Meeting the Requirements

Your system needs to meet some basic requirements to install and run a WordPress blog. The first is hosting. You'll need an account on a server somewhere. This may be shared hosting or your own server, if you have one. WordPress does work on Windows, especially with the same web server and database setup. But because it's the most common and, frankly, the simplest to set up, I'm going to concentrate on GNU/Linux-based hosting.

Your hosting server needs to have support for PHP version 4.1 or later and MySQL database server version 3.23.23 or later. I recommend Apache as a web server (version 1.3.23 or later), but any web server capable of supporting PHP should work. If you have support for mod_rewrite in Apache, you'll be able to use some especially useful features ofWordPress. (See http://httpd.apache.org/docs/1.3/mod/mod_rewrite.html for more information about mod_rewrite.) You'll also need to be able to upload files via FTP and change permissions on your files and folders.

I don't have a recommendation for disk space or bandwidth. A 1,000-post blog with 2,000 comments and no pictures will fit comfortably in 10MB with room to spare. Bandwidth is too variable to call. Blog popularity ranges from 1 visit a week to 10,000 per day and higher.

A huge number of companies offer hosting. Shop around and get the best deal to suit your needs. Always go for more than you think you'll need, but stay within your budget. You never know—your blog may become very popular. The last thing you want is to be cut off for exceeding your bandwidth, just as you are building your community.

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