Can I use an iMac like a server too?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by doxavita, Feb 26, 2011.

  1. doxavita, Feb 26, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2011

    doxavita macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2010
    #1
    Can I turn a 27" iMac (with good specs) into a home server? (host my own website, and perhaps some forums in the future too)

    or would I need a Mac Pro for that?

    What software would I need?
    Would Mac OS X Snow Leopard server be needed?
    Can a server be set up with snow leopard client too?

    thanks!
     
  2. QuarterSwede, Feb 26, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2011

    QuarterSwede macrumors G3

    QuarterSwede

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    #2
    Lion includes the server software as well just so you know for the future.

    What do you want to do with it? Right now, SL can serve files, Time Machine backups, iTunes media, Printers, etc.

    Right now, I'm using an old 12" 1.5GHz 1.25GB RAM PowerBook to serve files, my iTunes, printer and Time Machine backups on an external drive. It works perfectly just by checking these checkboxes. Love OS X.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #3
    I would like to make my own website. (example.com), I would create the .html files say with dreamweaver and then just host them

    also perhaps host some forums.
     
  4. Sean Dempsey macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

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    Aug 7, 2006
    #4
    Do you have a static IP, or plans to use a DDNS?
     
  5. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #5
    No idea, I'm a total newbie! :) what do you recommend? what should I use? what should I do?
    All I know is I would like my own website (hosted by me) and perhaps some forums.
     
  6. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #6
    Yes, you can, but it's pretty complicated. For it to work best, you'll want a static IP address (you get that from your ISP — usually costs a few bucks per month), a domain name, and good upload speeds from your ISP.

    Your best bet is to find a tutorial online. With Apache built-in to OSX, you'll have decent flexibility.
     
  7. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #7
    Should I buy OS X snow leopard server? Perhaps wait for Lion(client)?
     
  8. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #8
    You don't have to have it. Makes it a bit easier to set up the website on your machine, so it's not a bad idea. But it's not strictly needed, since OSX has a full apache server in it.
     
  9. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #9
    OK, and I assume an iMac can be on all the time? (day & night), and with 8GB of RAM, it should all work?
     
  10. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #10
    My iMac is our main computer, and I never turn it off. It's been on non-stop (minus when we're out of town) for almost 3 and 1/2 years now and it's still going strong. It will be fine for a server. Unless you're planning on a real high-traffic website. But I think your ISP upload speed will probably be more of a limit on that end than your iMac.
     
  11. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #11
    Would a forum be considered high-traffic?
     
  12. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

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    Apr 10, 2007
    #12
    Depends on number of users, posts per day, etc. A forum like MacRumors? VERY high traffic. Just depends on how busy it will be.
     
  13. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #13
    OK, I guess I'll have to see on that. I'll try to find a good tutorial.
     
  14. neko girl macrumors 6502a

    neko girl

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    #14
    Have you considered a third party hosting solution? It is considerably cheap and you wouldn't be responsible for any hardware or maintenance. Hosting solutions offer you 100s of GB of space, pre-compiled forum solutions, email servers, etc.

    Also, check this out:
    http://www.macminicolo.net/
     
  15. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #15
    I might as well consider it too. I would create the html/php files myself and then just upload them...
     
  16. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #16
    Would be easier. You can find good hosting for $5/month or less.
     
  17. neko girl macrumors 6502a

    neko girl

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    #17
    You could also maintain a local infrastructure so you could look at test versions of your site. You would need Apache (that most hosting solutions run), a SQL database of some kind to keep your data/import it regularly to keep a backup, and maybe a few different web browsers (IE would need to be used through Parallels).

    Also, check out Coda:
    http://www.panic.com/coda/

    I hope you don't think I'm encouraging you to buy anything. If anything you can go really, really cheap and start with free web hosting and find a free forum host (this might be harder). You could easily use TextWrangler (free) to maintain code for your website and look at phpBB (for forums) and Wikimedia with an "m" (for wikis).
     
  18. doxavita thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 6, 2010
    #18

    Wow, that looks awesome!, thanks, I was considering using Dreamweaver, but Coda might help too..
     
  19. Pachang macrumors regular

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    Dec 17, 2009
  20. Sean Dempsey macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #20
    Can I add:

    hosting your own website from a home computer on a regular ISP is a terrible idea. From setting up your machine as a server, to the sercurity risks you take, to just being a huge pain in the ass, it's a bad idea.

    Try www.dreamhost.com, 10 dollars a month for hosting, unlimited.

    Seriously, what you are wanting to do will being you nothing but pain. Download MAMP, do your building locally if you want, but host it on some sort of hosting provider.
     
  21. Beaverman3001 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    #21
    It isn't worth the hassle to do yourself. As someone else already recommended, dreamhost is a great hosting company. I've set up a few sites with them and have had zero problems.
     

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