The acronym LAMP refers to a solution stack of software, usually free and open source software, used to run dynamic Web sites or servers. The original expansion is as follows:
- Linux, referring to the operating system;
- Apache, the web server;
- MySQL, the database management system (or database server);
- Perl, PHP or Python, which are scripting languages.
The combination of these technologies is used primarily to define a web server infrastructure, define a programming paradigm of developing software, and establish a software distribution package.
Though the originators of these open source programs did not design them all to work specifically with each other, the combination has become very popular.
What's the attraction to LAMP tools for developers around the world? In part, it's the open source underpinnings of LAMP tools. They're freely available, easily configured, and very robust. They're in a constant state of development and improvement, adding features suggested by the user community at large. They can be easily deployed, fully configured, and maintained with a minimal amount of effort. In short, the LAMP tool kit allows developers to do what they do best: develop, without spending a disproportionate amount of time in the administrative details.
The scripting component of the LAMP stack has its origins in the CGI web interfaces that became popular in the early 1990s. This technology allows the user of a web browser to execute a program on the web server, and to thereby receive dynamic as well as static content. Programmers used scripting languages with these programs because of their ability to manipulate text streams easily and efficiently, even when they originate from disparate sources. For this reason system designers often referred to such scripting systems as glue languages.
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