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What is more correct when I'm talking about Apache 2 (HTTP webserver)?

It is Apache

or

They are Apache

I think it's "Apaches are". What's correct?

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Can you give more context? –  Kosmonaut Jun 25 '11 at 2:14
    
Apache is/are being used to ping-pong HTTP requests –  genesis Jun 25 '11 at 2:16
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3 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

It depends on what type of Apache you mean.

For the computer science term it would be:

 "Apache is being used to ping-pong HTTP requests."

For the group of native Americans it would be:

 "The Apache are a tribe of native Americans."
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When talking about the HTTP webserver, it is correct to use:

It is Apache2/Apache2 is being used to ping-pong HTTP requests

The way you say:

It is Microsoft

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"Apache" should be capitalized as it is a proper name. –  rintaun Jun 25 '11 at 2:28
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It's "apache2" as stated in linux's "top" command) –  genesis Jun 25 '11 at 2:42
    
@genesis: "apache2" is the name of the executable (that "top" outputs, for instance "/usr/sbin/apache2 -k start"), not how you refer to the webserver (unless it is specifically about the executable). You refer to the web server as "Apache" or "Apache 2.0" (shorthand for the full name "Apache HTTP Server" or "Apache HTTP Server 2.0") –  Peter Mortensen Jun 25 '11 at 9:32
    
@rintaun: don't you mean proper noun (instead of proper name)? –  Peter Mortensen Jun 25 '11 at 9:33
    
@Peter Yes, I suppose that is what I meant. Sorry about that. –  rintaun Jun 25 '11 at 9:41
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The name derives from the self-deprecating description "a patchy webserver", so it seems the developers considered it to be singular.

The software is called apache or, for version 2, apache2 in line with the Unix practice of using only lower-case in the name of executable files.

The webserver is one of the projects under the umbrella of the Apache Software Foundation which lists the projects with the capitalisation befitting proper nouns (as well it might).

The situation is analogous to Perl, the programming language. Perl is the name of the language, but the program on my computer disk is perl.


EDIT: It thought I'd made it clear what I was saying, but to make it hopefully more clear:

The project is called Apache, the executable file is called apache, or apache2. I'm sure the Question is about the project, not the file, and it's clearly singular.

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No, it is "Apache", not "apache". And the executable is often named "httpd" (for example, /usr/local/apache/bin/httpd). See for instance Using Apache. –  Peter Mortensen Jun 25 '11 at 8:46
    
I'm actually agreeing with you @Peter, the webserver project is called 'Apache' by its creators, but the software [the daemon] is called apache or apache2. I wouldn't expect questions about httpd, the version I use now is called apache2 –  pavium Jun 25 '11 at 8:58
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