When you access a website, a machine that runs specialized software sends content to your browser. These machines are called servers because they serve up information. A server is in charge of managing the interaction between data and how that data is presented to a user. A server builds pages that are customized based on different parameters that web developers control.If back-end will be your speciality, you should enjoy working with the software that manages setting up databases, creating users and managing access, and server security and maintenance.
Most larger sites handle this by running software that manages the scheduling of content. Now back end or full stack developers are in charge of building and maintaining these systems. Front end developers, on the other hand, might handle the design and help to create the functionality of these pages. Servers come in a variety of shapes and sizes and work within different operating systems. Again as a web developer, you need to have experience with at least one of these tacks, but in order to become more hireable, you want to explore more than one solution and then specialize.
After mastering one of these platforms, learning new technologies is like learning different dialects. Each language uses different syntax to explain the same concepts. Once you learn one, switching to another language is a matter of learning a new set of commands. Some platforms are operating system specific, and there are two main choices, Windows and Linux. Now Linux is more common and less expensive, while Windows servers are popular with large companies. Microsoft is famous for developing great environments and utilities and has embraced a lot of open source projects.
Linux, on the other hand, is fully open source and is supported by an active community of developers. Unless you specialize in the back end, you won't need to do a lot with the server itself. However, it can still be helpful to understand some of the concepts and tools. A good way to get started with this is to install a local version of a PHP and MySQL server in your own work station. The course Installing Apache, MySQL, and PHP can help kick start your learning. It shows you how to install a server in your local machine with multiple platforms.
If you want to explore another option, using Node.js as the server, then take a look at Building a Website with Node.js and Express.js. If back end will be your specialty, you should enjoy setting up databases, creating users, optimizing performance, managing access, security, as well as maintenance.
- Types of web developers
- Servers and databases
- Getting web development training
- Choosing the right tools
- Getting a job