Remote control

(Private - for Lynne's use only)

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What is on your server

Your server computer is actually running three server programs:
(We could add other server programs, if you wish. The obvious extra one to add is a mail server, to give you an e-mail address in your own domain.)

Of course, I have also installed some non-server programs. The one that you most need to know about is Avast antivirus, because you will have to renew the (free) registration each December. By the way, everything I have installed is free software.

For communication between two computers, you need a server program at one end, and a client program at the other end. The client programs that we'll install on your workstation are Firefox (as a web client), FileZilla client (an FTP program), and TightVNC Viewer (a VNC client).

Your router controls whether the server programs are visible to the external world. I suggest that we make only the web server visible, with FTP and VNC connections restricted to your LAN (local area network, i.e. the computers inside your house). The FTP and VNC servers have password protection, so we could make them accessible from other places, but if you don't need that extra access then we might as well tighten up the security.

Transferring files

FTP operations require an account with a username and password. You'll have to memorise the usernames and passwords, because I don't want to write them down here. I have set up three FTP accounts on your server. The first two are for you and me to get access to the whole of the C: drive on the server. We won't need to do that very often. The third takes you directly to the directory where the web pages are kept. (So you don't get access to the whole drive, only to that directory and its subdirectories.) That is the account you should normally use, because normally you will only be using FTP to update your web pages.

To begin, run the program called FileZilla Client. You will see that this program's screen display is broken up into a number of sections. The most important part is the directory displays in the middle. The display on the left shows the files on the local computer, and the one on the right shows the files on the remote computer. To transfer a file, just right-click on it and select either "upload" or "download" from the right-click menu. ("Upload" means from the client to the server, and "download" means from the server to the client.) By using the usual file selection methods like ctrl-click, you can select multiple files to transfer. You can also transfer entire directories. (But be careful; it's easy to transfer things you didn't intend to transfer.)

Before transferring anything, you must connect to the server. You can do this by entering a hostname, username, and password in the fields near the top, and then pressing the "Quickconnect" button, but there a couple of easier ways:
You should hover the mouse over those icons to find out what they do. The red X near the middle of the row of icons is important, because it's how you disconnect from the server. Near the right you have "synchronised browsing" and "directory comparison" buttons, which are especially useful when you want to synchronise files between the server and the client.

This program allows multiple connections to different places to be open simultaneously. In that case there's a tab bar above the directory windows, to let you switch between connections. Most of the time, though, it's less confusing to have only one connection open at a time.

Using the VNC viewer

When you run the program "TightVNC Viewer" you will have to supply a password. (Which I won't put in this document, for obvious reasons.) You will then see a screen window that is an exact copy of the server's desktop. You can then run programs, etc., exactly as if you were sitting in front of the server. The response is a bit slow, but that doesn't matter because you won't need to use VNC very often.

Because of conflicts between the two computers, the keyboard keys "Ctrl" and "Alt" don't work properly. Instead, you have to click on the CTL and ALT markers at the top right of the VNC window. Two clicks are needed, one to turn Ctrl or Alt on and one to turn it off again.

To exit from the VNC program, use the red X at the top right of the window.

Miscellaneous administrative details

Your external IP address is This is the address that other people will have to use to get to your web pages. Your router looks after the detail of translating this external address into an internal address.

All of the machines inside your LAN have addresses of the form 192.168.1.*, where the * stands for a number. Nobody outside your LAN can connect to those addresses, except via a connection set up by the router. (And we'll configure the router in such a way that the only permitted connection is the one to the web server.) The internal address of your server is This is the address that you have to use to view your own web pages from inside your house.

These pages belong to Lynne Williamson
Last updated 19-Dec-2010