Most people choose to host their own website using web space supplied by their own internet service provider. Others choose to pay for more advanced features, or rent virtual or dedicated servers. This costs money, so how about setting up your own personal web server. . . for free?! This means you have total control over whatever you choose to install.

So, how to do it.

Aside from the obvious (a computer, a broadband connection and a router with a firewall) you need a fixed IP address and web server software.

Internet service providers assign what is known as a ‘dynamic IP address’. This means that the IP address for your server is a temporary one. Not much use if people are trying to connect to you!

The solution is to sign up to a dynamic DNS service such as no-ip.com. Here you can set up a host name which directs to your home IP address (go to whatsmyip.org if you don’t know what it is). Install the software provided on your server. This will then check your IP address, and tells the service if it changes.

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