May 2018 Web Server Survey

In the May 2018 survey we received responses from 1,584,940,345 sites, 217,875,435 unique domains, and 7,452,628 web-facing computers. This reflects a loss of 198 million sites, but a gain of 3.36 million domains and 65,600 web-facing computers.

nginx saw moderate growth this month, gaining 1.17 million unique domains. This has increased its market share of domains by 0.19 percentage points, even though it lost 44.2 million sites.

The nginx ecosystem has continued to evolve over the past month, with some notable software releases:

  • nginx 1.14.0 was released on the 17 April, which adds HTTP/2 server push support to the nginx stable stream (the recommended release stream for production web servers). HTTP/2 server push can improve the performance of some websites by pre-emptively pushing assets to browser clients, avoiding the need for the client to explicitly make additional GET requests for assets on a page such as images, stylesheets & JavaScript.
  • The first production-ready release of NGINX Unit 1.0 was released on the 12 April, ending the product's beta period. NGINX Unit is a web application server that can serve sandboxed Go, Perl, PHP, Python and Ruby applications on the same server. It is unique in allowing dynamic reloading & remote configuration via a REST API rather than individual configuration files. A bugfix release, NGINX Unit 1.1, was subsequently made available on 26 April.
  • MySQL monitoring support was added to NGINX Amplify on 23 April. This commercial SaaS monitoring product from NGINX Inc. could increase the appeal of transitioning MySQL & PHP applications from Apache-based stacks to nginx-based ones.

Despite losing 59.7 million sites this month, Apache still powers sites on the largest number of unique domains. Apache is also running on 36% of the world's top 1 million websites – 12 percentage points ahead of its closest competitor, nginx.

There was also a 21% reduction of the number websites running Microsoft web server software this month, with the majority of these losses (77%) coming from hosting provider Raksmart, which lost 107 million of these sites. Despite this, the hosting provider gained 49,600 domains that point to Microsoft web servers. Many of the lost websites featured automatically generated content, and so were not counted as Active Sites.

Total number of websites

Web server market share

DeveloperApril 2018PercentMay 2018PercentChange
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Most Reliable Hosting Company Sites in April 2018

Rank Performance Graph OS Outage
DNS Connect First
1 Inc Linux 0:00:00 0.000 0.515 0.005 0.028 0.028
2 Swishmail FreeBSD 0:00:00 0.000 0.247 0.085 0.170 0.171
3 Rackspace Linux 0:00:00 0.004 0.744 0.007 0.020 0.020
4 New York Internet (NYI) FreeBSD 0:00:00 0.004 0.571 0.062 0.128 0.128
5 XILO Communications Ltd. Linux 0:00:00 0.004 0.316 0.073 0.145 0.145
6 EveryCity SmartOS 0:00:00 0.004 0.234 0.073 0.336 0.336
7 Hyve Managed Hosting Linux 0:00:00 0.004 0.182 0.076 0.151 0.151
8 vXtream Ltd Linux 0:00:00 0.004 0.239 0.077 0.154 0.154
9 CWCS Linux 0:00:00 0.004 0.311 0.107 0.198 0.198
10 Pair Networks FreeBSD 0:00:00 0.009 0.368 0.097 0.192 0.192

See full table

GoDaddy had the most reliable hosting company website in April 2018, with zero failed requests, and also with the fastest average connection time of 5ms. GoDaddy provides a wide range of hosting and domain registration services, including its website builder software which is designed to give small businesses a web presence.

Second place hosting company Swishmail was the only other hosting company website to successfully respond to all requests in April. Swishmail has had one of the top 10 most reliable hosting company websites for the past 3 months in a row. Swishmail offers both managed email & web hosting plans using FreeBSD servers running Qmail SMTP & Apache web-server software.

The next 7 top hosting company websites all had the same number of failed requests; however Rackspace maintained its place in the top 3 for another month with its faster average connection time. Rackspace provides a range of managed dedicated & cloud hosting solutions from datacentres located on 4 continents. Through its multi-cloud solution, Rackspace also provides management services for customers using other cloud platforms such as OpenStack, Azure, or AWS.

New York Internet (NYI) made the top 10 again in April. The hosting company clinched 4th place with a slower average connection time than rival Rackspace. NYI offers bare metal, cloud and colocation services in its US datacentres.

All of the 3 hosting company websites served by FreeBSD web servers that Netcraft monitors made the top 10 in April. The remaining 7 hosting company websites in the top 10 were served by web-servers running on either Linux or SmartOS operating systems.

Netcraft measures and makes available the response times of around thirty leading hosting providers' sites. The performance measurements are made at fifteen minute intervals from separate points around the internet, and averages are calculated over the immediately preceding 24 hour period.

From a customer's point of view, the percentage of failed requests is more pertinent than outages on hosting companies' own sites, as this gives a pointer to reliability of routing, and this is why we choose to rank our table by fewest failed requests, rather than shortest periods of outage. In the event the number of failed requests are equal then sites are ranked by average connection times.

Information on the measurement process and current measurements is available.