What Web Server Does .NET Use?


Heather Bennett

What Web Server Does .NET Use?

In the world of web development, the .NET framework is a popular choice for building robust and dynamic web applications. When it comes to hosting these applications, understanding the underlying web server technology is crucial. In this tutorial, we will explore the web server options available for hosting .NET applications.

Internet Information Services (IIS)

Internet Information Services (IIS) is the most commonly used web server for hosting . Developed by Microsoft, IIS provides a powerful and secure platform for running web applications on Windows servers.

IIS offers numerous features that make it an ideal choice for hosting . It supports various protocols such as HTTP, HTTPS, FTP, SMTP, and more. Additionally, it provides advanced security features like request filtering, SSL/TLS encryption support, and integration with Windows authentication.

Setting up IIS to host .NET applications is straightforward. After installing IIS on your Windows server or local machine, you need to install the required versions of the .NET framework and configure IIS to use them. Once configured correctly, you can deploy your .NET application to an IIS website and start serving requests.


Kestrel is a lightweight and cross-platform web server built specifically for hosting .NET Core applications. It is designed to be used in conjunction with a reverse proxy server like Nginx or Apache HTTP Server.

Kestrel offers excellent performance and scalability due to its asynchronous nature. It can handle thousands of concurrent connections efficiently, making it suitable for high-traffic scenarios.

To use Kestrel as your web server for a .NET Core application, you need to configure it in your application’s code. You can specify the port on which Kestrel listens for incoming requests, SSL/TLS configurations, and other settings. Once configured, you can run your .NET Core application, and Kestrel will handle the incoming HTTP requests.

Other Web Servers

While IIS and Kestrel are the most commonly used web servers for hosting .NET applications, there are other options available as well.

  • Apache HTTP Server: Apache is a widely used open-source web server that supports running .NET applications using the mod_mono module or through reverse proxy setups.
  • Nginx: Nginx is a popular web server known for its high performance and scalability. It can be used to host .NET applications by configuring it as a reverse proxy server in front of Kestrel or using the FastCGI module with .NET Core apps.

It’s important to note that regardless of the web server you choose, understanding how to configure and optimize it for hosting .NET applications is essential for achieving optimal performance and security.

In Conclusion

In this tutorial, we discussed two popular web servers used for hosting .NET applications: IIS and Kestrel. While IIS is widely used due to its integration with Windows servers, Kestrel offers excellent performance and cross-platform compatibility.

Additionally, we briefly mentioned other web servers like Apache HTTP Server and Nginx that can also be used with . As a developer, it’s crucial to understand these options and choose the most suitable one based on your specific requirements.

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