server


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Related to server: Proxy server

server

1. Chiefly RC Church a person who acts as acolyte or assists the priest at Mass
2. Computing a computer or program that supplies data or resources to other machines on a network

server

[′sər·vər]
(computer science)
A computer or software package that sends requested information to a client or clients in a network.

server

(1)
A program which provides some service to other (client) programs. The connection between client and server is normally by means of message passing, often over a network, and uses some protocol to encode the client's requests and the server's responses. The server may run continuously (as a daemon), waiting for requests to arrive or it may be invoked by some higher level daemon which controls a number of specific servers (inetd on Unix).

There are many servers associated with the Internet, such as those for HTTP, Network File System, Network Information Service (NIS), Domain Name System (DNS), FTP, news, finger, Network Time Protocol. On Unix, a long list can be found in /etc/services or in the NIS database "services". See client-server.

server

(2)
A computer which provides some service for other computers connected to it via a network. The most common example is a file server which has a local disk and services requests from remote clients to read and write files on that disk, often using Sun's Network File System (NFS) protocol or Novell Netware on PCs. Another common example is a web server.

server

A computer system in a network that is shared by multiple users. Servers come in all sizes from x86-based PCs to IBM mainframes. A server may have a keyboard, monitor and mouse directly attached, or one keyboard, monitor and mouse may connect to any number of servers via a switch (see KVM switch). In datacenters with hundreds and thousands of servers residing in equipment racks, all access is via the network. See server farm, blade server and rack mounted.

A User's Machine Can Be a Server
Stand-alone PCs and Macs can also function as a server to other users on the network even though they serve as a single workstation to one user (see peer-to-peer). In such cases, specific folders are typically configured for sharing rather than the entire hard drive.

Servers Can Be Software Only
The term "server" may refer to both the hardware and software (the entire computer system) or just the software that performs the service. For example, a "Web server" may refer to a dedicated computer running Web server software or to Web server software running with other applications. Servers are classified by their purpose, and the following servers are defined in this encyclopedia.
 application server audio server database server fax server file server intranet server mail server media server merchant server modem server network access server print server proxy server remote access server server appliance streaming server telephony server terminal server Web server





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