What is NGINX?

NGINX (pronounced engine x) is an open-source program initially developed as a strong successor to the Apache web server.

The History Of NGINX

In 2002, web developers across the Internet set out to create a web server capable of managing tens of thousands of simultaneous connections to the world wide web, which was considered a necessary benchmark for the modern web to exist.

Apache Vs NGINX

Apache is single-threaded, meaning only 1 task can run at a time and every further task spans another process, which consumes memory and CPU. NGINX is multithreaded, and this means that NGINX can handle multiple processes (threads) per request, unlike Apache, which is known for its one-thread and multi-process approach.

Nginx offers the ability to handle requests in a single thread or in multiple work processes, each of which can be controlled by a master process.

Unlike Apache, NGINX tends to consume fewer resources and improve the responsiveness of the server; it's able to handle a much higher number of concurrent visitors at a much lower memory and CPU usage. Faster loading websites offer better search engine optimisation and leads to better conversion rates.

NGINX allows administrators to set up advanced configurations and deal with high loads and simultaneous connections easily and is a direct drop-in replacement for Apache.  Many web hosting services choose NGINX over apache for better performance.

Since NGINX can manage a large number of connections, it can act as a reverse proxy to control incoming traffic and distribute it to more inactive servers.

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NGINX Popularity & Further Uses

NGINX has grown in popularity since its inception and is used for web services in a wide range of applications.

WordPress, the most popular content management system can be used with NGINX, the performance benefits of NGINX over Apache leads to a faster WordPress experience with no extra configuration needed.

Today, Nginx can perform several additional tasks, including web hosting, web caching, data storage, web accelerator, SSL/TLS terminator, mail proxy, TCP Proxy and data processing.

In addition to working as an SSL / TLS terminator and web accelerator, NGINX can also be placed on the second web server of the client to negotiate SSL and TLS. To serve as this agent, it efficiently manages tasks that might slow down web servers, such as compressing and caching content to boost performance.

NGINX usage statistics

According to reports by the Apache Foundation, it is second only to the more traditional Apache web server in terms of the number of requests it serves. Statistics that focus mainly on high-traffic sites and apps, however, paint a very different picture.

Dynamic websites that use anything from node.js or PHP can use NGNIX as a content cache or reverse proxy to reduce application server load and use the underlying hardware as effectively as possible.

NGINX is now used by over 400 million websites worldwide and its ability to deliver their content quickly, reliably and securely.

NGINX & Nginx Plus

NGINX is an open-source, cross-platform, multi-tenant virtualization platform used by many of the world's largest and most popular web companies. It is currently available in two commercially distributed versions, called NGINX Plus and NGINX Enterprise as well as several third-party products.

By monitoring NGINX, you can mitigate problems that develop elsewhere in your data centre quickly, with built-in statistic monitoring making management easy.

NGINX can handle thousands of HTTP connections simultaneously, making it an ideal choice for large-scale, multi-site applications.

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