Build Your First IIS Web Server With Own Windows PC
By Web Server as a term, we usually mean the commercial server we rent for getting our site hosted on basis of payment. But we can build our own server at home with our PC which can be so helpful to serve primary purpose of developing a site/blog. Though home-built server has limitation and cannot be used as alternative to commercial server, there is no alternative to it to the beginner web designer, developer, site builder and blogger to have expertise in web server like domestic appliance. Hence, setting up IIS Web Server in your PC may be a good option.
Contextually, if you haven’t yet checked out our article on Web Server, follow the link below-
There are a number of Web Server platforms. Among them the most popular and open source Server building software is the Apache. In a previous lesson, we’ve represented the overall process of building a own Apache Web Server at home. Here is the link–
Here is how to build IIS Web Server. Two`methods are quite different. In case of Apache, it is mainly a step by step Download and Installation process. On the other hand, IIS needn’t be downloaded. It is included in Window OS. So its installation is just like giving a start from Control Panel.
Installing IIS Web Server 7.5 IN Windows 7 (32-bit)
Web Server by IIS is a Windows Feature. So, to start it up, we’ve to follow the following path—
Start Menu→ Control Panel→ Programs and Features (Icon mode)→ Turn Windows Features on or off→ From the list of Windows features Check the box right to Internet Information Service You may be asked for Administrator Password or Confirmation. So, give Password or provide Confirmation.→ Click OK.
- Click Start Menu→ Control Panel
- Click Programs and Features
- Turn Windows Features on or off You may be asked for Administrator Password or Confirmation. So, give Password or provide Confirmation.
- Click + sign that follows Internet Information Service from the features list
- Again Click + sign that follows World Wide Web Service from the expanded list.
- Then Click + sign that follows Application Development Features from the expanded list.
- Now Select the dynamic content features that you need to install.
- Click OK.
Allow the Installation process be finished. Now your Web Server is ready for you.
It is time to Enter C-Panel (Connection Panel in this case) of your IIS Server. Just Click START button and write IIS in Search Box. From Search Result, Click Internet Information Service Manager. Connection Panel window is open before you.
How to configure my IIS Web Server
Here in Connection Panel, there are three Parts— On left Connection Panel, On right Action Panel and in the middle View Panel.
From this Panel, you’re going to set up your site. What does a site require to be built up. Simply, three things- a Hosting Server, a Domain Name and Site Contents. We’ve already set up our IIS Web Server. A commercial server has Cpanel (Control Panel) which is provided by the Hosting Company. Here we have IIS Server Cpanel. Now we need a Domain Name and Content. Domain Name is actually user friendly version of the Server’s IP Address. As this is our experimental site and not a real one, we’ll use our IP Address. But, if you wish, you can use Domain Name here if you have one purchased earlier. You can also publish your site online as part of World Wide Web but it has a great limitation. However, for tutorial purpose, we’re going to use our device’s IP Address as Domain Name. We suggest you to read up the following articles regarding Domain Name and IP Address to get clarified.
Now let’s start action with Cpanel to set up a site—
- On left Connection Panel Click Down Arrow that follows YOUR DEVICE NAME
- From the list Click Site. In the View Panel (Middle), a Default Web Site will be shown
- On Right Action Panel, click Add Web Site. Add Web Site Dialogue Box will appear.
Now it is time for defining all the blank fields to create a site the way as shown below
- Give a Site Name as you wish. We’ve used My IIS Site as site name here.
- Define the Physical Path. This means show a folder (by clicking three dots on right) where all of your site-content files (html, css ….) will be located.
- Now in Binding field, select http as type (not https unless you have SSL certificate) and on Right input your IP Address. You needn’t collect your IP. Click the down arrow and you’ll see your IP Address listed. Click that. Port 80 will remain the same as it is Port 80 through which http protocol works
- Next Host Name. You can define it if you have a Domain Name purchased. In this case, Users can reach your site by typing Domain Name in BROWSER from anywhere around the world. Otherwise leave it blank and your site will be reachable by IP Address.
- Click OK and you’ll see your site name listed in the Panel.
First, you need to know what your Site address is. It is located in your Connection Panel and that is http://localhost or http://yourIP. As in our example, our site My IIS Site address is http://localhost or http://192.168.0.100
By Typing the first address, you can access your site only from your own device which IIS Web Server is installed. And by the second address you can reach your site from other devices connected with the same local network as yours. This is because, this IP Address is Dynamic and hence, changeable. When this IP of your device would change, none can reach your site by the old IP. However if you use a Static Public IP, this can be used to reach your site from anywhere anytime. But reaching a site by IP Address in stead of Domain Name is uncommon and unusual.
Secondly, You need to add one or two html file in your Root Directory (which is empty for now) to make your site visible.
Now open a new tab in your browser and write in address bar http://localhost or http://YOUR IP and hit ENTER. It will certainly show your site content.