Apache has long time been the biggest Web Server, with Microsofts IIS as good second. It’s like that since somewhere in 1998 and it will be like that for a very long time, trust me. But the it’s the rise of the PHP server side scripting software on Microsoft Servers that caught my attention in Netcrafts September Web Survey.

The doubling of active sites running on Microsoft 2003 Server over a few months might be remarkable, it’s less surprising if you keep in mind that a lot of hosting companies are switching from older Windows Server software to the newer, more robust and stable Windows 2003 Server software. Only 5% are migrations from Linux to Windows 2003.

But as I told, the number of PHP-drive sites running on Windows Server software has doubled over the last year. This could mean a serious boost for PHP to become the second Server-Side scripting software on Windows after Macromedia’s ColdFusion, as PHP is not limited to Linux/Apache/MySQL, but could be hosted on a variety of envorinements.

I expect PHP to become the second language on Windows after ASP somewhere in the first half of the next year.

Don’t forget to check out this very interesting article on ServerWatch: IIS vs. Apache, Looking Beyond the Rhetoric By Martin Brown!