Omnis Technical Note TNWE0001

Omnis Web Client and Personal Web Server

For Omnis Studio
By Tom Hume

Which personal web server do I use with Omnis Web Client and why?

Summary
This technical note seeks to clarify the difference between Microsoft FrontPage Personal Web Server and Microsoft Personal Web Server with respect to Omnis Web Client.
Note: Both Web servers are designed for low volume personal or Intranet use. Neither is recommended as a commercial or corporate web server. The Microsoft Personal Web Server offers features that programmers need to use in order to create Internet Server Application Programming Interface (ISAPI) programs or to access databases using Internet Database Connector (IDC) technology.
The fact that the two applications are very similarly named has led to some confusion between them.
The Microsoft Personal Web Server is the required application when working with Omnis Web Client.

FrontPage Personal Web Server
The FrontPage Personal Web Server is the personal web server that ships with FrontPage 1.0 and FrontPage 1.1. It is a direct descendant of NCSA 1.3, ported from UNIX to Microsoft Windows. It supports only standard input/output Common Gateway Interface (CGI) and the FrontPage Server Extensions. It is a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) server only. It is configurable through the manipulation of text files in the "conf" subdirectory of the server installation directory. It is not suitable for use with Omnis Web Client.

Microsoft Personal Web Server
The Microsoft Personal Web Server includes a Hypertext Transport Protocol (HTTP) and a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) server. The Microsoft Personal Web Server is fully integrated into the Windows 95 taskbar and Control Panel, which allows you to start and stop HTTP and FTP services, to administer the server, or to change general options.

The Microsoft Personal Web Server includes an HTML-based administration utility that also supports full remote administration from a web browser. It supports both user-level and local security. Users can set up the Microsoft Personal Web Server to support Windows NT Challenge/Response (NTML) encrypted-password transmission. The Microsoft Personal Web ServerÕs support for NTLM allows remote FrontPage authors and administrators to be validated by their network logon username and password within the context of a Windows NT network, bypassing the need to re-enter this information when authoring. The Microsoft Personal Web Server disables security when authoring locally so you will not be prompted for your name and password as long as you are running FrontPage from the same computer where the Microsoft Personal Web Server is installed.

Microsoft Personal Web Server fully supports existing standards such as CGI and includes the open Internet Server API (ISAPI) extension to the Win32 API which is up to five times faster than CGI-based applications. Microsoft Personal Web Server also supports simple database access through the Internet Database Connector (IDC).

In short, Omnis Web Client works correctly with Microsoft Personal Web Server but NOT FrontPage Personal Web Server.