Using IIS5.1 in XP

I am planning to host an e-commerce website on a hp proliant server ML350 G3. The question is: do i really need to use a server operating system such as windows 2003 server or is windows xp professional running IIS 5.1 is good and secure enough? The site is developed on a .net platform using and the database is hosted on a mysql server on the same machine on a different scsi hard drive.
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n0ch1psConnect With a Mentor Commented:
IIS 6 2003 would be my recommendation, as PeteLong has quite rightly pointed out, there will be no connection limit problem.

It would be the correct business choice and there would be no problem if or when the site needs to grow or you feel the need to host further sites.


Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
XP can handle IIS and asp no problem :)

Install IIS on XP

Installing IIS
You can install IIS, add optional components, or remove optional components for IIS by using the Add/Remove Programs dialog box in Control Panel. IIS requires that you install certain software on the computer prior to installation. Review the IIS Software Checklist below before installing IIS.

IIS Software Checklist
Before you install IIS, you need to install the Windows TCP/IP Protocol and Connectivity Utilities.

The following optional components are recommended:

The Domain Name System (DNS) service installed on a computer in your intranet. If your intranet is small, you can use Hosts or Lmhosts files on all computers in your network. This step is optional, but it allows users to use friendly text names instead of IP addresses. On the Internet, Web sites typically use DNS. If you register a domain name for your site, users can type your site's domain name in a browser to contact your site.
For security purposes, Microsoft recommends that you format all IIS drives with NTFS.
Microsoft FrontPage to create and edit HTML pages for your Web site. FrontPage is a WYSIWYG editor that provides a friendly, graphical interface for tasks such as inserting tables, graphics, and scripts.
Microsoft Visual InterDev to create and develop interactive Web applications.
For more information on Windows TCP/IP Protocol and Connectivity Utilities, DNS, or NTFS security, see your Windows XP Professional online documentation.

IIS Installation
During installation, IIS installs optional components like Common Files, Documentation, and the Internet Information Services snap-in. You can choose not to install the optional components; however, deselecting specific components can decrease IIS functionality or disable IIS services. If you are unfamiliar with the optional components and how they affect IIS, install IIS with the default settings. After you install IIS, you can view Installing IIS Optional Components in the IIS online documentation for more information.

To install IIS, add optional components, or remove optional components

Click Start, click Control Panel, and click Add or Remove Programs.
Click Add/Remove Windows Components. The Windows Components Wizard appears.
Follow the on-screen instructions to install, remove, or add components to IIS.

If you upgrade from a Windows NT 4.0 Workstation that has IIS installed to Windows XP Professional, IIS is installed by default. If IIS was not installed on the Windows NT 4.0 Workstation, you will need to install IIS manually.
Personal Web Server is not available on Windows XP Professional. If you upgrade from a Windows home or personal product, you must install IIS for similar Web server functionality.
For more information on IIS, refer to the IIS online documentation by typing http://localhost/iisHelp/ in your browser address bar, and pressing ENTER.

*****Further Links and Reading*****

Installing IIS on Windows XP Pro

Install IIS on Windows XP Professional



IIS Answers
Timbo87Connect With a Mentor Commented:
The problem is that Win XP Pro has the 10 connection limit like Windows 2000 Pro. Only 10 people can connect to IIS at a time and often, one user may use up several connections depending on the complexity of the operation. If you're planning on getting more than 100-200 hits a day you'll want to get better server software.
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shaileshmarkAuthor Commented:
Thanks petelong. that was quick and helpful and did indeed gave me a lot of information about IIS which i have been using for quite a while now. however, there is still a concern i have that needs to be addressed: is windows xp professional good and secure enough to host an ecommerce site or do i need a server operating system such as windows 2000 or 2003 server. Thanks.
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
The 10 connection limit on windows XP does NOT apply to web traffic it only refers to shared resources.

as for security, if you in a domain you can use domain security on access to the site, if you want the site open to everyone then it uses exactly the same security as if it were deployed on 2K or 2K3 server - in so far as your web pages are accessed virtually by the IUSR_machinename account :)
shaileshmarkAuthor Commented:
petelong and timbo87

that 10 connection limit issue really got me worried, although i had a feeling it really did not apply to web traffic, only on shared resources as petelong said -- is this information about connection limit available in the microsoft product documentation or technet website?

fyi, the machine hosting the website and database server will not be sharing any of its resources -- it will be a standalone hp ml350 server hosting the website and connected to the internet through a hard firewall.
we are hoping to get at least a 100 hits a day to begin with and then who knows, may be a 1000 hits per day.

will XP Pro limit the number of hits on the website? will IIS 5.1 limit the number of concurrent hits on the website within a given time frame?
thanks in advance.
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
Well its not documented (for obvious reasons) thats why theres a bone of contension Timbo87 was technically correct but as usuall you can bend the connection rate higher.

Changing the IIS 5.1 (XP) Connection Limit
Found an interesting paragraph in an iisanswers article.  Have not verified this information.
Connection Limits
XP Pro allows 10 connections. This limit is installed by default in the metabase key MaxConnections for W3SVC, and there is no user interface method for modifying the setting. You can change this setting to any number less than 40 and it works, but that is not widely advertised.
The ability to increase the connection limit is interesting because you can now increase the max number of simultaneous connections used by IE, on your developer box.

I was under the impression that each connection to the web server used a connection. If IE makes two connections, one to download the HTML and one to download the image, that would use two of your ten connections. I realize they reset after they're done and it does not limit you to ten hits period.
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
again Timbo is correct (each IE session is limited to 4 concurrent outbound connections though) this can be adjusted too :)

to increase your web inbound connections do this

Click Start >Run >cmd {enter}

cscript adsutil.vbs set w3svc/MaxConnections 40 {enter}

Do not try anything higher than 40 or it will fail
n0ch1psConnect With a Mentor Commented:
You can tweak the metabase settings all you want but at the end of the day you want to be thinking about a Server technology for hosting an e-commerce site.

IIS on XP pro is fine for devolopment work for your site, however the 10 concurrent connection (Yes I realise this can be altered to a slightly higher number) will not be anywhere near enough for a busy e-commerce site.

You don't want potential customer's browsing to your site and receiving this > “Too many users connected”, they may not come back!
shaileshmarkAuthor Commented:
thank you n0ch1ps. i think you have answered my question. so the bottom line is xp pro is not a good business option -- or not an option at all -- to host ecommerce website. talking about server technologies, will there be any connection limits on IIS 6 on W2003 server?
Pete LongConnect With a Mentor Technical ConsultantCommented:
Dont forget small business server is limited to 74 connections :) as well
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
on the 2k3 server product (web or enterprise) you have unlimited inbound connections, you need to throttle them with QoS id it becomes a problem with "too many"
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
correct syntax

static (inside,outside) <internal ip> <external ip>
access-list 101 permit tcp any host <server ip address>  eq 80

You then need to apply this to the "inside" interface:

access-group 101 in interface inside
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
oops wrong Q sorry
shaileshmarkAuthor Commented:
petelong, n0ch1ps, timbo87,

you have all helped with this question and i would like to give points to all of you -- how do i go about doing that?
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
More than one Expert helped solve my problem. What do I do?

You split the points. Scroll down to the bottom of the question and click the "Split Points" link at the bottom of the page. Select the radio button of the comment who you want to Accept as the answer. Only one button can be selected. Set the point value (a text box above the comment) of how much you want this person to receive of the points. Then set the point values for each of the experts comments to whom you want to allocate points and these will be considered Assisted answers in helping you resolve the issue. Double check your information and then click the Submit button at the bottom of the page. One note: the total points of the splits must equal the amount you asked the question for itself, and no person can receive fewer than 20 points.
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
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