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I have to a get a very simple data entry website up and running. This website will be accessed by only a few people at a time (at most), but usually only one person, and not very frequently - maybe a coupel hours at a time, not every day.

I really don't want to pay for hosting if I don't have to. I have AT&T U-Verse Internet Service.

How feasible is it for me to setup a simple Windows/IIS website on my home network that can be accessed publicly? What's the minimum Internet speed I would need? How can make sure that the IP Address for the public website is static, so I can setup my DNS and forget about it?

Any additional thoughts or suggestions on this type of setup would be greatly appreciated. If this is not feasible, or easy, I will likely just go with a hosting service, and I already have one picked out, so I don't need any suggestions for this.

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4 Answers 4

It's quite feasible. An alternative to using IIS (check that you've got it on your version of Windows) is the WAMPserver.

For the low usage you've got speed isn't important.

You'll have to check with your ISP if you can get a static IP address but this answer covers what to do once you've only got a dynamic one.

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easyPHP also is WAMP distribution that works out of the box –  ZJR Jul 12 '11 at 16:06
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Your home network is fine from a capacity perspective, but how about security? By opening up something like this, you are potentially exposing your entire home network to every miscreant on the internet. Are you ready to pit your security skills against theirs? You can get low end hosting for roughly $50 per year and then let someone else worry about the bad guys.

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I do this with my Comcast service at home. I don't have a static IP. I use a dynamic DNS service ( http://www.dyndns.com/ ).

I do have a VirtualBox machine ( http://www.virtualbox.org/ ) dedicated to the web server (Turnkey LAMPstack http://www.turnkeylinux.org/lampstack).

My Linksys router ( http://amzn.to/po2KiD ) is my firewall with Tomato firmware ( http://www.polarcloud.com/tomato ). The firmware allows a hole in the firewall to direct port 80 and 443 to the web server as well as limited bandwidth monitoring. It also automatically updates the DNS entry when my IP address changes.

Since the connection is slow, fast enough for webpages but not images. All images are hosted with my Picasa account ( http://picasa.google.com/features.html ) and load quickly for all users.

I hope this helps.

-Bob

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You could always use Google Docs. They have forms you can create, and several other solutions that could very well meet your "simple data entry" needs in this area.

The nice thing about Google Docs is they host it, it's free, you can share privately or publicly, and access from anywhere.

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