An proxy is also known as proxy server software which acts in the role of a mediator client and server via the internet. Without a middleman the client would an attempt to request the resource directly to a server, and the server would then serve the requested resource directly at the request of the customer. Although this procedure is easy to comprehend and implement the addition of proxies can bring benefits such as more speed, privacy and security, and many other. In addition to offering a security layer they also act as a security guardian of the internet between users and servers.

The bundle of server hardware with installed proxy software is usually referred to in the context of proxy servers. This article will be focusing on proxies traditionally defined as software, and also when referring to web servers. We will provide a brief overview of the two main kinds: one being forward proxy and the other being a forward proxy and the other being a reverse proxy. reverse proxy. Each type has a different usage, which may be difficult due to the similar name-based convention.

This article will equip you with the understanding of what proxy services and their subtypes, and ways they can be useful for common setups. In this article, you’ll be aware of the situations where you could benefit from a proxy. You can also choose the right solution between reverse and forward proxy in any situation.

Understanding Forward Proxies

Forward proxy, also referred to in the context of being an open proxy, also known as an open is the agent of a client who would like to transmit requests via the internet to a server that initiated it. In this situation, it’s the case that all requests from the client will be directed straight through the forward proxy. The forward proxy, acting in the place on behalf of client take a look at the request. It will first will determine whether the client is allowed to submit requests through this particular forward proxy. Then, it can either reject requests or redirect them to the server that originated it. The client is not allowed direct access to the internet. it will only be allowed to access information that the forward proxy permits its connection to.

One of the most popular reasons for using forward proxy is the desire for greater privacy or security on the internet. Forward proxy has the ability to connect to the internet using the client. In this way, it is using another IP address in comparison to your client’s IP address.

Depending on how it has been configured, based on how it is configured, forward proxy may perform a variety of tasks and the capability to:

Forward proxies also are utilized in systems of central security and access based on permissions, for example, in a workplace. If all internet traffic is routed through an open forward proxy, an administrator could restrict access to only certain users on the internet using a common firewall. Instead of maintaining firewalls for the client layer, which can comprise multiple computers with various configurations and users the firewall can be installed at the forward proxy layer.

Be aware that forward proxy servers must be configured manually to utilize and reverse proxies could not be noticed by the user. Based on the type of IP address the client that is transferred to the server that originated it through the forward proxy privacy and anonymity may be granted or not.

There are a myriad of options to investigate for forward proxy services:

Understanding Reverse Proxies

A reverse proxy acts as an agent for a web server. It manages incoming requests from clients on its behalf. The web server could serve as a single server or a number of servers. Additionally, it can function as an app server, such as Gunicorn. In any of these scenarios it is possible to receive a request from a user of the internet in general. In most cases the request will be directed directly to the webserver that has all the resources the client would be looking for. In contrast, a reverse proxy serves as an intermediary, shielding the webserver from direct contact with the internet.

From the user’s perspective, the process of using reverse proxy is not much different than working with the Web server itself. It’s essentially the same thing, however the client cannot discern the difference. The client sends the request to access resources, which is then received with no further configuration required from the client.

Reverse proxy proxies are able to provide options, such as:

While centralized security is an advantage of both reverse and forward proxy services, reverse proxies give this benefit to Web server layers and not to the layer that clients use. instead of having to maintain firewalls on Web server layers, which can contain multiple servers with various configurations, the majority of firewall security is focused on the reverse proxy layer. Furthermore, removing the obligation to interface with a firewall and interacting with requests from clients off of web servers allows them to focus on providing resources.

If there are multiple servers running through a reverse proxy, it also controls the way requests are routed to the correct server. A number of web servers could be providing the exact same service, each serving different types of resources, or some combination of both. They may employ an HTTP protocol to perform the role of an ordinary web server however, they may also use protocols for application servers like FastCGI. You can create a reverse proxy to route users to specific servers according to the resource being requested or to follow certain traffic load rules.

Reverse proxies can also benefit from their placement in front of web servers by virtue of caching. Large static assets can be set up by caching rules so that they don’t have to connect to web servers every time they need to make a request. There are solutions that provide the option to directly serve static assets, without needing to connect to the web server in any way. In addition, the reverse proxy could handle the compressing the assets.

The well-known Nginx web server can be described as a reliable reverse proxy option. You can also use the Apache web server also comes with a reverse proxy as an added feature of Apache in contrast to Nginx was originally designed to and focuses on the reverse proxy feature.

The distinction between Forward Proxy and Reverse Proxy Use. The difference between Forward Proxy and Reverse Proxy Use

Because “forward” or “reverse” have connotations that refer to directionality, and false comparisons to “incoming” as well as “outgoing” traffic, the labels can be confusing because both types of proxies are able to handle requests as well as respond. A better approach to differentiate between forward and reverse proxy is to consider the needs of the application you’re creating.

Reverse proxy can be useful when you are developing an application that can serve web-based applications via the internet. They serve as your web servers in any interactions on the web.

Forward proxy applications can be beneficial when used in front of clients for private use, or in a work setting. They are a representation of your client’s traffic for any internet-based interaction.

The use case-based differentiation instead of focusing solely on identical naming conventions will aid in avoiding confusion.


In this article, we clarified the meaning of a proxy, with the two most common kinds of them being the forward and the reverse proxy. Practical applications as well as a look at beneficial characteristics were used to define forward proxies and reverse proxies. If you’re interested in learning more about how proxies are implemented, look into our tutorial on how to configure Nginx to act as an Internet server, and reverse proxy on Apache on an Ubuntu 20.04 server.

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