What is LiteSpeed Web Server?

Posted on by Geethika Gireesh | Updated:
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LiteSpeed Web Server (LSWS) is a proprietary, lightweight web server software that provides fast performance and resource conservation without compromising server security.  It is a popular web server offering high scalability, security, and load balancing. It also provides built-in anti-DDoS capabilities and allows per-IP connections and bandwidth throttling.

This article discusses what is Litespeed Web Server as well as its features and use cases.

Why is Litespeed Important?

When hosting websites, the web server software interacts with the server and decides how to load the website. The major problem faced by developers and digital agencies is website performance. A site that loads slowly creates a poor user experience, costing the business clients and ultimately the profit loss.

LiteSpeed Web Server brings a high-performance feature set to solve this issue.

Types of LiteSpeed Licenses

There are eight different LiteSpeed Licenses. Each license type supports a different number of domains, RAM limit, and the number of workers. Here is how LSWS defines these three components:

  • Domain: Refers to the total number of domains, including the main domain and sub-domains.
  • RAM Limit: Refers to the maximum amount of RAM allocated to the web server. 
  • Worker: Refers to the number of LiteSpeed processes generated to do the web server work.

 Below are the eight LiteSpeed license options:

Features of LiteSpeed Web Server

Drop-in Replacement for Apache

LiteSpeed follows a similar configuration format as the Apache Web Server, providing compatibility with it. It is a drop-in replacement with no necessary changes in the operating system (OS) or Apache configurations.

Zero Downtime Server Management 

Zero downtime refers to your website going down or being unstable due to LiteSpeed. Other web servers experience downtime with software updates due to blocked connections. LiteSpeed eliminates this with its graceful restart feature for version management. Connections are not blocked, which minimizes downtime.

Handling of Concurrent Connections

LiteSpeed is brilliant in handling concurrent connections. It relies on an event-driven architecture, which makes it faster compared to Apache and its process-based architecture. LiteSpeed creates a new process for every connection and serves them with few processes, making it faster, able to handle more connections, and less resource-intensive.

Edge Side Includes (ESI)

Edge Side Includes (ESI) is a markup language that uses the ESI Engine. It allows you to split a dynamic page into small fragments and process them separately from the rest of the page.

LiteSpeed Cache (LSCache)

LSCache is a built-in feature in LiteSpeed providing high-performance dynamic content acceleration. It functions via automatic page caching and scheduling to purge specific URLs. LSCache also offers separate caching for both desktop and mobile views.

Enabling LSCache decreases page load times significantly, making it an all-in-one website acceleration solution. Plugins are available for most popular CMS platforms.

Control Panel Compatibility

LiteSpeed is compatible with cPanel, Interworx, Plesk, DirectAdmin, and VirtualAdmin control panels. 


LiteSpeed Web Server’s security features are compatible with Apache’s ModSecurity feature set. This compatibility offers a significant advantage since LSWS works with mod_Rewrite, mod_security, and .htaccess

LiteSpeed Web Server Use Cases

LSCache and WordPress

This feature acts as an all-in-one solution for WordPress by deciding what to cache and when to purge it. This feature provides optimization enriched with cache management tools. It is an excellent feature that enhances website speed.

LSCache for Xenforo

This is a PHP-based add-on used to communicate with LiteSpeed Web Server. It supports HTTPS, HTTP/2, and QUIC with no additional configuration required, which is an added advantage. Using this add-on speeds up forum pages, reducing the wait time of visitors. 

LiteMage in Magento 2

LiteMage is an extension for Magento 2 that communicates with LiteSpeed and its built-in page cache to accelerate your eCommerce store. It is highly efficient and offers faster page load times.

Gzip Compression and LiteSpeed

LiteSpeed Web Server transmits data in a compressed form, whether static or dynamic. This compression preserves the amount of network bandwidth consumed. Also, Enable Compression and Enable GZIP Dynamic Compression are default settings at installation.

Wrapping Up

What is LiteSpeed web server? It is an effective means of speeding up your web application or site. LiteSpeed web hosting provides performance where it matters. Effectively administering LiteSpeed saves developers and agencies time, money, and resources.

Liquid Web offers Litespeed licenses for purchase with our VPS Hosting, Cloud Dedicated Server, and Dedicated Server hosting options. Contact our sales team to discuss options for adding it to your server.

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About the Author: Geethika Gireesh

Gaby Gireesh has a degree in cybersecurity and has worked as a senior system engineer for three years. In addition, she has extensive experience in Linux administration and web hosting.

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