One of the main reasons that Apache started getting a lot of recognition is because it was the first httpd server in the world to be able to support multiple websites on single server. Chances are that without Apache Linux would most likely be dead. But for the single fact that Apache lets you host multiple sites became a real asset to the whole world.
Lets look at this for a second. On the web hosting companies side before Apache. Every time a new customer came along and needed a site hosted. The company would have to be sure they had an extra server. Then they would need to install the proper software. This would then be followed by purchasing another Static IP Address.
- Server $800.00 or more
- Required Software (If Linux and all open source hardly any cost, however with propitiatory software close to $1000.00)
- An additional Static IP Address (price varies but can be between $500.00 to $1000.00 per month)
- 6 to 7 hours of setup (Obviously the people setting the server up will want to get paid for the work. We will say for the sake of argument that it is NY’a min wage. Today that would be $7.25 per hour. So we multiply that by 7 which equals $50.75)
Now on the end users side. You know the person who needs the site hosted. Because of the expenses involved with the company. The person would most likely have to pay close to $1000.00 per month. And because the web hosting company spent all this time setting things up for the customer. They want to make sure the customer stays with them for at least a year. This means the customer has to pay up front $12000.00 every year. This is why back in the good old days the web wasn’t nearly as big as it is today. Mainly because in order to even have website you would need a nice chunk of change to gamble with any way.
Looking at when Apache started to offer the ability to host multiple websites, which was in May of 1995. Both the popularity of Linux, Apache and the World Wide Web grew. This is not a coincident.
Companies where willing to take gamble with this free software stuff. They ended up saving money on multiple levels. Now they only needed to purchase single static IP Address. They only needed to worry about setting up a single server. Which meant they could lower their prices, which would triple or even quadruple their client data base. Which in turn they could double their profits.
Doubling the profits ended up with it’s own advantages. Now more people can start their own business and try to make it big or at least get a little extra money in their pockets, because now instead of having to pay a company $1000.00 per month they only would have to pay $10.00 a month.
The people working for the hosting company also become happier because of the success of the company they end up getting a bigger pay check. Where a System Admin may have at that time only would get paid $7.25 per hour he can now pull in $18.00 to $25.00 an hour for doing the same work.
People who would surf the web would now surf even more, since more and more people are getting websites. And people who never surfed before would start to.