I'm starting to get a better understanding of map-servers in general, but I am still unclear on how best to use GeoServer. At the moment, I use web-hosting to store the web-browser related parts of my site, and
php code to connect to a postgresql/postgis database. All of my data is stored in a desktop server, which I chose to use as it is a very low cost way of storing a large amount of data.
1] web-browser <--> database
This works fine also, as I do not need to style vector data; I am only returning numerical results with geojson vector overlays. However, I would like to incorporate GeoServer into this workflow so that I can apply better cartographic styles to data in the future. I understand the work flow should be similar to the following:
2] web-browser <--> GeoServer <--> database
My difficulty in understanding this piece, is how to connect GeoServer into the process. Can I run GeoServer on my desktop and connect to it to the browser via
php, similar to the database approach? Or does GeoServer need to be installed on the web-host and managed there?