networking, software

Build your own classic Mac OS Web Server with MacHTTP

Your trusty 68k-based classic Mac can actually become a legitimate web server – and it’s fairly easy to set up! All you need is a TCP/IP network connection and MacHTTP.

Here’s how to get started, in three easy steps:

  • Download MacHTTP and save it off in a folder on your classic Mac. Grab MacHTTP here!
  • Create a “Default.html” file in the same folder as the MacHTTP application – this is the root page that gets served by default.
  • Double click MacHTTP, and that’s it! You’re up and running!
Some sophisticated web design going on here…

Now, how can I view it?

First off, you do need to have a TCP/IP connection. In this screenshot of the TCP/IP control panel, I’ve found that my Mac got assigned the IP of…

Any computer on the same network should be able to navigate to that IP and see the page being served by the old Mac…

It doesn’t get much easier than that! If you wanted to, you could also assign a static IP to your classic Mac and forward port 80 traffic to it. Then, using your public IP – you could have anyone on the internet see the content being served by your retro server.

Mac HTTP is extremely light-weight and can even run on black & white 68000-based compact Macs. The sky’s the limit – with some clever AppleScripts, you could make a pretty interesting website – all hosted by hardware that predates Google, Facebook, and the modern Internet.