IIS
      4.) Nobody ever got fired for using Microsoft soft
  • Not that there is anything particularly horrible about apache, but alot of sites could use something smaller, and less of a memory hog like lighttpd. But yet they use apache anyways "cause we're using linux", as if the only webservers that exist are apache and IIS.
    • by SumDog (466607) * on Wednesday October 26, 2005 @09:18AM (#13879917) Homepage Journal
      Because most of the tools we use for web development work and are actively maintained on Apache. mod_php, mod_perl, mod_ruby, etc. Sure you can use these via CGI with any web server, but the in process execution makes them more convenient to use.

      Apache has turned into a de-facto standard. People can expect security updates for it, and the large user base insures its longevity. With any major piece of software, there are always better alternatives. But still, people use sendmail, even though we have postfix and qmail. People use bind...

      Apache works, is solid, scalable and is supported by many languages and many people. That's why most people use it.
      • Actually, I found that having the language mashed into the webserver was a bad thing. PHP, perl, ruby, python, java, etc, etc, etc all can do fastcgi. This gives you persistant apps, just as fast as if it were in the webserver, but without the ability to crash your websever, running as seperate users, and with the ability to do things like store persistant objects without having to do anything special at all. Even just simple things like using persistant database connections without having to have one co
  • The problem is that I know many system administrators that change their server's response to be Apache even though it's IIS. By the same token I know several Apache servers that respond as IIS and are used as honeypots; their logs are parsed for several known exploits and worms.

    People have always mentioned this problem with mining for server usage statistics. What does netcraft do to try and filter out a lot of these false statistics? Is there any thing they can do? Is there any other way to identify a "tru
    • There's no point spoofing your identity: any hacks/scripts/worms etc. do NOT check it - they try the exploit regardless of what the server reports itself as. That's why your Apache log (which is reporting itself as Apache) is full of attempted IIS exploits. Skript kiddies and worms _do not check_.
  • 22 days old? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Laaserboy (823319)
    From TFA:
    Posted by wss at October 4, 2005 08:40 AM

    Which means that the news is 22 days old. Given that this is a monthly survey, the slashpost seems a tad bit behind the times.

    One of us should write a bot that posts a story 21 days after the fact and see if we can beat the masses that happen upon Netcraft and re-print old news.

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