Home Network Setup Ideas?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Starshine, Jan 10, 2009.

  1. Starshine

    Starshine Legend Killer

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    As I have mentioned in a few other threads, I am slowly in the process of setting up a home network.

    Currently I have a Vista laptop that connects to the internet through a wireless connection.

    I have a desktop with Windows XP media edition that has 2 external HDs attached.

    I have a 2nd desktop that has Fedora currently installed.

    What I would like to do is either turn the XP machine into the server or the current Fedora machine into the server.

    Both desktops are a bit outdated and probably could use some upgrades ( when money & time permit ) but for the time being, if I could use either to begin the process - what software would be good to use?

    I can get a copy of Win Server 2003 ( which I would install on the XP machine ) or I have read in another thread about using Ubuntu Server Edition.

    My unix skills are novice as best, so if I went that route, I would need someone that could walk me through the paces of set-up.

    Any suggestions from those that have setup a home network ( or business network )
     
  2. burner35

    burner35 New Member

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    My dad has a home network, a mix wireless and wired. Occasional drop outs, good working NetGEAR software and products. :D

    It's easier than you might think, I suggest you do turn the XP/Vista machine into a server. ;) Use 2003, getting the 2008 demos suck and they require loads of power and lots of space, as with 2003 ... It does the job :p
     
  3. Fahad

    Fahad Guest

    I'd suggest that the Fedora machine is server.
    It could still work as a desktop, and wouldn't require much updates anyway.
     
  4. xPlozion

    xPlozion New Member

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    that and as i mentioned before in the other post, the server doesn't need to be that strong of a computer in a home environment. We've got an older dell that we picked up for free acting as our server.

    depending on your exact needs (backups, streaming music, other), could make a difference on which os and which computer to put it on.

    in linux, what distro are you familiar w/?
     
  5. Starshine

    Starshine Legend Killer

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    Interesting views. I've had both from friends that work in the field as computer techs.

    Right now, I have all my music stored on one of the external HDs ( a 1 TB one I bought recently ) and would like to use it to do DJ work in the future. ( The ext. HDs are connected to the XP machine )

    To do the other things, I will need to speak with my ISP ( http://www.qwest.com/internethelp/staticip/index.html#availability ) As I would like to be able to connect to the network remotely as I am away from home a lot in the summer and may need access to material on the HDs. If I have the Linux machine as the server, I'd still like to be able to connect to it to learn some basic operations ( Like maybe setting up an IRC or just operating a linux server )

    Thats just the thing, I'm not. Familiar with any really. I have installed and poked at Fedora, but when it comes to actual command line things, I would need a roadmap. :biggrin:
     
  6. Starshine

    Starshine Legend Killer

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    I hate to double post, but was hoping for someone to answer my last message. My friend's husband hasn't gotten back to me, so I am still unsure which path to take.

    As stated in the previous message, I looked into the Ubuntoo Server, but it states its all command line ( something I am not well talented / knowledgable with ) and I did find my CDs with the Win Server 2003 on it. But again, my desktop is a bit outdated and may just be on the low scale of running that software. ( And again, without some walkthrough - I am pretty clueless on setup )

    So, any ideas?
     
  7. ichwar

    ichwar Community Advocate Community Support

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    You don't need to use the ubuntu server edition. The desktop edition will work fine as a server.
     
  8. Smith6612

    Smith6612 I ate all of the x10Pizza Community Support

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    It all depends on your needs really. At my home, I have an overkill setup, but it is very much future proofed to handle 1Gbps of connectivity (Except for my access point/switch which I'm swapping out when I get FiOS). Basically what I did was, I took an old computer I had laying around, added some more RAM to it, installed Fedora Core to it, and then installed a second NIC to it. I set it up as a router, firewall, server, and a PPPoE connection manager. My set up goes from a bridged DSL modem, to the Fedora Box, to a Linksys WRT54GX acting as an access point/switch (not a router, I turned that stuff off), and then from there to my PCs and devices on my network. Each PC and Device has it's own static IP, however new devices that I haven't set up static IPs for, they will grab addresses from the Fedora Box via DHCP. Yes I know it's overkill, but I would highly suggest getting the following:

    Wireless N router with Gigabit ports, that is DD-WRT cabable and can have turned off router fuctions.

    An old PC with a Linux Distro (heck even a Pentium I will do. Just give it some RAM, tweak it, and it's good to go). Set this PC up as a file server as well that will work with Windows Networking for compatibility, and attach your drives to this box. Make sure if they are USB drives, that this old PC has up to date USB ports and has the bus speed to handle possibly high throughput data.

    CAT5e Cable for the PCs.

    Wireless N cards for laptop, Gigabit Ethernet NICs for PCs.

    Some knowledge on PCs and how things need to work, as well as networking knowledge.

    This setup should last you for years, especially as broadband speeds climb. The plus on buying expensive, is that with networking it's often times very cheap to upgrade in the future, rather than buying cheap, finding it underperforms months later, and spending more than initially to get something faster. IF you want to turn the Linux box into a router, there are tutorials online on how to do it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2009
  9. Starshine

    Starshine Legend Killer

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    Lets see if I can give what I have :

    A cable modem from my ISP ( with wireless access for my laptop ) I dunno if its a router or whatever. I just know its my cable modem. *shrugs*

    A windows XP media edition desktop ( my friend is going to dig through her RAM and try and boost this to 2 gig - currently has 640 MB )

    I have two external drives ( a 1TB that is my music storage and a 320 GB that I dunno what I plan to do with )

    A 2nd desktop that currently has, I think, Fedora 4 ( going to install or try to install Fedora 10 tonight ) that I am thinking of using as the server.

    What I'd like to do, and recapping from earlier, is have a server that I can connect my XP into, my external drives and my laptop so I can access information from any of the systems ( desktop to laptop, laptop to desktop, laptop to externals, etc ) or remotely via internet if I am out of the house / etc.

    From my ISP information, to do the remote connections like I would want to, I need to purchase a static IP address from them.

    At this point, according to my friend ( a desktop and unix systems admin ) her boss uses Fedora for his server setup at home. I am not familiar with Unix or Fedora or anything like that ( grew up Windows / DOS ) so I am unsure how to setup everything.
     
  10. Smith6612

    Smith6612 I ate all of the x10Pizza Community Support

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    You do not need to use a Static IP in order to do remote connections, especially with VNC. All you need is a little bit of knowledge with port forwarding and how that stuff works, as well as a Dynamic DNS host with the updater and you're good to go. The reason the ISP may have said that is because many ISPs don't allow people running servers on their residential based connections, and running a remote connection listen server can start to trample on the TOS. Typically they don't care though, just as long as you aren't killing the bandwidth in your area.

    Also, because the Linux community is pretty big, you can find huge amounts of info on things with a quick search of Google. I assure you it'll be the 3-4th result max for help if you're specific enough. Installing apps on UNIX based systems are, in the case of Ubuntu, sudo apt-get respository and then sudo apt-get appresositoryname. It's different on other distros of UNIX such as OpenBSD and OpenSUSE, but it's easy to get going with the help of Google.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2009
  11. Starshine

    Starshine Legend Killer

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    From the link I gave previously ( regarding static IP )

    Why would I need a static IP address?
    You may want to consider a static IP address if you:
    • Host your Web site on a computer at your home or office.
    • Remotely access your computers over the Internet (e.g., telnet or FTP).
    • Are required to have a static IP address for access to a Virtual Private Network (VPN). Learn more about VPNs

    That's why I said I'd probably need one. Yeah, I can probably do searches on how to use Fedora as a server - or just wait patiently for my neighbor / friend to have time to come help. Give her practice anyway for the job she is training for anyway.
     
  12. Smith6612

    Smith6612 I ate all of the x10Pizza Community Support

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    Well, VPNs I know for a fact will get VERY picky if the IP address changes, but that's the only thing you need a static IP for. If you're not setting up a VPN or a game server, don't worry about getting a Static IP. A Dynamic DNS service will do you good and you can easilly manage a VNC connection or even do FTP/HTTP over a Dynamic IP. I've done it many times and it only takes no more than a minute for the DNS to update fully.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2009
  13. hcse26

    hcse26 New Member

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    Well you can get a copy of Windows Home Server and plug you external HDD's on that machine and plug it into thee router along with the rest of the network.

    If you want to access your network from the net but can't get your hands on a static IP, just get a static name from dyndns and assign your router to automatically update it. I do this myself because to access Utorrent web UI from anywhere.

    Just thoughts...

    Sorry if I really sound like a n00b at this. I'm a Tech but I'm not really used to set networks up.
     

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