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Definition: Application Server
An application server, also known as appserver is a software framework that handles or manages all the application operations in between the clients and an organizations backend business applications or databases. The software framework facilitates in creating the web applications as well as a server environment to run them. The application server is seen as a feature of a three-level application, comprising of a graphical user interface (GUI) server, then an application (business logic) server and finally a database and an exchange server.
Thus it basically divides an application into three categories:
• A front end or the first tier, graphical user interface usually a web browser based like a workstation or a personal computer.
• A middle tier or the business logic application server possibly on an intranet server or even a local area network(LAN)
• A back end or the third-most tier usually the database and transaction server on a mainframe or a large server.
In numerous cases, the application server joins or works with a Web (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) server and is known as a Web application server. The Web browser or the program underpins a simple to-create HTML-based front-end for the client. The Web server gives a few unique approaches to forward a request to an application server and to forward back a new Web page to the client. Common Gateway Interface (CGI), Microsoft's Active Server Page, and the Java Server Page are some common such approaches.
The Java application servers are generally based upon the Java™ 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition (J2EE™) and utilizes a multi-level model including a Client Tier, a Middle Tier, and an EIS Tier. The Client Tier can be one or more applications or programs. The J2EE Platform is in the Middle Tier and comprises of a Web Server and an EJB Server. (These servers are likewise called "compartments.") There can be extra sub-levels in the center level. The Enterprise Information System (EIS) level has the current applications, documents, and databases. For storing business information, the J2EE stage needs a database that is accessible through the JDBC, JDO API. The database may be available from web segments and application client components.