Software & AppsOperating SystemLinux

Apache2 vs. httpd: Are they the same?

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In the world of web servers, two names often come up: Apache2 and httpd. These two terms are often used interchangeably, but are they really the same thing? The short answer is yes, they are essentially the same application, but the naming convention differs depending on the operating system you are using. In this article, we will delve into the details of Apache2 and httpd, their similarities, differences, and how they work.

Quick Answer

Yes, Apache2 and httpd are essentially the same application, the Apache HTTP Server. The difference lies in the naming convention used by different operating systems. In RedHat-based distributions, it is called httpd, while in Debian-based distributions, it is called apache2.

Apache HTTP Server: An Overview

Before we get into the specifics of Apache2 and httpd, let’s first understand what the Apache HTTP Server is. Developed and maintained by the Apache Software Foundation, the Apache HTTP Server, often referred to as just “Apache”, is an open-source web server software that is widely used to host websites and serve web content over the internet.

The Apache HTTP Server is known for its power, flexibility, and support for a wide range of modules, making it a popular choice for both small and large websites. It supports various features like URL rewriting, password authentication, digital certificates, and more.

Apache2 vs. httpd: A Matter of Naming Convention

The difference between Apache2 and httpd lies in the naming convention used by different operating systems. In RedHat-based distributions like CentOS and Fedora, the Apache HTTP Server is referred to as httpd, which stands for HTTP Daemon. On the other hand, in Debian-based distributions like Ubuntu, it is called apache2.

For instance, to install the Apache HTTP Server on a RedHat-based system, you would use the command:

sudo yum install httpd

On a Debian-based system, the equivalent command would be:

sudo apt-get install apache2

In both cases, you are installing the same Apache HTTP Server; the commands only differ because of the naming conventions used by the different distributions.

Configuration and Directory Structure Differences

While the underlying application is the same, there are slight differences in the configuration files and directory structures between apache2 and httpd.

In RedHat-based systems, the main configuration file is located at /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf. In Debian-based systems, the main configuration file is /etc/apache2/apache2.conf.

The directory structure also varies slightly. In RedHat-based systems, the document root (the directory where the website files are stored) is typically /var/www/html, while in Debian-based systems, it is /var/www.


In conclusion, Apache2 and httpd are essentially the same application, the Apache HTTP Server, but are named differently based on the operating system. Regardless of the name, the Apache HTTP Server remains a powerful and flexible choice for hosting websites and serving web content. Whether you’re using a RedHat-based or Debian-based system, understanding the naming conventions and directory structures can help you effectively manage and configure your web server.

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