Server changes to improve the local network.
I’ve relied on a 1U Dell box I’ve had now for a number of years for a web server. It’s done just fine, but it’s time to make some changes. I’ve set up a two-pronged approach, moving some websites to cloud service, and others to Raspberry Pi units.
Server changes to the cloud! I needed a secure server to operate an ecommerce website. So, I set up Elysian Fields Press on SiteGround, using WordPress. Since the traffic to that site isn’t overwhelming (most folks buy my history books from Amazon or local booksellers), I migrated some of the sites up to that account. The process is simple enough. I use UpdraftPlus to back up the WordPress install. Then I set up the domain at SiteGround, then restore the site. More on UpdraftPlus later.
The second set of server changes involves Raspberry Pi systems. With the regular blogs (YatPundit, YatCuisine, NewOrleansRailroads) in the cloud, I prepared to migrate the other sites off the 1U. To easily facilitate the server changes, I set up a Raspberry Pi as an Apache reverse proxy server.
I installed a Pi for reverse proxy a few years ago. put Windows 2008 on the 1U. The web servers transitioned VMs under Hyper-V. I had network issues with that configuration. So the 1U returned to Ubuntu. My old Raspberry Pi Model 1A+ resumed its role as a proxy server. That Pi operated as a TOR relay for a while. I re-formatted the SD. The proxy config vanished. For these server changes, Google delivered.. This procedure fit what I needed for now. A lot of the howto docs on reverse proxy focus on SSL or load balancing. All seashell software required for now is simple re-direct.
All web traffic hit the router, then to the 1U. The server changes involved putting the Pi in between. Raspberry Pi’s “imager” program created a SD card. After a quick addition to enable headless configuration, the server popped up on the network fine. The Pi received Apache2 with no issues. So, then it was a matter of configuring the server for reverse-proxy.
Initial reverse proxy configuration
The Pi was ready to go. Next step, configuring an Apache CONF file to send the traffic from the proxy to the web server. Since it’s a home network the config relies on just the hosts file.
Next step, setting up a second Pi as the actual web server.