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Personal Web Site Using WHS as the Web Server RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I have submitted the following as a feedback suggestion:

    I know a lot of Home users that would love to be able to easily create a personal web site. They want to host pictures with slide show capability. They would also like to be able to post things like recipes to share with family and friends. If WHS could provide a user friendly wizard to make it easy to create such sites using the WHS Server as a host, I think it would be a big hit with many home users.

    I would like to see something like Google's PicasaWeb with albums, slideshows, download capabilities and easy publishing. A simple recipe database with a wizard to add ingredients, directions and possibly a picture. There would also need to be various themes provided.

    This would eliminate the need for home users to pay for external web storage and hosting services. It could also provide an additional revenue stream to Microsoft if visitors had an option to order prints and such.

    There should also be documentation to allow enthusiasts and even third parties to extend the basic capabilites.

    If you agree, please vote at:

    https://connect.microsoft.com/WindowsHomeServer/feedback/ViewFeedback.aspx?FeedbackID=262073

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 2:58 AM

All replies

  • Speaking only to the documentation issue, it is my understanding that there will be an SDK available at some point. I don't know when that will be.

    Regarding the rest, I suspect that Microsoft will not include that type of functionality in WHS. Instead, it will (at least at first) be supplied by third parties and VARs. It's a good idea.
    Thursday, March 8, 2007 3:21 AM
    Moderator
  • I'd definatley not want to see a web server included.

    Once you have a web server included people will want to be able to use dynamic apps (php, perl, etc., etc., etc.), and once  you allow that you leave WHS open to a whole range of potential security problems which have nothing to do with WHS.

    I would prefer WHS to focus on it's core functionality and not allow users to install software which could risk the security of the data held on it because no matter how many times you tell people it was something they installed they will still say "Well I have a windows home server and some hacker stole all my data from it, so I haven't bought on since".

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 7:04 AM
  • If you want a webserver, get a "real" server.  Put on Linux and use Apache or go with Windows and IIS, but this is more work than most people can handle.  Besides the fact that PHP is vulnerable to most everything and that securing Apache and PHP (etc...) requires lots of time and study, what you are asking for is a home-made ready to exploit webserver.  You might know how to protect a server, but the target audience won't.  How many users will buy one of these, play around with the server features while still in the "ooh, look at the shiny new gadget!" phase and then forget about it?  Sadly, this effort to provide everything has cost MS lots of grief over the years for this very reason.

    To be honest, I don't even like the concept of using Windows Live accounts to handle the remote administration.  With all due respect to the WHS team, I haven't seen any reason to assume that MS Live Spaces won't be exploited like MySpace.  If Spaces is exploited in similar manners, then why should I expect that my WHS won't be exploited from through the remote administration and sharing features as they seem destined to be tied to MS Live? 

    I will test the remote capabilities for the betas as they are presented, but I am planning to disable them as soon as I am finished testing.  (Yeah, can you tell I work in Information Security? I'm just a tad paranoid.  Of course, I also read this list on a weekly basis.)  Let's focus on a rock solid and secure system that performs these three functions.  Then, consider extra features.

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 1:22 PM
  •  Gigabit Nick wrote:

    I'd definatley not want to see a web server included.

    Once you have a web server included people will want to be able to use dynamic apps (php, perl, etc., etc., etc.), and once  you allow that you leave WHS open to a whole range of potential security problems which have nothing to do with WHS.

    What I was suggesting was that this be built in to WHS and not require any installation of any additional software on the WHS server. Your objection  is that this will allow users to create "dynamic apps". Most home users would not have the desire or knowledge to do this. Those that do, can add those types of applications today. I can install anything I want on the current WHS server, including php, perl, etc, etc.

    If the wizard I suggested were implemented, many people that may be tempted to install these other dynamic apps, would probably opt for the no hassle built in version. So in essence, there would be fewer installations of problematic "dynamic apps".

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 2:18 PM
  •  mtgarden wrote:

    If you want a webserver, get a "real" server.  Put on Linux and use Apache or go with Windows and IIS,

    Actually, WHS  is a "real" server. It's already running IIS under Windows. Why would I want to buy another "real" server????

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 2:23 PM
  • I don't think that WHS should include a Personal Web Server. For one, because most ISPs have rules stating that you are not allowed to run a website on Consumer packages, only buisness. Also, I know that I am limited to a 60k/s upload rate, which any website with any kind of regular traffic would greatly affect your internet speed at home. I do think that some sort of Photo album application on WHS Remote Access would be neat though!
    Thursday, March 8, 2007 4:13 PM
  • Sorry, wasn't trying to say that WHS wasn't a "Real" server.  That came out wrong.  I was viewing it from the outlook that this was a home user device.  No offense meant.

    If you want a web server, then I would reccommend using a setup that was explicitly built for that, not a setup that has a web server built on to it.  The fact remains that it will be insecure under the administration of most people. 

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 8:59 PM
  • Using the webserver in WHS to provide a phonebook, etc.. just for those who have access to WHS is a good idea IMO.
    Thursday, March 8, 2007 10:26 PM
  • I completely disagree with adding Web Server functionality into WHS.  However, maybe a module could be added that would allow for this.

    My reasoning behind this is that most home users are behind DSL or cable connections that specifically deny the use of web servers on residential accounts.  I have written guides for setting up web servers on Windows OSes using Apache/PHP/MySQL, but it is aimed mainly at web developers and people who are just curious about playing with internally.  I think adding a web server just  adds complications, and would cause more problems than it is worth.  People should leave their personal sites to web hosts, not their home network.  WHS is a file server, it should stay that way.

    Thursday, March 8, 2007 11:12 PM
  •  Steve Hawken wrote:
    I don't think that WHS should include a Personal Web Server. For one, because most ISPs have rules stating that you are not allowed to run a website on Consumer packages, only buisness. Also, I know that I am limited to a 60k/s upload rate, which any website with any kind of regular traffic would greatly affect your internet speed at home. I do think that some sort of Photo album application on WHS Remote Access would be neat though!

     kstatefan40 wrote:
    I completely disagree with adding Web Server functionality into WHS.  However, maybe a module could be added that would allow for this.

    My reasoning behind this is that most home users are behind DSL or cable connections that specifically deny the use of web servers on residential accounts.  I have written guides for setting up web servers on Windows OSes using Apache/PHP/MySQL, but it is aimed mainly at web developers and people who are just curious about playing with internally.  I think adding a web server just  adds complications, and would cause more problems than it is worth.  People should leave their personal sites to web hosts, not their home network.  WHS is a file server, it should stay that way.

    If we go strictly by either of these arguments, then WHS is already in violation of ISP rules. It already has a web server that offers a site to anyone on the internet. i can create a generic account and offer the username and password to as many friends and family that Iwant. It is not just a file server. It uses a web site to share those files externally. What's the difference if I allow the external users to copy 100MB of pictures using the current capabilities or host these pictures using a web site that would not use any additional bandwidth but provide grandma with an easy way to view a slideshow. I am not talking about a huge eCommerce site being hosted by WHS, I'm talking about what many home users would actually want, an easy way to share pictures, recipes, blogs, etc with a limited number of family and friends. Microsoft could even limit the number of simultaneous connections so that this personal site could not introduce major internet traffic. It could also be setup with a required password that you would have to disclose to anyone who you wish to have access.

    As far as the upload bandwidth, I have a 256mb upload rate and I don't even have the premium service from my cable provider. That service provides 1MB of upload for 10 bucks a month more. So, granted, some people may not have the bandwidth to do this effectively, but many others do.

    Friday, March 9, 2007 1:42 PM
  •  Rick Webster wrote:

    As far as the upload bandwidth, I have a 256mb upload rate and I don't even have the premium service from my cable provider. That service provides 1MB of upload for 10 bucks a month more. So, granted, some people may not have the bandwidth to do this effectively, but many others do.

    You have a 256MB upload rate? You mean 256k??.... where are you from? Seems hard to believe, sorry. All im trying to say is that ISPs don't want you running PUBLIC webservers where any joe could logon and download large files. WHS is password protected so only the people you give access to would be downloading. Most ISPs block port 80 anyway for this reason.

    Friday, March 9, 2007 4:26 PM
  •  Steve Hawken wrote:

    You have a 256MB upload rate? You mean 256k??.... where are you from? Seems hard to believe, sorry. All im trying to say is that ISPs don't want you running PUBLIC webservers where any joe could logon and download large files. WHS is password protected so only the people you give access to would be downloading. Most ISPs block port 80 anyway for this reason.

    OK, Fine . I got carried away, 256k is what I meant . My point still is that the personal web pages could also be protected with a password. It would just be nice to make it easy for a home user to share their stuff with their friends and family. I would not expect or want "any joe" to be accessing my family pictures. I am not proposing a high volume, public web site.

    Saturday, March 10, 2007 3:28 AM
  •  kstatefan40 wrote:

    My reasoning behind this is that most home users are behind DSL or cable connections that specifically deny the use of web servers on residential accounts.  I have written guides for setting up web servers on Windows OSes using Apache/PHP/MySQL, but it is aimed mainly at web developers and people who are just curious about playing with internally.  I think adding a web server just  adds complications, and would cause more problems than it is worth.  People should leave their personal sites to web hosts, not their home network.  WHS is a file server, it should stay that way.

    Could not have said it better my self! I totally agree!

    Saturday, March 10, 2007 3:59 PM
  • HI,

    I can see both sides of the one, I do feel that being able to edit the website would be very helpful, adding a shared diary, links to websites and maybe a discusion board like in SBS 2003 would be really good. you could make it accessable to the "extended family" without making it a public site due to the passwords (i thing please din't shoot me if I am wrong) .

    Also you could make it avaliable in the Media Centre PC's online spotlight, making it with big graphics would be a really great idea so that yo can see who's birthday it is from the comfort of your sofa (lazy I know)....

    Trevor

     

    Saturday, March 10, 2007 8:01 PM
  • IIS (MS Web Server) is installed by default on WHS, I also just tried installing WSS 3.0 which worked.  WSS 3.0 is a "lite" version of SharePoint and would probably provide the functionality you want.  It has a lot of features and with just a bit of work you can customize how the site looks.
    Sunday, March 11, 2007 6:10 PM
  • VAR's are all from Mars!

     

    One would hope that WHS gives the home owner a tool to do away with the overcrowded jungle of internet servers. But alas, WHS is a sweet and simple home server, nothing cosmic. In the WIndows environment VAR's can add functionality to WHS. Gravity dictates a whole new level of resource depletion. Okay then, assume we all master that familiar Windows balancing act, some will want (as this forum proves) to push the limit outside home turf.

     

    WHS hosting on the World Wide Web? Current web servers port a modest 4 layers of 2 sets of quad cpu Xeon processors running at a combined 10ghz on raid10. This keeps busy sites just lurching along. The very tiniest web servers (those eternal pages) are same size as WHS if I hooked up this desktop. Of course, everything that lives on my desktop scores the same slow-down. Hardware cost and location aren't the only issue.

     

    No way under heaven is Windows Server (memory hungry media monster) going to prop my desktop in cyberspace. Linux, the freeware brainchild of that long since graduated Finnish student... (forgot his name), runs most of the internet today and uses very, very little memory. Get modest or humbly meditate as Vista's Linux partition slo-w--l---y ... and steadily waves hello to your family and friends.

     

    Who knows where AMD and Intel will take us in the coming decade. Assuming a steady path, today's 10 gig interlaced high power server could be desktop in five. We've got 'mucho grande' coming down the pipeline! For now, I'm planning ahead to my next computer which will be two four-layer cpu's in who knows what configuration. Take it easy! Eh?

    Friday, October 12, 2007 1:34 PM
  •  SkipFire wrote:
    IIS (MS Web Server) is installed by default on WHS, I also just tried installing WSS 3.0 which worked.  WSS 3.0 is a "lite" version of SharePoint and would probably provide the functionality you want.  It has a lot of features and with just a bit of work you can customize how the site looks.

     

    WSS 3.0 ( Windows Sharepoint Server) is not a lite version it is the original. dont confuse it with office 2007 sharepoint server which is targeted more towards office users.

     

    Rex Geissinger

    Friday, October 12, 2007 7:35 PM
  • Looks like a couple guys did not wait.  take a look at

    http://forums.microsoft.com/windowshomeserver/ShowPost.aspx?siteid=50&postid=3148432

     

    These two wrote a whole set of how to do its.  All the software they use is free (microsoft "express" stuff) or is already on WHS. And the code is downloaded from Microsoft's asp.net website.

     

    So maybe WHS has a personal website capabilty after a little bit of software installation.

     

    The direct link to the two's stuff is

    http://whswebsite.googlepages.com/

     

    Thursday, April 10, 2008 12:07 AM
  •  

    I am in Aussie land and I am not aware of MOST ISPs blocking port 80 or not allowing personal websites. I have a residential Broadband account with a fixed IP address and currently run SBS using exchange for email and IIS for my families website. I currently use a product which builds photo/mpeg slideshows and uses a wizard to build the website and upload to my SBS box from my workstation. Family members interstate and overseas can access the site using a family login (obviously heavily restricted privileges).

     

    I understand that the suggestion is not to add IIS to WHS as this is essentially already there! Its a request to provide a wizard to allow the building of mulitmedia slideshows for publishing on the existing webserver in WHS... is this correct?

     

    While not on the same topic I would also like to see a "light" version of exchange or a simple Mail/Contacts/Calendaring solution for WHS as well. This would then allow me to decomission my SBS box (use it for WHS!!) and still allow my family members to logon to ANY computer on my internal home network (4 workstations) and access their email etc.

     

    Cheers

    Jeff

    Friday, April 11, 2008 6:50 AM
  • The tuitorial/guide mentioned above has been completed:

     

    Part 7 – WWC (Whist Website Construction) has been posted.  This is the final document that is planned at this time.  Part 7 includes modules for a User Forum, User Polls and Secure Downloads functionality.

     

    This can be found with the previous six parts at

    http://whswebsite.googlepages.com/

     

    Saturday, May 3, 2008 5:06 PM
  • If you are already working through the WWC Instructions or just haven't dropped by the http://whswebsite.googlepages.com/ site recently, you should go take a quick look again. 

     

    They have some new information and downloads you might find useful:

    - They have a revised Starter Kit available for download.  It includes three new themes, each with animations.  And it has most of the fixes in Part 4 already done for you.

    - If you have already started your site they have the three new themes as an add-on too

    - They have added FAQ’s for the most frequent mistakes

    - There is also a clearly marked Help section

     

    Friday, May 23, 2008 5:40 AM
  • WWC – Complete 7-Part Package Posted as a single Document

     

    This post is to let you know that the Complete 7-Part WWC (Whist/WHS Website Creation/Construction) Instruction has been posted as a single MS Word document.  The first page is a hyperlinked Table of Contents which adds greatly to the usefulness of the document.  Heck, we wrote the Instructions and sometimes we forget what is covered in each of the seven Parts.

     

    Take a look at:  http://whswebsite.googlepages.com/

     

     

    Monday, June 9, 2008 10:36 PM