Chapters 1 : Internet and the World Wide Web
Web Documents that you view on the Internet are stored on different
Web servers. Web servers are computers on which Web documents reside
and run HTTP software to permit Web transactions. CERN and NCSA are
the two organizations that provide Web Server software, such as CERN
http and NCSA httpd, respectively.
CERN httpd, or CERN Hypertext Transfer Protocol Daemon, is a generic
public domain Hypertext Server software that can be used as a regular
HTTP server software. In addition to serving Hypertext and other
documents, the CERN httpd software can act as a proxy for HTTP, FTP,
Gopher or WAIS. A proxy software is a security measure that
prevents direct access to the Web server. This provides protection
against unauthorized access of the CERN server and consequently
provides security to the documents that reside on it. Another
feature of the CERN httpd software is that it is easy to install,
which makes it the preferred Web Server software in many organizations.
CERN has a completely interruptible network input/output facility.
This facility of the CERN httpd software allows you to view the
full status of the server during network operations.
Another commonly used Web Server software is NCSA httpd. This
software shares several common characteristics with the CERN httpd
software, which makes it equally popular. This Web Server software
from NCSA provides support for accessing documents, images,
audio, video, animation and data through different sources.
The NCSA httpd Web Server software has an X/Motif interface
that is user-friendly and facilitates easy interaction. The
user interface is further enhanced by a wide choice of
color settings. As well as the choice to view documents in
monochrome or in color. NCSA http provides multiple independent
document viewing windows to view multiple documents stored on
the server. NCSA has a security feature that is equivalent to
the user name/ password scheme of telnet, a remote login
feature of the Internet. Another interesting feature of the
NCSA http software is its customizable encryption hooks. They
allow external encryption to be used to request and receive
encrypted documents. In addition, the NCSA Web Server software
can also display very long documents.
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