For the past week I've been thinking about increasing my internet presence and what that might entail. I decided I needed a few new accounts: an email, a blog, a youtube, a twitter, a facebook, and a website. Signing up for the first few was easy peasy. The website... not so much. I didn't want to sign up for a tripod account. I've done that a couple times before. I wanted something entirely mine. WWW.JIMMIEHAMMEL.COM... It was a huge pain in the ass.
First you have to choose a domain registrar, then you need site host, most hosts offer registrar services but there are hundreds, perhaps thousands of these companies! Which to choose? It's hard to tell because the online reviews for several of my first picks, appeared to be faked. They just seemed to complimentary. I finally did find one that I liked. NearlyFreeSpeech.net. They'll register your domain name for $8.99 a year and the monthly charge for their hosting services is based on the amount of space you use and the number of hits you get. It's super cheap for someone just starting out. If it ever starts to cost more $7 a month, I can switch to an unlimited hosting service.
So I get my hosting service and they register my domain name, all is swell. Now I need an ftp uploading program... that's something I never had to bother with when using Tripod. They had a pretty user friendly GUI. But I try out one called "fling"... couldn't figure it out. At this point I'm feeling a wee bit frustrated. Turns out my "site" is called something different and my domain is an alias... I need to link my site to my domain... then I need a username and password which are not the ones I chose but ones they assigned me... and some kind of file key... lolz... I wanted to rip out my own hair. But my host recommends a different ftp uploader called WinSCP so I try that one out and voila, I manage to get all this stuff entered into the right boxes and my "under construction" page uploaded.
But then it's been a couple years since I created my own website so of course I named it MAIN when it should have been named INDEX and spent another hour trying to figure out why I was still getting an error message when I tried to look at it...
But there is an upside. I now understand the mechanics a bit better. I have full control over my site and no one can put advertisements on it except for me. I have a central hub from which I can easily refer people to all my different social networking sites. It'll take me a day or so to create a fully functioning website to replace the "under construction" place holder but I'm excited. Can't wait to show my mom!