How To Setup A Web Server And Host Website On Your Own Linux Computer

how to setup a web server

Welcome to small tutorial series of hosting a website on Linux machine. This series of articles will teach how to setup a web server on the Linux computer and make it available online. The website we’ll host on our personal computer can be accessed from around the globe. In this article(Part 1), we are going to install all the required tools to a setup web server. So let’s get started and start our own setup web server.

The Linux distro we’ll be using for this setup is Ubuntu OS. However, this can be implemented in any Linux distro. At the end of this tutorial, you will be able to host your PHP and mySQL based website on your own Linux machine. The tutorial is divided into two parts. In the first part, we discuss the basic components and their installation part. In the next section, we shall write sample PHP code for a basic website and host it under apache2 web server.

How To Setup Linux Web Server And Host Website On Your Own Computer [Part – 2]

Prerequisites To Setup Web Server

To setup web server on your own Linux computer, we’ll require the following three components to be installed –

  • Apache2: apache2 is open-source HTTP server. It is still the most popular web-server used worldwide today.
  • php and php sqlite component: PHP is a server-side scripting language. PHP and its component will help you to interact with a backend mySQL database for your website.
  • mySQL: mySQL is a database solution in which you shall be storing your data in the table.

If you have installed the above components, you can skip this part and move to the next part here( add link here).

​How To Setup A Web Server

Install Apache2

Apache is open source web-server software that powers much of the web today. It is maintained by apache-http-project. Explore more here:

Open your terminal and type in commands –

sudo apt-get updatesudo apt-get install apache2

To check if apache2 is installed properly –

sudo service apache2 restart

Open your web browser and open the link using ip–address of your server. If you are practicing locally, you can type in localhost or By default, Apache runs on port 80 and hence you need not provide the port number in your browser. ip-address of your server. For example198.162.12.52
It should show a message as it works! To change port address, you need to edit the configuration file at /etc/apache2/ports.conf  and change the Listen 80 to your desired port number. After edit, you need to restart the apache2 server.

​To restart apache2 web server -​​
sudo service apache2 restart

Install mySQL

mySQL is the database management solution that helps you to store and retrieve data in tables.
Since in this tutorial we shall be using php, we will also need to install php5-mysql component.

sudo apt-get install mysql-server php5-mysql

To check if mySQL is installed properly, open mysql on terminal with command –

mysql -uroot

If you set the password during installation open with -p parameter –

mysql -uroot -p

Install PHP

PHP is an open source web server scripting language. It is a back-end scripting language that will help you to interact with the mySQL database. For example, if you want to show the tabular employee list stored in your mySQL database in your website, with the help of PHP you can interact with mySQL, retrieve the employee list and render in html page. php5-mysql library helps you in this regard. PHP provides multiple auxiliary libraries for different needs. Php5-mysql is one among them and we shall use that in our tutorial.

To search the libraries that are available.

apt-cache search php5-

To install PHP and php5-mysql

sudo apt-get install php5 libapache2-mod-php5 php5-mcrypt
sudo apt-get install php5-sqlite

To check if PHP is installed correctly, make file /var/www/html/info.php and add the following content to this file -​


Restart apache2

sudo service apache2 restart

Open web browser and navigate to you are using remote server replace ip with server’s ip address. Upon success, you should see the following webpage –

Well, that’s it, you are ready with the basic setup required for this tutorial. In the next section, we code a sample webpage in PHP that would store and retrieve the information in the mySQL table. Then we host it under apache2. If you like this tutorial, share the tutorial with your friends and let them set up their own web server. We’ll publish the next part very soon so keep visiting. Thank you!​

How To Setup Linux Web Server And Host Website On Your Own Computer [Part – 2]

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6 Comment

Joginder September 20, 2020 - 11:56 am

Nice tutorial, but i’ve another problem, what if i shut down my machine? How my website will respond online if my machine is off. Please enlighten me.

Jim Smith December 13, 2020 - 6:23 pm

If you want your site to be available 24/7, you must leave it on 24/7

Chad Carew January 11, 2021 - 7:30 am

If I wanted to host a web page without putting it out on the world wide webs, supposing I have a router with DDNS address assigned and a vpn server running on said router, could I do this and then just give those I want to be able to access the site a login for the VPN and once on my network set things up such that they would then get directed to my website?

meleeman February 3, 2021 - 11:37 pm

what about hosting a server on the world wide web and not just your local instance?

PanicButton October 4, 2019 - 12:29 pm

So true

Denver Boeringa December 5, 2019 - 7:34 am

You need to open the port that Apache is listening on Afterward you can access it from using your public ip. Hopefully its static if not have a dns like running on the same server.

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