Server Guidelines

Last updated: January 12, 2023
Audience: All UW


Shared Web Hosting computing resources can be used to run servers such as MySQL database servers which persist even while you aren’t logged in to your account. Use of such servers should be made with a complete understanding of the following rules, responsibilities, recommendations, and disclaimers.

Rules & Responsibilities

  • Running a server on your account is subject to all the rules and policies regarding the use of UW computing resources. Use must support UW research, learning, teaching, administration, and/or community outreach activities.
  • You are responsible for downloading and installing your own server software.
  • You are responsible for starting and stopping your server.
  • You are responsible for monitoring your server.
  • You are responsible for supporting use of your server, including basic operation, integration, logging, and security.
  • You are responsible for the impact that your server has on UW computing resources.


  • Use a web development environment to setup and run your server. These hosts are rarely rebooted. And their intended use, for Web development and programming, make them more suitable than other systems for running servers. It also helps that they are single hosts. It’s easy to lose track of servers on multi-computer systems like Homer, which aren’t tailored for this sort of work anyway.
  • Choose a high-end, non-privileged port (between 1024 and 65000) for your server.
  • If you run a server on a Shared UW NetID account, make sure someone is reading the email sent to the account or make sure that the account’s email is being forwarded to an account where email is being read. UW Information Technology may occasionally send email messages to accounts running servers.
  • If you’re just experimenting with servers on your own, stop your server when you aren’t using it.


  • Due to limited resources, UW Information Technology does not provide system administration or “help desk” consulting services for user-installed servers. In the case of using MySQL servers, limited information is provided for do-it-yourself use. For help in building and using servers, you might consider contacting one of the on-campus groups doing website and application design.
  • Overall system performance on the web development environments will be monitored, with efforts to keep it at a reasonably high level for general use, but there is no guarantee of a specific level of system performance for do-it-yourself servers. Since the web development environments are shared multi-user systems, their performance largely depends on their moment-by-moment use.
  • The web development environments are intended to be highly reliable, but system maintenance may interrupt and even stop your server.
  • When possible, an effort will be made to detect who is running a server and warn them prior to any system maintenance that may interrupt or stop do-it-yourself servers. This applies only to servers running on the web development environments. No attempt will be made to look for servers on other UA computers.
  • You are responsible for monitoring your own server and keeping up on email that may forewarn service interruptions.