manuleka

Seeking Advice On Setting Up A Home Webserver

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I'm going to setup a little server using an old hp box - AMD 64 X2 3800+, 1GB DDR2 RAM, 80GB HDDThe box will be pretty much running LAMP for web dev testing so may probably host a single site...I would also like to access it remotely when i'm not at home... any OS recommendation? Currently looking at Ubuntu 12.04.2 LTS but this will be my first time setting up a server, appreciate any advice or additional options that i might need to consider for the setupcheers

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manuleka,You do realise I'm going to write a guide on setting up a Web Server, also SSH and FTP. I'd be using Fedora 18 though, and the thing is, you can set it up without a GUI, so a minimal install would be perfect. Though I don't recommend Fedora, leading edge means security issues may not have been found yet so it's not a safe OS in that sense.If I was to recommend an OS for Web Servers, it would be Debian or CentOS, though I'd probably lean towards CentOS because it's based on RHEL and I like derivatives of RH, which is why I use Fedora. If you like Ubuntu, you may go with Debian. Either these two are both good for web servers. I would not use Fedora or Ubuntu, because they like to be updated with the latest etc, and that's just an opening for security problems.Cheers,MC

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manuleka,
You do realise I'm going to write a guide on setting up a Web Server, also SSH and FTP. I'd be using Fedora 18 though, and the thing is, you can set it up without a GUI, so a minimal install would be perfect. Though I don't recommend Fedora, leading edge means security issues may not have been found yet so it's not a safe OS in that sense.

If I was to recommend an OS for Web Servers, it would be Debian or CentOS, though I'd probably lean towards CentOS because it's based on RHEL and I like derivatives of RH, which is why I use Fedora. If you like Ubuntu, you may go with Debian. Either these two are both good for web servers. I would not use Fedora or Ubuntu, because they like to be updated with the latest etc, and that's just an opening for security problems.

Cheers,

MC


was more lenient towards Ubuntu 12.04 LTS which comes with the 5 year long term support...

but am having a look into CentOS...

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CentOS has Long Term Support of Core and also Long Term Use in Production which I think is even longer than Ubuntu's LTS. It's a community built enterprise distribution. This distribution differs a lot to those popular distributions like Mint/Ubuntu/Fedora. This is because if you're using it for enterprise you do not want to be upgrading to new versions every 6 months. It can costs businesses a lot to do this process, so reducing the upgrade and building stability to increase the use of production is their goal and patches/fixes will be backported, so that security bugs and problems will be fixed.This also means that when new versions of programs come out, they can be behind. I think it took Debian a long time to just get Python 2.7 which isn't released in the current version and is planned to be released in the next version. It usually their philosophy that if it's only adding features and not fixing security problems, there's no need to rush to it.The reason I recommended Debian and CentOS is because they are the two top dogs fighting for first position over which Linux distribution is used more as web servers. CentOS took over Debian at one stage, then Debian came back. These two seem to be at it all the time. Ubuntu is becoming another popular one, but this could be due to it's popularity and that it's easy to run your own web server but it's still far from reaching these two distributions.Although Linux popularity as a web server still does not out do Unix based web servers. It would probably be better for me to recommend Linux, since it's what we are more use to, even though Unix doesn't differ a lot, it's still a different beast.Cheers,MC

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I will start working on my web server tutorial next, I'll also be using CentOS 6.3 as well as Fedora 18 as the steps are pretty much the same but could contain slight differences. I prefer minimal installations which is how I've installed CentOS. Which means you can follow my User configuration and Setup guide to create the user and update the system, etc as I updated it to cater for CentOS as Fedora had one step in the process that was set by default, but not set in CentOS. So, that's why I've decided on combining both OS into the mix.

Since you seem to be using it for production (anything that is live), I'll work towards making it suitable for production, since I usually only set up testing servers (little importance on securing it) and never really worry about allowing them through the internet but if you want to use it for production, then I'll aim for that. It'll increase the length of my tutorial though, which is good and should hopefully help others who want to create production machines. I can't guarantee it'll be setup like most hosts online, but it should be close.

Cheers,

MC

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I will start working on my web server tutorial next, I'll also be using CentOS 6.3 as well as Fedora 18 as the steps are pretty much the same but could contain slight differences. I prefer minimal installations which is how I've installed CentOS. Which means you can follow my User configuration and Setup guide to create the user and update the system, etc as I updated it to cater for CentOS as Fedora had one step in the process that was set by default, but not set in CentOS. So, that's why I've decided on combining both OS into the mix.
Since you seem to be using it for production (anything that is live), I'll work towards making it suitable for production, since I usually only set up testing servers (little importance on securing it) and never really worry about allowing them through the internet but if you want to use it for production, then I'll aim for that. It'll increase the length of my tutorial though, which is good and should hopefully help others who want to create production machines. I can't guarantee it'll be setup like most hosts online, but it should be close.

Cheers,

MC


thanks MC... looking forward to it :)

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Just a bit of fun trivia:Howard Stern's web site is on an Ubuntu system.Vanity Fair's web site is on CentOS.The way I determined this was by trying to load a nonexistant page to get the default Apache2 "Not Found" page with information about the version of Apache2.

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I tried to play with the CentOS liveCD on a virtual machine, it couldn't load the graphics. It's the first time I have seen a Linux release which is unable to load X during the boot phase. Still has to be improved, RedHat does not have such problems.

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Just a bit of fun trivia:
Howard Stern's web site is on an Ubuntu system.

Vanity Fair's web site is on CentOS.

The way I determined this was by trying to load a nonexistant page to get the default Apache2 "Not Found" page with information about the version of Apache2.


links to the site? cheers

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I'm trying CentOS on VirtualBox, and just tested if I could load the graphical installer. I picked text mode by default when I first installed it, so didn't realise that the graphical installer would not run but did notice the lack of options text mode had, like no partitioning/configuration for the hard drive. It could be that it requires more video memory than Red Hat for a graphical install which I will try boosting up next time though it may not even be on my install, as I only got the net install CD since I like minimal installs.The next question I would ask is, if Howard Stern is hosting his own website or if we can find out who his host is.I remove Server tokens/signatures from the configuration file or fake it as an IIS machine just to be target practise. I wonder how many web hosts actually use Ubuntu, I know it's up and coming, but why Ubuntu over Debian? Possibly because Debian takes too long to get newer versions of programs.Cheers,MC

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links to the site? cheers


Vanity Fair may have changed its servers. Their server headers no longer contain the string "CentOS."

But, you can get the "Not Found" page for howardstern.com by trying to load this nonexistant page: http://forums.xisto.com/no_longer_exists/

At the bottom of the page it will say
Apache/2.2.4 (Ubuntu) PHP/5.2.3-1ubuntu6.3 Server at howardstern.com Port 80

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...I remove Server tokens/signatures from the configuration file or fake it as an IIS machine just to be target practise. I wonder how many web hosts actually use Ubuntu, I know it's up and coming, but why Ubuntu over Debian? Possibly because Debian takes too long to get newer versions of programs.

Cheers,

MC


and quite a lot of people use Ubuntu so its a lot easier just to stay with Ubuntu Server

i have decided to go with Ubuntu Server with Xubuntu Desktop

because i've fiddled around with Ubuntu for sometime now i think is a lot easier to stick to an Ubuntu Server (i'm not a power user of Linux but more of an explorer hehe)

http://forums.xisto.com/no_longer_exists/ is my Server... Nothing there yet... will use it as my Wordpress Playground, and maybe other stuff but haven't decided on what they would be yet...

what do you guys use your home servers for anyways?

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I usually only set up a server for testing and development. Never actually considered hosting my own site as I think if I read the ToC, My ISP probably does not allow it, nor has my ISP guaranteed that my IP is static, even though it hasn't changed yet.I like developing plugins, etc for wordpress as well as other open source web programs. A lot of the lesser known ones too, because if you start doing things that aren't even found in the popular software they usually copy you, it also means less support too which I enjoy and would rather let someone port it to the popular software so they can deal with support issues.I remember a few years ago, we use to mess around with IPB a lot, although it was all inhouse and really only made for our personal use. It never went well, as every update meant having to redo it again and I think some of the stuff we did is still left-over and really needs to be cleaned up. IPB wasn't free so it sort of lost a lot of our attention and other boards provide better testing grounds.Cheers,MC

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i see... yea i'm only setting up mine because i realize my current broadband package comes with an option of a Free Static IP addy... otherwise i wouldn't be bothered setting up a server... the PC i'm using for the server is an old machine of a mate of mine who was gonna throw it away, so i grabbed it :)

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