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Apache is generally recognized as the world's most popular Web server (HTTP server).Originally designed for Unix servers, the Apache Web server has been ported to Windows and other network operating systems (NOS) .
The name "Apache" derives from the word "patchy" that the Apache developers used to describe early versions of their software.
Apache also supports plug-in modules for extensibility.
Apache is reliable, free, and relatively easy to configure.
Apache is free software distributed by the Apache Software Foundation.
The Apache Software Foundation promotes various free and open source advanced Web technologies.
One aspect of Apache that some site administrators find confusing especially those unfamiliar with UNIX-style software is its configuration scheme.
Instead of using a point-and-click graphic user interface (GUI) or Windows Registry keys as most other modern software packages, Apache generally relies on simple text files for its configuration settings.
T he term "httpd" stands for HTTP Daemon. Recall that in a UNIX environment, the term daemon refers to a type of process designed to launch at system boot and continue running for very long periods of time.
The name doesn't make much sense on a Windows platform, but the concept of a UNIX daemon can be compared to the concept of Windows services.
The Windows port of Apache allows for installation as a Windows service but does not require it.
This file contains a number of other entries (technically called directives ), but for most of these, modifications are optional. Probably the most useful of these entries is ServerAdmin it allows the administrator to set the email address that will be displayed on error pages (such a "404 pages") in the client's browser, giving users a way to contact someone if a site problem occurs: