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I bought a chromebook to use as a secondary computer, and once I save up money I'd like to buy a windows laptop as a primary computer (not because i dislike my chromebook, i've been very pleased so far). I'd like to run a private mediawiki and maybe wordpress too on my primary computer, for personal writing. Before my old laptop died I used localhost for mediawiki and it was great. But I'd like to access my wiki (and possible wordpress site) from both computers, if possible, and I'd like to do it as securely as possible.

One option I'm thinking might work would be to set up a LAN with apache. I don't know much about LANS so I'd probably have a lot to learn, especially to set it up securely.

Another would be to put the wiki and wordpress on a usb flash drive and plug it in whenever I want to access my sites. I would assume that website updates would appear on both computers (i.e., if I make a new page on one computer, it'll show up next time i access the site on the other computer) as long as I put the wiki/wordpress files and mysql files on the same usb drive, but I wonder if it would work so smoothly in practice. A major issue with this though might be that I'd be using the same files for a linux-based and a windows operating system.

Anyways, I wanted to see if anyone could help verify the plausibility of these methods. Also I'd be very interested to hear of any other ways I could do it. How would you go about setting this up to be private, yet accessible from your 2 computers with different operating systems?

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As long as there's no port forward, you can't really access a server in a lan from outside. Assuming you wanted to be really sure, you could probably restrict access by ip address. There's a few mechanisms to do this - from apache, you can force a additional level of authentication using a password - either in the main config (preferred) or htaccess (not the best option here, since it slows down apache or by only explicitly allowing that ip address using mod_authz_host, or from the firewall - this SO question covers that, though you need to replace port 8000 with port 80.

The USB flash drive option is.. tricky. Both wiki and wordpress rely on a full *AMP stack, so unless you're using a portable option like XAMPP, you won't be able to carry around wiki and wordpress that way. There's also too much chance of things breaking

I'd note there's also options for running a 'full' ubuntu distributions on a chromebook. Unsure if you can run apache alongside the regular chrome UI, but if you don't mind linux, and experimenting a bit, you may be able to run a wiki, and wordpress on the chromebook itself (though, using an ubuntu chroot)

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  • Great answer, thanks! A lan may really be the best way to go about it after all then. Also I did some research and I think I could actually run any linux distro since I've got an intel cpu, which is great, because I love Mint (though I'm still pretty new to linux)! I've been considering dualbooting as another option as well, but i THINK i could also download anything I want from the developer mode command line. – user219048 Oct 12 '13 at 5:37

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