DEV Community

Cover image for Client-Server Model

Client-Server Model

Mahmoud EL-kariouny
Full Stack Web Developer
・2 min read

What is the Client-Server Model?

⦁ In order to build database-backed web applications, we first need to understand how servers, clients, and databases interact.

⦁ A server is a centralized program that communicates over a network (such as the Internet) to serve clients.

⦁ And a client is a program (like the web browser on your computer) that can request data from a server.

⦁ When you go to a web page in your browser, your browser (the client) makes a request to the server—which then returns the data for that page.

Relational Database Clients :

⦁ A database client is any program that sends requests to a database.

⦁ In some cases, the database client is a web-server! When your browser makes a request, the web server acts as a server (fulfilling that request)

⦁ But when the web server requests data from the database,

  • It is acting as a client to that database—and the database is the server (because it is fulfilling the request).

Servers, Clients, Hosts :

⦁ In a Client-Server Model, a server serves many clients.

⦁ The Client can be (Commands line Applications, Graphical users interfaces, Web App).

⦁ Servers and clients are programs that run on hosts.

⦁ The server sometimes refers to both the computer and the process that serves the web app

⦁ Hosts are computers connected over a network (like the internet!).

⦁ The host (computer) of the web server and the database, can be the same computer.

Requests and Responses :

⦁ A client sends a request to the server

⦁ The server's job is to fulfill the request with a response it sends back to the client.

⦁ Requests and responses are served via a communication protocol, which sets up the expectations and rules for how the communication occurs between servers and clients.


Don't let this confuse you.
Basically, we call things clients when they are making a request and servers when they are fulfilling a request.

Since a web server can do both, it sometimes acts as a server and sometimes acts as a client :).

Discussion (0)