An proxy is also known for its role as a proxy. is a program that acts to act as an intermediary for a client and server on the internet. In the absence of a proxy server, a user would send a request for every resource straight to server, and servers would serve the requested resource directly to the user. While this approach is straightforward to comprehend and use, the addition of proxy servers can offer advantages such as more performance, privacy and security, etc. In addition to providing a layer of pass-through proxy servers act as a guardian for the internet, separating clients from servers.

The consensus is that the hardware for servers, paired with proxy software is also often referred as proxy servers. This article will concentrate on proxies traditionally defined as software, and specifically with respect with web server. We will give a synopsis of the two main kinds of proxies which are forward proxy and reverse proxy. reverse proxy. Each kind has a distinct use, and can be confusing due to the identical namestamp.

This article will provide you with an idea of different types of proxy and subtypes, and their value for the most common setups. By reading this article, you’ll be able to understand the situations when you may benefit from a proxy, and make the right choice between reverse proxy and forward proxy depending on the scenario.

Understanding Forward Proxies

Forward proxy sometimes called open proxy, sometimes referred to as open proxy is a proxy for the user who wishes to make a request over the internet to a source server. In this scenario, every attempt to send requests made by the client will rather be directed via the forward proxy. A forward proxy acting in place of the client will look into the request. It first will determine if the client is allowed to accept requests via this particular forward proxy. Then, it can either deny requests or send it back to source server. The client is not able to have direct access to the internet; it is only allowed access to the information that the forward proxy gives it access to.

One of the most popular applications for forward proxy servers is increased privacy or security on the internet. A forward proxy accesses the internet in lieu of an individual client, and in the process, it may use a different IP address in comparison to the IP address of the client.

Depending on how it’s been configured, based on the way it’s configured forward proxy can provide various features that allow you to:

Forward proxies can also be used in systems that provide central security as well as permission-based access to the internet, for instance at a workplace. If all internet traffic is routed through an open forward proxy layer, an administrator is able to restrict access to only certain clients to the internet. This is filtered by an common firewall. Instead of having firewalls in place for the client layer that could comprise a variety of machines with various user configurations, firewalls can be placed at on the front proxy layer.

Be aware that forward proxies should be manually set up to use, while reverse proxy servers could be ignored by the client. According to the type of IP address of a client is sent to the server that originated it via the forward proxy privacy and security may either be provided or rendered transparent.

There are a myriad of options to take into consideration in determining forward proxy:

Understanding Reverse Proxies

Reverse proxy is a web server, which handles the requests of customers on its behalf. It can be used as a one server, or as a series of servers. It could also comprise an application server, like Gunicorn. In any of these situations the request will be made via the web in general. Most of the time the request is made directly to the server with all the resources the user requires. Reverse proxy acts as an intermediary, segregating your server from communications with the web’s public.

From a consumer’s point the client’s point of reverse proxy isn’t different from connecting directly to an internet server. It’s basically the same, but the client can’t discern the distinction. The client makes a request for the resource and receives it without any further configuration required on the part of the client.

Reverse proxies provide options like:

While central security is a benefit of both reverse and forward proxy solutions, reverse proxies provide this feature to the server layer, only the layer that clients use. instead of maintaining firewalls on the server level which could include multiple servers and various configurations, the majority of firewall security is focused at the reverse proxy layer. In addition, eliminating the responsibility of dealing with firewalls and interacting with requests from clients that are not on web servers lets them concentrate solely on delivering the needs of their customers.

If there are multiple servers hosting through a reverse proxy it also handles the routing of requests to the servers. There could be multiple web servers serving the same resource, serving different kinds of resources or a combination of both. They may utilize their HTTP protocol for functioning as a normal web server, but they may also include protocols for application servers like FastCGI. You can create reverse proxy that routes clients to particular servers according to the requested resource, or to follow certain rules for traffic volume.

Reverse proxies can also benefit from their positioning before web servers by providing caching capabilities. Large static assets can be set using caching rules to prevent reaching web servers every request. There are options that provide the option of serving static content directly, without having to communicate with a webserver. Additionally, reverse proxy can manage compressing these files.

The well-known Nginx web server is a wildly popular reverse proxy choice. While it is true that Apache web server does have reverse proxy capabilities, Apache web server does have the ability to reverse proxy as an added feature available to Apache However, Nginx was designed originally to and is focused on the reverse proxy feature.

Distinguishing Forward Proxy from Reverse Proxy Use Examples

Since “forward” and “reverse” are associated with an impression of directionality and false comparisons with “incoming” as well as “outgoing” traffic and could be confusing because both kinds of proxies handle requests and response. Instead, a better way to distinguish between forward and reverse proxy servers is to study the requirements of the app you’re building.

Reverse proxy is a vital element in the creation of a method to run web-based applications via the internet. They function as your servers when you interact with the Internet.

Forward proxy can be useful for displaying customers for personal use or even in a workplace. They are a way to display the information of your client when you connect to the internet.

A distinction based upon use case instead of focusing solely on similar naming conventions will make it easier to avoid confusion.


The article clarified meaning of a proxy with two types of them being the reverse and forward proxy. Practical applications and an exploration of the beneficial attributes were utilized to identify forward proxies and reverse proxies. If you’re interested exploring the benefits of proxy servers, follow our tutorial on how to set up Nginx as an internet server and reverse proxy in Apache in Ubuntu 20.04 Server. Ubuntu 20.04 Server.

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