[thelist] Hosting at Home

Shawn K. Quinn skquinn at speakeasy.net
Wed Nov 23 12:35:15 CST 2005

On Wed, 2005-11-23 at 13:58 +0200, Hershel Robinson wrote:
> I have a fixed IP and I have a (I think) good router with a firewall. 
> It's a Netopia Model 3387W-ENT [1]. I run Apache on a Windows box for 
> local testing and so I know it a bit. I am in a wild and crazy mood and 
> I am considering the possibility of setting up a xAMP server in my house 
> and putting there a website.
> I might build a Linux box or I might use my existing Windows server. I 
> know little about Linux put I understand that to build a simple LAMP 
> server can be fairly easy these days.

GNU/Linux is a great choice for a server, as are FreeBSD and OpenBSD. I
would strongly urge you not to even attempt to use Windows for a server.

> The site I will put there will be extremely low-traffic. I am aware that 
> some people do such things sometimes, that is, build their own home servers.
> Something tells me that this is foolhardy however and if I have little 
> experience with servers and firewalls, it is not wise to open even a 
> single port of mine and let the world into my LAN. Maybe someone will 
> talk me out of this?

A firewall is not strictly necessary with a properly secured GNU/Linux
or BSD-derived system, and with OpenBSD would be outright redundant. For
my firewall, in fact, I use OpenBSD and it runs rather well given that
it's a Pentium 100 with a hard drive that is starting to flake out. (I'm
hoping to replace it with a Soekris net4801 but that's another story.)

I have no idea what this Netopia thing is; for all I know it's the
networking equivalent of Ronco or Ginsu. If it seems to work for you,
that's great, but don't be afraid to replace it either.

Shawn K. Quinn <skquinn at speakeasy.net>

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