April 2016 Web Server Survey

In the April 2016 survey we received responses from 1,083,252,900 sites and 5,800,222 web-facing computers. This reflects a gain of nearly 80 million sites and 18,100 computers.

This is the largest number of sites the survey has ever seen, beating the previous maximum of 1,028,932,208 in October 2014. The number of web-facing computers is also at its largest, although this total has generally risen much more steadily than the number of sites.

Microsoft was the only major vendor to gain sites this month, and so it was solely responsible for this month's total reaching its highest value ever. Apache lost 33 million sites, while nginx and Google suffered much smaller losses. Many of the 124 million additional sites using Microsoft IIS are aimed at a Chinese audience. Several million are served from just a handful of IP addresses, using either IIS 6.0 or 7.5.

However, this proliferation of new Microsoft-powered websites is largely driven by automated processes. Many are "spam" sites that use link farming techniques to attract traffic. Although Microsoft's website count grew by a remarkable 38.9% in April, it lost 12,100 web-facing computers. High quality websites that attract genuine repeat traffic tend to have a very low number of sites per computer compared with the computers that are involved in link farming, which sometimes host millions of automatically-generated sites each. Corroborating this further, Microsoft suffered a loss of 341,000 active sites this month, taking its total down by 2.0%.

Meanwhile, nginx continued its relentless growth. It gained 19,500 web-facing computers this month (+2.4%), was the only major vendor to increase its active sites count, and increased its share within the top-million websites by 0.49 percentage points.

nginx is particularly prominent at Amazon and DigitalOcean, with the two hosting companies accounting for more than 25% of all nginx computers. In particular, nginx is the most commonly used server at DigitalOcean, being used by just under half of its web-facing droplets. At Amazon, despite its large share of all nginx computers, Apache is more than twice as common, with nginx only used on a quarter of EC2 instances.

Total number of websites

Web server market share

DeveloperMarch 2016PercentApril 2016PercentChange
Microsoft317,761,31831.65%441,470,89440.75%9.10
Apache325,285,18532.40%292,043,54826.96%-5.44
nginx143,464,29314.29%143,349,43913.23%-1.06
Google20,790,7672.07%20,597,6051.90%-0.17
Web server market share for active sites

DeveloperMarch 2016PercentApril 2016PercentChange
Apache83,825,65849.16%82,446,61949.15%-0.01
nginx28,026,67716.44%28,196,26216.81%0.37
Microsoft17,228,19710.10%16,887,24210.07%-0.04
Google13,545,8647.94%12,968,1627.73%-0.21

For more information see Active Sites

Web server market share for top million busiest sites

DeveloperMarch 2016PercentApril 2016PercentChange
Apache455,42845.54%451,87245.19%-0.36
nginx251,44025.14%256,36125.64%0.49
Microsoft113,58511.36%112,60411.26%-0.10
Google20,2662.03%20,4132.04%0.01
Web server market share for computers

DeveloperMarch 2016PercentApril 2016PercentChange
Apache2,771,48147.93%2,780,85947.94%0.01
Microsoft1,538,37526.61%1,526,22726.31%-0.29
nginx824,46214.26%843,92614.55%0.29