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Microsoft closing in on Apache's web server crown

And sprinting up on the inside, here comes Nginx!

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50 million more of the world's web servers started to run Microsoft's internet information server (IIS) during February, according to Netcraft.

The server-counter's data for the month offers the following view of the world's web servers.

Developer January 2014 Percent February 2014 Percent Change
Apache 358,669,012 41.64% 351,700,572 38.22% -3.41
Microsoft 253,438,493 29.42% 301,781,997 32.80% 3.38
nginx 124,052,996 14.40% 138,056,444 15.00% 0.60
Google 21,280,639 2.47% 21,129,509 2.30% -0.17

If IIS can keep growing at this rate, Netcraft observes, it could overtake Apache during 2014. That prospect is dampened somewhat by the fact that big increase for Microsoft is attributed to a single company – the Nobis Technology Group – switching to IIS. Such events aren't common, so the big February bump is unlikely to be repeated. But Apache can't breathe easy because the table below, which depicts the server used among the world's million busiest sites, shows Nginx is eating its lunch.

Developer January 2014 Percent February 2014 Percent Change
Apache 554,533 55.45% 539,129 53.91% -1.54
nginx 159,079 15.91% 174,552 17.46% 1.55
Microsoft 126,568 12.66% 125,595 12.56% -0.10
Google 30,370 3.04% 30,314 3.03% -0.01

Nginx users and admirers can take a lot of heart from that. Microsoft? The 0.1 per cent decline won't trouble it, although of late Redmond is happy to talk up any nice-looking numbers and indeed did so for this Netcraft data dump.

Apache folk probably aren't too troubled either, as Netcraft notes it “is faring much better in both the active sites and top million sites datasets … where it is still dominating with just over half of the market share in both metrics. ®

The next step in data security

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