Originally posted by merman63769
I am completely new to linux, and I am asking a pretty tedious question...
I am wanting to set my linux box up to start hosting website, email, file sharing, and to use dns to direct my website requests...I know how to host websites using someone else's server but would like to start using my own...
First of all I have installed redhat 9 onto a celeron 597Mhz machine with 128mb ram. I am connected to the internet using a cable modem, and then passing through a router (Linksys befsr41) and have 3 other computers sharing the internet connection. I have the ports forwarded on the router for the http, ftp, smtp, pop3, dns - to the server, and have turned on the http server and tried to activate the dns server...
I have purchased a domain for myself but dont know how to go about getting it directed to my server (i assume I use the dns server and the nameservers from the cable company?)
If anyone has time to help or knows where i can find very descript details on how to go about setting up a server (without getting into tech speak, which I don't understand)( I would prefer to use gui to set this up) your help would be very much appreciated!
I am a Linux Newbie my self, but I have been able to do the things that you want to do with relative ease. I never used RH 9, but for what I hear it is very similar to Fedora 1 (my distro), so I guess my situation is similar to yours.
Anyway, about the DNS thing:
You should get a DNS server company to do the IP/domain mapping for you. I used "www.dnsmadeeasy.com" and they were great! There web interface is easy to use, they have great tutorials and info for newbies and there price is $5 per year (not bad). I think that this will buy you about 5 different IP/domain mappings...
I see that you want to do as much GUI configuration as possible. Well, keep in mind that part of the beauty of Linux is the ability to do things (anything) from anywhere without restrictions. For this, the command line is a wonderful tool that you will love very very much once you learn it... However, if you want to make things both easy and portable at first you can try Webmin from "www.webmin.com" and I am sure you will love it! It is a web-based admininstration interface for most common Email, http, proxy, DNS, servers, etc. I used Webmin a lot when I first started!
Another wonderful tool you want to get is "shorewall". This is a good and stable firewall implementation for Linux that will make the task of protecting your server much easier. Also, shorewall will allow you to share your server's internet connection with the rest of the network and much much more. Webmin has an exelent configuration interface for the shorewall firewall (much better than the IPTables firewall), well, at least it is easier and more intuitive...
I use postfix as my mail server. I found postfix much more simple to configure and it has some significant security features that make it a good solution for almost anyone. I would take postfix over sendmail any day!
When you setup Email. You should grab SquirrelMail for your web interface to your Linux Email accounts. It is a wonderful webmail solution that has all the functionality you can want plus more. You can also add plugins to SM to make it send GPG encripted mail and a lot more. Check them out at www.squirrelmail.org.
I use my server as my DNS (Bind 8) and as the gateway to the internet for the rest of my network. I find this configuration to be much more stable than the cheep home routers that I have. I have had uptimes of 93 days with 0 time without services. Note that I never had the system hang, it is always power outages or kernel upgrades that force you to reboot.