Microsoft have finally woken up to the fact that people aren’t using their Web server product, Internet Information Server.
Un*x-based Web servers rule the roost with the majority of commercial hosting companies, for a couple of reasons.
First is cost – Apache is free, as is Linux that it runs on, where as the Microsoft option requires a copy of Windows Server which retails for around $1,000.
Another is that many of the applications that are run on the Internet, and are freely available, use the programming language, PHP – twenty-two million Web sites currently. PHP is widely know as running slowly on IIS.
Microsoft have now signed a deal with Zend Technology to get PHP running faster, more reliably and increasing its stability. The deal covers Windows Server 2003 and the upcoming version Windows ‘Longhorn.’
To get the PHP working efficiently on their Server products, Microsoft will develop a version of FastCGI them. They will give away.
Microsoft will be excited with the comments of Andi Gutmans, co-founder and chief technology officer at Zend, “Since our preliminary work with Microsoft, we have already seen a better than 100 percent performance gain with some PHP applications on Windows Server 2003.” Good start.
Clearly this is great for Zend, a major mover in the PHP-world, as we suspect that they’ll be getting bundles of money for their troubles. Actual details of the financial arrangements were not disclosed.
As to whether anyone will actually choose to run PHP on Windows Server, when they can get it running for free on Linux – What do you think?