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WEB HOSTING HOW-TOS

Hosting (From Home) for Fun and Profit: Prerequisites, Hardware, and Network
By: Michael Swanson
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    2004-10-27

    Table of Contents:
  • Hosting (From Home) for Fun and Profit: Prerequisites, Hardware, and Network
  • Prerequisites
  • Hardware
  • Network and ISP Concerns
  • DNS
  • Security

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    Hosting (From Home) for Fun and Profit: Prerequisites, Hardware, and Network - Security


    (Page 6 of 6 )

    Having your own webserver allows you great freedoms in regards to how and what you host, what sort of hardware you use, and many other advantages, but it also carries some important responsibilities, especially if you use your server to host other people’s sites. The most important of these responsibilities is security. You the owner and operator of the server are responsible for making sure that the software which runs your server is kept updated and secured to the best of your ability.

    Most relatively savvy internet users have learned the importance of updating and maintaining the software on their computers, and the same applys to a server. Virus protection, spyware protection, and a software firewall are three very important parts of securing a server from attack. Virus protection and spyware protection are clear for reasons that should be well known.

    The software firewall may seem redundant, especially if you already have a hardware firewall guarding your local network. However, maintaining both a hardware firewall at your internet gateway and a software firewall on the server itself is very important. Most hardware firewall’s block and allow by certain ports to be allowed and forwarded to specific computers on the network. However, it is still possible for various types of malicious traffic to come in on ports for your different services. Most software firewalls available now will only allow information to be received by certain applications, which can help prevent malicious executables from preempting trusted applications on open ports. Also, they often check file size and make sure the file hasn’t changed before allowing it access to the internet.

    By keeping the software on your server updated, any malicious traffic that does get through the firewalls will hopefully not find any vulnerabilities in the software that processes it. This is the single most important way of keeping your server safe.

    Final Words

    This article has covered some of the basic concerns when setting up a server, including many network concerns particular to using a residential network connection. The most important issues to keep in mind when embarking on this process are: planning and security. The more planning you complete ahead of time, the less time you will have to spend later either fixing problems or adding new software and features. Security is important in order to maximize uptime and maintain good performance for sites hosted on your server.

    Overall, the knowledge and experience gained from setting up a webserver are well worth the effort and time necessary to complete this process.


    DISCLAIMER: The content provided in this article is not warranted or guaranteed by Developer Shed, Inc. The content provided is intended for entertainment and/or educational purposes in order to introduce to the reader key ideas, concepts, and/or product reviews. As such it is incumbent upon the reader to employ real-world tactics for security and implementation of best practices. We are not liable for any negative consequences that may result from implementing any information covered in our articles or tutorials. If this is a hardware review, it is not recommended to open and/or modify your hardware.

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