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The focus of this category is on Internet or Intranet clients that serve two or more purposes in the server-client architecture, particularly the client software.

The Internet consists of servers and clients, and they involve both hardware and software. The machines that provide services to other machines are servers, while the machines that are used to connect to those services are clients, and software is involved in the operation of both servers and clients.

There are web servers, email servers, chat servers, FTP servers, and so on, covering all of the needs of Internet users. When you connect to a website on the Internet, you are a user, and the device you are using to connect to the Internet is a client machine.

To view a webpage, you will generally use a web browser, such as Chrome, Opera, or Safari. In response to the request made by your browser, the server machine finds the page that you are requesting and sends it to you, assuming that you have permission to view it. As a client, by your direction, the browser has a specific purpose, so it directs its request to the specific software server running on the server machine. When you are operating a browser on your device, it will want to talk to the webserver on the server machine, not the telephony or email server.

A server provides several services, which it makes available through numbered ports, one for each service that is available on the server. As an example, when a server machine running both a web server and a file transfer protocol, such as FTP, the webserver would typically be available on port 80, while the FTP server would be available on port 21. Clients connect to a service at the specific IP address and port number the corresponds to the service it is seeking to access.

Once a client has connected to a service on a particular port, the service it accesses is accomplished through a specific protocol, which describes the way in which the server and client will communicate. Although other protocols may also be supported, every web server on the Internet conforms to the hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP).

So, web browsers are clients that connect to web servers to retrieve web pages for display. The Internet is made up of several other types of servers and clients, as well. Email clients retrieve email from mail servers, while chat and instant messaging are accomplished through a variety of clients, which vary according to the protocol being used.

There are several types of clients performing a variety of tasks on the Internet. These include blog client software, email clients, FTP clients, HTTP clients, instant messaging clients, Internet relay chat clients, MUD clients, Usenet clients, and several others, such as clients providing telephony services, video conferencing, and various file-sharing services.

Client software designed primarily for a specific purpose may be listed in a category representing that service, while those that provide two or more services may be listed in this category. In some cases, it may be appropriate for a resource to be listed in more than one category. For example, client software that is designed primarily to provide chat services may be listed in the Messaging & Chat category, but if it also allows files to be shared from one user to another, it might also be listed in this category in recognition of its secondary purpose.



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