What is IIS?

  • IIS stood for Internet Information Server for versions 4.0 and down.
  • IIS stood for Internet Information Services for versions 5.0 and up.
  • IIS is not to be confused with the much less powerful PWS (Personal/Peer Web Server) that ran on Windows 95/9x systems and Windows NT Workstations. This version was limited to around 10 connections at a time.

IIS Versions.

  • IIS 1.0 was available as a free add-on for Windows NT 3.51.
  • IIS 2.0 came with Windows NT 4.0.
  • IIS 3.0 came with Windows NT 4.0 SP 3.
  • IIS 4.0 came with Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack.
  • IIS 5.0 came with Windows 2000 Professional.
  • IIS 5.1 came with Windows XP Professional and Windows XP Media Center Edition.
  • IIS 6.0 came with Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition.
  • IIS 7.0 came with Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista.
  • IIS 7.5 came with Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7.

IIS is a network file and application server product by Microsoft. IIS 4 runs in a 400 kB process called Inetinfo.exe. IIS 4 can be installed with the Windows NT Option Pack. IIS 4 provides standard Internet services:

  • HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol). Delivers HTML pages and web applications to the Internet & intranet.
  • FTP (File Transfer Protocol). Allows FTP clients to download & upload files.
  • SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol). IIS provides IIS with client services for e-mail so it can use e-mail.
  • NNTP. (Network News Transfer Protocol). Newsgroups are publicly displayed e-mails that people can post replies for. IIS supports a single-server discussion group, as opposed to a full global Usenet NNTP news service. You'd have to get something like MS Exchange Server for that. [Insidious.]
  • gopher. An Internet technology that allowed gopher clients to download files using text-based directories. Versions of IIS prior to 4 supported this, but gopher is so dead because of web pages.

Miscellaneous IIS Features

  • IIS supports HTTP 1.1
    • Host headers enable an IIS server to host multiple web site using its single IP address.
    • Pipelining enables clients to have multiple requests at a time instead of one at a time.
    • Persistent connections enable IIS multiple objects (eg images, Java applets, etc.) over fewer connections.
    • Chunked transfers enable IIS to break data into multiple pieces with different sizes.
  • Each IIS application or sub-process runs in separate virtual machines. This shields each app from the rest.
  • IIS can use ASP and MTS to provide transactional service apps.
  • IIS can participate in clustering services that enable server A to take the place of server B, if server B fails. 
  • IIS can use Microsoft Certificate Server to provide additional site security.
  • Windows XP has IIS 5.1 and ASP 3.0
  • In IIS 6, ASP are prohibited by default. To turn them on, go to IIS Manager. Click on "Web Service Extensions" on the left hand side. Ref:

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