How Does Web Browser Work?

How Does Web Browser Work

In our day-to-day life, the internet is becoming a part and parcel. We hardly know what a web browser is and how it works. It is impossible to explore the taste of the internet without a web browser.

A browser is simply a software program that allows users to broaden their knowledge by accessing information on the World Wide Web. Here is a detailed article on what a web browser is and how it works.

What is a Web Browser?

A Web Browser is a software that allows us to browse the internet. It works as an interface between the user and the World Wide Web (www) and locates, retrieves, and displays content: either in the form of images, videos, audio, or files. 

Many of us may confuse it with the search engines like Google Search, Bing, etc. Search engines are the stores that keep the data of other websites, whereas to connect to these websites and web pages a web browser is required.

According to current data, about 55% of the world’s population uses a web browser. Among different browsers- Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari are the most famous browsers for PC.

The main functions of the browser are:

  1. Connecting to the webserver
  2. Requesting for the information and displaying it on the user’s computer.

Structure of a Web Browser

Browser Interface
Source: https://medium.com/

For better understanding, we have to understand the structure of a browser. A browser mainly consists of the following components-

  1. User interface: It is an interactive platform for users with the browser.
  2. Browser engine: It builds the interaction between the rendering engine and the user interface
  3. Rendering engine: It gathers resources and displays the content requested.
  4. Networking Module: It mainly sends HTTP commands to the web server and transfers the data collected from the server to other components.
  5. JS interpreter: It can convert the Javascript into a binary file.
  6. UI backend: Basic images like windows and combo boxes are painted by using this.
  7. Data storage: All types of data are stored here. 

You can also read the difference between a browser engine and a rendering engine.

How Does Web Browser Work?

Usually, it all starts with a URL. When any user puts in a URL and presses enter, the browser with the help of the domain name server converts the domain name into an IP address. Then local computer with the help of the DNS sends an HTTP command to the web server.

The server builds a TCP connection for data exchange. When the browser is connected, it is then allowed to read the HyperText Mark-up language and retrieve the web page. Once it is done; the browser engine and rendering engine of the browser display the content on the user’s device.

Browser Engine

Usually, the networking layer sends the content to the rendering engine, where it is converted into two types of trees – DOM trees or content trees and renders trees. The first one generates the hierarchy and the latter one adds style properties to the HTML content.

In the next step, the layout is done by assigning the elements to their position. Next, comes the painting, where color and texture are done using the UI backend. And finally, the webpage is ready to display to the user.

The rendering engine always tries to provide the webpage as soon as possible and it is responsible for rendering the webpage.

Conclusion

That’s it; this is all about what is a web browser and how it works. If you want to know more, you can follow the reference article. If you want to know which web browser uses a specific browser engine, then check out the top 5 web browser and their browser engine.

I hope this article was helpful to you. If you liked the article, share it with your friends and family. If you have some suggestions, do not hesitate to leave them in the comments section below. We will add them to the article.

Posted by
Ajoy Kumar

He is a Computer Science graduate dedicated to empowering individuals to forge successful careers in programming and the dynamic world of technology and industry.

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