There are two aspects of a website - frontend and backend. Frontend deals with everything that happens on the screen while Backend development involves everything that happens behind the screen. It involves setting up the server, database, APIs, etc., and building and maintaining the infrastructure that powers your web application and so on.
What are the top Backend Development Tools?
We have categorised the further part of the article into multiple sections, covering programming languages, frameworks, databases, containerisation, and backend hosting services to give you a better and more structured understanding of the best backend development tools available in the industry.
In the 2022 Stack Overflow Developer Survey, Node.js even overpowered React in terms of popularity. The best advantage of using runtimes like Node.js is that you don't have to learn a new programming language altogether to work on backend development.
Python is one of the most popular programming languages in the world. According to the Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2022 it was the 4th most used programming language. Developers love Python for its easy syntax and diverse use cases.
It can be used in Web Development, Data Analysis, Machine Learning, the Internet of Things(IoT), and so on.
When it comes to backend development, Python has a bunch of frameworks with Django and Flask leading the way and making Python a really useful language for backend developers.
PHP is a language that came into existence in the days of the early internet. It has made its way into the codebase of popular websites ever since.
It's widely popular for building websites and web applications and has a great number of frameworks that help developers build great websites with Laravel being the most popular.
Java, born in the early 90s is one of the most popular programming languages when it comes to building backend applications. It's a high-level, object-oriented programming language that can be used for a variety of purposes like creating desktop and mobile apps, data processing, backend development, and more.
Just like other languages in the list, Java also offers a wide number of frameworks for building robust backend applications. Here, Spring is the most popular backend framework used by developers.
Express.js is a very popular Node.js framework used for building web applications. It provides developers with a proper set of tools on top of Node.js that makes it easier for them to build scalable backend applications.
It also comes with a vast library of middleware and plugins that make it easy to extend the framework's capabilities. Express along with MongoDB, React, and Node.js also forms that popular MERN stack often used by developers and corporations to build modern full-stack applications.
Django is one of the best and most popular backend web frameworks that Python offers. It's a highly secure web framework that can be used to build a wide variety of websites like content management systems, news websites, social media, and more.
Developed between 2003-2005, Django was open-sourced in July 2005 and it has been continuously growing and improving ever since.
Flask is another really popular web framework of Python after Django. It's a microframework created by Armin Ronacher and initially released in 2010. Flask is free from boilerplate code or dependencies which makes it really attractive option for newbie backend developers to learn.
It only comes with the essential components of backend development like routing, requests, sessions, etc. For more functionality, you have to either use an extension or write a custom module.
This approach helps in keeping Flask lightweight and avoiding boilerplate code that is not being used.
Laravel is the most popular PHP framework that provides developers with a rich set of features like routing, middleware, authentication, and more to help them build efficient backend web applications.
Laravel has an intuitive syntax that is easy to pick up by backend developers. It is also highly customisable and has a range of configuration options available making Laravel a great option for projects that need a high degree of flexibility.
Laravel also has a huge community of developers that contribute to its development and it can be used with a variety of frontend frameworks and database management systems.
Spring is one of the most popular Java backend frameworks used to build enterprise-level applications. It was originally written by Rod Johnson and launched in 2001.
Spring is a lightweight framework that provides support to various other frameworks like Struts, Hibernate, Tapestry, etc, and is used on millions of computers today.
The framework also provides a bunch of unique features like spring web service, data access framework, etc. that make Spring a great choice for any backend developer to learn.
MySQL is a popular open-source relational database management system heavily used in the industry for building web applications. It is appreciated in the developer community for its speed and reliability.
MySQL is also a highly scalable database that can be scaled up or down depending on the needs of your application.
Along with Linux, Apache, and PHP, MySQL is also part of the popular LAMP stack.
PostgreSQL is an open-source relational database management system that was born in 1996. It can be used to manage a wide range of workloads, like single computers, data warehouses, and web applications with several concurrent users.
PostgreSQL is ACID-compliant ensuring that all the database transactions are reliably processed. It also includes support for advanced capabilities like full-text search, and spatial indexing. PostgreSQL supports all the major operating systems and a variety of programming languages like C, C++, Java, and Python.
MongoDB is one of the most preferred NoSQL database management systems on the internet. It stores data in a JSON-like format called BSON as documents.
This makes MongoDB a really flexible database because as a developer it's going to be easier for you to define schemas when storing complex data structures in the database.
It can be used with multiple languages and frameworks including Python, Java, and Node.js.
Firebase is a Google-backed backend development platform that helps developers build and ship apps for Android, iOS, and the Web. It was founded in 2011 with its first product, Realtime Database.
It has tremendously evolved over the years and now provides a wide range of tools such as Authentication, Realtime Database, Hosting, Cloud Functions, Cloud Firestore, Cloud Storage, Analytics, and much more. Owing to this, it has become one of the best backend development tools in modern times.
Firebase is used by popular companies like Alibaba, The New York Times, The Economist, Lyft, Trivago, Gameloft, Duolingo, and thousands of developers on their projects.
Supabase is an open-source Firebase alternative and a backend development tool that helps you quickly build backend for your projects.
It comes with all the necessary backend features like authentication, database, file storage, etc to help you build and scale your application to millions of users.
As a backend development tool, it frees your time and mental space by taking care of all your backend stuff and allowing you to spend more time on business and users' needs.
Docker is a set of platform-as-a-service products that allows you to build, deploy, and run your applications inside containers. Containers are isolated packages with their own software and config files etc. They can communicate with each other through well-defined channels and can be run across platforms that support Docker, including operating systems like macOS, Linux, and Windows.
Docker containers are lightweight and even a single virtual machine can be used to run multiple containers together. Overall, Docker is a great backend development tool for any modern developer to look into.
Kubernetes, also known as K8s, is an open-source container orchestration technology for automating the deployment, scaling, and administration of containerized applications. It was created by Google and is now maintained by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF).
Kubernetes provides a strong framework for container management, ensuring that applications run consistently and resiliently. K8s also takes care of scaling your application and supports a number of features like automatic bin packing, self-healing, strong orchestration, and load balancing.
Backend Hosting Services
Render is a cloud-based platform that simplifies the process of deploying and hosting web applications. It positions itself as a Heroku alternative with easy usage, better pricing, and simple UI.
It has a set of powerful features like zero-downtime deployments, automatic SSL, and custom domains that makes deploying applications a huge relief.
Render supports a wide range of programming languages, frameworks, and databases and also offers a generous free tier for developers to get started quickly and scale as their needs grow.
Fly.io is a Platform as a Service(PaaS) hosting provider for your backend applications. It helps you run your backend servers and databases close to the users without DevOps.
Fly.io runs your applications on top of actual physical servers all around the world with the main focus on deploying the apps as close to the end users.
It provides a range of features like automatic SSL, custom domains, and built-in monitoring and supports a variety of programming languages and frameworks, including Node.js, Ruby, Python, and Go.
Amazon Web Services(AWS) is a cloud computing platform developed by Amazon in 2006. It is one of the most popular cloud computing platforms currently in the world.
It provides you with a range of tools and services to build, deploy, and scale your applications. AWS is designed for scalability and can be used by developers to scale their apps up and down whenever the need arises.
It also provides powerful APIs like Amazon S3 and Amazon DynamoDB to integrate into your projects.
20. Google Cloud
Developed by Google in 2008, Google Cloud is a cloud computing platform that provides developers with all the necessary tools to build, deploy, and scale their applications with ease.
This includes virtual machines, storage, networking, support for machine learning and data analytics, and so on.
Google Cloud supports a long list of programming languages and frameworks including Python, Node.js, and Java. It also provides an intuitive console for developers of various skill levels to help solve issues when they arise.
With this, our article on the best backend development tools has come to an end. We have provided you with a huge list of tools with proper categories.
Now go and explore these tools and tell us which one of them you like the most or tell us if there is some other backend development tool that you like and use but were missing from this list.
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