I am a D-I-Y type of guy and have managed to setup Apache on my LAN and make it accessible via WAN over port 80 and Tomcat on port 8080.
I aim to possibly get a home web server up (will calculate the costs), but I need some questions answered about networking.
My understanding on ports are that they can be a risk if left open (which I have done) if there is no service or application listening on my side on those ports.
So I take it that leaving those ports open and removing the services or applications that run on my side for these ports is a major security risk?
I noticed though that Xampp (1.8.1) does not allow requests over WAN unless I set my password for Apache. Does setting this password imply that Xampp is safe to use in a production environment?
When is it safe to leave a port open?