Apache Week
Issue 100, 30thJanuary1998:

Copyright 2020 Red Hat, Inc

In this issue

Apache Status

Apache Site: www.apache.org
Release: 1.2.5 (Released 5th January 1998) (local download sites)
Beta: 1.3b3 (Released 20th November 1997) (local download sites)

Apache 1.2.5 is the current stable release. Users of Apache 1.2.4 and earlier should upgrade to this version since it fixes a number of bugs and potential security problems. The next major release will be 1.3. A beta test release of 1.3 is available now for both Unix and Windows 95/NT systems.

Bugs fixed in 1.3b4

These bugs have been found and fixed in 1.3b4.

Because of the major differences between Windows and Unix, these are separated into bugs which affect Windows systems only, and other bugs (which may affect Windows as well). Unix users can ignore the bugs listed in the Windows section.

Windows-specific Bugs

Other Bugs

  • The mod_mime_magic optional module has been cleaned up to fix a number of bugs and make it more efficient.
  • Apache was requiring that some strings, such as "http" in requests, were in a particular case. This has been fixed in line with the HTTP/1.1 specification, which defines most text as case insensitive.
  • Virtual host sections start off as if they contained Options All instead of inheriting the configuration from the main server (in practice this will not affect most sites, because options are normally set on a per-directory basis instead).

Patches for bugs in Apache 1.2.5 may be made available in the apply to 1.2.5 directory on the Apache site. Some new features and other unofficial patches are available in the 1.2 patches directory (these may not apply cleanly to 1.2.5). For details of all previously reported bugs, see the Apache bug database and known bugs pages. Many common configuration questions are answered in the Apache FAQ.

Development has slowed down to prepare for the release of Apache 1.3. During the beta release cycle Apache is in a "feature freeze" where no major new features will be added.

Speed Increases

Apache has been tidied up to reduce some unnecessary memory allocations and copying. Some other internal operations have also been made more efficient.

API Change: Table Structures

A small change has been made to the Apache module API. Previously, the types array_header and table were defined to be the same thing. This was because they were implemented identically. But recent performance changes have shown that these two structures may need to be implemented slightly differently.

This will affect modules which assumed that table types were the same as array_header, and accessed the array of table items directly. For example:

  /* t is a variable of type "table" */
  table_entry *elts = (table_entry *)t->elts;

Instead modules should treat variables of type table as opaque, and use the API function table_elts() to get at the array of elements. For example

  array_header *arr = table_elts(t);
  table_entry *elts = (table_entry *)arr->elts;

table_elts() is available in all versions of Apache.

Apache in the News

Much of the press coverage of Netscape's recent decision to release the source to their browser has linked the move to Apache's success in the server market. This was covered in many news reports, including Netscape's harshest critic: A 'brilliant move' (Yahoo news), Netscape Frees Communicator 5.0 Code (Wired) and Netscape's play: Bold or desperate? (C|Net).

Special effects for the Titanic movie were created on Linux systems. The article Titanic challenge to Microsoft on MSBNC shows how commercial companies are increasing using free software, such as Linux and Apache.

Finally for this week, ABC.COM covers the rise of Apache compared to Netscape and Microsoft servers in Apache: Peaceful Web Warrior. This contains a good description of how Apache is developed.