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To be or not to be a server


bradL
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I recently got the idea of turning an old pc into a server. I have two choices between pc's. They are about 6-8 years old to give you an idea on the specs, both run xp and also they are very close HP models. I wish I could post the specs but I need to finish a Security final and get some sleep for a final tomorrow. Should I keep xp or go with some linux distro and do you know of any guides out there?

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Well of course I'm going to recommend Linux (Or any Unix variant other then Mac)

And guides for what exactly? What would you want your "server" to do?

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I've been thinking about a ftp. Basically just storage for my home network. Store my music on it and play it on another computer and allow some remote access. It doesn't have a large hard drive so I won't do any backups. I really don't know what I want it to do, I just want to look into what servers can do and how to do it. Sorry if I seem vague.

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For simplicity gut out XP and install the Xampp bundle on there. It's effective and easy to manage, unlike the majority of NIX/Unix server packages which are rather time consuming to setup.

This is, of course presuming you're not going into professional hosting, the difference between XP and a Nix package probably won't be noticable.

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For simplicity gut out XP and install the Xampp bundle on there. It's effective and easy to manage, unlike the majority of NIX/Unix server packages which are rather time consuming to setup.

This is, of course presuming you're not going into professional hosting, the difference between XP and a Nix package probably won't be noticable.

That means I have to find my Xp reg key now. I'll give a look see when i get chance.

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For simplicity gut out XP and install the Xampp bundle on there. It's effective and easy to manage, unlike the majority of NIX/Unix server packages which are rather time consuming to setup.

This is, of course presuming you're not going into professional hosting, the difference between XP and a Nix package probably won't be noticable.

Aha? My personnel opinions is that all CLI based applications are a lot easier to manage then any GUI application out there, Once you read the man pages and understand It's need & commands.

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Once you read the man pages and understand It's need & commands.

Precisely.. this takes a good few hours/days to get familiar with. In XP you can just take advantage of the GUI and get straight on into hosting.

In a professional environment I'd definatly agree with you, but in this case I think simplicity is key.

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We have a pc magazine thing over here that did a low spec server build using Linux. They supplied a complete guide using a step by step process with an old copy of Mandrake.

I do have it in a zip file laying about somewhere.

It's quite small and i'd be happy to share it with you if your interested.

It's pretty comprehensive and basic from the ground up.

Pm me if you want to know more :)

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I've been thinking about a ftp. Basically just storage for my home network. Store my music on it and play it on another computer and allow some remote access. It doesn't have a large hard drive so I won't do any backups. I really don't know what I want it to do, I just want to look into what servers can do and how to do it. Sorry if I seem vague.

There are lot of benefits with going with windows or Linux. How/where do you plan on streaming your media to? xbox? other computers? internet? If you plan on using this box to store/play media from off your local network and have some Linux experience, I would go with ubuntu server edition and then installing a minimal lightweight gui, like xfce (xubuntu-desktop), and run Samba, like WhollyMindless said. Also check out Webmin which I believe was mentioned in Ep 4x14.

If you just want to get this box up and running with little OS config effort, then Windows is a good choice.

If you plan on using FTP across the internet, look into using SFTP, basically FTP through SSH. Much more secure.

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if you just need some ftp you might as well just keep your xp install and throw something like filezilla on it. it would be alot easier for you than having to install and configure settings on linux if youre not familiar with linux. basically it probably wont matter either way. i mean ftp is ftp. but like someone else mentioned if youre planning on streaming to other devices like an xbox for example it might be better to stick with windows.

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