What Is a Back-End (In a Website)? Definition & Overview

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backend in website

What is a back-end (in a website)?

The back-end is a portion of the website the user doesn’t see, and they are the parts of the web that users do not directly interact with. 

The back-end is the server-side of the website. It comprises dedicated servers databases, operating systems, middlewares, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), programming languages, and frameworks. 

The back-end communicates with the front-end; it sends and receives information from the user. The back-end is responsible for data storing and organizing and ensuring everything on the user side works. 

Whenever a user gives information on a web page, the browser sends a request to the back-end, which returns data in front-end code that the browser can then interpret and display.

What are the website back-end functions?

The back-end of a website is a composite of technology and programming that functions in a website. It consists of the following key elements:

  • The server is the physical disk that receives requests and in which the website’s data is stored. Servers are also located on farms and originate as the physical side of the internet.
  • The database is used to organize and persist data. A back-end database stores data, but does not include end-user application elements such as stored queries, forms, macros, or reports.
  • The API is meant to communicate between applications. It is a medium through which developers can access information from a database.
  • The programming languages are used to build a back-end portion of a website. PHP, C++, Java, Javascript, Python, Node.js are commonly used languages.


What is a back-end developer?

A back-end developer is one who programs individual components of a back-end system. They build the structure of software applications. They also develop and maintain products that satisfy the user’s needs. Generally, they analyze the software requirements and construct the specific functions of a system.

What is the difference between front-end and back-end development?

Frontend development mainly focuses on what the user visualizes in the application. This is the ‘client-side’ and works on interactions with the users. This constitutes the visual look and feel of the application. HTML, CSS, and Javascript are used in front-end development. In contrast, back-end development focuses on the server-side of the application. Users cannot see the functions, but this is what communicates with the application. PHP, Java, Python are generally used to program.

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