From what I have understood the following is needed to go dedicated with a database driven web server.
* A rented server (of course)
* Choose OS. In this case Linux.
* login with ssh.
* Install Apache 2.
* Install Mysql.
* Install PHP4.
* DNS service is required,
(1) buy the DNS service
(2) get DNS service for free
(3) host your own BIND or djbdns
* Buy a domain name
* point dns primary and secondary dns (specified with domain name supplier) to your dns server
- Question: Is it OK to point both primary and secondary to the same server (option 3)
* Ask rented server supplier to make reverse dns lookup in there DNS servers.
* Write application in PHP, transfer with sftp.
* Test application.
I'm not sure about pointed both nameservers to one IP. But may be doable.
You forgot some of the most important steps.
(4) Secure the Server
* Disable Telnet
* Disable remote root logins, add normal user to the 'wheel' group, the 'su' to root privileges.
* Install & run Chkrootkit
* Install & run RKHunter
* Secure PHP
* Install Firewall(APF, KissMyFirewall, Shorewall)
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To install APF, you need IPTables already installed (APF just 'manages' the IPTables configuration).
The benefit of a control panel is that many things are easier - to create a new domain, its only a couple of clicks. Wth ssh you can do the same, but it'll take you longer to edit all the config files. (in effect, a control panel is to web server like APF is to IPTables - a friendlier front-end). Its always good to know what it does for when things go wrong, but otherwise a panel will save you time.
When you secure your server, dont just disable telnet - disable everything you don't need. (and you don't need telnet, use SSH)
DNS. You will need to get a DNS service if only to point your domain at your DNS server. Ie. If myweb.com's DNS entry is held at ns1.myweb.com you're going to have difficulty in finding it. there is a bodge to this, and its called Lame delegation, but it's not a good thing. Best to get a free DNS service (dnspark.net is good) to host the entries for your ns records and then host all other entries on your DNS server. (I use dnsreport.com to check)
You will then get 2 NS records to enter in your registrar's NS, some of them refuse to allow the same IP in the nameserver boxes.
Why would I specify ns1.myweb.com as name server? Why not specify the ip address, eg 126.96.36.199, directly at the registrar to point to my dns server, if I choose to set up my own dns server.
However with free dns service available, I need not set up a own dns host, right?
If I get a free dns service, then of course I would use that to point to my web server (I plan to set up one), specifyging their dns servers, eg ns1.freedns.com, ns2.freedns.com at the registrar, and at freedns.com I would specify my IP to map www.myweb.com to my server.
With a free DNS host, you are limited in the number of domains you can register with them. Typically you register *your* domain so the outside world knows where to find you, and then you host your own DNS server (which the outside world now knows the address of as the free DNS entry tells them).
You host all your other domains in your DNS. simple!
I *think* that the standard says only FQDNs are allowed as NS records, and they have to resolve to different IPs.
The point of only allowing the FQDN as an NS record is that you need ns.mynameserver.com to be registered somewhere as an A record. Eventually these all come back to the root nameservers, and they are well-known (otherwise you wouldn't be able to find a domain as you wouldn't know where to start asking)
Your provider will often give you 2 nameservers for your master domain, but I don't think they'll allow you to add more domains at will. To do that, you'll need to run your own DNS server.