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HTTP Server Basics

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Jason Jones

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Posted: 21 Dec 2004

I've been the admin for various websites now for several years, using everything from Red Hat to Gentoo Linux, but nothing has been easier to administer or set up than SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9. With just a matter of easy clicks, you can be serving up your own web pages before you know it.

To start, open YAST by clicking on the YAST icon on your Desktop

Inside YAST, you'll want to click on Network Services on the left and then HTTP Server on the right.

If you haven't installed the apache2 packages, you'll be asked to do so.

After clicking continue, you'll see a bunch of windows pop open and then close automatically.

These are just information boxes telling you what is being installed. These can be safely ignored, so it's okay just to wait until the following box appears:

Here is where you'll define the details of your web server configuration. The default configuration for SLES 9's web server is sufficient for most basic HTML servers.

Go ahead and click on Enabled to enable the web server.

After you enabled the server, feel free to look around in the settings, but be careful what you change. The default configuration should work well enough for most people.

When you're comfortable with your settings, click Finish and the following will appear in the window to tell you it's installing, configuring, and enabling your server.

And that's it. You now have a web server running to serve up web pages!

Now, how do you tell if it's working? Well, open up a browser and type in "localhost" into the address bar and press enter.

If the information displayed above appears, even though it's telling you you're forbidden, it's a good sign. This means your server is up and running, but it doesn't have any content to display yet.

If you see the following information displayed above, this means your server is *not* up and running yet. Go back to the configuration screen and make sure it's enabled.

To get some content in your server, you simply copy your HTML files to your servers directory. SLES 9's default directory is "/srv/www/htdocs" Put the HTML files in there and you're good to go. Make sure you have an index.html file in there, too.

For example, for my index.html file I created a new file using gedit and used this for its content:

Hello World

and this is what I got in my browser

Happy serving!

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