Which Web Server Is Used to Run ASP.NET Programs?


Heather Bennett

Which Web Server Is Used to Run ASP.NET Programs?

When it comes to running ASP.NET programs, the choice of web server plays a crucial role in ensuring optimal performance and functionality. ASP.NET is a powerful framework developed by Microsoft for building dynamic web applications and websites. In this article, we will explore some popular web servers that can be used to host and run ASP.NET programs.

IIS (Internet Information Services)

IIS is the most widely used web server for running ASP. It is a feature-rich and highly scalable server that provides excellent performance and security. IIS is tightly integrated with Windows Server operating systems, making it the default choice for hosting ASP.NET applications.

IIS supports various versions of ASP.NET, including ASP.NET Core, and provides seamless integration with other Microsoft technologies such as SQL Server and Active Directory. It offers advanced features like request filtering, URL rewriting, caching, compression, and SSL encryption.

Apache HTTP Server

Apache HTTP Server is another popular choice for hosting ASP. Although primarily known as a web server for Linux-based systems, Apache can also be installed on Windows servers to run ASP.

To run ASP.NET on Apache, you need to use Mono, an open-source implementation of the .NET framework. Mono allows you to execute .NET applications on non-Microsoft platforms like Linux and macOS.

Apache provides excellent flexibility and extensibility through its modules. With the help of modules like mod_rewrite and mod_proxy, you can enhance the functionality of your ASP.NET applications hosted on Apache.


Nginx has gained significant popularity as a lightweight and high-performance web server. Although Nginx does not natively support ASP.NET, it can be used as a reverse proxy server to forward requests to another web server that can execute ASP.

One such web server that can be used with Nginx is Kestrel, the cross-platform web server developed by Microsoft. By configuring Nginx as a reverse proxy for Kestrel, you can effectively host and run ASP.NET applications with the benefits of both Nginx’s performance and Kestrel’s compatibility with ASP.NET.

Other Web Servers

In addition to the aforementioned servers, there are several other web servers like Lighttpd, Cherokee, and Zeus that can also be used to run ASP. These servers may require additional configurations or third-party modules to enable ASP.NET support.

In conclusion, the choice of web server for running ASP.NET programs depends on your specific requirements, platform compatibility, and performance considerations. IIS is the most commonly used option due to its seamless integration with Windows Server and comprehensive feature set.

However, Apache with Mono or Nginx with Kestrel offer alternatives for cross-platform deployments. Ultimately, it’s essential to evaluate your needs and choose a web server that best suits your ASP.NET application.

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