Few questions about Mac OS Server and hosting website

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by persianjk, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. persianjk macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2011
    Hello everyone,

    Currently, I have Mac OS Lion installed on my macbook pro and my Mac Mini.
    Now, I have decided to install Mac OS Server on my both systems, so I could host my own websites. Few things that I are not sure about are:

    1) Will my installed apps working on Lion would keep working on OS Server?

    2) How do I know if my ip is static or not on Lion?

    3) Does my system should be running all the time to keep the websites up?

    4) And Do I have to talk with my internet service provider about doing this. (they won't block my ip?)

    Thanks in advance,
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Use a web hosting service. Hosting your own websites is more trouble than it's worth.
  3. persianjk thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2011
    It's not about money, I own 6 websites and I've been paying for all of the hosting services separately, but I like to learn the way of doing it, and I am only going to host one of my domains with it.
    Thanks for your advice
  4. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    Yes (but I'm sure someone will find an exception!)

    But you don't need OS X Server to host websites - you can do it on regular OS X, which includes the same Apache web server software (you're sure to find a HowTo guide on the interwebs) and (although your mileage may vary depending on what you want to do) I didn't find the Server tools very helpful for this unless you just want a click'n'drool wiki server configured the way Apple intends. If you're out to learn, then finding out how to edit the Apache config files in regular OS X and installing any wiki/blog/CMS/whatever software you want (most are free) will be useful to you.

    Check the details provided by your internet provider. Its the only way to be sure. These days static IP is usually advertised as a "feature" so if its not mentioned, and if you didn't get your own domain name you probably haven't got it. If you don't have a static IP you might want to investigate this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_DNS#DDNS_for_ISP_users (I've never tried it).

    Also, if you're connecting via a router/firewall (likely if you've got two machines) then its your router's IP address that matters - in that case your macs will have private IP addresses (10.x.x.x, 192.168.x.x, - only valid on your home network and you'll have to set up port forwarding on your router.

    The old PPC Mac Mini that handles my mail has been running continuously for several years - currently 312 days since last restart :)
    (Sadly, its running Linux, not Mac OS).

    You should check your "acceptable use policy". Some providers forbid running servers. This isn't just being mean: ADSL connections are designed on the assumption that you are going to be downloading far more than you are uploading, so the upload speed is only a fraction of the download speed. If someone else downloads from your website then they're using <i>your</i> upload bandwidth.

    So I'd echo what others have said - while its OK for creating experimental sites that only you will use, using a home broadband connection to run any sort of public website that might attract traffic is a non-starter: that's what web hosting services are for.
  5. MacDann macrumors 6502a


    Mar 27, 2007
    Can see the end of the Earth from here
    You can use a DNS service that redirects your domain to your computer, many of which cost little or nothing.

    Yes, the computer hosting the web site must be running for the site to be accessible.

    Acceptable use is a big deal - some service providers purposely block ports to prevent users from hosting web sites. There are ways around this, but in all honesty, from the type of questions you're asking it's unlikely that you currently have the knowledge to do something like this (don't take this as criticism, please, it's not intended to be.)

  6. persianjk thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2011
    Thanks a lot for answering all of my questions, and I really appreciate your time.
  7. cooldaddybeck macrumors member

    Jul 15, 2008
    San Jose, CA
    I use freedns.afraid.org to manage dynamic dns updating for the site i host at home. If my IP changes, it automatically updates. All you need to do is drop a simple file in your /Library/LaunchAgents folder to send new data when it's acquired.

    Of course, the site I host at home is my "test" site, my live site is still hosted by NetSol. ;0)
  8. ChristianVirtual macrumors 601


    May 10, 2010
    If you expose your server to the public make sure to have proper firewall rules in place. I use a MacMini as VPN server and the log files are full of events when someone trying to login on SSH. Maybe script kids; some addresses I could back route to Russia. Close as much as possible services and make sure to use complicated passwords.

    But hey: it's fun to play with gives some good experience.
  9. jackhdev macrumors 6502

    Apr 9, 2011
    Bismarck, North Dakota
    Additionally, make sure that your ISP has ports 80 and 443 open on your Internet connection. All HTTP requests go through 80 and all HTTPS web requests go through 443. I use Optimum and I had to pay an extra $15 a month just to get 80 open. These may not be open unless you pay for them! Then be sure to forward the needed port(s) to your server (on your router).

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