Internet data mining firm Netcraft have released the results of their February Web Server Survey and it shows that the Internet is continuing its strong pattern of growth, adding 2.6 million hostnames (+1.7%) this month. The results also show a resurgence for Apache as they reclaim 0.3% of the web server market share from Microsoft’s IIS and Google’s GFE.
However, the most interesting statistic can be found if we look back to the February 2007 results: the Internet has added 49,399,068 hostnames in the past 12 months, growing from 108,810,358 to 158,209,426 websites! This represents an enormous year-on-year increase of 46%.
How much more growth can the ‘net withstand? How many more websites do we really need? The key to this can also be found within Netcraft’s survey data. They make a second count of ActiveSites – ignoring parked domains, unused blogs and other Internet garbage that nobody is cleaning up – and this figure show that the proportion of worthwhile sites is actually falling, down to under 40% of total hostnames. So, with a large proportion of the growth currently being rubbish perhaps we can hope that future changes like the outlawing of domain tasting will help to slow the growth and return some quality to the WWW.