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Introduction The goal of this book is to give you the basic tools and skills that you need to administer an Internet site. I want to emphasize that this book is far from being complete, which is actually intentional. You can do so much with your Web site and so much information exists, that to cover all of it would be impossible, even if we skipped the exercises. Because the exercises are what this series is all about, we couldn't leave them out. Instead, we had to make a decision about what to include. The first question I asked myself was "What are the problems and other issues that I have encountered when configuring Internet and intranet servers?" Although the target audiences for the information are slightly different, the problems that arise are pretty much the same. In addition, I have found managing the intranet site much easier if it closely matches the Internet site, and vice versa. Another thing I focus on is the aspects that could be used as a foundation for those areas that I didn't cover, because the goal of this book is not to hand-hold you through the configuration. Instead, the goal is to get you thinking. By giving you just enough information to solve the basic tasks and getting you to stretch that knowledge in the exercises, I hope you will be able to go beyond what you learn in this book. Something that many people will find annoying is that in many places, I simply refer you to other sources, such as the man-pages. I do not do so because I am lazy (although I am), but rather I felt that to repeat that information was not necessary. One thing I would like to warn you about is that a number of "trick" questions are spread throughout the exercises. They are not an attempt to really trick you, but to get you thinking. Many times during the configuration, you might think that one answer is correct, but the real correct answer is something else. Such questions are designed to let you know that the correct answer might not always be the logical one. If you look at the title of this book and compare it with the chapters, you will probably ask yourself, with all the different Web servers, why we are going to talk specifically about the Apache server? Three primary reasons for this exist. First, it the most widespread server on the Internet. As of this writing, more than half of all Internet servers are using it. Therefore, if you are called upon to manage an Internet server, odds are that you will be administering an Apache server. The second reason is that even if your server is not running Apache, the basic configuration files are the same as most other servers. Some major differences exist, such as with the Netscape FastTrack Server. However, the basic principles are still the same. Although the steps you take with Netscape are different, the underlying concepts are the same. Using the GUI interface that Netscape provides, you are hidden for the most part from the underlying configuration files. By knowing how functionality is attained with Apache, you have the basic understanding to expand upon what Netscape provides. Finally, the availability of the Apache server is a consideration. The Apache server is freeware and therefore the source code is available. The configuration files and programs provided allow you to compile it for a wide range of systems. Furthermore, pre-compiled binaries exist already for most major UNIX versions, as well as Windows NT and Windows 95. The server is also included in compiled, ready-to-run format with the accompanying copy of Caldera OpenLinux Lite. This means you can jump right in. Although you have a complete Apache server with the Caldera OpenLinux on the CD, they are always making improvements, so you will eventually want to install the latest version. As of this writing, the current version is 1.2.5, although I have installed on my own machine the beta version of 1.3 (Beta 3). Appendix B contains information on obtaining and compiling the source. ABOUT THE WEB COMPANION This book has a companion Web site, located at: phptr/phptrinteractive The Web companion is designed to provide an interactive online environment that will enhance your learning experience. You'll find answers to the Test Your Thinking projects from the book, additional Self-Review Questions to challenge your understanding of chapter discussions, a virtual study lounge in which to mingle with other Interactive Workbook students, and an Author's Corner, where I will provide you with discussion that I think will be of interest to you. Visit the Web site periodically to share and discuss your answers. Acknowledgments Despite the fact that my name is on the cover, this book is not a one-man show. A number of people worked behind the scenes to get this thing off the ground and running smoothly. First, I wish to thank Mark Taub of Prentice Hall, who convinced me to do this project, although I had other things in mind. Uncounted thanks go to Ralph Moore for his encouragement, helpful suggestions, and most importantly, his patience. A great deal of thanks also goes to my technical reviewers Jeff Gitlin, Corinne Gregory, and Micah Brown. Their helpful comments and corrections definitely made this book better. I also wish to thank Patti Guerrieri and the Prentice Hall production staff for working so hard to get this book out in time. Thanks also to Lisa Woo-Bloxberg of Netscape Communications. Not only did she get me a copy of Netscape to work with, but she also helped get me answers to some difficult questions. Still another bunch of thanks go to Laura Kenner of Caldera for getting me a copy of Caldera OpenLinux to play with. Thanks also go to Kirk Waingrow and The Unix Guru's Universe (ugu) It's loaded with information, and is also a good demonstration of what you can do with a Web site without all of the bells and whistles. Last, but certainly not least, thanks to my wonderful wife, Anja, and fantastic sons, Daniel and David. As always, any mistakes are mine. If you find something or would like to comment, please drop me a line: jimmo@jimmo email@example.com Best Regards, jimmo Untersiemau, 19 August 1998About the Author:
Jim Mohris author of several book s on UNIX, including SCO Companion and Linux User's Resource (Prentice Hall PTR). He is also the Nuthin' but Net columnist for SCO World Magazine.
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