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CGI (Common Gateway Interface)

CGI (Common Gateway Interface) is a standard set of rules or protocol for a web server in order to interface external application software and to receive information in order to forward to the user.

CGI is the part of HTTP (Web Hypertext Transfer Protocol). Passing of information to the application and receiving back to the server is influenced by Common Gateway Interface.

CGI is designed to streamline passing of user’s request and intended information back and forth between user and application program.

CGI program aims at accepting and returning the data that is in line with CGI specification. The consistency of the interface allows the application programmer to write a CGI application in the choice of different languages. The CGI program is usually written in Visual Basic, Java, Perl, C++, or C programming languages.

CGI programs are designed for dynamic interaction with users. CGI is more of a server-side solution since the processing takes place on the Web server. CGI can affect server speed because every time a CGI script execution is taking place, a whole new process needs to be initiated.

This has lead to the development of a more advanced programming interface known as FastCGI. In essence, it integrates and manages multiple CGI requests and can, therefore, accelerate user request by almost 30 times faster than the conventional method.

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