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For 2021 - online Python 3 training - see ((here)).

Our plans were to retire in summer 2020 and see the world, but Coronavirus has lead us into a lot of lockdown programming in Python 3 and PHP 7.
We can now offer tailored online training - small groups, real tutors - works really well for groups of 4 to 14 delegates. Anywhere in the world; course language English.

Please ask about private 'maintenance' training for Python 2, Tcl, Perl, PHP, Lua, etc.
Simple but effective use of mod_rewrite (Apache httpd)

[Index under mod_rewrite tutorial]

Do you want a single 'intelligent' web page to provide the content for tens or hundreds of URLs so that you don't have to write each similar page individually? Do you want to set up your server so that it will take any requests for ".htm" files and turn them into ".html"s? Do you want to rename a page, but still leave the old name in place too for anyone who has bookmarked it or linked to it?

If you're using the Apache httpd web server (and 70% of domains do use it!), then mod_rewrite is the tool you need to implement these functions. But alas, mod_rewrite is so flexible it's hard to know where to start, even with the reference manual to hand!

How do I rename a page but leave the old name in place?

RewriteEngine On
RewriteRule ^oldplace/oldname\.html$ newplace/newname.html


This is an example from the top level directory (document root) .htaccess file, redirecting references to oldname.html in the oldplace directory to newname.html in the newplace directory.

* You can add as many rewrite rules like this as you like - no need to turn the engine on every time

* The path names you give should be relative to the directory in which the .htaccess file is located.

* The old name is a REGULAR EXPRESSION - the ^ and $ mean "starting with" and "ends with" and I've added them in this example to avoid any risk of matching a url that INCLUDES the text pattern. The \ in front of the . means "I really want a dot" as by default a dot matches any character at all.

How do I accept .htm extensions as well as .html?

RewriteEngine On
RewriteRule ^(.*)\.htm$ $1.html


Literally "Anything that ends in .html is to be replaced by the same thing ending in .html"

How do I point all the .html URLs in a directory at a single intelligent page?

RewriteEngine On
RewriteRule ^(.*)\.html$ action.php?pagename=$1&%{QUERY_STRING}


This forwards ANY URL with a .html extension in the current of lower directories to a page called action.php, with a parameter called "pagename" that will contain the name of the page called.

Many, many pages on our web site use code similar to this - our wiki is comprised of pages that are generated from a MySQL database by a single script every time, and even the image library isn't individual files - in that case, we have a rewrite rule that points .jpg requests at a script. What might appear to be 28 different style sheets are really just one ...

Where do I configure mod_rewrite?

1. You place any OVERALL settings in the Apache httpd configuration file httpd.conf (in the case of SuSE Linux, or other tailored configurations, you might place the settings in a file that's included from httpd.conf

2. Any changes / additions your want to set DIRECTORY BY DIRECTORY should be placed in a file called .htaccess in each individual directory. The settings you make will then apply to that directory and anything below it unless overridden in another .htaccess file.

Extra Notes?

If you have several rewrite rules that match, you may find that your URL is rewriten multiple times. If you add [L] onto the end of a rewrite rule, it means "Last" so that mod_rewrite will stop at that point and not try to make further changes to the current URL.

If you add [P] (or [L,P]) onto the end of a rewrite rule, you'll make the new URL a proxy request; this means that you can redirect to a URL on another server, which your server will call up by pretending to be a client (browser).

You can also specify rewrite conditions and much more - once you're familiair with the techniques listed above you should probably go on and learn the ins and outs of them from the manual which you'll find much more readable.

Notes for PHP Programmers

If you are writing a script that need to know its own name, and you call it via mod_rewrite, which variable name contains the original URL called for, and which the rewritten one?

$PHP_SELF is the rewritten name
$_SERVER[REDIRECT_URL] is the original name
$_SERVER[REQUEST_URI] is the original name WITH get parameters
(written 2007-05-27, updated 2007-05-29)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
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  [32] Web design platoon - (2004-08-29)
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  [117] A case of case - (2004-11-14)
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  [173] Data Mining - (2005-01-09)
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A607 - Web Application Deployment - Apache httpd mod_rewrite
  [631] Apache httpd to Tomcat - jk v proxy - (2006-03-03)
  [755] Using different URLs to navigate around a single script - (2006-06-11)
  [934] Clustering, load balancing, mod_rewrite and mod_proxy - (2006-11-21)
  [1006] Apache httpd and Apache Tomcat together tips - (2006-12-24)
  [1009] Passing GET parameters through Apache mod_rewrite - (2006-12-27)
  [1376] Choosing between mod_proxy and mod_rewrite - (2007-10-02)
  [1381] Using a MySQL database to control mod_rewrite via PHP - (2007-10-06)
  [1636] What to do if the Home Page is missing - (2008-05-08)
  [1731] Apache httpd, MySQL, PHP - installation procedure - (2008-08-01)
  [1771] More HowTo diagrams - MySQL, Tomcat and Java - (2008-08-24)
  [1778] Pointing all the web pages in a directory at a database - (2008-08-30)
  [1954] mod_rewrite for newcomers - (2008-12-20)
  [2094] If you have a spelling mistake in your URL / page name - (2009-03-21)
  [2555] Bookkeeping - (2009-12-29)
  [2728] Redirecting a home page using mod_rewrite - (2010-04-17)
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  [2773] Dynamically watching your web site via a PHP wrapper - (2010-05-21)
  [2900] Redirecting a page - silent, temporary or permanent? - (2010-08-03)
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  [3753] Adding a passcode to a directory - (2012-06-05)
  [3862] Forwarding a whole domain, except for a few directories - Apache http server - (2012-09-17)

A603 - Web Application Deployment - Further httpd Configuration
  [345] Spotting a denial of service attack - (2005-06-12)
  [466] Separating 'per instance' data from binaries and web sites - (2005-10-16)
  [526] Apache httpd - serving web documents from different directories - (2005-12-12)
  [550] 2006 - Making business a pleasure - (2006-01-01)
  [662] An unhelpful error message from Apache httpd - (2006-03-30)
  [853] To list a directory under httpd on a web server, or not? - (2006-09-02)
  [1080] httpd.conf or .htaccess? - (2007-02-14)
  [1121] Sharing the load with Apache httpd and perhaps Tomcat - (2007-03-29)
  [1351] Compressing web pages sent out from server. Is it worth it? - (2007-09-14)
  [1355] .php or .html extension? Morally Static Pages - (2007-09-17)
  [1377] Load Balancing with Apache mod_jk (httpd/Tomcat) - (2007-10-02)
  [1551] Which modules are loaded in my Apache httpd - (2008-02-23)
  [1564] Default file (MiMe types) for Apache httpd and Apache Tomcat - (2008-03-04)
  [1566] Strange behaviour of web directory requests without a trailing slash - (2008-03-06)
  [1619] User and Group settings for Apache httpd web server - (2008-04-22)
  [1707] Configuring Apache httpd - (2008-07-12)
  [1762] WEB-INF (Tomcat) and .htaccess (httpd) - (2008-08-20)
  [1767] mod_proxy and mod_proxy_ajp - httpd - (2008-08-22)
  [1939] mod_proxy_ajp and mod_proxy_balancer examples - (2008-12-13)
  [1974] Moving a directory on your web site - (2009-01-03)
  [2060] Database connection Pooling, SSL, and command line deployment - httpd and Tomcat - (2009-03-01)
  [2272] Monitoring and loading tools for testing Apache Tomcat - (2009-07-07)
  [2478] How did I do THAT? - (2009-10-26)
  [3133] An image from a website that occasionally comes out as hyroglyphics - (2011-01-14)
  [3449] Apache Internal Dummy Connection - what is it and what should I do with it? - (2011-09-19)
  [3635] Parse error: parse error, unexpected T_STRING on brand new web site - why? - (2012-03-03)
  [3955] Building up from a small PHP setup to an enterprise one - (2012-12-16)
  [4307] Identifying and clearing denial of service attacks on your Apache server - (2014-09-27)


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Meet other local businesses in Melksham
Some other Articles
A lot has happened in a year
PHP header() function - uses and new restrictions
Where did the Bank Holiday go?
Meet other local businesses in Melksham
Simple but effective use of mod_rewrite (Apache httpd)
Where and When - can you place the picture?
Arrival and Departure experiences - another hotel
Spot the difference
A Fresh horse
Returning multiple values from a function (Perl, PHP, Python)
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This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

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