Apache rules Alexa, with NginX, Microsoft and others playing catch-up

Alexa themes are still real and still interesting. Let me drill down into several statistics and data to derive some regularity and pattern information about the Web servers, implied for WebPages, that are enrolled in alexa.com. To do this, we need the detailed analyses of the data retrieved from HTTP headers.  Let’s start with the web server and its behavior. For this purpose, we consider the sample of 100,000 requests in the November-December period and compare the results with the six-month previous data. The sample can be divided into 90% recognized and 10% unrecognized web server volumes. This analysis considers only the recognized web server volume proportion. The reasons for the unrecognized ones could be due to security: many companies just hide their web server information, and also some servers don’t send web server information by default (and no one adds the information manually).

So according to the recognized web servers, the most popular and applicable web server software identified in Alexa is Apache, and its share is about 53% of all web server software. Below is the top ten list of popular web server software:



Current data

Comparing this with the six-month earlier data, we see that Nginx has improved its position, increasing its share from 9.64% to 18.85%, and achieving second place. Moreover, Nginx is very popular in Russia with a 74% share, China with 31% and Europe with 25%. Of course, Microsoft-IIS has also improved its percentage, but in spite of this still lost second place. Prior attention to Microsoft-IIS goes to China with 46%, Great Britain with 23% and Canada with 18%.

Six months ago


Nevertheless, no one can catch up to Apache; its share is substantial among top web servers.

Apache is the most popular web server software in the world. Its share is about half of all web server users. Though some changes in percentage happen, it’s still a winner in many giant countries such as Japan with an 85% share, Europe with 63% and US with 59%.

The last two places of the top ten list are taken by IBM_HTTP_Server and BigIP; they left YTS and GWS behind.

So, three competitors jangle three first prize positions in Alexa. In further blogs we will observe their trends and transformations.