If you have a linksys wireless router (usually blue with 2 antennas), chances are it has built in dyndns subscription software. Thats what I have anyway. I'm sure other routers have the same type of functionality. Dyndns will keep track of your ip address and allow you to associate it with a free host name. Afterwards, configure your router to allow port 80 (or port 443 if you are running a secured site) to be passed to a specific machine behind your router. You could purchase a domain name somewhere like GoDaddy.com . they're cheap. You can configure your newly purchased domian name as described in this forum.
These instructions are written for MyDomains.com and Dyndns.org, but they could certainly apply to other similar services. 1. Purchase a domain name, and verify your account at the registrar. You will need to be able to login to your account to change the nameserver ip addresses. For our example we will use the name: myhost.com 2. Login to your account at your registrars (where you bought your domain name) and locate info on changing the nameservers. You will need to access this information and change your nameservers to: NS1.MYDOMAIN.COM NS2.MYDOMAIN.COM NS3.MYDOMAIN.COM NS4.MYDOMAIN.COM 3. Setup an account at MyDomains.com <http://mydomains.com> (free). 4. Setup an account at dyndns.org <http://dyndns.org> (free) 5. Login to your account at dyndns.org and setup a dynamic hostname. Makes no difference what the name is as long as you remember it. For our example we will setup a host named: myfwdhost.ath.cx 6. Login to your account at MyDomains.com and click the link in the left-hand column under Domain Tools labeled Manage Mydomain.com forwarding services 7. Click the Add Domains button at the bottom of the page. Enter your purchased domain name (myhost.com) in the field and click the Add button. 8. Access the My Domains page of your account at mydomains.com and you should see your new domain name listed. Click on the domain name and you should be sent to the page that starts with "URL Forwarding" somewhere near the top. URL Forwarding – leave everything blank, except the Disable Forwarding checkbox – it should be checked. E-mail Forwarding – enter an address if desired. This can be a catch-all address such that any wildcard address sent to your domain will be forwarded to this address. Make sure to click the Update button if you make changes. DNS Management – this is the meat and potatoes and what actually does the work pointing to your domain, and finally your machine/host. Under canonical name – enter the hostname you chose at dyndns.org (myfwdhost.ath.cx) and click the Update button. If you have a mailserver enter the hostname you chose at dyndns.org (myfwdhost.ath.cx) and 0 in the priority field and click the Update button again. You should now see something like this under DNS Management (using our example hostnames): myhost.com CNAME myfwdhost.ath.cx myhost.com MX 0 myfwdhost.ath.cx Make SURE YOU DO NOT HAVE AN A NAME LISTED. If you do – then you should delete it. 9. At this point you have done everything necessary to use your purchased domain name, but it may take anywhere from a few hours to a few days before your registrar changes the nameservers (step 2 above) and the changes propgate throughout the other internet nameservers. When you can do a whois lookup and the nameservers are listed as in step 2 above – then you are all set and your domain name is now active. 10. Setup some facility to watch your dynamic IP (that of your modem/router) and then updates the address at dyndns.org as appropriate. There are plenty of GUI applications at MacUpdate that can do this for you or if you feel adventurous – try the UNIX/PERL option ddclient: ddclient Project Page at Sourceforge http://freshmeat.net/projects/ddclient/ some useful ddclient setup info
If you are a windows xp pro user, you can install IIS (Add/Remove Windows componenets). Or, you can grab a copy of Ubuntu, either the desktop of server version (server version doesn't install gnome). Configure PHP with your webserver. Google has good results for both windows and ubuntu how-tos. Install a database service on your system. I prefer mysql (its free). Download a free web portal system. I have used xoops, phpnuke, etc.. I prefer wordpress because its blog oriented. I integrated gallery2 using the wpg2 module for a photo gallery. Ehhh, if you get this far you should be ready to configure your portal. Cheers.