How to Connect a Client and a Server

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In client-server architecture, client machines have network software installed to request and receive information over a network. Server systems are high performance machines that host a number of server programs as well as resources that can be requested by client machines. Therefore, clients communicate requests to servers by initiating communication sessions while servers accept incoming requests. The Internet forms a good example of a client server model where web browsers act as clients requesting information from web, DNS and FTP servers.

The Setup

  • Determine the kind of server you want. There are http servers for website hosting, Domain Name Servers (DNS) that query IP addresses and mail servers that handle email, among many others. Some of these servers are free or open source while others need to be purchased.

  • Download or purchase a server operating system like Ubuntu or Microsoft Server 2003. Apache is the most popular http server since it is free and open source and works well with other software. In fact most network-based operating systems come with Apache as part of the package. You however need to run it.

  • Setup the server name and basic configurations of the server as well as the website you are going to run.

  • Edit the http.conf to run the process. You can locate the http.conf file by locating the folder "/usr /local /etc /apache22/" from the installation files.

  • Test if the server is working by putting the IP of the server machine in the browser address bar.

  • Select the option "Register Name Server" to configure the name server options. Give at least two name servers from the Internet.

  • Install and set up a database like MySQL.

  • Install and set up a programming language like PHP. Locate it in the folder "/usr /ports /lang/" from the installation files.

  • Install an FTP application to upload files into your server. Locate these files from the folder "/usr /ports /ftp".

  • Configure the "inetd.conf" file to run a process called "inetd." The file can be located in "/etc /inetd.conf" as part of the installation files.

  • Run the client system using the server name or IP address to access the server resources.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use MySQL database server when you need to setup a database. Almost all web surfers use MySQL database servers. It's free and open source.
  • PHP is most preferred as the server programming language since it works well with MySQL and is the most widely used. It is also free and open source as is MySQL. Other server programming languages include perl, Ruby and Python.

References

  • Photo Credit Computer servers skyline image by patrimonio designs from Fotolia.com
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