Yesterday after school a few students from my AP class came by for our weekly computer club meeting. At this meeting they took a computer system, which was an amalgam of spare parts, and installed Ubuntu ( a user-friendly open source Linux shell) with the intent on building a Web server for our school. They then installed Apache, MySQL, and a PHP web interface for remote access to our Web server. The whole experiment went great. We did have to call the cable company to get port 80 forwarded to or domain (from our cablem modem/router), but other than that it went off without a hitch.
Our headmaster loves the idea of what we are doing, and may let us buy a new server for this now that we have “proof of product”. We hope to do the scale up by purchasing a Dell Xeon server. Our ultimate goal is to install Windows server 2003, and set up an exchange server so that our school community can take full advantage of the wonderful resources Microsoft has to offer through our MSDN subscription. We also hope to eventually set up subdomians for teacher's to host their Web sites like many colleges do. Another aside, AP student Brendan (TCP/IP guru) has found a nice blog utility that we will use to set up blogs for every teacher in the school using our Web server. Once everything is online I will post the URL.