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Web Server Addition Reccomendations

Posted on 2007-03-22
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Server Addition Strategy Recommendations
Environement is W2K3 LAN behind Cisco PIX & Cisco Layer 3 Switch with T-1 leased line access.
I am to add a server that will be:
A) Web Server (& host the Organization's IntraNet Site too)
 B) FTP Server (accessible to internal & external hosts)
C) Streaming Media Server (current Web Site Host won't store video for our web site, we have to put it on our own server to make multi-media content available to them?)
D) Managed by yours truly whose LINUX experience is a single SYMANTEC SPAM appliance that has it's own browser based GUI for dummies interface

Currently have only 2 M.S. W2K3 Servers, one is DC, other Exchange 2003 Server, both behind firewall on internal LAN with 80 XP workstations.

My Assumptions:
A LINUX based web server placed in DMZ would be most cost effective solution & most secure?
The new server would not need any integration with Active Directory to perform the above listed roles?
There aren't any LINUX server solutions available that offer GUI management consoles?
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Question by:dealvis
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Dave_Dietz earned 200 total points
ID: 18777915
Assumptions:
1) Incorrect.  Windows can be just as secure if you configure it properly.  As far as cost effective, you state that you have no real Linux admin experience.  How cost effective is it to have a server that you can't fix if there is a problem?  What might take you a hour to resolve on a Windows box might take several hours (or days) to resolve on a Linus server.  This is not to say that Linux is inherently more difficult to administer - you simply are more familiar with what you have experience with and the situation might be reversed for a Linux admin who knows little about Windows.

2) Indeterminate.  Do you want internal users to be able to use the same credentials to access the Intranet server as other resources on the network?  Whether the server would need AD Integration depends entirely on your requirements/specifications/desires.

3) Ignorance.  I don't know.  :-)  I'm really more of a Windows guy and haven't looked at Apache in quite a while so I'm not aware of what's available regarding GUI admin tools for Linus/Apache.

Dave Dietz
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Author Comment

by:dealvis
ID: 18779095
What if I choose Windows Server 2003 "WEB EDITION" for the new Web/FTP server placed in the DMZ?
Less money, a plus.
More Secure than W2K3 Standard, a plus.
I am more Familar with OS, a plus.
BUT - Can't use W2K3 "WEB EDITION" as streaming media file server, a minus?

Is this logically correct thinking?
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by:Hedley Phillips
Hedley Phillips earned 50 total points
ID: 18782064
I love Linux, it is easy to use, easy to set up, secure and all round great. But, where I work we have a windows network which I admin and there is no way I would recommend a Linux server there.

AS it is, you could admin IIS easily on a win 2003 server, but as you state, your linux experience is not great. I would stick with what you know.

On top of this, what happens if you get a linux box in and you leave. Your epmployer is then going to have to find an admin who knows both win & linux which is not quite so easy and will be more expensive.

I would get windows 2003, stick IIS on it and be up and running in a few hours. Job done. Or get windows and stick Apache on it, even better! That is what I prefer to do.

For FTP, stay away from Windows FTP server, it is rubbish. Use Filezilla instead. A different world. And free.

Re GUI for Linux apache, you can get a gui, one is called webmin. It allows you toadmin your linux server remotely over the web. Damn good, loads of free modules for it and I am sure it has impreoved in the years since I used it.
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Expert Comment

by:Dave_Dietz
ID: 18784240
>>Is this logically correct thinking?

I would say yes with one reservation.

How are you defining a "streaming media file server"?  Do you intend to install Windows Media Services on the server or are you simply going to have a bunch of .wmv (or whatever format) files on the server that browsers can access?

Dave Dietz
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Author Comment

by:dealvis
ID: 18785188
Yes the intention is to provide streaming of various muti-media content from the new server to internet hosts. (Sounds like you are suggesting we will need to install Windows Media Services to do so?)

(The Tech Arts Dept guys also want to store their files on the new WIN Server box too so that adds the 'FILE SERVER' role as well).

Bottom line Dave my response to your clarification request  is "both" but most importantly streaming services are a must for the new server.
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