A server-side application is a computer program that is executed on a central computer ( server ), while input and output from / to the user takes place via decentralized computers ( clients ).
The opposite of a server-side application is a client-side application where the program logic is executed on the user's computer. It is not excluded that the client program for its part communicates with servers, e.g. B. to access a database.
Depending on other technical properties, a distinction is made between several subgroups of server-side applications:
For a web application , only a web browser is required on the client side . Input and output take place via dynamically generated websites. The program logic runs on the web server addressed via the HTTP protocol .
Rich Internet Application
A rich Internet application is similar to a web application with the difference that part of the program is shifted to the clients, e.g. B. by Java applets or ActiveX components. As a result, the graphical user interface can be expanded to include functionalities such as B. Drag and Drop can be expanded, and some calculations can be performed on the client, which reduces the load on the server.
Thin client architecture
With a thin client , the client is only a pure input and output medium. All inputs, every keystroke, every mouse movement are transferred to the server (usually a terminal server ) and processed there. Every single change in the graphical user interface is transmitted pixel by pixel from the server to the client and displayed there.