In Linux world the ubiquitous Apache web server has held position as undisputed big chief since inception, however technology, as it does, advances and amongst an ever increasing proliferation of realised Linux platforms there's many a sysadmin embracing the rise in popularity of it's biggest contender, Cherokee, still from the same open source 'reservation' but with a fresher, faster footprint and a substantially more user friendly admin interface (in that it actually has one). Could the days of cli admin and confusing .conf file editing be over? Well, I must admit since discovering Cherokee I honestly can't see me using Apache again.
Cherokee is developed to be light and robust whilst offering easy administration through a clean and comprehensive web GUI. Below is a breakdown of features offered and applications available.
Web server features
- TLS and SSL
- Virtual Servers
- URL rewriting and redirections supporting regular expressions
- Authentication via htdigest, htpasswd, LDAP, MySQL, PAM, Plain, and Fixed list.
- Reverse HTTP proxy
- HTTP Load balancing
- Traffic shaping
- Custom and Apache compatible log format.
- Ability to launch web applications on demand
- Audio/Video streaming
- On the fly gzip and deflate compressions
- Resilient to the 10000 simultaneous connections barrier
- Server Side Includes
- uWSGI support
- RRDtool statistics
- Data base bridging and Sharding
- Graphical configration interface
- Point & Click deployments through an application market
Configuration wizards are provided to automatically configure the web server to perform specific tasks, or run frameworks and applications. These provide support for:
The web GUI is invoked from a CLI via the cherokee-admin command which provides a dynamic login password active for one session only. On returning to a command prompt the admin session, and any related access, is terminated completely and becomes inaccessible, as such all configuration parameters and administration are kept completely secure.
Fig 1: The Cherokee Admin main GUI
For those hesitant to migrate who may be concerned about potential disparities between Apache and Cherokee functionality, well, don't be. Cherokee is a direct drop in replacement for Apache, matching structure (/var/www/) and functionality perfectly whilst demystifying previously confusing areas such as Virtual Host config with reassuring visual simplicity.
Installation (for Ubuntu) can be dropped in directly from existing repos via the apt-get command, however to obtain the latest release it's recommended to add the Cherokee PPA (followed by an apt-get update and apt-get upgrade)..
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:cherokee-webserver
As you may have gathered Cirronix are big Cherokee fans, we think you will be too.