A proxy is also referred to as proxy server software which serves to act as an intermediary between client and server on the internet. Without an intermediary the user would a request the resource directly to the server and the server will serve the resource directly back at the request of the customer. Although this is a simple process to grasp and use using proxies, it can provide benefits like increased speed as well as security and privacy and a lot more. Alongside providing a layer of security, proxies act as a guardian for the internet between clients and servers.

Generally speaking, the bundled package of servers that have installed proxy software is usually referred to as proxy servers. This article will be focusing on proxies traditionally defined as software and in the context of web servers. This article will give a synopsis of the two primary types: one being forward proxy and the other being a forward proxy and the other being a reverse proxy. reverse proxy. Each type has its own usage, which may be confusing due to the similar namesake convention.

This article will provide you with the knowledge of what proxy services and their subtypes, and the ways in which they can be beneficial for common setups. In this article, you’ll be in a position to recognize the scenarios that you can gain from a proxy. You can also choose the best option the case of forward or reverse proxy for any scenario.

Understanding Forward Proxies

Forward proxy also known as an open proxy serves as the representative of a customer who would like to transmit requests over the internet to the server that originated it. In this case, it’s the situation that all requests received from the client are instead sent straight to the forward proxy. This forward proxy acting on behalf on behalf of client examine into the request. At first, it will determine if the client is allowed to submit requests through this particular forward proxy. It will then either refuse requests or redirect them to the origin server. The client isn’t allowed direct access to the internet; it can only be allowed to access details that the forward proxy enables its connection to.

One popular reason to use forward proxy is to provide greater security or privacy online. Forward proxy has the ability to connect to the internet as a client. In this way, it is using another IP address, in contrast to the IP address of your client.

Depending on how it has been set up depending on how it is configured, forward proxy may provide a variety of functions as well as the ability to:

Forward proxies also are used in systems of centralized security and access is based upon permissions, like at work. In the event that all internet traffic is routed by an open forward proxy an administrator can limit access to specific users on the internet using a common firewall. Instead of implementing firewalls on the client layer which could comprise multiple computers with various configurations and users the firewall can be placed at the forward proxy layer.

Be aware that forward proxy servers must be manually set up to work the reverse proxy, while forward proxies may go unnoticed by the client. Depending on the type of IP address the client that is transferred to the server from which it originated via forward proxy, privacy and anonymity may be granted or not.

There are numerous options to investigate for forward proxy services:

Understanding Reverse Proxies

A reverse proxy acts acting as an intermediary for the web server and manages incoming requests from clients in its place. The web server can serve as a one server or a number of servers. It could also function as an app server such as Gunicorn. In any of these situations, a request would come from a user of the internet in general. In most cases, the request would be sent directly to the webserver that has all the resources the client seeking. A reverse proxy acts as an intermediary, protecting the webserver from direct contact with the open internet.

From the perspective of a user an individual’s point of view the procedure of using reverse proxy is not much different than working with the website server in direct contact. It’s basically the same, but the client is unable to discern the distinction. The client makes an request for an item, and it is followed by receiving it, with no additional configuration required by the client.

Reverse proxy proxies may offer some features, including:

While centralized security is an advantage of both forward and reverse proxy solutions, reverse proxies provide this benefit only to Web server layers, not to the client layer. instead of having to maintain firewalls on Web server layers, which can include multiple servers with different configurations, the majority of firewall security is focused at the reverse proxy layer. Additionally, the absence of interfacing with a firewall and interacting with requests from clients off of web servers allows them to concentrate on delivering resources.

If there are multiple servers working behind a reverse proxy it is also able to control how requests are routed to which server. Many web servers may be offering the same service, and each offering different types of resources, or a combination of both. They may employ an HTTP protocol to perform the role of an ordinary web server but they can also incorporate applications server protocols such as FastCGI. It is possible to set up reverse proxy servers to direct clients to certain servers based on the resource being requested or to follow certain traffic load rules.

Reverse proxies also can benefit from their position in front of web servers by virtue of caching. The large static files can be configured with caching rules to ensure that they avoid having 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 having to connect to a web server in any way. In addition, the reverse proxy could handle the compressing the assets.

The popular Nginx webserver is an effective reverse proxy option. Although you can utilize Nginx, Apache web server, it also has reverse proxy capabilities as an additional feature of Apache which is in contrast to Nginx was initially designed for and focuses on reverse proxy functionality.

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

Because “forward” or “reverse” have connotations that refer to directionality, and false connections to “incoming” as well as “outgoing” traffic the labels could be confusing since both kinds of proxy services are capable of handling requests as well as responses. A better approach to differentiate between forward and reverse proxy providers is to look at the requirements of the app you’re developing.

A reverse proxy is a good option when you are developing a solution to serve websites on the internet. They serve as your web servers in any interactions with the internet.

Forward proxy applications are beneficial when they are used to block client traffic for your personal use, or in the workplace. They are a representation of your client’s internet traffic, for any online interaction.

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


The article clarified meaning of a proxy with the two primary types being the forward proxy and the reverse proxy. Practical applications and a glance at beneficial characteristics were used to define forward proxies and reverse proxy. If you’re interested to learn more about implementation of proxies check out our guide on how to configure Nginx as an internet server and reverse proxy for Apache on an Ubuntu 20.04 Server.

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