How to set up your own cloud based web server .

Dave O'Dea
· 4 min read
Image credit.

For when you want to make everything you learn on Free Code Camp visible to the big bad world !

This is part 1 in “How to set up your own cloud based web server”

Let’s break the task into 5 smaller pieces:

  1. Create a server ← You are here !

2. Setup the server.

3. Install the LAMP stack.

4. Setup a domain name (i.e.

5. Getting files on the server.

Why ?

For me, the decision to set up my own web server boiled down to three reasons:
1. Price:

  • As we will see, paying for a VPS (virtual private server), costs a fraction of a managed, hosted offering.

2. Control:

  • Setting up your own server allows you to control all facets of the server and how it operates, right down to the command line level.

3. Learning:

  • If you are reading this article it means you are most likely interested in learning more about web development. Servers are an integral part this technology, therefore, setting up and running your own web server will provide you with invaluable skills.

How ?

  • We will be using a service called DigitalOcean to host our server. DigitalOcean offer very competitive pricing for everything from basic servers to high-memory computing engines.
  • Their $5 a month droplet (droplet = server in DigitalOcean parlance) will be more than sufficient for our needs. It comes with 512mb RAM and 20Gb SSD storage.
  • You can get a $10 (two months for free) using this link here.

Once you’ve made an account on DO (DigitalOcean)using the link above, go to your dashboard, click on the green Create Droplet button.

  • On the next page, select the following options as I have in the images. We will be using the most up-to-date, stable version of Ubuntu server as our operating system.
  • Lets ignore the Block Storage option (I’ll be doing an article on this later) for now.
  • Select a Region which is closest, geographically, to you:
  • No need to select any Additional options at this time.
  • Now, the next step regarding SSH provides an extra layer of authentication security for your server. I do advise setting this up, however, I believe it is outside the scope of this introduction article and deserves its own dedicated post so I’ll cover this at a later date. For now, leave these options unchecked.
  • Go ahead and select how many servers you need, 1 is fine for us today. Then, name your server i.e. ‘ myFirstServer ’ or whatever other name you wish.
  • After you click on Create, it will take DO less than a minute to build your server out for you — amazing !
  • Soon after, you will receive an email with the credentials for your new server.

.. and that is that. Well done! You’ve just created a new Virtual Private Server or Droplet on the DigitalOcean platform — clap yourself on the back.

Next up, we will set up your new server here , by logging in remotely, setting up users and completing some basic security steps !

Lets do this …

~ Dave.

Kitchen to Keyboard

One fella’s journey from Professional Chef to Software Engineer

Dave O'Dea

Written by


Kitchen to Keyboard

One fella’s journey from Professional Chef to Software Engineer

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade