All Articles Learn How To Host Your Own Website And Help You’ll Need By Joshua Burk How to Host Your Own Website Learning how to host your own website teaches you why hosting is the foundation of the internet. Every website needs a spot—a place to be accessed at any time and from anywhere. Hosting is just that. It is a space of internet real estate that makes a site accessible on the web. If any person, business, or company wants to create a website, that site must be hosted somewhere. As with anything else, there is both good and bad hosting. Good hosting allows a site to be accessed quickly, is affordable to own and operate, has little maintenance, and is scalable for future growth on the web. Bad hosting, on the other hand, is slow, expensive, high-maintenance, and cannot be scaled up or down over time. What you may be asking is, “how can I host my own website?” The answer, unfortunately, is a little complex. In short, there are two ways you can host your website: Through a hosting platform, this is what most business Host locally, which means you do it all on your own. Between the two website hosting methods, hosting platforms are much more common on the web because hosting requires a fair amount of technical knowledge, a great deal of time, and dedication. However, with persistence, it is possible to take your domain name from a mere concept to a fully realized website using either method listed above. Today we discuss the pros and cons of hosting your own website locally and help you decide whether a hosting platform is the better choice for you. Options for Local Website Hosting There are two ways to host your own website locally. Both involve three main steps, but each stage requires its own bad hosting On work and has different requirements. The first way to host your own website is to use a Windows PC with a WAMP server, and the second is to use a Linux Machine with a LAMP server. Let’s dive further into these two choices. Windows PC (WAMP Server) After acquiring a domain name, the steps for hosting your website using a Windows PC are as followed: Install Wamp Software First, download free programs like WampServer and XAMPP. These programs allow your computer to act like a server, the home for all of your website’s files. Upload Site Files After downloading the software, the next step is to add your site’s domain address. This domain serves as the location where the files are stored. The HTML should be written in text files, then added to the site’s domain address. Make the Website Public While building the site, it will be private. Once the website is created, the next step is to go to “Apache” and select the “HTTP.conf” file. You’ll know the site is public when the setting in this file reads as the following: Order Allow, Deny Allow Allow from all Linux Machine (LAMP Server) The second way to locally host a website is through a Linux Machine. The steps for hosting your website with a Linux Machine are: Install LAMP Software This process is similar to installing WAMP software on a Windows PC above. It also allows a Linux Machine to act as a server for your website. Configure the Site Files and DNS As with a Windows PC, add the site files to the domain address. These files need to be HTML text files and be attached to the domain. Configure Apache The main difference between how a Linux Machine locally hosts a website and how a Windows PC operates is that Apache allows visitors. On a Windows PC, the site and its domain simply need to be made public. But on a Linux Machine, the user must tell Apache to accept site access requests to the domain, which involves creating a directory for your domain and tweaking the permissions. The process of locally hosting a website may sound technical because it is. Without the necessary knowledge and skillset, local hosting can be a nightmare. But what benefits could you receive by going this route? Benefits of Hosting Your Own Website Locally hosting a website can be a painstaking endeavor, but it can also be rewarding. It is a much more hands-on approach to website building. It requires a lot of time, attention, detail, and work. Because of this, you will truly get out what you put in. Your website’s look and functionality will directly depend on your time turning it from nothing into something. Locally hosting your own site on the web is also an opportunity to become more educated in how websites, different programs, and computers work. By the time you finish, you will know the entire process and everything it entails. You may also become more patient. If locally hosting a website can teach a person anything, it’s patience. Should I Host My Own Website? Locally hosting a website has the potential to be a gratifying experience. However, trying to do all of this yourself creates the likely prospect of also driving you insane. Hosting your own website is time-consuming and requires far too much responsibility for just one person to handle. Most websites use hosting providers because of how difficult (and expensive) it can be to create and maintain a locally hosted website. Companies almost always outsource to a hosting provider because it is a cheaper option while also taking additional work off their plate. The only websites that locally host are usually those with the sizable funds and the workforce to do so, like Google. By hosting locally, you’ll run into a series of issues. Some of these issues are a slow website, maintenance on hardware and software, high electrical bills (from your computer constantly running), and a changing IP address. It is much easier, cheaper, and less stressful to use a hosting platform to avoid these headaches. Benefits of Firetoss Hosting Your Website Using a hosting platform like Firetoss is a much simpler solution than locally hosting yourself. A hosting provider houses your website’s data and files and manages web traffic demands in exchange for a monthly or annual fee. Overall, a hosting provider is consistent, dedicated, and handles any technical issues so that you don’t need to worry about them. Hosting Platform Types With a hosting platform, there are generally four types of hosting to choose from: Shared Shared hosting is the most cost-effective option. It allows the storage of multiple sites from across the web on the same server (i.e., sharing space). It is best for smaller sites or those new to the web who are just starting/experimenting with a new domain. Cloud Cloud hosting is like the inverse of shared hosting. Instead of multiple sites sharing the same server, it is one site/one domain powered by various servers— a more flexible setup than shared hosting. If one server experiences an issue with cloud hosting and goes down, another server ensures the site still stays live on the web. Typically, cloud hosting is suitable for sites that share spikes in traffic that help their domain grow. Virtual Private Server (VPS) A virtual private server (VPS) is a midpoint between shared and dedicated servers. A site shares space with other sites from the web on a VPS, but there is a dedicated section explicitly for each site. A VPS is a step above cloud because it mixes flexibility, future scaling, and increased power but is still a step below the ultimate in website hosting, which we’ll get to next. Dedicated With dedicated hosting, your site is the sole tenant of a server. All of the resources from that server are dedicated to your site alone. The exclusivity of a dedicated server comes at a higher cost, but it is worth the money. Your site will not be affected by server issues from some other site on your shared server. It will handle spikes and high traffic flow from around the web, and it will give your site the most flexibility and power available. Your Expert Hosting Platform At Firetoss, we have a fully educated and committed team of hosting experts at your disposal. We can help your domain go from a concept to a fully formed, fully functional website, quickly diagnosing and solving any potential issues along the way. We will prevent your website from ever going offline. Contact us to discuss with one of our experts the best hosting option for your company today.