Apache Week
   Issue 65, 16th May 1997:  

Copyright 1996-2005
Red Hat, Inc.

In this issue

Apache Status

Release: 1.1.3 (Released 14th January 1997)
Beta: 1.2b10 (Released 30th April 1997)

Bugs reported in 1.2b10:
  • The response value of the Allow header can be incorrect in some situations.
  • The status module returns a 501 Method Not Implement status if accessed by PUT or POST. It should return 405 Method Not Allowed.
  • mod_status should return an error if accessed while the server is running under inetd, rather than creating a core dump (the status module should not be used under inetd).
  • Kept alive connections are not timing out, if IdentityCheck (rfc1413) is on. Seen on IRIX.
  • If the hard-coded in DEFAULT_GROUP or DEFAULT_USER names do not exist, Apache will not start, even if it will never use that group or user id (either because it is started as non-root, or because Group and User directives are used). Also if started as non-root, the User and Group settings are ignored but if the given user or group does not exists Apache stops.
  • The proxy module cannot handle requests which are given by IP number when the IP number has not corresponding name. Setting HostnameLookups Off has no effect.
  • Proxy requests can leave stuck children because the timeout code does not work in certain situations when getting data from the origin server, because the timeout is watching the connection to the client instead.

Bugs fixed in next release:

  • Core dumps when request is a directory (seen mainly on FreeBSD)
  • Module lines in Configuration can now start with leading whitespace (which is sometimes the case if the comment # character is deleted). Also space is allowed in the CC= and OPTIM= lines before the equals sign.
  • If a DirectoryIndex uses content negotiation but no variant was acceptable, return the results of the negotiation, but only if no more names remain to be checked.
  • If <VirtualHost> section does not include a port and main server does not have a Port directive, redirects issued by Apache go to port 0. Now fixed to use the real main server port (80 by default).

Patches to Apache 1.2b10 bugs may be available in the 1.2b10 patches directory on the Apache site. At time of writing there are no patches and this directory does not exist.

For details of all previously reported bugs, see the Apache bug database. Many common configuration questions are answered in the Apache FAQ.

Apache is currently in a 'beta release' cycle. This is where it is made available prior to full release for testing by anyone interested. Normally during the beta cycle no new major features will be added. The full release of Apache 1.2 is now expected in May.

JDK 1.0.2 Has Problems with HTTP/1.1

It has already been reported that some products have problems with responses from HTTP/1.1 servers such as Apache. In these cases Apache can be configured to return responses labelled as HTTP/1.0 instead, using the BrowserMatch directive to set the environment variable force-response-1.0.

One of the products which has this problem is Sun's Java Development Kit (JDK) version 1.0.2. If this is used to connect to an httpd server, it cannot read HTTP/1.1 responses properly. This JDK is actually used in various products, each of which can choose to re-implement this routine. If the product does not re-implement it, a work-around is to add

  BrowserMatch product force-response-1.0

where product is the user-agent string sent by the application. This is explained in the Apache FAQ.

The bug in JDK 1.0.2 was fixed in the alpha release of JDK 1.1 in September, so applications using this version should be okay

Another application with problems handling HTTP/1.1 responses is WinPlay, a Windows MPEG player. A workaround for this product is

  BrowserMatch Winplay force-response-1.0

Plans for Apache NT

Plans for Apache on Windows 95 and NT are moving forward. Although nothing has yet been produced, there is an outline plan to develop a Windows version of Apache 1.2 sometime after 1.2 is released for OS/2. It will probably work on both NT and 95.

The work on a Windows release will be done slightly outside the main Apache development effort, which will start to concentrate on the major changes needed for 2.0. Part of those major changes will be support for various operating systems, including NT and 95. The aim is to ensure that, for 2.0, basically the same code is used for all operating systems with a set of platform-specific routines to handle anything that varies between operating systems. Another requirement for 2.0 is support for multi-threading, which will also be implemented in a platform independent way to allow Apache to continue to work on systems which do not have threads (either by not using threads, or by using a fake-threads package on such systems).

As with all planned work on Apache, there are no guarantees that it will happen in any particular timescale. All important developments will be included in Apache Week as they happen.

Comments or criticisms? Please email us at editors@apacheweek.com