Apple & Apache: a New Standard in Web Service

The world's most popular Web server now on the world's most popular Web creation platform. Caching proxy Web service and virtual hosting now available on Macintosh.

Santa Barbara, CA, May 12, 1997. Tenon Intersystems today announced shipment of WebTen, an industrial-strength, high-performance Apache Web server for Power Macs. WebTen 1.0 takes advantage of Tenon's unique "UNIX virtual machine" technology to support the widely acclaimed Apache Web server as a double-clickable Macintosh System 7 application. Apache runs in Tenon's multi-threaded, pre-emptive multitasking environment, and has been extended with support for WebStar plug-ins and AppleScript CGIs. This dual strategy of supporting both Apple and UNIX Web extensions gives WebTen the largest family of CGIs of any known Web server. WebTen uses Tenon's advanced TCP stack to provide 'true' virtual hosting and includes caching proxy Web service. These advanced features, coupled with WebTen's top performance and WebTen's browser interface, create a new standard in Web serving for Apple. Tenon's new offering joins the world's most popular Web creation platform (Apple) with the world's most popular Web server (Apache).

WebTen is the fastest Web server on Power Macintosh. WebTen can sustain up to 10,000 connections a minute, or over 10 million connections a day. WebTen's Apache makes use of Squid -- high-performance caching and http accelerator software -- to offload the server and further advance Apache's already top performance. WebTen can also be configured as a caching proxy FTP or HTTP server, reducing local browser access time as well as bandwidth consumption.

WebTen is based on the latest Apache 1.2 with Tenon extensions. Apache 1.2 is fully compliant with HTTP/1.1, which allows for greater performance and efficiency when transferring files. HTTP/1.1 supports "content negotiation" to allow different versions of a single document (e.g., English or French, html or pdf), and "persistent connections" or "keep alive" to give a faster response when a large number of documents are requested over a single connection. In addition, Apache server-side include (SSI) and extended server-side include (XSSI) directives, by embedding special commands in HTML documents to set variables and test conditions, lets users create dynamic Web pages without having to write CGI scripts.

Tenon's Apache extensions enable WebTen to support WebStar 2.0 Plug-Ins and Macintosh AppleScript CGIs, as well as standard Apache modules, industry-standard Perl script, shell script, and application program-based CGIs. This duality -- support for both Apple and UNIX plug-ins and CGIs -- gives WebTen users the best of both worlds. Because WebTen's multitasking execution environment is based on Rhapsody kernel APIs and supports Rhapsody TCP sockets, Tenon's enhanced Apache will easily transition to Apple's next-generation Rhapsody OS.

WebTen supports 'true' virtual hosting. This is made possible by Tenon's advanced TCP stack, which can replace Open Transport and provide features and performance not yet available with Open Transport. Virtual hosting lets ISPs and Web providers support multiple Web servers on a single machine -- each with different host names, IP addresses, and URLs -- and have them appear to be completely separate sites. With WebTen & Tenon's TCP stack, a Macintosh can support multiple physical interfaces and each interface can have many IP addresses. In situations where IP addresses are not readily available, WebTen's 'named' virtual host feature allows the use of the same IP address for multiple virtual hosts.

Apache has been designed with security in mind. Since WebTen is a Macintosh application, it doesn't suffer from known UNIX security vulnerabilities. The only UNIX daemon that WebTen supports is the Apache httpd. Because the Apache sources are publicly available, and because it is the most widely deployed Web server, Apache has received extensive attention in the area of security. When running Apache with Tenon's TCP networking libraries, WebTen is less vulnerable to denial-of-service attacks than WebStar, since Tenon's TCP has been modified to resist the "syn" and "ping-of-death" attacks. A WebTen "security kit" that adds SSL support will be available this quarter. Using SSL with virtual hosts is only possible using Tenon's TCP stack and IP-based virtual hosting. WebTen's upcoming SSL option will, for the first time, allow Macintosh Webmasters to set up secure connections for virtual hosts. Other supported security features include the ability to "allow or deny" site access based on IP address, subnet mask, domain name, or URL, support for "realms" to allow user name and passwords to be applied to specific files or directories, and the ability to limit CGI applications to specific directories.

WebTen's Web-based browser interface enables local or remote administration via your favorite browser. Extensive logging options are available, using Macintosh plug-ins or the built-in features of Apache.

WebStar 2.0 customers can purchase WebTen for $295 until May 31st.

Tenon has been shipping award-winning UNIX, X , and internet software for the Macintosh since 1991. Since Apple's NeXT acquistion, Tenon has extended their unique "UNIX virtual machine" technology to produce a set of "Rhapsody-Ready" internet applications. WebTen is the first offering in this series.

•Tenon and WebTen are trademarks of Tenon Intersystems.

•UNIX is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries, licensed exclusively through X/Open Company Limited.

•WebTen includes software developed by the Apache Group for use in the Apache HTTP server project and Squid which is derived from the cached software from the ARPA-funded Harvest research project.

•All other product names are trademarks of their respective holders.

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