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.htaccess Tutorial - Introduction

A text file called .htaccess can be used to control web server (Apache) behavior for your web site. The other sections of this .htaccess tutorial deal with actual commands (called directives) which can be used.

It configures settings for the web server per directory (the one it is placed in) and subdirectories under it.

1. Create And Upload A .htaccess File

As this is a text/ASCII file, you must create or modify it using a basic text editor. Upload it using FTP to the directory of your choice. Upload it in ASCII mode.

If you want the .htaccess file to apply to your entire site, upload it to your root web directory. This is the same directory which holds your home page.

Please note that your FTP software will not show an entry for .htaccess on the server side. Files starting with a '.' are consider 'hidden' files on Linux servers.

2. My .htaccess File Does Not Work

Make sure your text editor did not add an extension. Uploading a filed called say .htaccess.txt would not work. Remove the .txt extension in this example.

Most FTP software will use correct file permissions. In case it did not, give it 644. This stands for owner read/write permissions and read only for others.

If your .htaccess file has even a single error it in, it may cause error messages to be generated when you try to view your web site.

In this event, remove the .htaccess file from your web hosting acount to restore things back to normal. You could also overwrite it with a blank .htaccess file.

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