Client-Side vs Server-Side Scripting In Web Development

When it comes to building a website, Creative-ly web developers must know how to code on both sides of the data transmission relationship; web developers need to know how to code on both the client side as well as the server side.  It is important to carefully understand both of these traits to ensure effective website building and management.  Understanding—and effectively managing—these traits are specifically what separates a thorough web developer from a web designer (who focuses more on form than function).



Client-side scripting is a term used to describe the creation of various web applications which can be executed within a web browser on the user’s computer.  Such web applications can consist of several functions, which generally include:

  • performing simple flash game functions
  • storing using data in cookies
  • other interactive web (browser-based) applications

Client-side scripting has its own set of languages. These are structured to provide the system with specific sets of commands, and can include:

  • CSS
  • Flash
  • HTML
  • JavaScript
  • Jquery
  • Microsoft Silverlight


Server-side scripting is a programming technique web developers employ to construct the backend of a website.  Server-side scripting is exceedingly important to a website because web browser storage is limited by the capacity of the computer of the end user.  As such, websites need to have another place to host all of the images and files necessary for the site to work within the crowded database in a server.

This process involves the construction of a framework that will be designed to allow for the web server to communicate with the browser on the end user’s computer. Of course, the goal is for the two to communicate seamlessly; for the user not to know that this relationship exists.  In order to make this work, the web developer embeds the script into a website so that when the user clicks on an image or a menu or any link, the server follows the commands to the proper output—the corresponding image, menu, or link.

Server-side languages include:

  • NET
  • C
  • JavaScript
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Ruby

Server-side code is known to be far more secure than client-side scripting, obviously because the web users has no access to source code or any of the corresponding proprietary databases or additional data beyond what the code allows them to see.