Following hot on the heels of Apache 1.1 is a minor upgrade
1.1.1. This fixes five bugs in the 1.1 release:
Redirect in .htaccess files did not work
The new ability to put Redirect directives in
.htaccess files did not work.
Negotiation and handler interaction
If a handler was specified for a file obtained through
negotiation, the handler was ignored and the file served as
mSQL authorisation problem
If the mSQL authorization module was compiled it
(mod_auth_msql), it affected the use of other authorization
methods in .htaccess files.
Misspelt anonymous directive
The directive Anonymous_Authorative was mispelt:
it has been changed to Anonymous_Authoritative.
Format error in cookie log
A format error in the log created by mod_cookies has been
Actually, these are all 'bugs' in the documentation.
mod_env cannot set PATH
The comments in mod_env show an example of setting the
PATH environment variable with SetEnv. But the two
environment variables which cannot be set are PATH
The documentation for ErrorDocument says that a
%s token can be used in a string error message to insert
the text of the original error. This does not work.
Other documentation errors
Various other mistakes in the documentation have been
noted. These are mainly typographical, but there is also
the problem that some parts of the documentation apply to
Apache 1.0 and have not been updated to 1.1.
The next stable release will be probably be called 1.2, which
will incorporate many of the features we've reported on in
"Under Development" over the past few weeks. A few big
changes (such as making the server multi-threaded) might wait
until version 2.0. If any serious bugs or security flaws come
to light there might well be a 1.1.2 release, but there
should be no new features in 1.1.* versions.
All of the features required by the HTTP/1.1 specification have been implemented in an
experimental version of Apache, except for proxying. This
makes Apache 'unconditionally compliant' with the 1.1 spec.
Amongst the new features in HTTP/1.1 are:
Clients can request parts of documents, for example, to
request continuation parts of interrupted transfers.
Resources can be sent in parts (called chunks) to
allow for dynamically-produced content.
New Request Methods
New request methods can be used: OPTIONS, to find out
about the capabilities of the server, and TRACE, for
More Conditional Requests
Currently clients can check whether the resource on a
server has been updated since they last retrieved it. New
headers now can be used to check whether a resource has
not changed, or to match documents using special
identifiers called entity-tags.
Enhanced Content Negotiation
Requested resources might exist in several different
variations: different languages, different formats (gif and
jpeg, for instance), and different character sets. In
HTTP/1.0 the server could do content negotiation, but this
is extended in 1.1 to allow the browser to select from a
list (this is not fully defined, however).
Also under development this week is a module to handle PICS content
rating. This system provides a means of labeling content on a
site, which can be used to restrict access if desired.
The source for Apache is being cleaned up a bit. The overall
aim is to make configuring Apache for different systems as
easy as possible. This is being done by creating options for
each of the facilities which some operating systems lack.
These features can then be implemented within the Apache
source, or some alternative can be found. Each feature will
be controlled by a #define'd name of the format
HAVE_feature. For example, systems with the mmap()
function call will have the HAVE_MMAP name defined.
The use of this naming scheme means that in the future it
might be possible to configure Apache with an autoconf tool,
such as the one from the GNU project.
Authoring tools such as
Netscape Navigator Gold and GNN
Press can be used to put documents onto a server. For
this to work, the server needs to be able to handle the
submitted document. The way to do this is with a script
called for each PUT request. The biggest issue when
developing a script like this is security: great care has to
be taken to ensure that the script cannot be used by one
person to update documents owned by another, or worse.
A method for making PUT scripts (and cgi in general) more
secure is under development as part of the threaded version
report indicates that Apache's performance with
persistent connections (Keep-Alives)
might be less than optimal. In fact, in tests, the
performance with Keep-Alives turned on is 10 times slower
than without. This is due to interactions between the way the
server sends data and the underlying implementation of TCP
transmission protocols, and is not a bug in Apache. However,
the test environment was a local ethernet, which is not
typical of Web requests across the Internet. Persistent
connections are designed to reduce the transfer times of
documents containing multiple images by eliminating the need
to create a new connection for each image. This setup time is
much greater across the Internet than across a local ethernet
The report provides a couple of patches to improve
performance of Keep-Alives. This first patch prevents the
headers being sent in a separate TCP packet (or
segment). However this behaviour was implemented to
overcome a bug in some versions of Netscape, which would hang
on a connection if it read the entire document (headers and
the document) in a single read. A work-around would be to
only send the headers in a separate segment if the whole
document would be too small for Netscape.
The access.conf-dist distributed with version 1.1 and 1.1.1
is heavily modified from that in previous versions. One
change which may have gone unnoticed is that the
<Limit> and </Limit> directives are now omitted.
The <Directory> section now looks like this (comments
Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
allow from all
Normally there would be a <Limit GET POST PUT DELETE>
... </Limit> section arround the order and allow
The reason for this is future-proofing (as well as
simplifying the file!). In the future, new methods will be
add to HTTP to complement GET, POST and so on. In fact,
HTTP/1.1 defines OPTIONS and TRACE, and lists some other
possibilities. The original way of listing methods in the
<Limit> would mean that each <Limit> would need
updating with all the new methods every time a new method was
added - and this would need doing in all .htaccess
files as well.
To make this a lot easier, it is possible to put any of the
commands normally found inside a <Limit> section
outside a <Limit>. The directives such as order,
deny, allow and require can be used like this. When placed
outside a <Limit> section these commands apply to
all the methods.
reports on the Netcraft server
survey, which shows Apache is still gaining user share.
Apache is now the only server running over 100,000 sites on
the Internet, or 35% of all sites surveyed.