Cowboy vs Microsoft IIS vs nginx

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Microsoft IIS
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What is Cowboy?

Cowboy aims to provide a complete HTTP stack in a small code base. It is optimized for low latency and low memory usage, in part because it uses binary strings. Cowboy provides routing capabilities, selectively dispatching requests to handlers written in Erlang.

What is Microsoft IIS?

Internet Information Services (IIS) for Windows Server is a flexible, secure and manageable Web server for hosting anything on the Web. From media streaming to web applications, IIS's scalable and open architecture is ready to handle the most demanding tasks.

What is nginx?

nginx [engine x] is an HTTP and reverse proxy server, as well as a mail proxy server, written by Igor Sysoev. According to Netcraft nginx served or proxied 30.46% of the top million busiest sites in Jan 2018.
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          What are some alternatives to Cowboy, Microsoft IIS, and nginx?
          Apache HTTP Server
          The Apache HTTP Server is a powerful and flexible HTTP/1.1 compliant web server. Originally designed as a replacement for the NCSA HTTP Server, it has grown to be the most popular web server on the Internet.
          Apache Tomcat
          Apache Tomcat powers numerous large-scale, mission-critical web applications across a diverse range of industries and organizations.
          OpenResty (aka. ngx_openresty) is a full-fledged web application server by bundling the standard Nginx core, lots of 3rd-party Nginx modules, as well as most of their external dependencies.
          It is a drop-in Apache replacement and the leading high-performance, high-scalability server. You can replace your existing Apache server with it without changing your configuration or operating system details. As a drop-in replacement, it allows you to quickly eliminate Apache bottlenecks in 15 minutes with zero downtime.
          Phusion Passenger is a web server and application server, designed to be fast, robust and lightweight. It takes a lot of complexity out of deploying web apps, adds powerful enterprise-grade features that are useful in production, and makes administration much easier and less complex.
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          Decisions about Cowboy, Microsoft IIS, and nginx
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          How developers use Cowboy, Microsoft IIS, and nginx
          Avatar of MaxCDN
          MaxCDN uses nginxnginx

          The original API performed a synchronous Nginx reload after provisioning a zone, which often took up to 30 seconds or longer. While important, this step shouldn’t block the response to the user (or API) that a new zone has been created, or block subsequent requests to adjust the zone. With the new API, an independent worker reloads Nginx configurations based on zone modifications.It’s like ordering a product online: don’t pause the purchase process until the product’s been shipped. Say the order has been created, and you can still cancel or modify shipping information. Meanwhile, the remaining steps are being handled behind the scenes. In our case, the zone provision happens instantly, and you can see the result in your control panel or API. Behind the scenes, the zone will be serving traffic within a minute.

          Avatar of AngeloR
          AngeloR uses Microsoft IISMicrosoft IIS

          This is a legacy system requirement. We have some portions of our website written in PHP. Normally this wouldn't be an issue but at the time they decided to use PHP+Windows they were also trying to use MSSQL databases (All the microsoft influence was due to some azure credits the company received early on). The particular driver they ended up picking forced them into using the mssql_* functions instead of PDO. This meant that the majority of the site used these rather outdated calls and replacing them was a rather large endeavour. So while we migrate some of the PHP backend away to various node.js api systems we are simply sustaining the existing PHP portions.

          Avatar of Cloudcraft
          Cloudcraft uses nginxnginx

          Nginx serves as the loadbalancer, router and SSL terminator of As one of our app server nodes is spun up, an Ansible orchestration script adds the new node dynamically to the nginx loadbalancer config which is then reloaded for a zero downtime seamless rolling deployment. By putting nginx in front or whatever web and API servers you might have, you gain a ton of flexibility. While previously I've cobbled together HAProxy and Stun as a poor man's loadbalancer, nginx just does a much better job and is far simpler in the long run.

          Avatar of datapile
          datapile uses nginxnginx

          Used nginx as exactly what it is great for: serving static content in a cache-friendly, load balanced manner.

          It is exclusively for production web page hosting, we don't use nginx internally, only on the public-facing versions of static sites / Angular & Backbone/Marionette applications.

          Avatar of Pēteris Caune
          Pēteris Caune uses nginxnginx

          We use NGINX both as reverse HTTP proxy and also as a SMTP proxy, to handle incoming email.

          We previously handled incoming email with Mandrill, and then later with AWS SES. Handling incoming email yourself is not that much more difficult and saves quite a bit on operational costs.

          Avatar of Wirkn Inc.
          Wirkn Inc. uses nginxnginx

          NGINX sits in front of all of our web servers. It is fantastic at load balancing traffic as well as serving as a cache at times when under massive load. It's a robust tool that we're happy to have at the front lines of all Wirkn web apps.

          Avatar of Performance Assessment Network (PAN)
          Performance Assessment Network (PAN) uses Microsoft IISMicrosoft IIS

          Web server for our 9 web applications and associated web services and external integrations

          Avatar of David Flynn
          David Flynn uses Microsoft IISMicrosoft IIS

          We host our ASP.NET Core APIs on Windows Server 2016 / IIS.

          Avatar of Mathias Vonende
          Mathias Vonende uses CowboyCowboy

          Application/http-server for everything except static data.

          Avatar of Yue Wang
          Yue Wang uses Microsoft IISMicrosoft IIS

          Web Server. Deployed on Windows 2012 r2.

          Avatar of Proactima Solutions AS
          Proactima Solutions AS uses Microsoft IISMicrosoft IIS

          Our web frontends are running on IIS

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