What is a Server: Definition, Functions and Types

What is a Server
What is a Server: Definition

The question of what a server is still quite often arises in some circles. Especially for those who are learning about network computers. Because the server is one of the important components that will be encountered when doing network construction.

The use of a server is the right solution to organize and manage data with wider storage. The existence of a server allows management and storage of data that is more optimal than using a client computer.

In this article, Langit Automation will discuss about the definition, types and functions of a server. So that later you can understand more about the world of servers and also their application in the process of transferring data between devices more easily and quickly.

What is a Server: Definition, What are Servers?

Server is a computer system that has special services in the form of data storage. The collection of data stored on the server can be in the form of information, documents, or other complex data.

Special services on the server are intended for the client side with the need to provide information for users and visitors. Servers have an important role to send and receive data or information quickly.

In general, the form of a server is a computer network with a very large size. The network system is supported by other components such as processor, RAM, and so on in a large capacity.

Servers are widely used by various organizations or companies. Its main function is as a means for data storage. So that the stored data collection will be more secure and convenient when accessed.

When building a computer network topology, generally it will also require the presence of a server. The server will be the command center or activity of the devices on the network.

Server Functions

In general, the function of the server is as a medium for storing data and information in a large capacity. Not only that, the server also has other important functions that you need to know.

For information, here are some of the functions of a server:

1. Application Server Functions

The function of the application server is to store various types of applications that can be processed and accessed by the client. Application servers have an important role to help businesses in the process of managing documents and enterprise application products.

2. Proxy Server

The function of a proxy server is to manage traffic on a network through a proxy configuration. In short, a proxy server functions to connect client computers to the internet network.

3. Data Servers

The data server has a function to store data. The data stored is data that has become information or data that is still raw. Later, the data can be accessed by client devices with the help of applications that are on the server.

Types of Servers on the Network

Servers have several different types that can be used according to needs. For information, here are some types of servers that you need to know.

1. Web Server

The first type of server is a web server. A web server is a special computer network that handles HTTP and HTTPS model requests. So, the web server will receive some display code from the browser which will then send it back in the form of a web page.

The page will be sent in the form of a display format in the form of HTML and CSS documents. Then the format will be processed into a more attractive and easy-to-read display for users.

The function of the web server is to send the information requested by the previous user through the browser using a special protocol. So that users can access it in the form of a page display in the form of text, video, images, and so on.

The role of the web server is not only to display the World Wide Web (www) only. But it can also be used to review or make arrangements in a job. For examples on the use of printers, cameras, and other types of hardware.

2. Mail Server

The type of server that you also need to know next is the Mail Server. This server can be used to exchange messages between fellow users electronically. Mail servers are divided into two different types namely Incoming Mail Server and Outgoing Mail Server.

Incoming mail servers consist of POP3 and IMAP. POP3 (Post Office Protocol 3rd version) is an electronic messaging protocol for storing messages sent and received on a local drive. While IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) always saves messages sent and received into the Mail Server.

In general, the mail server functions to exchange messages between users with several steps of supported mail protocols and files according to the web client used. The file can be text, images, video, audio, and so on.

3. Database Servers

The next type of server is a database server. Database server is a computer network that provides services in the form of database management and accepts client requests to access databases on the server.

In general, there are 4 (four) categories of database servers. The database servers include flat file databases, relation databases, object databases, and relational-object databases. Each type of database will have different functions and uses.

The main function of the database server is to provide big data management services more easily for users. So that the search process or data management can be done more effectively and regularly.

Database servers are widely used by various institutions, organizations, and even large companies. Apart from being a place to store data, Database Server also provides data access services for many users at the same time.

4. File Server

File Server is a computer network that provides the needs of data stored on a disk. The disk location can be used to store various types of data such as images, video, audio, text, and so on.

This server is designed to be integrated directly with the workstation. So that the process of storing and retrieving data can be monitored more regularly.

 The function of the file server is as the heart of a server that provides very large memory storage capacity. This server allows to control communication and information between network devices.

5. DHCP Server

DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) Server is a network that runs IP address rental services and TCP/IP information to clients. Generally, operating systems such as Windows 2000 Server, Windows Server 2003, and GNU/Linux use this type of server.

The main function of a DHCP server is to provide IP address services automatically to clients/computers/hosts on a requesting TCP/IP network. So that the administrator does not need to be preoccupied with manually creating an IP address for the client because the IP has been assigned by the server.

6. Proxy Server

A proxy server is a computer network that has a very important role for users. Proxy Server has a role as an intermediary for users with the web server. Every user who accesses the internet network, will always pass the proxy first before proceeding to the web server.

The main function of a proxy server is to secure the user’s IP address when surfing the internet. If it is not protected by a proxy, the IP address will be easily seen by other users on the internet so that the user’s data can be tracked.

In addition, proxies can also be used to block some websites that you don’t want to visit. So that the activities of accessing the internet will be safer, more comfortable, and user privacy is also maintained.

7. FTP Server

FTP (File Transfer Protocol) Server is an internet protocol that provides server data access on one network only. Clients can request access to exchange files through the server. So the data exchange process can only be done through the server.

The process carried out by FTP is actually included in the ASCII code. In general, this method is quite dangerous because the data that is exchanged does not go through an encryption process so it is prone to be read by irresponsible parties.

The main function of the FTP Server is to provide services to clients and visitors to access data stored on the server.

8. Game Servers

The next type of server is Game Server. This server is specifically for gamers or the gaming world. Game servers are made to provide a better playing sensation for users when accessing and playing online games.

Currently, game developers are focused on providing online multiplayer game. So that it can make the game capacity lag if too many users access the game at the same time.

Read : How to Choose a Network Topology For Your Business

To prevent this, a special server was developed for games. Game servers consist of two categories, namely external servers and internal servers.

External servers are game data stores provided by game developers. While the internal server is a game data storage that is on the user’s device. An example of a very popular game server is Steam.


Server is a computer system that has special services, especially in terms of providing and managing information data. Through this server, users will be able to access and exchange data more easily and effectively.

In general, there are 8 types of servers commonly used, namely web servers, mail servers, files, proxies, databases, FTP, DHCP, and game servers. Each server has different functions and uses.

That’s a discussion of what a server is, its functions, and also its types. With this article, I hope you can understand more about the meaning and types of servers used in computer networks.

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