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Servers for dummies


Servers for dummies

Ok, this may be a big ask but here goes....

I have an idea for a wbsite I want to put together but to do it right, 250Mb of website will just not be enough. For this reason i want to set up my own server so I can use my own HD space to host the site on. This brings me to my prob. I don't have the first clue how to set up a server and configure it for PHP and CGI etc. I know how to use PHP and and do the web building as i've built sites and used PHP in the past. I just don't know how to set up my own server.

Sooooo, my question is, does anyone know of a good step-by-step "servers for dummies" type tutorial that would walk me through the process? Any help would be appreciated.

Tks in advance. Smiley
Posts: 2,559
Thanks: 261
Fixes: 5
Registered: 06-04-2007

Servers for dummies

I know a good bit already about linux, but I found good when I was setting up a linux machine with Apache, MySQL and PHP.

If you are doing this on a windows box, you either need to install IIS from the Add/Remove Windows Commonents section of the Add/Remove Programs util, and then down load PHP from Alternatively you could install Apache on your Windows box from I don't have much experience with PHP on Windows though, so can't be too much help with that.


Servers for dummies

Good stuff, PJ. That gives me summin to get started with. Tks a bunch for the help, mate Smiley
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

Servers for dummies

It must be one hell of a web site you are planning if 250Mb is not enough. Wink

Do not forget that ADSL upstream speed is limited to 256K.

I recommend that you take a look at SME server, see the following link;

This is a community driven custom Linux distribution developed with commercial backing. It will recycle a basic PC, (I my case a PIII 500MHz) into a standalone web server. Completed with, easy web based administration.

Apache, PHP, MySQL etc are all installed and configured for you. It will run pretty much straight on of the box.

And if there are any other feature that you wish to add, there are lots of “contrib”utions as the are called on the site. For example how to install Awstats web stats program. See


Servers for dummies

Tks for those links, Buzzons. I checked them all out and managed to install Apache and get it to run without a prob. the probs started when i tried to get PHP to run on it. After trying all day, i scrapped it and installed an all inclusive prog called webserv from Sourceforge. This time, I got apache AND php and mysql installed but there wasn't a SINGLE piece of of documentation on how to configure it to your own passwords etc. After messing about with THAT for a couple hours, i've decided to scrap that, too, lol.


well it's not just the size of the new website that's the prob. i allready have stuff taking up alot of the space. Plus, the new site will be graphics intensive because ppl will be able to upload their own pics to it.

Tks for your suggestion, too Chilly. i'm going to download and play with the SME server tomorrow and see how i get on with that. I ain't doin it tonight now as messin with the other ones all day has given me a headache, lol.

Tks again for all your input, guys. it's very much appreciated. Smiley
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

Servers for dummies

Post back or PM me if you require and assistance with SME.


Servers for dummies

Tks alot, Chilly. Will do. *salute* Smiley

Servers for dummies


Would this be of any help?


Servers for dummies

Tks for that Theattic. I'm going to take a look at both SME and xamp and see how i get on. I'll letchya know laters. Smiley

Servers for dummies

Right, I've installed Xamp as SME was recommending burning the installation files to a CD but I don't have a CD writer.

Now then, so far so good. Xamp is installed and I am able to access it's setup pages. Now i've just downloaded the MySQL Administrator but as seems to be the way with all this server stuff, they seem to think we're all experts at it and it provides no walk through or help files.

I'm at the very first panel called "Connect to MySQL Server Instance".

The first box is called "Stored connection"... What do i add there? I tried "localhost" but that didn't work.

Second box is "server Host"... I put my IP#

The last two boxes are for username and PW.... I can manage that part, lol.

Servers for dummies

I haven't used Xampp for what you are planning on doing. I use it as a testing place for phpBB.

In the notes it should explain exactly how to go about your project.


ApacheFriends XAMPP (basic package) version 1.4.3 (win32)

+ Apache 2.0.49
+ MySQL 4.0.20a
+ PHP 4.3.7 + PEAR
+ mod_php 4.3.7
+ MiniPerl 5.8.3
+ SQLite 2.8.13
+ PHPMyAdmin 2.5.7
+ ADODB 4.21
+ Mercury Mail Transport System for Win32 and NetWare Systems v4.01a
+ FileZilla FTP Server 0.9.0
+ Webalizer 2.01-10

* System Requirements:

+ 64 MB RAM (recommended)
+ 98 MB free Fixed Disk
+ Windows 98, ME, XP Home
+ Windows NT, 2000, XP Professional (Recommended)


[Step 1: Unpack the package to your usb stick or a partition of your choice.
There it must be on the highest level like E:\ or W:\. It will
build E:\xampp or W:\xampp or something like this. Please do not
use the "setup_xampp.bat" for an USB stick installation!]

Step 1: Unpack the package into a directory of your choice. Please start the
"setup_xampp.bat" and beginning the installation. Note: xampp makes no
entries in the windows registry and no settings for the system variables.

Step 2: If installation ends successfully, start the Apache 2 with
"apache_start".bat", MySQL with "mysql_start".bat". Stop the MySQL
Server with "mysql_stop.bat". For shutdown the Apache HTTPD, only
close the Apache Command (CMD).

Step 3: Start your browser and type or
http://localhost in the location bar. You should see our pre-made
start page with certain examples and test screens.

Step 4: PHP (with mod_php, as *.php, *.php4, *.php3, *.phtml), Perl
by default with *.cgi, SSI with *.shtml are all located in
=> \...\xampp\htdocs\.
Beispiele (Examples):
=> \...\xampp\htdocs\test.php => http://localhost/test.php
=> \...\xampp\myhome\test.php => http://localhost/myhome/test.php

Step 5: XAMPP UNINSTALL? Simply remove the "xampp" Directory.
But before please shutdown the apache and mysql.


1) MySQL

user: root
(means no password!)

2) FileZilla FTP

user: newuser
password: wampp

user: anonymous

3) Mercury:
Postmaster: postmaster (postmaster@localhost) und Admin (Admin@localhost)

Testuser: newsuser
password: wampp


user: wampp
password: xampp

(NT4 | windows 2000 | windows xp professional)

\...\xampp\apache\apache_installservice.bat =
==> Install Apache 2 as service

\...\xampp\apache\apache_uninstallservice.bat =
==> Uninstall Apache 2 as service

\...\xampp\apache\mysql_installservice.bat =
==> Install MySQL as service

\...\xampp\apache\mysql_uninstallservice.bat =
==> Uninstall MySQL as service

==> After all Service (un)installations, better restart system!

Apache Notes:

(1) In contrast of apache 1.x, you can not stop the apache2
with the command "apache -k shutdown". These functions only for
an installations as service by NT systems. So, simply close
the Apache START command for shutdown.

(2) To use the experimental version of mod_auth_mysql remove the # in
the httpd.conf. Detailed information about this topic can be found on
the left menu of xampp, once you started it.

(3) To use Mod_Dav load the Modules + in the httpd.conf by removing the # on
the beginning of their lines. Then try (not
for Frontpage, but for Dreamweaver)


(1) The MySQL server can be started by double-clicking (executing)
mysql_start.bat. This file can be found in the same folder you installed
xampp in, most likely this will be C:\xampp\.
The exact path to this file is X:\xampp\mysql_start.bat, where
"X" indicates the letter of the drive you unpacked xampp into.
This batch file starts the MySQL server in console mode. The first
intialization might take a few minutes.

Do not close the DOS window or you'll crash the server!
To stop the server, please use mysql_shutdown.bat, which is located in the same

(2) To use the MySQL Daemon with "innodb" for better performance,
please edit the "my" (or "my.cnf") file in the /xampp/mysql/bin
directory or for services the c:\my.cnf for windows NT/2000.
In there, activate the "innodb_data_file_path=ibdata1:30M"
statement. Attention, "innodb" is not recommended for 95/98/ME/XP Home.

To use MySQL as Service for NT/2000/XP Professional, simply copy the "my"
/ "my.cnf" file to C:\my, or C:\my.cnf. Please note that this
file has to be placed in C:\ (root), other locations are not permitted. Then
execute the "mysql_installservice.bat" in the mysql folder.

(3) MySQL starts with standard values for the user id and the password. The preset
user id is "root", the password is "" (= no password). To access MySQL via PHP
with the preset values, you'll have to use the following syntax:
If you want to set a password for MySQL access, please use of mysqladmin.
To set the passwort "secret" for the user "root", type the following:
C:\xampp\mysql\bin\mysqladmin -u root password secret

After changing the password you'll have to reconfigure PHPMyAdmin to use the
new password, otherwise it won't be able to access the databases. To do that,
open the file in \xampp\phpmyadmin\ and edit the
following lines:

$cfg['Servers'][$i]['user'] = 'root'; // MySQL user
$cfg['Servers'][$i]['auth_type'] = 'http'; // HTTP authentificate

So first the 'root' password is queried by the MySQL server, before PHPMyAdmin
may access.

Good luck

Servers for dummies

Whoa! TYVM for all yer help, Theatic. it's much appreciated. Smiley
Posts: 697
Registered: 03-09-2007

Servers for dummies

Just to express my appreciation for theattic pointing in the direction of xampp (apachefriends).... it's a brilliant package.