difference between apache server and tomcat

Apache Http Server vs Apache Tomcat Server

Apache offers HTTP Server as well as Apache Tomcat. They are both powerful and used by many websites & applications around the world. Here are the key differences between Apache Http Server vs Apache Tomcat Server.

Apache Http Server vs Apache Tomcat Server

Here is an in-depth comparison of Apache HTTP Server vs Apache Tomcat.

Apache HTTP Server

Apache HTTP server (known as Apache server) allows you to create & run different kinds of web servers to host your websites and web applications. It is one of the most widely used web servers, especially for PHP websites, and other PHP-based content management systems like WordPress, Magento, Joomla, Drupal. It is a general-purpose web server that can be used to host websites & applications written in any programming language.

Apache Tomcat

Apache Tomcat (known as just Tomcat) is a web container for Java-based applications and websites. It is customized and optimized for Java programming language only. So it allows you to run Java-specific elements like Java Server Pages, Servlets, WebSocket, etc. It provides a pure Java HTTP server that allows you to run Java code.

Also read : How to Create Virtual Host in XAMPP

Difference Between Apache HTTP Server and Tomcat

Let us look at some of the important differences between HTTP Server and Tomcat

Pages Served

Tomcat can serve both static and dynamic pages written using HTML, Java Servlet & JSP. Tomcat does not work with other platforms like PHP, Python, Ruby, etc. Apache HTTP Server can also serve static and dynamic pages written using HTML and any other language such as PHP, Python, Ruby, Java, etc. But you need to use each language’s respective add-on modules for it.

Also read : How to Enable HTTP Strict Transport Security in NodeJS

Supported Programming Languages

Tomcat can host only Java-based websites and pages. Apache HTTP Server can be used to host websites and applications written using any programming language, once you install its add-on module. So Apache HTTP server is more widely used than Tomcat.

Request/Response Processing

Apache Tomcat is a web container and not a full-fledged server. So it cannot handle requests/response processing. It can only manage pages generated through Servlets and JSP. On the other, Apache HTTP Server can handle requests/responses as well as do load balancing. Therefore, in many cases, Apache Tomcat is used together with Apache HTTP Server.

Also read : How to Enable HTTP Strict Transport Security in Apache

Underlying language

Apache Tomcat is written using Java while Apache HTTP server is written using C programming language.

In this article, we have looked at the difference between Apache Tomcat and HTTP Server briefly. If you want to build applications using Java, then go for Apache Tomcat as web container. For other programming languages, use Apache HTTP server. In fact, you might even look into running Apache Tomcat on port 8080 and Apache HTTP server on port 80 together. Apache HTTP Server can receive requests from client browsers and pass them onto Tomcat for processing them, which in turn sends back the results to Apache HTTP Server, which finally returns the data as a response to client browsers.

Also read : How Does RewriteBase Work

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