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  This page explains how to set up example.com at KICS.
Register example.com
Fill out the online application form
Pay KICS
Congratulations! You have a UNIX shell account
Put your web pages on our computer
Set up your email forwarding
Change example.com's name servers
 

Before you do anything else, you need to register the domain name example.com so that you "own" it.

You don't really own the domain name; you just rent it. If you forget to renew your rental contract, someone else can take it.

There are lots of places to register example.com (assuming it's still available). Examples for .ca names: domainsatcost.ca, reg.ca, cadns.ca. Examples for .com/net/org names: gandi.net, domaindiscover.com. Prices range from about $10 US to $45 US per year.

If they offer you any options like hosting or parking, don't take them. All you need is to own your domain name.

When you own a domain name, you decide whose computer gets contacted when someone sends mail to anything@example.com, or looks up http://anything.example.com/anything in a web browser.

This guide assumes that you want that computer to be KICS' computer. You'll pay us to keep your web pages and incoming email on our computer. We will make sure that computer is available to receive your email and deliver your web site to visitors 100% of the time (or as close as possible, which is pretty darn close).

When your registrar asks you what your name servers are, give them these names and IP addresses as necessary:

ns1.kics.bc.ca -- 204.244.102.67
ns2.kics.bc.ca -- 204.244.102.68

You will also be asked for Technical Contact info and should use the following:

System Administrator
root@kics.bc.ca
Kootenay Internet Communications Society
Box 2001, 622 Front Street
Nelson, B.C.
V1L 4B7
Canada
(250) 352-5107

After you register your domain name, there is a delay of one or two days before it starts to work. Meanwhile, you can get started on the rest of the process.

 
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Fill in the online application form.

When we receive your application form we will issue you a receipt and set up your account according to the information you provide.

 
  At minimum, you can pay the initial setup fee of $20, plus $120 for your first year for a total of $140.

If you like, you may pay for more than one year at a time.

Make cheques payable to KICS and send to:

Kootenay Internet Communications Society
Box 2001, 622 Front St.
Nelson, BC
V1L 4B7
 
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  As you might have heard, a UNIX shell account is a powerful tool. You won't like it at first, but it will grow on you.

It gives you a place to put your private files, like your incoming email messages; a place to put your public files, like your web pages; and a place to run your programs.

The most important thing to know about your account is that you have a home directory. A "directory" is simply a folder. Your home directory is a folder on our computer that nobody but you is allowed to change. Our server puts your incoming email there, and it expects you to put your web pages there.

We will send you an email message containing an account name (also called your login) and a password.

 
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  To connect to the KICS computer you will need to use File Transfer Protocol (FTP) client software. Some popular ones are WS-FTP and Cute-FTP, but you can find many others at TUCOWS or C/NET.

Your FTP program will ask for your login and password when you upload your web pages to our computer. Our computer's name is kics.bc.ca, but once you've changed your name servers, you can simply call it example.com. Your FTP program might refer to it as a host or a server.

Your home directory contains a folder called example.com; if you put a file in there called "foo.html", then anyone in the world will be able to see it by typing "example.com/foo.html" or "www.example.com/foo.html" into a web browser.

You definitely want to make a file called "index.html". It will appear on the front page of your web site: "www.example.com".

 
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  Note for tinkerers: Your email is handled by a program called qmail. Qmail runs whenever someone sends a message to something@example.com. It looks in your home directory for a file called .qmail-something. The contents of that file determine what happens to the message. For more details, log in and type "man dot-qmail" or see http://cr.yp.to/qmail.html.

We have provided an easy way for you to set up email addresses (e.g. info@example.com).

Note for new accounts:

These instructions assume that your domain name is registered and your name server changes have taken effect. To set up your email addresses ahead of time, use youraccountname.kics.bc.ca instead of example.com for these steps.

Anything you set up in youraccountname.kics.bc.ca will also start to work for example.com as soon as your domain name is registered and its name servers are changed to ns1.kics.bc.ca and ns2.kics.bc.ca.

Go to http://example.com/tools/setup and log in with the "mail setup password" you received when you signed up for your KICS hosting account. Your browser must have cookies enabled; otherwise you won't be able to log in.

To create an address like foo@example.com, type foo in the little box and click the Create button.

The next screen will ask you what you want to do with mail that arrives for foo@example.com.

You have four choices:

  1. Send it back, saying "no mailbox by this name." In other words, this address does not exist.
     
  2. Forward it to a list of email addresses. Type some email addresses into the text box, one on each line. Each message for foo@example.com will be sent to all of the email addresses you provide here.

    This is a simple way to make a mailing list, but be warned: if three of the email addresses fail for some reason, whoever sent the message will receive three failure notices.

    Normally, this is used to forward email to a single address like foo@existing-account.com.
     
  3. Deliver it to your default POP mailbox. Messages for foo@example.com will be saved in your home directory on our server. You can retrieve them from the POP server example.com with the same username and password you use with FTP, Telnet, and SSH.

    Normally, this is used for mail that you will read yourself, like yourname@example.com.
     
  4. Deliver it to foo's POP mailbox. Messages will be stored in a separate POP mailbox. You must type a password for that POP mailbox in the space provided.

    To pick up mail from the POP mailbox, use POP server example.com, username youraccount-foo (where youraccount is your regular FTP username and foo is the name of the email address being created), and the password you supply when you set up the address.

    Normally, this is used to store mail for other someone in your organization who doesn't already have an email address. Whoever picks up the mail doesn't need to know the password to your KICS account; you can choose a different password for each POP mailbox.
     
After you indicate your selection by clicking the appropriate checkbox, click the "Save changes" button. The mailbox will start working immediately.

Note: You may create as many email addresses and POP mailboxes as you like, and you can come back at any time to make more. However, please remember that you have a limited amount of disk space. If one of your POP mailboxes is forgotten, and it accumulates too much mail, it will eventually use up all of your disk space; this will cause your other POP mailboxes to stop working as well. This will not happen unless you forget to check your mail for a long time or receive an extraordinary amount of email at once. This limitation does not apply to messages which are forwarded to other addresses; they are not stored in your account.

You can find out how much disk space you're using by visiting http://example.com/tools/.

 
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  If you didn't already do this in step 1 -- perhaps you didn't do step 1 because you already owned your domain name -- log in to your registrar's "domain manager" or whatever they call it. Replace the existing name servers with ours:
ns1.kics.bc.ca -- 204.244.102.67
ns2.kics.bc.ca -- 204.244.102.68

It usually takes at least 24 hours for the results of this change to take effect across the entire internet. When it does, the world will start sending email and web site requests to our computer. Good! This makes our computer happy.

Questions? Just send a note to the KICS board.

 
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