In this blog, you’ll learn the steps on how to have a self-hosted website with AWS Lightsail, a virtual private server with AWS or Amazon Web Service.
For those who have successfully opened their AWS account, you have the option to provide limited access to a virtual team to help you complete the whole process of self-hosting your website. Visit the tutorial here.
But if you wish to complete the process yourself, go ahead and begin on the first step below.
Step 1: Login to your AWS account
There are two ways to login on AWS.
Login to your AWS or Amazon Web Service account using your existing Amazon login credentials and jump to Step 3.
If you don’t have an existing account on AWS, create a new AWS Lightsail Account here and proceed to Step 2.
Step 2: Create an AWS Lightsail account
Create your AWS Lightsail account here https://aws.amazon.com/lightsail/pricing/
Fill up the sign up form with the following information: login, personal and payment details.
View the images below.
Confirm your identity using phone verification. You will receive a 4-digit number to verify your account.
Once verified, select your Support Plan. Click ‘Basic Plan’, it’s a free plan recommended for new users.
Please take note of the $1 fee during account verification charge.
Step 3: Create Instance
After signing in to your AWS account, you will be directed to AWS Management Console. Search for Lightsail.
Click ‘Create Instance’. Instance is the term used for virtual server in AWS.
Choose your Instance Location by clicking ‘Change AWS Region and Availability Zone’. Select the location nearest to your business operation.
Choose ‘Linux/Unix’ as your Platform.
For non-developers, choose ‘LAMP’ as your Blueprint.
Scroll down and look for SSH key pair. The SSH key pair is used to access your server once you deploy it. Remember you can only download your SSH key pair once so you have to keep it in a safe place.
Click ‘Create SSH key pair’. Label your new SSH key pair based on your Region then click ‘Generate key pair’. Click ‘Download Key’
Tick ‘Enable Automatic Snapshots’ for automatic backups.
Choose your instance plan and name your website. Once done, click ‘Create Instance’.
Step 4: Hosting your website to your AWS Lightsail server
Start hosting your website to your server by exporting your website from any web designing platform i.e. Webflow
Webflow helps users build responsive websites. You can open a free account anytime but you need to purchase a plan to export a file. It’s perfect for business owners who have multiple website or agencies who manage websites to use this tool because of its easy ‘drag-and-drop’ functionality. You can quickly create websites without the need to code.
Use an FTP client like CyberDuck, Filezilla etc to begin self-hosting your website.
Create a ‘New Connection’. Choose SFTP from the list and type the username and password by using the SSH key pair.
Alternatively, you can access your credentials through Bitnami. Type ‘ls’ and press ‘enter/ return’ to see your htdocs file. To get your credentials, type ‘vi bitnami_application_credentials’ then press ‘enter/ return’.
Finally, click ‘Connect’ and drag the Webflow website file onto the ‘htdocs’ folder.
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