Free Essay

Web Server

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By barabeck23
Words 1165
Pages 5
A web server is a crucial element in most company’s infrastructure. Every corporate company has to have a web presence. Some companies use it for marketing, some use it for sales, and some use it just to share information. It doesn’t matter why they use it, because they need it either way. Most customers want to check out products online before they decide what they want. Computers provide an easy and flexible way to research for the best products that are available for the customer. Depending on what you are going to use your web server for, you have to select an appropriate solution for yourself that will satisfy your needs. There is no “clear cut” way to create and configure a web server. If you are looking for the answer: “Ok! This is the best web server!” You are out of luck. I wish there was an easy way to figure this stuff out, but there are many questions to answer and needs to satisfy before you can declare that you have a great web server. There is a lot of information out there that will “help” you chose a solution for your company or organization. Unfortunately, I think in this case there is a little too much information available and it could be overwhelming. There is a lot of biased information available on the net. Some people say Apache is better than IIS, but it really depends on what your needs are. If you have your own company, you have to sit down with your IT staff and marketing staff and preferably every member of your company to come up with a “picture” that you need your website and web server to do for you and for your company. For my senior project class, my team and I decided to create a website for a corporate catering company. We had to come up with a plan that was going to satisfy our sponsor’s requirements. Our sponsor wanted to have a website that was simple, but very effective. He wanted to get some information through to his customers over the net, and he wanted it too look colorful, yet user friendly. He wanted a website with a home page, a menu page, an about us page and an online ordering page. The online ordering page required a username and password for returning customers. Therefore, we had to come up with a plan for a web server that would allow us to have a database connected to our web site. We decided that we were going to use a hosting company that would allow us to have a database that was required by our sponsor. We choose a plan from the hosting company based on a few specifications. First of all, the sponsor used a hosting company called Verio for his previous web site. Verio is very expensive compared to other providers, but our sponsor was already used to their services, and didn’t want to change it. Therefore, my team and I decided that we will figure out a way that our sponsor can stay with his current provider. Since I am familiar with and my group was familiar with MYSQL we had to consider that into choosing a package. Therefore, we choose a plan that was supporting Windows (IIS) and a MYSQL database. Is there a best way to configure a web server? There sure is, but before you start “drawing the picture” you have to do some research. In my case it took quite a bit of time to make sure we put everything into consideration. Basically you have to get some questions answered and tasks completed before you can start working on your web server. First of all, you have to register a domain name if you don’t have one already. If you already have one and want to transfer it to another hosting company, you have the option to do it. Of course you also have the option of hosting your own site. In that case there are even more questions that need to be answered. For example, you need to know what kind of internet connection you have and does your internet service provider allow you to host your own website. If so, you need to figure out if you have any ports blocked. Of course, when you have some ports blocked your web server might have some difficulties functioning in certain situations. You need to figure out, whether or not your router or modem support port forwarding, which is crucial if you are planning to host your own site. Another very important question you have to answer if you are willing to host your own site: Do you have a firewall? And what settings you have selected when you configured it. Second of all, you have to decide what you want your web server to do. If your web site is only going to be a static HTML page, you obviously don’t need to have a state of the art system. On the other hand, if your website requires you to have dynamic elements, perhaps with a database, you have to put into consideration the requirements that you will have to fulfill. Third of all, you have to decide what kind of programming language you want to use, and what kind of programming language your IT department is familiar with. Some of your choices include Dream weaver, PHP,, etc. Depending on the programming language, you might have to use different options to host your website or to have your website hosted. For example, for my senior project we first picked an Apache web server to host our client’s web site. Unfortunately, that particular option did not support a MYSQL database, so we had to choose a different option. One good thing about the whole thing is that you have a lot of options to choose from. You are not really limited from the resources that are available to you. Finally, you have to consult with your staff if you own the company or your board if you don’t own the company about the budget you have. You have to come up with a plan and introduce it to them. You have to make sure you clearly identify every aspect of the requirements. Some people might not be familiar with certain terms you use, so you have to make sure you use terms that everybody understands. Of course, it helps if you come up with a couple of fully worked out plan that only needs to be implemented. Therefore, they can say yes or no to the plans you have proposed. There is no easy way to configure a web server. You have to answer questions and plan out everything before you can say that you have a system that is perfect for you. After completing senior project my team and I became fully aware of that.

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