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I live in a university campus and luckly I have super fast internet in my room, with a static IP address.

I tried to setup XAMPP and by pointing to my IP address from anywhere I can access the services running on my PC.

Now I am thinking of hosting my own website on my own PC. I am not sure what else I will need (beside the static IP) to make this happen (if it is possible at all).

I am running Windows 7 ultimate and of course I do have a domain registered. What should I point my domains DNS names to make this happen (I assume it is far more steps involved!)

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migrated from serverfault.com Mar 25 '12 at 0:50

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You need a DNS server, either hosted or run yourself. The DNS server can then point hostnames to your IP if you want to run services from it. You should check with your Campus policy to ensure you aren't violating policy. –  Chris S Mar 25 '12 at 0:50
    
You'll also need someone to forward traffic from the public interface to your computer. Presumably this would be campus IT. And presumably they will say no. –  ta.speot.is Mar 25 '12 at 0:58
    
One way to circumvent the campus IT would be to create a portal from a cheap VPS which is just the front for your server, and then use a zero config vpn tunnel from your VPS to your dorm server. Any files/calculations will be done on your machine while appearing that the VPS is doing everything. –  kobaltz Mar 25 '12 at 1:25
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@ta.speot.is: The OP mentioned that they'd already tested the connectivity and found it worked. How long this might continue could be up for debate, but right now, it appears that your presumption is false. –  womble Mar 25 '12 at 1:55
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@kobaltz: Once you've got a VPS to run your VPN from, why wouldn't you just serve the site directly from there? –  womble Mar 25 '12 at 1:56

2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

There aren't that many steps left. Assuming your xampp install works from anywhere using your IPv4 address (1.2.3.4), you will need to do the following:

  1. Obtain a domain name from a domain registrar. You are now the lucky owner of example.com.

  2. Log in to the dns management interface of your registrar and add two A records, @ and www and point them both to the server's address (1.2.3.4).

  3. Wait for the change to propagate through the dns web.

  4. Profit.

Later you can look into repeating step 2 for IPv6 addresses, just substitute AAAA for A, and a:b:c::d for 1.2.3.4. You might also want www to be a CNAME record, but that's not strictly necessary.

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You make it sound so easy. :-) –  Synetech Mar 25 '12 at 1:59
    
He already completed all the difficult parts, and apparently his uni (like mine) hands out all but unfiltered global addresses. –  Eroen Mar 25 '12 at 2:09
    
Those parts may be difficult insofar as getting the software running (blast you WAMP!), but they are in your own control and free. The part I don’t like is when other people (e.g., registrars) and money get involved. –  Synetech Mar 25 '12 at 2:49

You also need to be sure your server is secured:

  • make sure packet filtering is setup to only allow traffic you authorize
  • make sure only the things you need for the functions your server performs are accepting incoming connections
  • security patches, etc.

Another thing to address is QoS - do you really want to dedicate all your incoming bandwidth to your public facing server? Not sure what QoS features OS X has (I'm assuming that's what the "X" in XAMPP stands for) I don't think Windows 7 has any facility for setting QoS policies on incoming connections, but you should rate-limit your incoming connections (Linux can do this natively) if you are using the bandwidth for something in addition to your server.

Furthermore, if you are serious about uptime:

  • protect your server with a UPS
  • really hope you're doing some type of RAID
  • backups
  • look into automated monitoring so you know first when your server goes belly up, particularly if you ignore the above three points
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The 'X' is for cross-platform, according to wiki. I spot a "Windows 7" tag. –  Eroen Mar 25 '12 at 2:12
    
+1 to @Eroen, X = Cross Platform. L = Linux, W = Windows, M = Mac; other letters are used less commonly for other OSes (usually people running another OS know what they're doing plenty well enough that they aren't using pre-packaged stacks). –  Chris S Mar 25 '12 at 2:41

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