This represents the very high-level timeline of the Apache project. More detailed information about individual versions of each subproject can be found in their version history. Note that much of the early part of this document can also be found in the "about Apache" document on the Apache Server web site.
The history of Apache starts with the NCSA HTTPd project. Quoth Rob McCool:
> How did you first get involved in the NCSA HTTPd project, and who else
> worked on that with you?
It was largely me, Eric Bina did some work on group annotations, and I took
some ideas/code/etc. from a number of people across the Web. If I tried to
name them I'd probably forget a lot of people.
I first got involved because Marc wanted to have a small, simple server
that people could use with Mosaic. He felt the CERN server was too large and
complex, and that something small and easy to understand would facilitate
more widespread adoption.
More information from Rob added here soon. The short form, however, is that Rob left to get a real job, and the project lost a lot of momentum. That's when Apache started, in order to fill the hole that was left by the demise of NCSA HTTPd.
Brian Behlendorf started collecting patches to be applied to the last version of NCSA. The initial versions of Apache are available primarily as a series of patches. Hence, initially, the name Apache , as it was "a patchy server". At least, so the legend goes.
The Apache Group, initially consisting of 8 individuals, traded patches on a mailing list set up for the purpose.
In April of 1995 the first public release of Apache (version 0.6.2) came out. Also of great importance was the 0.8.8 release, based on the new server architecture, codenamed Shambhala, designed by Robert Thau. By this time, the Apache Group had grown to around 15 individuals.
Apache 1.0 released on December 1, 1995 , and within a year surpassed NCSA as the most-used web server.
The Apache Software Foundation was formed in June of 1999 , and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. See the ASF FAQ for more information.
ApacheCon was held in March, 2000 , in Orlando Florida, USA. Apache 2.0 Alpha 1 was released during the closing session.
ApacheCon Europe was held in October, 2000 , in London, England. Douglas Adams spoke.