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I am presently working on localhost. I have created few web services(.asmx) using Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5.

At the same time I have a mobile application (client) that consumes these web services. Now I plan to make these web services public by hosting them on a home server.

I need to set up a home server for that purpose. I have a Windows 2003 Server CD with me.

I want to know how do I configure the server so that I can host my web services? What requirements are necessary for set up?

Also since my database would be SQL Server 2003 or later, how can I manage it once I have set up my server?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Keep in mind you can always use a hosting provider to accomplish what you want, but if you prefer to host from home there are a few hurdles to consider.

  • You have to make sure your ISP does not block port 80. It used to be a common practice amongst ISPs, but I don't think they do it anymore. If they do block it, you could host on a different port, but that has its limitations.
  • You'll have to register a public domain name and point it to your internet IP address.
  • If you do not have a fixed IP address from your ISP, then you will want to use a dynamic DNS service like dyn.com. This costs $30 per year. I'm sure there are other providers as well. If you don't use dynamic DNS and your internet IP address changes, you'd have to change the IP address in your DNS provider which can take up to 2 days to propagate across the internet. A dynamic DNS service provides a mechanism to detect when your IP address changes and update it on their end automatically.
  • You'll have to forward port 80 from your router to your internal web server. You'll forward port 443 as well if you use SSL.
  • Plan on having a dedicated machine to host your service. You'll probably want to purchase a UPS for the machine, otherwise plan on lots of outages.

This is all I can think of off hand. Hosting from home has a few advantages, but it is not without its headaches.

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thank you very much !! So I feel hosting from home is something I have to give a serious thought to really. Also, can u suggest me some good hosting providers that are cheap and affordable. How is hosting done exactly and what gets hosted? When does money come into picture? Should I prefer a hosting of my own country ? Please can u tell me regarding this –  Parth_90 Dec 3 '11 at 8:55
    
I have always self hosted, so I can't recommend a hosting provider. I'd suggest doing some research on Stackoverflow and Google. There is this post link, but it is a bit old. The cheapest hosting is shared hosting, which means a lot of websites are hosted on the same server(s). You can get hosting which provides a virtual machine, but this gets pretty expensive. I'm not sure about country, it might depend on where your target users are located. –  Nathan Fox Dec 3 '11 at 17:39
    
I think the general arrangement with shared hosting is that you get a control panel to configure web settings. You'll also get FTP access to the site to download and upload files. For FTP I recommend using FileZilla. As far as cost, I think it is usually around 10 USD per month. I hope this helps, good luck with your project :-) –  Nathan Fox Dec 3 '11 at 17:44
    
that was indeed very helpful !! If I have any questions I will surely add a comment over here. Thanks !! :-) –  Parth_90 Dec 3 '11 at 18:32
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