Connecting to my computer server on schools LAN from WAN. Possible?

Posted on 2004-11-16
Last Modified: 2008-02-01
   I pose a small conundrum:

I live in my campus dorms. I run many servers off my computer including (web-server, ftp, radio station, iTunes, smtp, etc.)
All is well on the LAN, however I am DYING to extend my services and network speed to others off the LAN. I am able to share files in P2P networks, torrent downloads, etc. thus puzzling me why I wouldnt be able to share my webserver and others. If people can connect to certain ports on my computer from off the LAN, why cant they connect to my servers?

First off, if this question is rediculous, then please tell me. I know quite a lot about networking, but this still puzzles me. If it can't be done, so be it.

If it can, let me say I cannot config the schools routers to port forward or anything like that nor have access to their hardware configs.
I can give you my WAN IP, LAN IP, Subnet Mask, and any other available info possibly needed.
PLEASE HELP a student whos currently lost all ideas and reason. lol jk ... but PLEASE HELP! hehehe
Thanks a lot everyone!

- Sentinel
Question by:MyAsylum
    LVL 5

    Accepted Solution

    Forget it man!
    In case your school LAN is protected from the inbound traffic - there is no way you can do that.


    In case a port is opened on the school firewall, e.g. 80 - you can use some kind of VPN agent that will map your computer to another server thus creating a tunnel between your PC and the outside world. Be aware that in this case the server outside the LAN will be the address for the outside world and it will be responcible for forwarding traffic to the PC in the school LAN.

    A possible setup for this can be:

    Set a VPN server at home or a friend outside the school dorm or find such server on the net.
    Install a VPN connection on your PC inside the LAN
    Install a DNS agent on the PC inside the LAN that will be able to update the outside DNS server with the IP of the LAN PC.

    This way all the traffic to your PC (outside) will be forwarded to the inside PC.

    This will work.

    Author Comment

    Thanks for posting back so fast...

    But dammit... yd u hafta give my hopes up ! lol jk jk

    quick question though. .. how can I seed torrent downloads then and have ppl connect to me?

    I port sniffed my pc and found they connect to my WAN IP  ... but how does that get directed to my comp ... isnt my WAN IP the same as everyone on the network?

    I thought about setting up a VPN however, I dont have extensive knowledge on it. :(
    Thanks for your help though.

    Im gonna wait to hear a few other ppl before awarding the points though.
    LVL 36

    Assisted Solution

    Hi MyAsylum,
    I expect your college/university not permitting any inbound connections to your machine. What IP address does your machine have?
    Most places will give you a private IP and perform NAT. P2P software will work because you connect to a server and they will detect you are behind a firewall and when someone wants to download from you your machine is instructed to connect to them and start sending the file.
    LVL 16

    Expert Comment

    httptunnel might work for you if port 80 is unrestricted (meaning not handled by proxies, transparent or otherwise).  Google for it.

    I'm guessing your torrents work because torrent clients can inititate outbound connections (even while only seeding, IIRC) - do you use a torrent client that can tell you whether your seed connections are locally or remotely initiated (ie Azereus)?


    Author Comment

    Hello All,
       My WAN IP is
       LAN IP:

    I dunno if that helps.
    I understand what youre saying about the P2P software. Thanks for clarifying that.
    I use Azereus like you mentioned for torrents.

    Any other suggestions?
    LVL 5

    Expert Comment


    I'd remove your WAN IP just incase the school ever does a search through google. It'll pick up the IP and any could cause you some trouble. Just trying to keep you safe from the prinipals ;-)
    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    As previously said I doubt very much you could do this and if you did succeed somehow I expect sooner or later the plug would be pulled, it might even be pulled for running the servers within the LAN depending on your campus policies.
    LVL 18

    Assisted Solution

    I agree completely with Problem_Solver. It will depend on your university/college policy...but more than likely what you are doing is against their policy and could result in them completely denying you any access to the university network. I work for a university and what you are doing is definately against our policy. I highly suspect that if you found any holes to make this work that once you did.....the network admins monitoring network traffic on the network would eventually figure out what you're doing and pull the plug on you. Also please remember there are reasons why Universities have these policies in place

    You say " speed to others off the LAN"

    Well it is NOT your network speed....the network is owned and operated by the University and what you would be doing is essentially stealing bandwith from the University and everyone else on the University network as well as risking security. I don't mean to preach to anyone...but as a professional, I know the headaches that network admins face in a University environment.

    Author Comment

       Thanks a lot everyone.  Ive decided to drop the idea...I dont feel like losing network/internet access. luv2smile, I understand what youre saying. Im not quite sure how to award these points however....everyone seemed to help.
    LVL 5

    Expert Comment

    at the top right of a user comment click accept answer if you only want that person to get points.

    Or click the split points button just above the comment box to divide the points between those who helped

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