How To Set Up a Private Server on Ubuntu Linux and Protect Your Privacy

4 Mins read

If you’re like me, you have a lot of online accounts. You probably use your work email for personal correspondence, for example.

But there are many other ways in which your privacy is at risk when running an Ubuntu Linux server:

If someone gets access to it, they can see everything that’s going on—including passwords and usernames. For this reason alone, setting up a private server is essential if you want to protect your own data from being accessed by others (or yourself). Here’s how I did it myself:

1. Get a cloud hosting service

A cloud hosting service is an online service that provides you with virtual resources, such as storage and processing power, so you can run your own data center from anywhere in the world. You can choose from hundreds of providers who offer different types of services, including VPS (virtual private server), dedicated server plans and more.

You’ll want to look for a provider where your dedicated IP is finally on a server near you and it allows you to set up a private server and protect your privacy by offering encryption technology—and preferably one that offers both features at no extra cost!

2. Update Linux system and packages before you start

Before you proceed to the next step, make sure that your Linux system and packages are up-to-date. To do so, run the following commands:

  • Run sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y
  • Restart your server (optional).

3. Create a basic firewall to prevent unwanted access

In this step, we’re going to set up a basic firewall to prevent unwanted access.

Firewalls are security systems that monitor network traffic and block unauthorized access.

They can be used to block certain IP addresses from accessing your server, or they can block certain ports from being accessed by the server. A good example of this is when you want to limit someone’s ability to connect using SSH (the Secure Shell protocol).

4. Ensure your server is unblocked by the firewall

If you’re using Ubuntu, it’s time to start setting up your server. You need to ensure that your server is unblocked by the firewall.

The first step is to block all ports except for SSH. You can do this by opening a terminal and typing:

firewall-cmd –add-port=”22″

This command will open port 22 for connections from other computers or devices on your network (if you have one). You can also use iptables with the following command:

sudo iptables -A INPUT -p tcp -m state –state NEW –dport 22 -j ACCEPT

5. Secure SSH Server Access with Two-Factor Authentication

To secure the SSH server, we’ll need to have both a username and a password for it. You can create these using the useradd command:

$ sudo useradd -m -g www-data -s /bin/bash www-data

Note that you may need to replace www-data with your own username if you don’t want to use an existing one. Once this is done, add your SSH key into ~/.ssh/authorized_keys so that other users on your system can access it in order to log in as well:

6. Change default SSH port for additional security

The default Port number for SSH is 22. If you want to increase the security of your server, then you should change the port number to a different one that is not in use by others on the internet or else you will be vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks.

Furthermore, the best way forward here is by using a program called Let’s Encrypt which automatically issues SSL certificates and makes sure they are valid at all times. It also supports automatic renewal of certificates so there are no worries about them expiring before they need renewing!

7. Secure your server using Fail2Ban

Fail2Ban is a tool for automatically blocking IP addresses that have been involved in brute force attacks, or those that are uploading data to a file server.

Fail2Ban actually works by using iptables, which is the main firewall software used on Linux distributions. It scans your log files and looks for patterns that indicate an attacker has been trying to break into your system. 

If it finds one of these patterns, fail2ban will then ban the offending IP address so they can’t connect again until they change their password or try something else (like attempting to brute force their way into another account).

8. Protect against Brute force Attacks using Fail2Ban

Fail2Ban is a Python based intrusion detection system that can be used to track login attempts and ban IP addresses that have been banned from making further attempts to access your server. Install fail2ban:

  • sudo apt-get install fail2ban
  • To configure it, create a configuration file (my-fail2ban.conf) in /etc/, with the following contents:

# Ban IPs that fail to authenticate for a certain amount of time


Ubuntu Linux is a very popular Linux distribution and one of the most popular desktop operating systems. There are many users who use this OS for their daily activities like work, entertainment etc. But there are few drawbacks of using Ubuntu which make it a little difficult for some people to use it as their main operating system or home server.

Setting up a private server on Ubuntu Linux is not that difficult if you follow some guidelines and precautions while doing so.

Remember you need to have at least 4GB of RAM in your PC/laptop, 1 CPU with 2 core minimum, 2TB storage space required (for future expansion), advanced editing software like Windows Subsystem for Linux(WSL) installed on your host PC or Laptop with GUI interface (Graphical User Interface).

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