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  1. #1

    Very new to Linux



    I was given a project on Php and MySQL to develop a web based system. It was a private project and I am about half way to finish it. I did all my programming in Windows because it is what I am familiar with... The company who gave me the project just wanted the code. Now, they want me to Host the soulation and adminiser it, they say they will provide me with a server with a hosting services (seperate individual server for this), It is up to me to deploy, make it public and administer it. It is suppose to be running on Linux. They don't care which distribuation it is. (Short of it is - If I can't do this, the project will be abandoned)

    My knowledge in Linux
    I was told about this 3 days ago, I was able to install Ubuntu, installed on my laptop and playing around with it now. I am not scared of it, but thats all I know about Windows. In Windows I have pretty good administer experiences (I have been helping a hosting team to deploy ASP based solutions in the past) and also I am in MCSE in Windows 2003.

    My Attitude
    In the past, I have been able to take on projects I have no idea about (I learnt PHP when I was given a project).. So I am not scared of new challanges..
    But learning Linux, Hosting a PHP , MySQL web solution that runs on Apache is a different thing.. I am still positive though.

    Now, I have 2 months to get this up and running - Go Live is in Mid Fenbruary.
    All I want to know is, if it is possible to learn Linux and related technology that is good enough to acheive the above? (ofcours with good security)

    If 2 months is not enough, how long do you think is a fair amount of time?

    I love challanges and I would kill my self to get things done.. but I dont want to experiment at my client's expense.. thats not fair.. All I need to know is if this is possible.

    Any advice is welcome.

    Thanks a lot for your time.


  2. #2
    From my experience, 2 months is enough to get those up and running provided you have sys admin background. However, as you mentioned, you need to make this public, it means it would be firewall/IDS etc setup as well. Not sure if you care about network/server security.

    I use Centos & Fedora, tried Ubuntu before, don't really like it.

    Also, welcome you to Linux.

  3. #3
    Linux Engineer MASONTX's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Mason Texas
    Welcome to linux. Glad to have you with us.
    Registered Linux user #526930

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    First of all welcome.
    Second of all, it is possible to do it in the 2 month depend what you want.
    Install an Apache server local is done in less a half day. Lots of tutorials, search for install or configure php mysql apache.

    But what imagine1437 if you want it public, you need also the security like Firewall and IDS/IPS (if you never heard about that Intruding Detection System and Intruding Protection System)

    I hope you are able to finish it
    Greetz Mark

  6. #5
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Yes, with your sysadmin background 2 months is plenty of time to pick up the things you need to know to get this off the ground.

    Assuming you aren't like most sysadmins and already have a ton of other things on your plate....

    Either way, please note that even after 2 months (after the system is up and running), you're not "done". Running a website will open the system up to attacks - so you'll need to learn how to harden the system against them. Doubly so if there is any kind of transaction processing on the site (ie. information that would be worth stealing).

    Just for the record, the Linux flavor of choice for me is Debian...

  7. #6
    Penguin of trust elija's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Either at home or at work or down the pub
    First question: Is the server with a hosting company?
    You post implies that this is the case and if so, all the hard stuff is already done and it will just be a case of setting up the site.

    Second question: Which distro is the server?
    This is important, especially if you have root access; less so if the server is administered through a control panel. It is important because different distros put the config files in different places.

    And yes, simply setting up a webite is relatively simple
    Should you be sitting wondering,
    Which Batman is the best,
    There's only one true answer my friend,
    It's Adam Bloody West!

    The Fifth Continent

  8. #7

    Thanks a lot guys..

    You all are really helpful.

    The server space is given to me at a hosting company. Someone at the client company installed a IBM blade and connected it to the network. Rest the things -
    pointing it to a public IP, Installing the OS, Installing softwares like Apache, MySql, etc, configuring them, instlaling SSL, additional security.. all are done.

    the hosting company provides server space and network cabling and some monitoring.. thats it.

    - Shiyam

  9. #8
    shiyam198, you can try things on XAMPP before going online

  10. #9
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Norfolk Island
    My advice would be to stay away from xampp on linux, it's not intuitive to linux systems AFAIC and much of the apache/php/mysql information will expect these to be running natively, not the xampp way.

    elija seems to be hitting the nail on the head.

    You said:

    Rest the things - pointing it to a public IP, Installing the OS, Installing softwares like Apache, MySql, etc, configuring them, instlaling SSL, additional security.. all are done.
    Which sort of indicates that the hard stuff is done for you, but you then say :

    the hosting company provides server space and network cabling and some monitoring.. thats it.
    Don't know which is correct... but the core thing here is that you need to experiment. So what I'd recommend is :

    1. if the server is set up, then find out what flavour it is (Debian, Centos, Ubuntu, etc) and then grab an ISO of the same version & run it up with VMPlayer (free) at home/work. Set up the network interface BRIDGED and allocate an IP on your network. That will make it easy to test what you do. If your server isn't set up, then pick a flavour & do the VM then once ready, replicate it (manually build with same settings) to the server. One thing one the build here, don't bother installing any Xwindows or Gnome/KDE elements as you don't need them.

    2. Security can be quite simple, you just need to follow a few basic rules, the primary one being that you don't wan't to block port 80 or 443 because that pretty much defeats the purpose of having a website. And apart from port 22 and port 53 for DNS replies from your selected DNS servers you can pretty much block everything else. That makes your IPTables rules table very simple, maybe 10 lines and I know CentOS and othe RedHat variants have an easily configurable IPtables setup that you can add custom rules to. You can experiment on your VM
    with this stuff & it doesn't matter if you get it wrong at times because you have direct access to the terminal via your VM (nothing worse than locking yourself out of a remote system.

    3. It sounds like the core services you need are iptables (mentioned above) for firewall, apache, mysql & php. These are all pretty much native to any server setup so I'd recommend using the installs that go with the flavour you choose as this makes support and understanding just what the hell a document is saying a lot easier (see note on xampp).

    4. Now start to play, check out "hardening" implementations for apache/mysql and try to follow the recommendations. Check out security stuff for mysql/php so that you don't allow users to submit queries instead of their usernames, and check out the basic setup doco's for apache, mysql & tutorials that you find.

    For all of it I'd recommend finding what looks like good info from three or four sites for what you are trying to do, eg set up apache website with mysql & php. read through them to get an understanding, then try it out. I often find that will get me through a complex setup problem on a linux system better than just one method as quite often well meaning people leave out critical information. No doubt there's major gaps here.

    I'd also recommend finding a VIM Quick reference guide (handy), along with checking out the linux tutorials that exist on this site. there are some damned good ones that I use to get the techs here up to speed. I'd definitely recommend the "Introduction to Linux - A hands on guide".

    2 months should be fine. Just try to do things bit by bit rather than have everything working in one hit. And have fun.


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