A survey by Netscraft points out that five months after crossing the 50-million site border the web has reached 55 million sites for October 2004, receiving responses from 55,388,466 sites.
That's a gain of 981K sites from the September survey, continuing the recent trend in which internet growth has averaged roughly 1 million sites a month.
It tracks the growth pattern seen during the expansion from 45 to 50 million sites, which also took just five months (December 2003 to May 2004). The first Netcraft survey in August 1995 found 18,957 hosts.
Web server market share remains remarkably static, with no developer seeing a shift of more than seven-hundredths of a percent. Those trends hold fast despite robust monthly growth of 704K sites for Apache and 176K for Microsoft.
As we noted last month, market share for the two rivals has barely budged since November 2003. In the ensuing months, Apache has added 7.3 million sites and Microsoft servers have gained 2.2 million sites without disturbing the prevailing market dynamics.