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About This HOWTO

Building your own fully operational networked server can be greatly satisfying. More important, it can provide you with much freedom to do as you please without depending on someone else's systems. Manage your own email, run your own web server, host multiple websites, even operate your own database applications. Next time your ISPs email server crashes, you won't be affected.

This HOWTO will explore some of the standard types of applications and services available to configure a dedicated Linux network server. This type of server configuration is perfectly suited to the home user, or can also provide the basis for a small to medium office system.

The HOWTO is considered a high level document, which should provide a reason level of detail to guide your installations to a stable and secure state. Further documentation should be sought by the reader in key areas to provide detailed technical explanations.

This document is developed around the Fedora Core versions of Linux , so some configuration aspects will favour Fedora Core more than other Linux distributions. However, the configuration files, scripts and concepts are kept as generic as possible for the wider audience.

Reader Assumptions

I have tried to keep this HOWTO as simple as possible for all users to better understand the concepts and explanations herein. To fully utilise all configuration aspects like email and web server, I've made the following assumptions:

  • the reader has a basic understanding of the hierarchical structure of a Linux filesystem,
  • the reader understands the relationship of a server/client model and the services it provides,
  • the installer will not breach their Internet Service Provider's Acceptable Use Policy implementing this HOWTO,
  • a registered Internet Domain Name is available for use during the installation,
  • the reader can use a text editor (vim examples are used throughout HOWTO),
  • at least one dedicated computer will be used as the server (possibly more for a small to medium office environment), and
  • there is a full time broadband Internet connection available for use.

If users find the "vim" editor too difficult in manipulating the configuration files, then other text editors can be used instead like "gedit". Alternativley the "vim" GUI can be started by typing "gvim".

Providing Feedback

This document covers a wide range of topics, while I have attempted to provide the best possible coverage on all these areas, some errors may occur or application settings change over time with updated releases. There are also numerous hyperlinks to external resources and sites which may break over time as these sites update or move.

If you find any errors or omissions throughout the documentation, or perhaps have a better solution to possible problems, then please contact me so these changes may be incorporated into the document.

Send all feedback and comments to: [1]

Document Conventions

This document uses the following textual conventions throughout the document as assistance to readers.

Description Appearance
- Warning: Things that may affect stability File:Docs Drafts ServerInstallationGuide FC5 Introduction warning.gif This is a warning.
- Caution: Things that are important File:Docs Drafts ServerInstallationGuide FC5 Introduction caution.gif This is a caution.
- Hint: Things that may assist File:Docs Drafts ServerInstallationGuide FC5 Introduction hint.gif This is a hint.
- Note: Things that may need remembering File:Docs Drafts ServerInstallationGuide FC5 Introduction note.gif This is a note.
- File Name /etc/resolv.conf
- Directory Name /var/log
- Typed Command rpm -ivh package.rpm
- Application Name ntpd
- Command Prompt - generic user [bash] $
- Command Prompt - root user [bash] #
- Command Prompt - generic user with tcsh shell [tcsh] $
- Environment Variable VARIABLE
- Emphasized Word emphasized
- Quoted Text "quote"
- Configuration Example workgroup = WORKGROUP
server string = Samba Server

The following server and networking details are used throughout the configuration and script examples.

Description Value
- Hostname: galaxy
- Domain Name:
- Fully Qualified Hostname:
- USB Modem Interface ppp0 (as applicable)
- External Network Device: eth0 (as applicable)
- Internal Network Device: eth1
- Internal IP Address:
- Subnet Mask
- Private Network Address (Internal):
Stop (medium size).png
The above settings should be adjusted to suit the requirements of the individual and their networks. Where adjustments are changed, they should then be continued throughout the entire document for consistency.

Acknowledgments and Thanks

I first and foremost need to thank my wife Susan and our two children Caitlin and Lachlan for their support and understanding while I took time off to prepare this document. The majority of this HOWTO (the initial version for FC3) was written in a relatively short time, there was much to test and document to ensure that I presented you, the members of the Linux community, with what I hope is a quality resource. To my wife and family, I love you.

I would also like to acknowledge the following people who helped me in certain areas of the document:

1. Anyone ?

Copyright Notice

© 2004, 2005 and 2006 - Miles Brennan


Registered Trademarks

Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.
The Fedora trademark is a trademark of Red Hat, Inc.
Motif and UNIX are registered trademarks of The Open Group.
Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation.
SSH and Secure Shell are trademarks of SSH Communications Security, Inc.
All other trademarks and copyrights referred to are the property of their respective owners.

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