What is Varnish?


Varnish is a website accelerator platform, which caches data for quicker access. It’s occasionally called an HTTP reverse proxy as well and it works between a web server and an Internet browser. When a website visitor accesses a particular web page, its content is requested by the web browser, and then the server processes this browser request and sends back the needed content. If Varnish is enabled for a specific website, it will cache the pages at the very first request and if the visitor opens a cached page once more, the information will be delivered by the accelerator platform instead of the server. The accelerated loading speed is a result of the substantially faster response time that the Varnish platform offers as compared to any server software. At the same time, this does not mean that the visitors will keep seeing the same content over and over again, because any change on any of the web pages is reflected in the content that Varnish saves in its system memory.

What is Varnish Cache?

The name “Varnish”

The name Varnish comes from when the instigator of Varnish spent a long time staring at an art-poster with the word “Vernissage” and ended up checking it in a dictionary, which gives the following three meanings of the word:

r.v. var·nished, var·nish·ing, var·nish·es

  1. To cover with varnish.
  2. To give a smooth and glossy finish to.
  3. To give a deceptively attractive appearance to; gloss over.

Official website: Varnish Cache

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