Setting HTTP Basic Authentication based on the host name

For many of our projects, the .htaccess file is under version control… but at the same time, I need to put HTTP Basic Authentiation on just the staging site. Unfortunately the host weren’t able to do this for me, but with a little .htaccess trickery I was able to detect the staging site URL and trigger the authentication.

Why do I want to do this? Well, pretty often the client is keen to see how some new, embargoed, content is going to fit together, whether that’s a group of new pages or a new masthead, etc. I don’t want just anyone guessing my staging site URL and wandering around getting information they shouldn’t! Continue reading Setting HTTP Basic Authentication based on the host name

WP Super Cache and WP Touch (Pro)

On one client’s site we’re using WP Super Cache and WP Touch Pro, and it bothered me that while WP Touch Pro ensures that mobile users get a lovely optimised theme, it wasn’t serving cached pages for those queries. Until recently we were hacking both WP Super Cache and WP Touch (pre-Pro) to achieve this, but recent changes in both plugins mean we can avoid the egregious charge of tampering with other people’s plugin code.

Three fairly simple steps: Continue reading WP Super Cache and WP Touch (Pro)

Problems with .htaccess and AFP over Netatalk

After yesterdays triumph of establishing contact with my virtual server over AFP, using Netatalk, I was perplexed today to find that my .htaccess files weren’t having any effect. Listing the files on the shared volume on my Mac seemed to show that they were there:

~$ ls -Al /Volumes/Home Directory/www/sites/jackspeak/site/
total 736
-rwxr-xr-x   1 simon  simon    401  6 Apr 18:08 .htaccess
drwxr-xr-x@ 10 simon  simon    296  5 Apr 11:30 .svn
-rwxr-xr-x@  1 simon  simon   2941  5 Apr 11:30 500.html

But running the same command on the Linux virtual server showed very different results:

~$ ls -Al /www/sites/jackspeak/site/
total 736
-rwxr-xr-x   1 simon  simon    401  6 Apr 18:08 :2ehtaccess
drwxr-xr-x@ 10 simon  simon    296  5 Apr 11:30 :2esvn
-rwxr-xr-x@  1 simon  simon   2941  5 Apr 11:30 500.html

Apache wasn’t seeing any .htaccess files because there wasn’t any there… something had translated the “.” into “:2e”. What was this strange set of characters “:2e” which was screwing with my files? Continue reading Problems with .htaccess and AFP over Netatalk

Simple Apache redirects

If you look around the web, you’ll see endless tutorials on how to configure Apache to do redirects using mod_rewrite. Undoubtedly mod_rewrite is a powerful way to control access and redirects on your Apache server, and it is enabled on many web hosts, but before you dive into the complexity and regular expressions of mod_rewrite, why don’t you give mod_alias a chance – you don’t have the power that you’ve got with mod_rewrite, but it is a lot simpler. Shall we take a look? Continue reading Simple Apache redirects