In computer networks, a reverse proxy is a type of proxy server that retrieves resources on behalf of a client from one or more servers. These resources are then returned to the client as though they originated from the proxy server itself.
While a forward proxy acts as an intermediary for its associated clients to contact any server, a reverse proxy acts as an intermediary for its associated servers to be contacted by any client.
It will be easy for non-professional to understand how do reverse proxies work.
The main purpose: a reverse proxy server works as a web broker for a server by requesting content from another source.
Possible uses of this technique:
- hide the existence and characteristics of an origin server or move the contents of a server to another one
- distribution of the requests load to other servers
- web acceleration: reducing the load of one particular server by caching static & dynamyc content
- speeding up loading times by compression of the content
- split testing (A/B test) and multivariate testing
- access to the content on a subdomain via a relative path on the main domain – even if the subdomain exists on a different server than the main website
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