Application Server Software

Application Server Software Overview

An Application Server provides services and infrastructure for developing, deploying, and running applications.

Top Rated Application Server Products

TrustRadius Top Rated for 2020

These products won a Top Rated award for having excellent customer satisfaction ratings. The list is based purely on reviews; there is no paid placement, and analyst opinions do not influence the rankings. Read more about the Top Rated criteria.

Application Server Software TrustMap

TrustMaps are two-dimensional charts that compare products based on trScore and research frequency by prospective buyers. Products must have 10 or more ratings to appear on this TrustMap.

Application Server Products

(1-25 of 41) Sorted by Most Reviews

The list of products below is based purely on reviews (sorted from most to least). There is no paid placement and analyst opinions do not influence their rankings. Here is our Promise to Buyers to ensure information on our site is reliable, useful, and worthy of your trust.
Oracle WebLogic Application Server

For more information visit

Key Features

  • Application server performance (31)
  • Administration and management (32)
  • Installation (32)

NGINX, a business unit of F5 Networks, powers over 65% of the world's busiest websites and web applications. NGINX started out as an open source web server and reverse proxy, built to be faster and more efficient than Apache. Over the years, NGINX has built a suite of infrastructure…

Microsoft IIS

Microsoft IIS is an application server and infrastructure.

Key Features

  • Application server performance (28)
  • Administration and management (28)
  • Security management (28)
Apache Tomcat

Tomcat is an open-source web server supported by Apache.

Key Features

  • Application server performance (20)
  • Security management (20)
  • Administration and management (20)
Apache HTTP Server

Apache Web Server (Apache HTTP Server) is an open source HTTP web server for modern operating systems including UNIX and Windows.

WebSphere Application Server

IBM WebSphere Application Server provides... an application server and infrastructure.

Key Features

  • Administration and management (14)
  • Application server performance (14)
  • Security management (14)
Microsoft Application Server (deprecated)

Application Server is an expanded server role in the Windows Server® 2008 operating system. It provided an integrated environment for deploying and running custom, server-based business applications. These applications respond to requests that arrive over the network from remote…

Oracle GlassFish Server

Oracle GlassFish Server was originally developed by Sun Microsystems and is available open source or supported by Oracle. It is an application server.

TIBCO ActiveMatrix Service Grid

ActiveMatrix Service Grid is an SOA governance and application server, from TIBCO.

Magic xpa Application Platform

Magic xpa Application Platform is an application server and infrastructure from Magic Technologies in California.

Payara Server

Payara Server is a fully supported, developer-friendly, open source application server. The vendor says Payara Server’s architecture is innovative, cloud-native and optimized for production deployments. The application server is built and supported by a team of DevOps engineers dedicated…


FitNesse is an open source fully integrated standalone wiki web server and acceptance testing framework.


Bitnami provides packaged applications for any platform, via the Bitnami Application Catalog. The Bitnami application automation platform delivers and maintains a catalog of 130+ ready-to-run server applications and development environments in partnership with cloud providers including…


IBM CICS (Customer Information Control System) presents a transaction processing option.


Korean software company TmaxSoft brings you JEUS, a rather evocatively branded application server.

Pivotal tc Server (formerly VMware vFabric tc Server)

The Pivotal tc Server (formerly VMware vFabric tc Server) is a Lightweight Java application server that extends Apache Tomcat for use in large-scale mission-critical environments.


Pramati, from Indian company Pramati Technologies, is an application server and infrastructure.


WebOTX is an application server and infrastructure tool, and B2B middleware offering, from NEC.


NGINX Unit, from F5, is a dynamic application server tailored to the demands of modern microservices.


uCosminexus from Hitachi is a B2B middleware offering and application server.

Fujitsu Interstage Application Server

Global, Japanese-headquartered company Fujitsu offers the Interstage Application Server.

Gnubila G Platform

The G Platform from Spanish company Gnubila is an application server.

TIBCO GridServer

TIBCO GridServer is presented by the vendor as a market-leading infrastructure platform for grid and elastic computing—and the backbone of businesses operating in the world's most demanding markets. TIBCO boasts more than a million CPUs spread across a thousand global installations…

Learn More About Application Server Software

What is Application Server Software?

An Application Server provides services and infrastructure for developing, deploying, and running applications.

Application Server Software Features & Capabilities

  • Ease of download and installation

  • Support for a number of different programming environments or IDEs

  • Simultaneous support for multiple applications

  • Adequacy of documentation and user community vibrancy

  • Overall performance including deploy time, initialization time etc.

  • Compliance with open standards like Java EE and DSHi

  • Administration console for managing application and environment

Application servers are server programs in a computer in a distributed network that provide the business logic for an application program. As such they are the middle tier of a standard three-tier architecture.

Three-Tier Architecture

In a three-tier client/server architecture, the application tier sits between the presentation tier and the data tier. The presentation tier displays information related to services available on a website. The backend data tier houses database servers where information is stored and retrieved. Data in this tier is kept independent of application servers or business logic.

In other words, when there is a request from the client, the application server process the business logic and makes a call to the database to retrieve the relevant data.

Application Server vs. Web Application Server

An application server is distinct from but often works in conjunction with, a web application server. A web server can only handle HTTP requests, while an application server can serve business logic via many different protocols. In a standard setup, the web server receives a request from the GUI or front end and then sends that request to the application server for business logic processing before it is sent back to the web application server and then back to the user via a modified web form.

In addition to processing application business logic, application servers have another function. They often simplify the building of client applications by providing the building blocks that help create the applications themselves. The best-known example is Java Beans in the J2EE environment. Indeed, application servers are closely associated with the J2EE standard. J2EE is an enterprise level Java application development platform.

Pricing Information

Some applications like Apache Tomcat are open source. Commercial enterprise-level application server platforms are on-prem licensed software, and pricing starts at around $7,000.