If you work closely with Servers and Technology, many times you would have faced situation where you need to setup a HTTP Server in your network. For log time, I have been using a tiny tool called HFS to setup a HTTP Server in my network. Today, I will go ahead and tell you how to setup a HTTP server easily in your network.
Let me introduce my favorite tool to setup HTTP server in your LAN/Internet. The name of the tool is HFS and can be downloaded from this link. By using this simple tiny software, you can create a web server on your system in minutes. You do not need to be a tech-geek to setup a web server. Any kid can setup a web server and use his webserver to share files in their network or through internet.
Let us go ahead and download the HFS utility from their website. The link is provided here. The Webpage will look like the one provided below. HFS utility is a tiny file, it is just 600KB, but it will do its job very well. You can setup a web server in your laptop and use it across your network. You do not need any Server Operating System to setup a HTTP webserver.
Download the HFS.exe file from above said web link. There is no installation required. Just double click the HFS.exe you have downloaded and it will open the HFS window as shown below. At the top of HFS window, you can find the IP address of your Webserver. Congrats, you already setup a web server in your network now. so easy!!!
Now you have successfully setup a HTTP Server in your network. From above said image, I can tell you that my HTTP Server IP is http://22.214.171.124:8080/, and if I type this address in Internet explorer, it should launch below provided page. You can also click on “Open in browser” button in HFS window to launch same Internet Explorer screen.
I hope you have completed above said steps. Now I can confirm that you have successfully setup a web server. It is easy, isn’t it?. Now let us see how to add files to the web server so that you can share these files with other users in network.
How to add Files to the HTTP Server:
Adding files to the http server is very easy. Just drag and drop folder from Windows Explorer or My Computer window to the HFS window. The file is added to the web server and it is ready to be shared over the network. In the below provided screenshot, you can find that I have added the Folder TricksGuide to the HFS window.
When you drag and drop files to the HFS window, sometimes you may receive a pop-window (shown below) asking you to choose Real Folder or Virtual Folder, you can go ahead and choose Real Folder (Do not ask me what it means.. lol)
As I have added the folder TricksGuide to the HFS window, anyone who knows my webserver IP address can download the files to their computer. To download the files, simply enter the IP address in the address bar of Internet explorer. In my case, the IP address was http://126.96.36.199:8080/. Let us see how the web server screen will look like. You can see the folder TricksGuide is available for download.
Click on the folder and you can download the contents. Now it is the time to share the web server address with your colleagues or friends so that they will be able to download the same files. Remember, here we have enabled only the Download feature of web server.
How to setup a Upload Folder:
Sometime you wanted users to upload files to a common folder in the network, HFS allows you to do that as well. To allow people to upload files to the folder, you need to enable the Upload feature in HFS. To do that, simply right click on the folder name in HFS window, then choose the option Upload –> Upload for accounts –> Anyone. Please check below provided screenshot to understand better.
Now enter the IP address of web server in Internet Explorer and you will find the Upload option as shown below.
Click on the Upload option, and it will open a new webpage with upload options(shown below).
How to set Password for folder:
Sometime you wanted to block access to some of the folders available in your Web Server. One way of doing is by setting a password. To set a Password, it is very easy. In HFS Window, just right click on the folder you wanted to password protect, then choose the option set user/pass.
For your better understanding, please check above provided screenshot. It will ask you to set user name and password for the folder. Once you set this, the folder is protected and will be accessible only by users who knows user name and password of the folder.
There are more options available in HFS but I could not explain all the features here. You may go through the documentation of HFS utility to learn all advanced features. Also ensure that no firewall is blocking HFS in your network.
I use HFS when I need to update firmware of HP Blade switches, Moonshot Servers or HP Blade serves because I can place the firmware file in the HTTP web server and issue CLI commands to run the firmware update. This utility helps me to setup a HTTP server in minutes.
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