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A proxy server is an exclusive software system running on a computer that works as an intermediary between an endpoint device and another server from which a user is requesting a service. The proxy server may reside in the same machine as a firewall server or it may be on a different server.
One of the benefits of a proxy server is that its cache can help all users. If an internet site is often accessed, this is likely to be in the proxy’s cache which enhances response time. A proxy can also record its connections, which can be useful in troubleshooting.
How Proxy Servers Work
When a proxy server has a request for an internet resource, it looks in its local cache of formerly accessed pages. If it spots the page, it sends it to the user without redirecting the request to the internet. If the page is not saved in the cache, the proxy server requests for the page from the server. When the page is reflected, the proxy server connects it to the original request and redirects it to the user.
Proxy servers are utilised for both legal and illegal intentions. For businesses, a proxy server is used to simplify security, administrative control or caching services. For personal use, proxy servers are used to allow user privacy and anonymous surfing. Proxy servers can also be used for the reverse purpose of tracking traffic and weakening user privacy.
The proxy server is invisible to the user. All requests and responses seem to be direct with the addressed internet server.
Users can retrieve web proxies online or set up web browsers to always use a proxy server. Browser settings contain automatic and manual detection options for HTTP, SSL, FTP, and SOCKS proxies.
Shared proxy servers may deal with many users while dedicated proxy servers just deal with one user per server.
Forward and Reverse Proxy Servers
Forward proxies transmit the requests of a client onward to a web server. Users access forward proxies by directly surfing to a web proxy address or by setting up their internet settings. Forward proxies permit evasion of firewalls and enhance user privacy and security but may also be used to copy illegal materials.
Reverse proxies administer all requests without requesting any action on the part of the requester.
Sites might be blocked for legal reasons. Reverse proxies may be used to eliminate connection to corrupt, prohibited or copyrighted content. Sometimes these reasons are admissible but sometimes justification is doubtful. Reverse proxies sometimes prevent access to news sites where users could view leaked information. They can also prevent users from retrieving sites where they can divulge information about government or industry actions. Blocking access to such websites may disrupt free speech rights.
More Types of Proxies
Transparent proxies are commonly found near the exit of a corporate network. These proxies integrate network traffic.
Anonymous proxies hide the IP address of the client to allow them to retrieve materials blocked by firewalls or to evade IP address bans. They may be used for improved privacy or protection from attack.
Highly anonymous proxies hide the fact that they are being utilised by clients and disclose a non-proxy public IP address. They hide the IP address of their clients using and grant access to sites that block proxy servers.
Socks 4 and 5 proxies offer proxy service for UDP data and DNS look up operations aside from web traffic. Some proxy servers offer both Socks protocols.
DNS proxies redirect domain name service (DNS) requests from LANs to internet DNS servers while storing for improved speed.