May 26, 2018

High performance single-tasking web server

Boa is a single-tasking HTTP server. That means that unlike traditional web servers, it does not fork for each incoming connection, nor does it fork many copies of itself to handle multiple connections. It internally multiplexes all of the ongoing HTTP connections, and forks only for CGI programs which must be separate processes. Preliminary tests show boa is about twice as fast as Apache, and is capable of handling 50 hits per second on a 66 MHz ‘486.

The primary design goals of Boa are speed and security. Security, in the sense of “can’t be subverted by a malicious user”, not “fine grained access control and encrypted communications”.

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