Daniel - July 5, 2021
Here is the Reverse Proxy vs Forward Proxy comparison. Read on!
Proxies are used to route and secure data traffic between networks. For less tech-savvy individuals, distinguishing between a Forward and Reverse proxy can be confusing. Hence, this post will examine in detail the difference between a Forward and a Reverse proxy.
Proxies are intermediary servers that stand between a user and the internet. We can describe proxies as a gateway that filters data traffic.
Proxies work the same way; they make and receive connection requests on your behalf, receive and filter data requests to servers using their IP address, location, and other identifying information while, your IP address, location, and other information remain masked in the background.
When next you connect to the internet using proxies, know that your data requests go to the proxy server, which now forwards it to the appropriate website or internet resource. The proxy server also receives data traffic on your behalf, filter the data traffic, and forward to your device.
Also, when connecting to a website or online platform, you might be interacting with a web proxy which receives data and filter data traffic before passing same to the web server you’re connecting to (that’s a reverse proxy).
A forward proxy is so popular that we refer to it as ‘proxy.’ When you connect to the internet via a proxy, you’re using a Forward proxy. A forward proxy is a proxy server that stands between your device and the internet. Therefore, the proxy server is a middleman that acts as a data traffic exchanger between you and the internet.
A forward proxy bypasses geo-restrictions and internet censorship, masks your IP address, speeds up your browsing speed by acting as a cache, and filters out malicious data traffic. For example, no matter your location, you can always watch your favorite TV show on Netflix US using proxies even when you’re outside the US.
A reverse proxy controls data traffic to a web server; it filters incoming data requests from internet users. Thus it stands as a gateway to a web server.
Imagine you have to go to an organization to introduce a new product concept or seek partnership; you interact with the Marketing Manager, the Secretary to the CEO, or other important personal carrying out the organization’s objectives; they are the proxy to the CEO.
A reverse proxy works the same way, performing authentication tasks, acting as a cache, or load balancing by receiving and distributing heavy data traffic amongst other reverse proxy servers.
A Forward proxy stands in between your device and the internet, it masks your IP address by sending and receiving data traffic requests on your behalf using its IP address, location, and other identifying information, while a Reverse proxy acts as a front to web servers, receive and filters data traffic from internet clients.
Websites that use reverse proxies have their IP address and location hidden from view as they remain in the background letting the clients interact with the proxy server.
Reverse proxies speed up a website’s loading speed by acting as a cache to web servers. Hence, if a website is performing poorly, it will go unnoticeable since it has cached copy stored on the Reverse proxy server.
Therefore, both Forward and Reverse proxies perform different tasks, they both:
Filter data traffic
Serve as access points to a device or web server.
Forward Proxies makes you anonymous by masking your IP address and location, thus making you appear anonymous online. On the other hand, a reverse proxy acts as a Firewall that hides your webservers; it interacts with data traffic from clients’ devices.
To conclude the reverse proxy vs forward proxy comparison, you should note that forward proxies have gained wider reach compared with Reverse proxies due to the need to protect our data and browsing activities. The two common types of Forward proxies are the Datacenter and the Residential proxies available at ProxyRack.
Reverse proxies are also important to web owners, they protect websites against malicious data requests, DDoS attacks, and heavy data traffic as well as speed up their website’s loading time. You can also source Reverse proxies by contacting out support team.
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