November 21, 2003
"Apache Cookbook": Solutions and Examples for Apache Administrators
Sebastopol, CA--The Apache web server is a remarkable piece of software.
So state Ken Coar and Rich Bowen, authors of the newly released Apache
Cookbook (O'Reilly, US $29.95). And it's a statement that's difficult to
argue with when you consider that the Apache server is by far the most
widely used web server platform in the world. Free and rock-solid, it runs
more than half of the world's web sites, ranging from huge e-commerce
operations to corporate intranets and smaller hobby sites. But according
to Coar and Bowen, what makes it especially remarkable is that it includes
extensibility by design. In short, they say, "If the Apache package right
out of the box does not do what you want, you can generally extend it so
that it does. If the extensions, or modules, included in the package
distribution don't meet your needs, there's an excellent chance that
someone among the millions of users in the world has concocted a 'recipe'
of changes or enhancements that'll meet your requirements."
The "Apache Cookbook" is a collection of these recipes: more than one
hundred problems, solutions, and practical examples for webmasters, web
administrators, programmers, and everyone else who works with Apache. All
the recipes are drawn from real-life situations, encountered either by the
authors or other people who have asked from the authors' help. For every
problem addressed in the book, the authors offer a worked-out solution or
"recipe"--short, focused pieces of code that you can use immediately. But
this book offers more than cut-and-paste code. Readers also get
explanations of how and why the code works, so they can adapt the
problem-solving techniques to similar situations.
The recipes in the "Apache Cookbook" range from simple tasks, such as installing the server on Red Hat Linux or Windows, to the more complex,
such as securing and managing a proxy server, tuning for performance, and
fine-tuning password protection. The book contains configuration examples
on such topics as:
Redirecting and rewriting URLs
Denying access to unreferred requests
Running CGI scripts as the file's owner
Logging errors and accesses in more detail
Maintaining separate logs for each virtual host and rotating them each month
Determining how much memory your server needs
Optimizing symbolic links and process creation
Forwarding requests to another server
Protecting server files from malicious scripts
The impressive collection of useful code in this book is a guaranteed
timesaver for all Apache users, from novices to advanced practitioners.
Instead of poking around mailing lists, online documentation, and other
sources, readers can rely on the "Apache Cookbook" for quick solutions to
common problems, then spend their time and energy where it matters most.
Ken Coar and Rich Bowen
ISBN 0-596-00191-6, 234 pages, $29.95 US, $46.95 CA
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