Which Web Server Does .NET Use?


Larry Thompson

Which Web Server Does .NET Use?

If you’re a developer working with .NET, you may have wondered which web server is used to host your .NET applications. In this article, we will explore the web servers that are commonly used with .NET and discuss their features and benefits.

IIS – Internet Information Services

IIS is the most widely used web server for hosting . Developed by Microsoft, it is a powerful and feature-rich server that offers excellent performance and security. IIS supports various versions of the Windows operating system and provides seamless integration with other Microsoft technologies.

With IIS, you can easily deploy and manage your .NET applications using its user-friendly interface. It offers advanced features like application pools, which allow you to isolate your applications for better stability and performance. Additionally, IIS provides built-in support for ASP.NET, making it an ideal choice for hosting .NET web applications.


Kestrel is a cross-platform web server that was introduced with ASP.NET Core. It is a lightweight server designed for high-performance scenarios and is capable of handling thousands of concurrent connections efficiently.

Kestrel can be used as a standalone server or in combination with other servers like IIS or Nginx. When used in combination, Kestrel acts as an edge server that handles the initial request processing before passing it on to the main server. This allows Kestrel to offload some of the workload from the main server, resulting in improved performance.

Apache HTTP Server

Apache HTTP Server, commonly known as Apache, is another popular web server that can be used to host . Although it is primarily associated with the Linux operating system, Apache also has a Windows version that can be used for .NET development.

Apache offers excellent flexibility and scalability and supports a wide range of modules that extend its functionality. It can be configured to work with the .NET framework using modules like mod_mono or by using reverse proxy techniques to offload requests to a separate .NET server.


Nginx is a lightweight and high-performance web server that has gained popularity in recent years. While it is predominantly used for hosting static content, Nginx can also be used as a reverse proxy to handle .NET requests.

When used as a reverse proxy, Nginx acts as an intermediary between client requests and the actual . It can handle tasks like load balancing, caching, and SSL termination, making it an excellent choice for improving performance and security.


In conclusion, there are several web servers that can be used to host . IIS is the most commonly used server due to its seamless integration with other Microsoft technologies.

Kestrel offers high-performance capabilities and works well in combination with other servers. Apache HTTP Server and Nginx provide additional options for hosting .NET applications on both Linux and Windows environments.

  • IIS – Powerful web server developed by Microsoft.
  • Kestrel – Lightweight cross-platform web server introduced with ASP.
  • Apache HTTP Server – Popular web server primarily associated with Linux but also available for Windows.
  • Nginx – Lightweight web server that can act as a reverse proxy for .

As a .NET developer, it’s important to choose the web server that best suits your needs based on factors like performance, scalability, and integration capabilities with other technologies.

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