When it comes to the popular web servers, there are only three that make the list – Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS), Apache web server and nginx. All of these can be installed and run on any Windows PC. While Microsoft IIS and Apache web server can be controlled from their tools placed in the system tray, there is no such official tool for nginx server.
Fortunately, someone has create a helper tool called NginxTray which allows the users to control nginx web server from the convenience of the system tray. To a certain level, it mimics the system tray controller that comes with the Apache server.
Before you can use it, you have to setup nginx web server on your Windows computer. For this, you can download the latest version of nginx web server from http://nginx.org/en/download.html. The download is in form of a ZIP archive. You have to extract all the files and folders from the downloaded ZIP file into C:\nginx\. After this step is completed, you can should have C:\nginx\nginx.exe on your computer.
Now you can launch NginxTray and it will place an icon in the system tray. You can right-click on the NginxTray icon to see options for starting, stopping and restarting nginx server. Compared to the Apache web server system tray tool, it does not show the current status of the nginx server.
In the options for the NginxTray , we can choose the folder and the process for nginx web server. It is better to use the default C:\nginx folder and the default filename nginx.exe but they can be modified using these options.
Similarly, we can also control PHP using NginxTray through PHP FastCGI process. In the options, we have to specify where PHP folder is located, the PHP FastCGI process and the IP address used by it. These values can be found in the nginx web server configuration files as well as from those of PHP.
NginxTray can be useful for people who are testing web pages, web sites or web apps on their local computer during the development phase. It can control both PHP and nginx web server from system tray.
You can download NginxTray from https://github.com/nginxtray/nginxtray.