I'm running a home web server, mostly as a learning experience - I've got everything set up, I can access it via http:\\localhost\ as well as http:\\\, but I can't seem to access it from anything further than the router. I've already port-forwarded ports 80 and 443 to my local IP (which is manually assigned), but when I try to access it via my domain or via external IP, it has Error 118 - Connection Timed Out.

I think I had it working before - I just noticed this problem when I was coming home from a vacation. I'm not sure if my ISP is now blocking port 80, or what. (https also times out, but works fine locally.) I'm using Bellsouth/ATT, so the only port being blocked should be 25/TCP.

Miscellaneous details:

  • have you tried scanning your domain with a tool like zenmap? you can also test the port with telnet symantec.com/business/support/… – Frank Thomas Apr 1 '13 at 22:50
  • @FrankThomas Nope, nothing - Telnet, alternate ports, any of it. It's almost like my ISP is blocking all inbound TCP connections or something ridiculous like that... (I don't think that's the case, though - last I heard, Bellsouth only blocked port 25/TCP...) – JamesTheAwesomeDude Apr 3 '13 at 7:46

I don't know about your particular ISP, but I am pretty sure most ISPs block port 80. Here are some things you can try.

First, you can verify that your router is accessible from the internet. Most router firmwares allow some form of "remote access" . Pick a random port, beyond 8000, say 8680. Then, verify that you are able to access the router at http://your.actual.ip.address:8680. If this opens up your router page, you are on the right track.

Next, try changing the port. You don't have to mess with the server, just forward port 8700 externally to internally. Try accessing http://your.actual.ip.address:8700 and that should reach your server.

  • Hmm, I can't seem to connect via any method - it's like I can't have inbound TCP connections on ANY port... Should I blame the router company, or pester my ISP about it? Or (more likely -) is there something I'm doing wrong? – JamesTheAwesomeDude Apr 3 '13 at 4:00

How do you connect to your server from outside your network? What do you put in the address bar?

If your ISP provides you with a dynamic IP address, that might be your problem. You need a static IP address, or fix this issue by using a service like "http://dyn.com/dns/". Also your router has to support dynamic DNS.

FYI. When you have a dynamic IP address, it means your IP address changes once every x hours/days. If you then type in that address in your browser (or type in the website address that you have connected to that ip-address) it will work the first hours/days. Then, when you get a new address from your provider, you can not use that old address anymore, so your site will time out when you enter that address. A dynamic DNS service will help you with that.

Check this out: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/DynamicDNS

  • Bleh, DynDNS costs money, NO thank you. I've already got a domain set up (TDL for $0 - it's a .tk - and I've accessed my server via it successfully before. – JamesTheAwesomeDude Apr 3 '13 at 2:45
  • DynDNS is just an example. There are many others. Btw. DynDNS is free. You have to get an account for which you DO need your creditcard. After you cancel the account you can still use the dynamic DNS for 1 redirection, unlimited, for free. Also, a domain is not the same as a dynamic IP address. But you will fiture that out in while, I am sure. – Vincent Apr 3 '13 at 3:51
  • :| I completely understand the concept of Domains, Dynamic vs. Static IPs, DNS records, and all that.. – JamesTheAwesomeDude Apr 3 '13 at 3:57
  • Then you will understand that getting a domain name will not solve your dynamic ip address problem, right? See also this website (Connect remotely to your computer, DVR, webcam or run your own web server or website on a dynamic IP address): noip.com – Vincent Apr 3 '13 at 4:01
  • Yeah, the domain was mostly as a fun experiment :) – JamesTheAwesomeDude Apr 3 '13 at 7:25

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