Let me begin with the definition of a server. Suppose there are a lot of computers connected in a network and in that network, a computer provides data/resources to other computers. The computer which shares data with other systems is called server and this architecture is called client-server architecture. Any operating system can be used in the server machine. We can select a server depending on the business needs, our IT expertise, and the software we want to upload.
Nowadays Linux servers are very much popular. Big companies like Google, Amazon, Flipkart, etc. are using Linux servers. We can imagine the data they have to handle daily. Let’s now discuss the characteristics of a Linux server.
Free and Open Source
Linux is available to everyone as it is open source, so a company has to pay for the installation and maintenance of the server only. In the case of Windows, the company has to either pay for the operating system or will have to pay a periodic amount for a license. Using Linux in the server is more cost-effective than any other operating system.
Let me explain this with an example. We know that we can operate Linux from the terminal without the help of GUI. If in any case, we need to install a GUI, there is a wide range of GUI available like GNOME, KDE, XFCE, etc. And we can install any option which we want. Linux gives us the freedom to choose. Linux shell helps us to interact with the kernel which gives us the control to build new functionalities/utilities and automate the daily tasks. It gives us full control over the server and helps us to build a customized sever as per our wants.
When we compare with Windows and MAC, Linux is considered to be more secure. Linux core has built-in security features. It has a strict user privilege model and it has kernel security defenses to guard against threats. Linux offers a wide range of community support from all over the world so each update es through constant review by these technical experts so that each loophole will be identified and can be updated effectively.
Linux uses fewer resources which makes the system more efficient. Performance of the system will be improved; low infrastructure requirements will be there and that comes to the cost-cutting. All of this makes Linux more reliable. Linux servers and the software can be easily modified.
No Vendor Locking
Vendor lock-in means a situation in which the cost of changing to another vendor is so huge that the client is stuck with the original vendor. Due to economic pressures, an inadequate workforce, or the need to avoid changes to business operations, the customer is “locked-in” to what may be a substandard product or service. Linux has ready-to-use compatibility with other open-source software products and furnishes a quick interface. So, vendor locking can be avoided in many situations.
Update patches without rebooting the server
In Linux servers whenever a software update is needed, we can work on it without rebooting the server by changing a config file or restarting a service. whenever a kernel update is required, there are options of live patching in which rebooting the server is not needed.