The easiest way to install and configure a website using the Apache web server
There are many reasons why you might want to install and configure your own website instead of paying someone else to do it for you, but perhaps the biggest reason is that it’s just plain fun. It’s also good to know how to do this stuff so that if you ever run into problems, you’ll know exactly how to fix them. You don’t want to be stuck without the means of adding pages or editing content if your web developer has been run over by a bus! This article will walk you through setting up your very own web server using Apache, which is one of the most popular web servers available today.
Install the Apache Web Server
- Before you can install the Apache Web Server, you need to ensure that you have a working installation of the Linux operating system. If you don’t have Linux installed, you can download it from the internet or purchase a pre-installed version from a computer store.
- Once you have Linux up and running, the next step is to download the Apache Web Server software. Open a terminal window by clicking on Applications > Accessories > Terminal.
- Next type in the following command: sudo apt-get install apache2. Enter your password when prompted.
- The last step is to enter this command: sudo service apache2 start. You can also enter this command by typing sudo apache2 start if you’re not already in terminal mode.
Configure Virtual Hosts
One of the great things about the Apache web server is that it can be easily configured to support multiple websites on a single server. This is done by setting up virtual hosts. The configuration settings for each site are kept in its own directory, called sites-available. To activate this directory, you use the a2ensite command: $ cd /etc/apache2/sites-available $ sudo a2ensite blog
Once the new directory has been activated, we can create an index.html file in it so we have something to display when browsing to our new site. Here’s how you do that:
cd blog; touch index.html ; echo This is my first post! > index.html This is my first post!
Create a Custom Error Document
Use your own domain name
If you want to use your own domain name with the Apache web server, you’ll need to purchase a domain name from a registrar such as Go Daddy or Name cheap. Once you have your domain name, you can follow these steps to configure it with Apache.
- Log in to your account at the registrar that hosts your domain.
- Select domain names on the menu bar
- Choose edit next to your domain name
- Fill in all of the fields (you may need assistance from someone who understands DNS).
- Save changes.
- Copy down your IP address from the configuration page.
- Download Apache’s .htaccess file and put it in the root directory of your site’s folder.