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Nginx Powers Hulu.com ?

 | November 1, 2007 |  Posted In: Insight for Developers


Look at this post recently published on TechCrunch – It is ugly standard 404 error message, but what is interesting is the server line which shows nginx 0.5.32

I have checked and indeed images served from assets.hulu.com have nginx server in response header.

This would be the first site of this (planned) scale to run Nginx. So far even though Nginx was used by many major companies in Russia, the rest of the world preferred lighttpd often due to better documentation and more active development community.

Peter Zaitsev

Peter managed the High Performance Group within MySQL until 2006, when he founded Percona. Peter has a Master's Degree in Computer Science and is an expert in database kernels, computer hardware, and application scaling.


  • At for today, nginx has pretty nice documentation (russian, english, german) and really friendly community 🙂 The only major difference I see is that nginx is primarily developed by one developer. But it does not hurt its quality at all. Development is really active, bugs are fixed really fast. So, as you may guess – I vote for nginx 😉

  • and where is lighttpd-development these days?
    the buglist is growing and not much happening there in commits.
    I’d say if Jan isn’t doing development then no one else is. So the “only one developer” argument doesn’t count ;).

  • Alexey,

    The documentation which I find hard to find for Nginx is module development. lighttpd has decent documentation and examples so development of the modules is easy. We have already one running in production with ClickAider and one in development.

    I’m pretty agnostic these days and both servers seems to be working well and suitable for the task. For English speaking customers I prefer to advice lighttpd because it has larger english speaking community while for Russian I would use nginx.

  • Thomas,

    Looking at project timeline http://trac.lighttpd.net/trac/timeline Jan is doing some work. Though I believe it is now getting less attention than before. I think MySQL Proxy is what excites Jan now and as this is also priority for Jan’s employer (MySQL AB) we see what we see.

    Though I would say 1.4.18 seems to work good on many sites we deal with, so I guess the bugs are in the niche areas.

  • As for module development – I just want to mention this page, which looks pretty fine for me, but honestly speaking, I’ve developed modules for nginx and lighttpd long time ago and can’t count my experience valuable in this question.

    Anyways, both servers are great and it is nice to have such a great tools when we work on large projects.

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