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From Brian Mearns <>
Subject [users@httpd] Lightweight apache for fast proxying
Date Sun, 22 Nov 2009 21:30:23 GMT
I'm thinking of setting up apache as a fairly rich reverse proxy for a
variety of different servers, and would like some suggestions on a)
whether or not this is a good idea and if there are better
alternatives, and b) how should I build and configure it to maximize

There's the executive summary, here are the details. I already have
Apache httpd set up as a web server with several SSL and NonSSL name
based vhosts. I also have Squid set up as a caching reverse proxy.
Finally, I have a second apache web server instance set up as a test
server: basically I work out my configuration options in this server
(which listens on different ports), and then when it's working
properly I push the configuration into my other (release) server.

So here's what I want to do. Set up a third instance of Apache
exclusively as a front end for my other servers. Generally, it will
just service the same named vhosts as on my original server by reverse
proxying to squid (which is already set up to reverse proxy to the
origin server). I will also set it up with two different sets of
vhosts to a) access my test server (for instance at,
and b) bypass the squid proxy and go straight to the origin server
(e.g., at
Final detail is just that all of my vhosts (including test and
no-cache varieties) will have SSL enabled. I've got SNI working fine
with my current apache server, so I don't think this will be much of
an issue.

I'm pretty comfortable with Apache config, so I don't foresee any
insurmountable difficulties in setting this up. But if anyone can
offer any tips on the best way to do it (for instance, to make sure
the apache reverse proxying happens as fast as possible, or just how
to keep the front end server lightweight), or suggest better
alternatives to using apache for this, I'd really appreciate it.


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