I've setup IIS locally to host a website. I've created a free NOIP account so I can access it with a domain name. It's temporary, so I plan to assign a real domain to it later. I setup port forwarding on the router. Everything is in place.
I spent hours yesterday trying to figure out why I can't access the website via my external IP / hostname. I can access it locally from the same machine using localhost. I can access it locally using another machine by using the IP address. But I can't use the hostname or external IP address. I believe it must be a router setting.
Today I attempted to access the site from another network, and it works just fine using both the public IP address as well as the hostname. However, from my home network, where I'm running this, I can't use the external IP to access the site; only the internal IP.
My question / concern
Based on all of the above I'm concerned that my provider (Comcast) might be blocking access in some way, though I wouldn't have a clue as to where to start to check. Is there any reason I shouldn't be able to use an external URL to access my site? It seems I should be able to use both the internal and external IP and get the same results.
To attempt to rule out a server config / Windows issue, I wiped the box, installed Ubuntu on it, and just completed a LAMP installation. Unfortunately, it has the same issue. From within my home network I can access the web page with my internal IP address, but not the external IP or hostname. On another machine, outside my home network, I can access the webpage using the external IP and hostname.
I'm curious if others can access it also. If you don't mind trying and posting in the comments below, the temporary URL is http://cfsamet.noip.me. I'd be curious if anyone other than myself is having trouble accessing the site. It's the default Apache for Ubuntu page right now.
No luck yet. Have tried to connect internally using my MacBook, Windows, Linux, even my iPhone. All fail when using the external IP or URL, but can connect fine if I use the internal IP address. I can only assume it's a router issue, or a Comcast issue... not sure I'll get much further here. I'm mostly just stumped at this point.
I've tested using http://www.gomeznetworks.com, all of their servers can access the site just fine. I've also tested using http://tools.pingdom.com. It can access the site as well. It seems that I'm the only one (from home) that can't access my site. How does that even make sense?? LOL.
Unfortunately, this was put on hold... but I did essentially find the answer to the problem. This is a hardware issue with the Comcast modem used. This link - http://forums.comcast.com/t5/Home-Networking-Router-WiFi/SMCD3G-Can-t-access-web-server-from-LAN-from-Internet-OK/m-p/1754823#M55009 - has detailed information that explains the router is re-routing requests back internally without doing a DNS lookup. This is why things fail.