Maneesh Godbole wrote:Disclaimer 1: I do not have any personal experience in hosting on my own server
Disclaimer 2: I am lazy!
If I was in your place, I would approach several hosting services and enquire about their hardware and infrastructure.
That would give me an idea of the setup I might require.
Pat Farrell wrote:Servers barely need VGA vidio, use the onboard video. Go cheap. At current RAM prices, get 8GB and use a 64 bit version of Ubuntu or Debian. I run Debian on my servers and Ubuntu on my desktops and laptops. I like the fact that Debian does not do releases every six months to support some new video card, camera other thing that have nothing to do with servers.
Ubuntu is derived from Debian. If you install Debian with the GUI (which I recommend for folks just starting out running a server) the GUI is the same. Same package installer, etc.
Its easy, nearly trivial to have MySql and its tools installed for free on either Debian or Ubuntu. I would not do Oracle until someone paid me serious money to do so.
Its unclear if you are doing this for development/education/personal use, or if you plan to make it a public server on the open Internet. If you want it to be public, you really should get a fixed IP address from your ISP, which can cost $50 or more extra per month. You can do things like dyndns, but that's not how professional servers are setup.
Joe Ess wrote: Many consumer connections, like DSL, have larger download throughput than upload, which is the reverse you want if you are serving data.