For the past few years I have been running some software on a WIMP stack. They have been working quite well. I never had any issues with the technology stack itself. Or rather the only issues I had at times stemmed from the fact that a lot of PHP apps automatically assume that you are running Apache. So lately I had this crazy idea to try switching things around and running things on top of a WAMP stack. Here the thing though…
Long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away – as as I call it “back in college” I participated in a discussion on this very topic. It started with the following statement:
“… and on top of that they are running Apache on windows which is kinda stupid!”
This was met with round of nods, and approving grunts from everyone. Since I was the youngest, dumbest and least informed person in the room, I nodded too. Then asked why was it stupid, trying to figure out whether or not I should immediately uninstall apache from my home desktop.
The answer I got was sort of convincing. Apache was never designed to be run on windows. It was ported back to windows – it works because of kludges and hacks were made. It will never be as efficient as a server designed from ground up for the platform. It won’t scale and etc.. This was followed by another round of nods. One again, since I was least experienced, and least knowledgeable person there I didn’t argue the point and taken it as a given. From that point I always tried to run pure LAMP when possible, and if I had to use windows then use WIMP instead of WAMP. And of course I always figured:
“I have this windows box here, and it comes with it’s own built in server, so why would I install another one on top of it”.
Now that I think about it, I can’t really find any empirical data – any tests, or benchmarks which would support the convincing IIS vs Apache argument from my distant past. There are millions of various arguments on which one is better out there but most of them boil down to “Apache is better because it is open sauce” or “IIS sux because it is from Micro$not” and so on. Serverwatch has a nice, objective cross comparison between the two – and if you look at it, you will see that both are almost equivalent when it boils down to features. IIS is better at running ASP, and integrating Windows specific stuff. Apache on the other hand is multi platform and integrates better with linux-y technologies.
I really believe that the whole “Apache is a port” logic is faulty. It is an open source project after all, and people have been successfully deploying it on Windows for years, even in production environments. I’m sure it grew up considerably in the last 6 years or so since I had that conversation too. So if it was flaky back then, I’m sure it is not flaky now.
What do you think? Is WAMP a viable option these days? Should people stick to WIMP? Or is WIMP the abomination here? Is PHP really better off pairing up with Apache? I’m throwing it out there because I honestly don’t know. On one hand, I don’t want to try to fix what is obviously not broken. On the other hand, perhaps running WAMP would be more beneficial in a long run. LAMP is not really an option at that location I’m afraid.
[tags]apache, iis, server, php, wimp, wamp, lamp[/tags]