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Chapter 1. About Dynamic Content > Choosing an Application Server

Choosing an Application Server

Setting up and running an application server can be a daunting process. Fortunately, an application server is probably already available to you, so you may not need to start from scratch. Your options depend entirely on whether you’re hosting your Web site with a service provider or administering your own server.

Hosting your Web site with an ISP

If you have a Web hosting account with an Internet Service Provider (ISP), you’re limited to whatever application server the ISP uses. The majority of ISPs use Apache as a Web server to host their sites, and some of these same ISPs also offer access to the MySQL database as well. One server-scripting language often used with Apache is PHP, so you may have a PHP/Apache or PHP/MySQL setup already in place. (Another common development setup used with Apache is JSP.) It’s also possible to find specialty ISPs that run particular application servers, so if you definitely want to use ColdFusion, for instance, you should look for an ISP that hosts ColdFusion-based sites.


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