Website administration is the process of maintaining a website, that is keeping a website running efficiently and securely. This is managed by the website administrator or webmaster, whose job is to perform the daily tasks required to maintain a website. Tasks in maintaining a functional website include:
1. Installation, configuration, and maintenance for hosting and domain purposes
2. Preserving the integrity of data on the server
3. Managing administrator and user accounts/passwords, web software, web servers, web security, log analysis, content, and more
4. Supervising server security and firewalls
5. Planing and performing website enhancements and managing website content.
6. Building web pages, fixing bugs, and performing system upgrades.
Web administration is one of the most important, but overlooked aspects of web development. if you don’t have a good web administrator keeping your website running, well, you won’t have a website. Let’s look at what web administrators do
For many people, the first and only time they interact with their web administrator is when they get an account on the system. Accounts are not simply magically created from scratch or because the computer knew that you needed one. Instead, someone needs to enter information about you so that your account can be created. This is generally a system administrator for the website. This is only one tiny part of what web administration entails. In fact, creating user accounts is usually automated and the admin only looks at them when something breaks rather than for every individual account. If you happen to know that your accounts are created manually, be sure to thank your administrator for creating the account. It may be a relatively simple task for him or her to do, but acknowledging the work your administrators do for you can go a long way when you need their help on something bigger.
Security is probably the most important part of web administration. If your web server is not secure, it can become a source for hackers to use to either attack your customers directly or have it send spam messages in every spare second or even take more malicious actions against your business. If you don’t pay attention to security, be rest assured that hackers are paying attention to your site. Every time a domain changes hands, hackers get that information and start probing that domain for security holes. The hackers have robots that scan servers automatically for vulnerabilities.
The web server is actually a program running on a server machine. Web administrators keep that server running smoothly. They keep it up-to-date with the latest patches and make sure that the web pages that it displays are actually displaying. If you don’t have a web server, you don’t have a web page — so yes, you need that server up and running.
There are many types of web applications that rely on server-side software to work. Web administrators install and maintain all these programs and many others: Active Server Pages, CGI, PHP, Server Side Includes JSP, Databases, Log Analysis.
Analyzing the log files of your Web server is very important if you’re going to find out how to improve your website. Web administrators will make sure that the Weblogs are stored and rotated so that they don’t take over all the space on the server. They can also look for ways to improve the speed of a website by improving the performance of the server itself, something they can often do by reviewing logs and considering performance metrics.
Once you have a lot of content on the website, having a content management system is essential. Maintaining a web content management system is a big administrative challenge.
Why Not Consider Web Administration as a Career
It may not seem as “glamorous” as a web designer or developer, but web administrators are critical to keeping a good website going.