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Do you know any Good Free Web Hosting?

By akaivan
Apr 2, 2006
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  1. Hi everyone, do any of you know any good sites for free web hosting such as, Websites, Message boards, chat, guestbook and anything else really. I thought i can use some practice and make my own page :) Any ideas? And thankyou in advance
     
  2. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Checkout this thread HERE.

    Also do a Google search for "free web hosting"

    Regards Howard :)
     
  3. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Mind you, "good" and "free" are mutually exclusive when you look at hosting companies. You are better off pestering your friends to find some good soul who will give you some webspace on their own server. You could ask your school or workplace about possible web hosting too. A friendly sysadmin you know in person is way better than any ***** in any hosting company to whom you are just another pesky user.

    You could even host your own page on your own computer or set up some old Pentium rig with Linux/BSD and shove it under your bed so you wouldn't have to keep your main computer running 24/7.
     
  4. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    Lol i might try that Nodsu. Lol And thanks Howard :)
     
  5. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    You can absolutely run your own web host, right on your own box! And you wouldn't even need to be connected to the Internet to design and test.

    Check out http://www.en.wampserver.com/ and download the all-in-one exe installer.

    Read as much as you like about it, get a good feel for hosting yourself.
    I've used it for years, to do all my dev and personal site hosting. You can all html of course, plus PHP, and MySQL database. You can also use SQLite for a smaller flat file DB built in to PHP.

    Anyhow, all you need is to install that and create some passwords etc... some small config changes, and then know what your IP address is at any given moment so outsiders can get to you.

    Fun stuff

    good luck
     
  6. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    oo it looks good thanks Vigilante
     
  7. Jimbo420

    Jimbo420 TS Rookie Posts: 356

    I have to agree with Nodsu. Best free host would be you :p. Course if you ever run into problems and have to call tech support that can be tricky sometimes :).

    My site is running on an old 700Mhz Duron I had laying around.
     
  8. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    Y would u put and domain on another pc?
     
  9. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    You don't have to, but if you want to offload the resources it takes to run a web server.
    For example a gamer might not want to host a web site on their main gaming machine, so stick it on another. I run my server on my main PC, but I don't get a lot of traffic on this particular page so it doesn't matter.

    WAMP can take around 30-35mb of RAM, this is for the main program, apache, mysql etc...
    Plus, if you run a web server that people GO to, you'll want the "server" to stay on all the time. There are a lot of benefits to a dedicated hosting box, but there are just as many reason to run it on your main box anyway. Such as easy access to editing the files right in front of you.

    Anyways, don't think to hard about it, if you have a 2nd PC not doing anything and it stays on all the time and is reliable and you want to get into hosting a web server for yourself; then by all means hook it up.
    If you just have one main PC that stays on all the time and this is the one you want to learn web design on, and you're not worried about the extra resources, then go for it on your main PC.

    Once the server is set up, you can have people look at your primary home page by typing in your external IP address, like http://24.117.x.xxx or whatever.
    If you want to host a "domain" such as www.yourhouse.com, there is a little more work to do to get it pointed to your house. Namely DNS stuff.

    Good luck
     
  10. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    YEa i got an old pc. a p2.... SO were can i do this?? What server should i use?
     
  11. Jimbo420

    Jimbo420 TS Rookie Posts: 356

    All you really need it 2kPro on there and install IIS to run a website off of there.
     
  12. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    2k is already installed on there. And what is iis?
     
  13. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    If you have another PC to use as a web server, here are some pointers.

    1) High speed internet is good :)
    2) Leave it on all the time. So a quiet box that is out of the way is nice.
    3) Try to get Windows 2000 or XP on there to run WAMP. 9x it really no good for a server in my mind.
    4) Install WAMP from that web site, read as much about it as you can cause you'll want to make a few config changes, create passwords etc...
    5) Test it by opening Internet Explorer and typing localhost. This should open the default page the WAMP created for you (which you'll remove to put in your own page).
    6) You want to give your new server a static IP address inside your LAN, you can find it easy. Like 192.168.0.5 or something. This is also what you'll type in your browser from a different PC in your LAN.

    7) And then to top it off, if you do your designing on a different PC, you'll want to map a shared folder to the web folder, so you can edit the files from another PC.


    Problem is, if it's a P2, it's probably not that powerful, which is fine, you don't need much for Apache and MySQL, and you can get by with Windows 98 if you have to.
    The other options, which I couldn't help you with, is to just install Linux with Apache and so on. It's more complex and I couldn't begin to tell you, but some people here have more Linux experience of course, and could help.

    Hope that get's you started. WAMP is the easiest route, you can always install each program sepparately, but it's harder, and WAMP gives you a nice little integrated icon for managing the services.

    good luck
     
  14. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    hmm im really confused. wat deos wamp do? I just needed to have my own website. such as www.cool.com. WIll wamp let me do that?
     
  15. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

  16. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470


    HAha thats my old one. I need another for other porposes. Sort of People i know and meet can see. Its for me freinds and family. But i dont really want the freewebs in front of that.
     
  17. Jimbo420

    Jimbo420 TS Rookie Posts: 356

    What is WAMP that you are talking about here. I just used IIS that just comes in windows. Just curious because I have never heard of that.
     
  18. DaProffessaT34

    DaProffessaT34 TS Rookie Posts: 39

    Try to get any kind of computer and make it on their.
     
  19. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    Ok, first off:
    What's WAMP, I don't remember what it stands for, but the AMP part is Apache MySQL PHP. WAMP is not a program, it's just a bundle of those services.
    Those are all free services for doing your own web hosting. If you wanted to build your OWN web server. But rather then install and configure each service one by one, WAMP simply bundles them all together in one package with one interface and a single installer for all of them. Thus making life way easier. It's all free stuff. Otherwise, you download and install Apache, then download and install PHP, then download and install MySQL etc...

    IF you are using IIS, then WAMP is not needed at all, or I should say, the Apache part is not. But if you want MySQL and PHP you still have to configure it with IIS. It's your choice.
    I've used both IIS and Apache on Windows and WAMP just makes it super easy, and Apache/PHP/MySQL is way cooller then, say, IIS/ASP/MSSQL,MySQL, or, goodness no, Access.

    Tis a matter of opinion. I just like those and WAMP simplifies install. But if you have XP Pro or one of the Server versions, might as well use IIS if it's just the same to you. But if you have XP Home, 2000 maybe, 9x, then WAMP may be the easiest option.
    WAMP: http://www.wampserver.com/en/

    OR again, if you don't plan on programming PHP or any database, you can just as easy get a simplified web server ONLY, such as BadBlue, Savant Web Server, Sambar. or whatever. There is even a small server written IN PHP, called Nanoweb. With one of those you can host HTML stuff, javascript and so on. But that's not much different then creating some HTML files and then just opening them in a browser. But these make you a server so others can view the pages from outside.

    Ok then, moving on.

    If you want www.domain.com to point to YOUR house onto YOUR server, that's a little harder.
    Basically start at the source. Buy your domain, say from 1and1 or Godaddy. Then for DNS, you can host your own DNS (not recommended), or go grab a free acount at www.zoneedit.com.
    Once you have an account there, you tell Godaddy or whatever, that your DNS addresses are the ones that zoneedit will give you when you sign up.
    Then you use zoneedit to create all your DNS settings, A records, MX records etc. The primary thing is an A record for www.page.com and also just page.com (without www), that points to your external IP address. Use MX records to handle mail. So you can now have anything@domain.com and have your own mail. But now you need a mail server :) lol, not to get complicated or anything. But Zoneedit has a simple mail forward so you can create emails for domain.com and then just forward them to some other E-mail of yours.

    Alright? Follow? Once you get Godaddy pointing to Zoneedit, then zoneedit pointing to your house. You now need to set your router to forward port 80 traffic to the internal IP address of your web server.

    So now what happens?
    Say some dude in Japan types www.domain.com, their DNS server finds the SOA for that domain, which is Godaddy, which then passes the request to your own DNS, which is zoneedit, which sees www.domain.com and knows to pass that to your IP address via A Record. This reaches your router, which sees that it is port 80 traffic (HTTP), and forwards it to your internal server, which serves up the page and sends it back along the line. This is find for a web server. If you do other things at your house, you need to open up other ports for that type of traffic. Such as Port 21 (FTP), 25,110 (SMTP,POP3 email), 3389 (TSWEB) and maybe even the Secure SSL and HTTPS ports etc...

    Whew, um, I'm of course leaving out some technical theory, but basically that's how it works, basically. There are many steps, but the first steps are to buy your domain name and find yourself a DNS server. You can also buy the domain from a place that ALSO has DNS services, but it may not be free.

    The Web is really a complex place!

    It really isn't as hard as all that, though. I mean, you could install IIS or use WAMP, then just tell mom to type your external IP address into her browser, and there you go. Still have to port forward in your router though. But sending an actual address to your house is a bit more complex.

    Anyway, this is starting to be confusing for me, so I'm done jabering. But despair not, running a web server really is fun and challenging!

    :):)
     
  20. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    If you have a home internet connection, then you probably have a dynamic IP address that may change. You will have to see what dynamic DNS services your router supports (usually dyndns.org) and get a free domain name from there.

    You won't be able to get anything like www.cool.com, but cool.mine.nu or whatever.shacknet.nu is possible.
     
  21. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    ok how do i check if it lets me have 1??? And i would like somthing like cool.org?is that possible?
     
  22. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    Use any ole' domain checker for that. Go to 1and1, pretty cheap domain names, if you like me, use my referral link in my sig :) :)
    Here is there main page without referral: www.1and1.com

    In the right column on the top is a Domain Check tool, use it to see if the domain you want is available.
    It's best to get a .com name just because that's what everybody has. So if you copy some other domain and get like Imcool.net, people will still try .com first. Anyway, when I think up domain names, I like to get ones and buy both .com and .net. Sucks, but hey, keeps people from taking your name. I've bought like 5 domains with 1and1, pretty nice, and cheap, and easy.

    good luck
     
  23. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    cool.org is obviously taken :p

    Actually, you can be pretty sure all common English words and expressions have been taken and you either have to forget about them or pay a lot of money to the squatter.

    If you get your own domain name, then you have to make sure that the DNS entry is correct (otherwise people won't be able to find your server (or may find someone else hosting goats'n'nurses porn :p )). This means that you have to update the DNS records manually every time you get disconnected or install some clever program to do it for you.
     
  24. akaivan

    akaivan TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 470

    Thnks Vigilante, how much did u pay for all? hmm i guess ill hav to wait till my parents set me up with that
     
  25. Jimbo420

    Jimbo420 TS Rookie Posts: 356

    Thanks for the info up there Vigilante.

    You don't actually have to have a router to support the Dynamic DNS. It is a bit easier but there is software you can download from dyndns.org that you can run on your box if your router doesn't support dynamic dns like mine :(.

    Check out this link. You download that and then all you have to do is get a free account with dyndns.org and set up your host name with them and you would be all set for the server at home.
     

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