November 11

Best Apache Web Hosting 2023: Choosing the Top Host for the Popular Web Server

0  comments

Web servers are at the heart of the world wide web. Each time you access the Internet, you are inadvertently linking to a web server. Web servers store, process, and deliver a website’s content to any client that requests it. Internet browsers are the most widely used clients, while smartphone apps come in second. 

The content delivered could be any one or combination of text, videos, images as well as application data. Some of the most common web server software are Apache HTTP Server, Nginx, Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS), and Lighttpd. Let’s take a closer look at Apache HTTP Server.

About Apache Web server

Officially referred to as Apache HTTP Server, Apache is one of the world’s oldest and most popular web server applications. Developed by the Apache Software Foundation, it was launched in 1995 and was the most widely used web server within a year. Apache is freely available under an open-source license. It is highly customizable, and its source code can be modified to fit the needs of different websites. 

Apache powers just over 30 percent of the world’s websites. For more than two decades, it was the clear leader, holding as much as 70 percent of the market share during that period. Since 2019 however, Apache’s market leadership is no longer uncontested. Researchers now have Nginx as the most dominant web server. Apache, however, retains leadership (albeit marginally) among the top one million most popular websites.

Pros & Cons

  Pros

  • Freely available under an open-source license;
  • Module-based, which makes it easier to turn features on and off post-installation;
  • Fast, reliable, and stable;
  • Can handle large numbers of users and heavy data traffic with just basic configuration;
  • Easy to configure and customize;
  • Secure. Regularly receives security patches and updates;
  • Large community of developers;
  • Enjoys extensive documentation;
  • Integrates well with other applications as well as complex software projects;
  • Compatible with diverse operating systems
  • Extensive event logging;
  • Supports many languages, including Python, Perl, and PHP.

Cons

  • Less adept at handling unusually large numbers of concurrent connections, unlike rivals Nginx and Lighttpd.
  • Can be resource-intensive and have a substantial footprint, especially as more modules are included.
  • Customization may introduce unanticipated scenarios and increase security vulnerability.

Is Apache Web server software free?

Apache is freely available under an open-source license.

The immense flexibility of modules

Apache is module-based which makes it easier to turn features on and off post-installation. These modules could be on everything from authentication and security to caching and URL rewriting. For instance, when you load the mod_proxy module, you allow for a gateway/proxy on your server.

Is the Apache Web server still in use?

While Apache has been steadily losing market share over the years and appears to be ceding web server leadership to Nginx, it remains in widespread use.

What makes Apache so popular?

As one of the earliest web servers, Apache does benefit from a first-mover advantage. But it is also fast, reliable, stable, and secure. Apache is easy to configure and customize. It can handle large numbers of users and heavy data traffic with just a basic configuration. Apache regularly receives security patches and updates.

How does Apache being open-source add value?

As open-source software, developers can view, manipulate and collaborate on Apache’s source code. It has a large community of developers and enjoys extensive documentation. Apache integrates well with other applications as well as complex software projects.

Choosing a provider for your Web hosting Apache server

Apache has compelling advantages as a web server. However, you will not reap the maximum benefits of Apache web hosting with just any web hosting provider. Some web hosts have distinguished themselves by offering Apache hosting that is superior to that of their peers. 

So how do you know which provider is best? We compared different web hosts based on plan features, quality of customer service, cost, and overall value proposition. From a large list of web hosts, we whittled it down to the following top five.

ImageProductFeaturesPrice
A2 Hosting

A2 Hosting

  • Unmetered bandwidth (monthly data transfers)
  • 100 GB SSD storage space for its entry-level plan exceeding the industry average.
  • A Turbo option for its premium plans delivers speeds nearly 20 times faster.
9.6
Visit A2 Hosting
Bluehost

Bluehost

  • Unmetered bandwidth.
  • 50 GB storage space for entry-level plans, which is significantly higher than that offered by peers;
  • Low-cost entry-level plan.
9.5
Visit Bluehost
Hostgator

Hostgator

  • Unmetered bandwidth.
  • Nightly backups;
  • Digital advertising credits ($500 match Google Ads and $100 Microsoft Advertising)
9.4
Visit Hostgator
Hostinger

Hostinger

  • 50 GB storage space for entry-level plans, which is significantly higher than what is offered by peers.
  • Low-cost entry-level plan
  • Custom, proprietary control panel.
9.3
Visit Hostinger
SiteGround

SiteGround

  • Extensive knowledge base
  • Unlimited number of databases
  • E-commerce enabled.
9.2
Visit SiteGround

1. A2 Hosting

A2 Hosting is the number one web host for Apache hosting plans. Why? For starters, all of its Apache web hosting plans include unmetered bandwidth. Also, a Turbo option for its premium plans delivers speeds nearly 20 times faster. 

Overall, A2 Hosting checks all the right boxes. Their team has invested knowledge, experience, and resources to optimize the Apache hosting experience for its customers. The company has invested in cutting-edge infrastructure to keep page loading speeds fast. 

Its entry-level Apache hosting plan includes one website, unlimited email accounts, 100 GB SSD storage space, free SSL, and free access to CloudFlare CDN. Customers have access to 24/7 customer support via phone calls, live chat, and tickets. 

A2 Hosting has data centers in the US, Europe, and Asia. It provides a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  Pros

  • Unmetered bandwidth (monthly data transfers).
  • Unlimited email accounts.
  • 100 GB SSD storage space for its entry-level plan exceeding the industry average
  • A Turbo option for its premium plans delivers speeds nearly 20 times faster.
  • User-friendly knowledge base.

Cons

  • One website for its entry-level plan.
  • Maximum of five databases for an entry-level plan.

Payment plans

  • Startup ($10.99 per month) - One website, 100 GB SSD storage space, unmetered bandwidth, unlimited email accounts, and five databases.
  • Drive ($12.99 per month) - Startup plan features, except it has unlimited websites, unlimited SSD storage space, unlimited databases, and free automatic backups.
  • Turbo Boost ($15.99 per month) - Drive plan features, except it has unlimited NVMe SSD storage space, Turbo (up to 20 times faster).

UpTime

99.9 percent.

Speed

  • Uses sophisticated caching technology.
  • Unmetered bandwidth for all plans.
  • Uses SSD storage. SSDs are anywhere from 3 to 15 times faster than HDDs.
  • Turbo servers for speed up to 20 times faster.

2. Bluehost

Bluehost deservedly takes the number two slot. One of the most recognizable brands in the industry, the company has earned a stellar reputation for its expertise in open-source technologies. So its success with Apache web hosting is perhaps not surprising. A defining feature is that all of its Apache plans come with unmetered bandwidth. 

The company’s entry-level Apache hosting plan includes 50 GB storage space, five email accounts, 20 databases, free SSL, free access to CloudFlare CDN, and daily backups. Customers enjoy 24/7 customer support via live chat and phone. 

Bluehost has a 30-day money-back guarantee. Against industry convention, this web host does not commit to a specific uptime. However, it makes up for this by boasting one of the highest average uptimes in the industry.

  Pros

  • Unmetered bandwidth.
  • 50 GB storage space for entry-level plans, which is significantly higher than that offered by peers.
  • Extensive knowledge base
  • Low-cost entry-level plan

Cons

  • Maximum one website and five email accounts for an entry-level plan.

Payment plans

  • Basic ($9.99 per month) - One website, 50 GB storage space, unmetered bandwidth, five email accounts (100 MB storage per account), 20 databases.
  • Plus ($14.99 per month) - Basic plan features, except it has unmetered storage, unlimited websites, unlimited email accounts, unlimited databases, and other resources.
  • Choice Plus, also known as Prime ($18.99 per month) - Plus plan features, except it has domain privacy and automated site backup.

UpTime

No uptime commitment but has one of the industry’s highest average uptimes.

Speed

  • Unmetered bandwidth for all plans.;
  • Website caching

3. HostGator

HostGator is our third pick primarily for providing Apache web hosting that’s reliable and flexible. It stands out for not just offering unmetered bandwidth across all plans but unmetered storage space as well. 

Its entry-level Apache web hosting plan includes one website, one email address, two databases, free SSL, free access to CloudFlare CDN, and Google/Microsoft digital advertising credits. 

Customers get 24/7 support through live chat, social media, and phone. HostGator has a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  Pros

  • Unmetered bandwidth.
  • Unmetered storage.
  • Digital advertising credits ($500 match Google Ads and $100 Microsoft Advertising)
  • Expansive knowledge base and a vibrant social media community.

Cons

  • Limited to one website and two databases for its entry-level plan.

Payment plans

  • Hatchling ($11.95 per month) - One website, unmetered bandwidth, unmetered storage space, one email address, and two databases.
  • Baby ($12.95 per month) - Hatchling plan features, except it has unlimited websites.
  • Business ($17.95 per month) - Baby plan features except has free dedicated IP and Positive SSL upgrade.

UpTime

99.9 percent.

Speed

  • Unmetered bandwidth for all plans

4. Hostinger

Hostinger comes in number four for its capacity to offer Apache hosting plans that meet the expectations of developers, web administrators, and site visitors. The company regularly updates its web server infrastructure. 

Its entry-level plan includes 50 GB SSD storage space, 100 GB monthly bandwidth, one email account, two databases, weekly backups, free SSL, and free access to CloudFlare CDN. The company has a custom control panel, hPanel, that is purpose-built for Hostinger client. 

Customers have access to 24/7 support via live chat. It has 10 data centers spread across North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. Hostinger provides a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  Pros

  • 50 GB storage space for entry-level plans, which is significantly higher than what is offered by peers.
  • Expansive knowledge base
  • Low-cost entry-level plan.
  • Custom, proprietary control panel.

Cons

  • Bandwidth capped at 100 GB per month for the entry-level plan.
  • Maximum one email account, one website, and two databases for the entry-level plan.
  • Support via live chat only.

Payment plans

  • Single ($9.99 per month) - One website, 50 GB SSD storage, 100 GB bandwidth, one email address, and two databases
  • Premium ($12.49 per month) - Single plan features, except it offers 100 websites, 100 GB SSD storage, up to 100 email accounts, unmetered bandwidth, and unlimited databases.
  • Business ($16.99 per month) - Premium plan features, except it has 200 GB SSD storage.

UpTime

99.9 percent.

Speed

  • Unmetered bandwidth for its Premium and Business plans.
  • Uses SSD storage
  • 1 Gbps port connection on all servers

5. SiteGround

SiteGround rounds up our top five. It stands out not just for its demonstrable experience in supporting Apache web servers but also for the caliber of its customer service. Also, all plans include unmetered bandwidth.

Its entry-level Apache hosting plan includes one website, 10 GB SSD storage, unlimited databases, unlimited email accounts, free SSL, free access to CloudFlare CDN, and automated daily backups. 

All plans are covered by rapid server monitoring, anti-hacking systems, proactive patching, and spam protection. SiteGround’s Apache plans are e-commerce-ready from the get-go and include free shopping cart installation. 

You get 24/7 customer support via chat, phone, and tickets. SiteGround has servers in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The company offers a 30-day money-back guarantee. SiteGround buys equivalent green energy credits for energy that its data centers consume.

  Pros

  • Unmetered bandwidth.
  • Unlimited number of email accounts.
  • Unlimited number of databases.
  • E-commerce enabled.
  • Extensive knowledge base.

Cons

  • 10 GB storage for its starter plan is significantly lower than what peers offer.

Payment plans

  • StartUp ($19.99 per month) - One website, 10 GB SSD storage, unmetered bandwidth, unlimited databases, unlimited email accounts.
  • GrowBig ($29.99 per month) - StartUp plan features except has 20 GB SSD storage and other resources.
  • GoGeek ($44.99 per month) - GrowBig plan features except has 40 GB SSD storage and other resources.

Up Time

99.9 percent.

Speed

  • Custom implementation of MySQL and PHP for 30 percent faster website speed.
  • Out-of-the-box caching.
  • Unmetered bandwidth for all plans.
  • Uses SSD storage

Apache hosting FAQ

What operating systems does Apache work on?

While Apache is most often seen running on Linux, it works on a wide range of other operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Unix, and FreeBSD.

What is LAMP, and how is it related to Apache?

LAMP stands for Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP. It is a popular web application stack for general-purpose web servers. It is often provided via a one-click installer or within the Linux software/package manager. LAMP is free and easy to build. 

In this stack, Linux handles application operations, Apache processes and serves requests for web content and assets, MySQL stores your information, and PHP works with Apache to build dynamic content.

Does Apache have virtual hosting capabilities?

Yes. Virtual hosting refers to a single web server’s ability to serve more than one domain simultaneously. In fact, virtual hosting is how web hosts can provide shared hosting plans or allow you to have multiple domains under a single plan.

What plans do Apache servers usually use?

Apache servers can be used for shared hosting, virtual private server (VPS) hosting, or dedicated server hosting plans.

How does Apache compare to Nxinx and Lighttpd?

Nginx (pronounced ‘engine-X’) key strength is its ability to handle a high number of concurrent connections. While it's more scalable than Apache, it lacks the modular architecture of its main rival which makes it harder to add new functionality post-installation. 

Lighttpd (pronounced ‘lighty’) is a light web server built for speed. It is best suited for web servers where speed is critical. Its small footprint, however, comes at a cost — limited and non-extendable functionality when compared to Apache

Which is better: Apache HTTP Server or Apache Tomcat?

Apache Tomcat is a Java servlet container that can operate as a web server. Java servlets extend a server’s functionality. This is in contrast to Apache HTTP Server, which servers pages through HTTP protocol. Apache Tomcat can, therefore, only host Java-based code, unlike Apache HTTP Server, which can handle content and software written in any language. 

Apache Tomcat can be used on its own or in conjunction with more conventional web servers, including Apache HTTP Server. It offers robust performance and high scalability but is slower and less resource-efficient than Apache HTTP Server.

Conclusion

Apache may be losing market share to Nginx and newer rivals, but it remains the preferred choice for millions of websites. This is thanks to its compelling advantages, including speed, versatility, reliability, stability, usability, scalability, open source license, modular architecture, extensive documentation, and large user community. 

Your ability to tap into and exploit these strengths does depend on the Apache web hosting service provider you choose. We have highlighted five Apache web hosting providers that are a cut above their peers. Evaluate the pros and cons of each to determine which is best suited for meeting your web server goals.


Tags


You may also like

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

Get in touch

Name*
Email*
Message
0 of 350
>