Virtual hosting with Apache – the good way

There are so many amazingly bad guides to Apache and virtual hosting, so i decided to create a good one. This guide uses Apache2 running om Debian 6. I will not cover installation and stuff. Also, I cut right to the chase.

First, the NameVirtualHost property should just be declared once, and ports.conf is a good place to have it.

/etc/apache2/ports.conf

NameVirtualHost *:80
Listen 80

Second, do not place all virtual hosts in a single file, that’s not very dynamic. Look at this:

# ls /etc/apache2/sites-*
/etc/apache2/sites-available:
total 8
dr-xr-x--- 2 root           www-data     3896 Jun 26 15:33 .
dr-x------ 5 www-data        www-data     3896 Jun  8 13:15 ..
-rwxr-x--- 1 root           www-data     569  Apr 11 21:51 default
-rwxr-x--- 1 root           www-data     569  Apr 19 11:40 sub1.example.org
-rwxr-x--- 1 root           www-data     569  Apr 19 11:41 sub2.example.org
-rwxr-x--- 1 root           www-data     569  Jun 26 15:25 goodworkaround.com

/etc/apache2/sites-enabled:
total 0
dr-xr-x--- 2 www-data  www-data 3896 Jun 26 15:33 .
dr-x------ 5 www-data  www-data 3896 Jun  8 13:15 ..
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root   root  26 Apr 11 21:52 000-default -> ../sites-available/default
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root   root  41 Apr 19 11:49 sub1.example.org -> ../sites-available/sub1.example.org
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root   root  41 Apr 19 11:50 sub2.example.org -> ../sites-available/sub2.example.org
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root   root  37 Jun 26 15:29 goodworkaround.com -> ../sites-available/goodworkaround.com

So what am I doing that no one else is doing? I am symlinking, and I am splitting each domain or subdomain into separate files. Just use place all the domains in the sites-available folder, and symlink it from sites-enabled. This makes it easy to disable sites temporary, by just removing the symlink and reloading apache. Lets take a look one of those files.

/etc/apache2/sites-available/goodworkaround.com

<VirtualHost *:80>
        ServerAdmin webmaster@goodworkaround.com
        ServerName goodworkaround.com
        # ServerAlias www.goodworkaround.com

        DocumentRoot /home/mariussm/websites/goodworkaround.com

        <Directory />
                Options FollowSymLinks
                AllowOverride None
        </Directory>

        <Directory /home/mariussm/websites/goodworkaround.com>
                Options FollowSymLinks MultiViews
                AllowOverride All
                Order allow,deny
                allow from all
        </Directory>

        ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/goodworkaround.com.error.log

        # Possible values include: debug, info, notice, warn, error, crit,
        # alert, emerg.
        LogLevel warn

        CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/goodworkaround.com.access.log combined

</VirtualHost>

As you can see, it listens on all interfaces (*:80) on port 80, cares only for the hostname goodworkaround.com and has a root folder. So hey, that’s the easy way.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s