How to Create a Web Host in Your Home

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To have a web site people usually buy such a service called web hosting. Businesses use services of paid professionals if they like to have their web hosting in their own premises. If you have an old laptop or PC and are connected to a broadband line you can create your own website free, as a rewarding do-it-yourself hobby.

Steps

  1. Get the Apache server software. Your old computer will be called your "Web Server" now on. Download public license Apache HTTP Server to your old computer. This free software is also the most widely used server on the Internet.
  2. Figure 1
    Double click on the downloaded file to install it. Fill the dialogue required fields. It is quite arbitrary information and later you can change them.
  3. Figure 2
    Select the custom install from options in the next dialogue. Change the install directory of Apache to your desired folder.
    Figure 3
  4. Go to that directory and find "conf" folder. In that folder open the "httpd.conf" file. Now in your "Web Server" create a root directory for your web site; for example, "C:\Web\MyWeb"
  5. Figure 3: Before
    Inside the "httpd.conf", change the Apache default serving document root to your web root.
    Figure 4: After
  6. Figure 5: Before
    Also in the same file change the default Apache web directory to your own web directory.
    Figure 6: After
  7. Figure 7:Basic HTML Page
    Use a basic knowledge of writing HTML code and create a test page; write in it "I am a winner!" Save it as "C:\Web\MyWeb\index.html"
  8. Open your port 80 for forwarding as described in How to Open Your Port 80 Behind a Firewall
  9. Locate your site. Now in your "Web Server" open your favorite browser and type in the address bar, http://localhost/ Your winner page will be served by the Internet on your browser.
  10. Get the IP of your home, (look in the How to Open Your Port 80 Behind a Firewall tips). That is the address of your broadband given by your Internet Service Provider, on the Internet. Ask a friend of yours to type it in his browser. Your site is open to public now.
    • If your IP number is, say, 98.227.112.49 then your friend types http://98.227.112.49/
    • This IP is subject to change and difficult to remember. It needs to be maintained dynamically, and pointed by a name like other sites, say www.i_am_homesite_proud.com.

Tips

  • You need to get a free subscription from a "dynamic DNS service provider." They also provide you with a mnemonic as your web site name, and a free client software to be installed on your web server to maintain your changing IP address. People can watch your site using that name. But if you like to have your desired web site name, it is necessary to purchase one with some less than $10 per year. Then point that name to "dynamic DNS service provider" using their simple instructions.

Warnings

  • Become sure you are doing these experiments on a computer that is not of daily use of you and your family.

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