FREE is my ISP. They provide a free service of personal page for every one, even if you are not one of their customers. There are hundreds of other providers out there that do the same. But FREE is unique in the richness of features they provide: 1GB of space, PHP and MySQL technologies, open source frameworks for forums, wikis, blogs,... Very rich! To start developping and using such nice features, I could have coded my website and uploaded every shreds of it on FREE's server for testing. It would have been long and it would have exposed unfinished work: not very professional, one could say. To avoid this not very bleeding edge exposure, I've prefered to install a local network architecture that mimics FREE's server.

The main components are:

The installation of lighttp is straightforward on Gentoo.

To begin the webserver installation, I've started checking its available USEs flags and set the nice ones in Portage and proceed with its installation:

echo "www-servers/lighttpd ipv6 ldap mysql php ssl xattr" >> /etc/portage/package.use
emerge www-servers/lighttpd

The mysql USE flag should trigger the installation of MySQL. Remove it if you only want to develop static pages.

Now it's time for a little tuning to check if this installation is working. Modify /etc/lighttpd.conf at line 40 to make the server.document-root match the location of your web pages:

server.document-root        = "/home/pierre/site/"

Starting the web server is done by the following command:

/etc/init.d/lighttpd start

If you want to keep the web server running at every reboot, you can add the service to the default runlevel:

rc-update add lighttpd default

You should now be able to access your web pages with your favorite browser at http://127.0.0.1. In case you would meet authorization problem, as a regular user, just review the file access of your web pages with the following commands at the root of your site:

find -type d -exec chmod o+rx {} \;
find -type f -exec chmod o+r {} \;