What are htaccess files
Published: August 14, 2014


.htaccess files, also known as hypertext access, are configuration files run by directories, allowing decentralized management and control of a host company's web server. Many assume hypertext access is only associated with creating custom error pages or password protected directories, however there is much more to .htaccess than that. Hypertext access has many other benefits such as automatic gzipping, improving caching, creating more affective URLs and precluding hot linking.

To break it down, .htaccess files are just simple ASCII files. This file extension can be created on any text editor and uploaded to websites using ftp (File Transfer Protocol) client. To start, hypertext access makes configuration changes on a per-directory basis, so therefore, run by directives. Directives are typically short, one lined commands used to modify the web server's behaviour. The purpose of directives in hypertext access is the ability to execute multiple directives at a time without the access of Apache's global configuration file (httpd.conf.) Apache's global configuration file stores information on the various functions of a web server which can be edited by adding/removing a number sign. So, instead of giving direct access, .htaccess files allow partial access through directories / subdirectories, allowing various people to specify and access their own Apache directories. This method could be very helpful for hosting companies using shared hosting environments with their customers. Keep in mind that some editors use wordwrap, which could throw in unnecessary characters and damage the .htaccess coding; prevent this by disabling this feature on your editor.

Although most text editors save hypertext access files as .htaccess, the default file extension can change depending on specific editing programs. For instance, the program, Notepad, automatically saves hypertext access as .htaccess.txt. In this case, you must remove .txt in order to continue editing your .htaccess file.

Also, it is very important to remember that although anything that can be accomplished in .htaccess files can be done in httpd.conf files, it does not work the other way around. This is because .htaccess files must be enabled in the httpd.conf files in order to be carried out. Once the power is enabled, httpd.conf is also limited to certain contexts by the .htaccess files, so system hosts/administrators have more control over the access they give.

.htaccess files are extremely useful and have been known to improve web servers in many ways, however there are two things one should consider before implementing hypertext access. Although it may only be a subtle change for most, .htaccess files can slow down a server by the process of AllowOverride. This process scans the directory and any above it until reaching the highest directory. Because .htaccess files affect the pages in its directory, servers can becomes slower when a page loads and AllowOverride is enforced. Security is also influenced when implementing hypertext access because .htaccess files are much more accessible than standard Apache configurations. Allowing others to make alterations on your .htaccess files gives them much more control over the server itself, so these users can do anything they want within certain limitations.

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Anyone running a small business these days knows t
Anyone running a small business these days knows that Digital marketing is the back bone of any service related business and it's something we've struggled with for years before connecting with Rich. The Computer Geek Web Development & Hosting have helped us gain a competitive edge in our field and Rich has been so easy to deal with and he really knows what he's doing. Even in a tough year like COVID-19 our sales are up from last year. We would like to think Rich And his team for implementing all the changes that we needed for our website with such successful results.
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I've built and managed my websites for several years but recently reached a point where my website was running so slowly that I had no idea where to turn. I discovered the Computer Geek website and took a chance of trusting the other great reviews there. I met Rich through the chat service on the site and he was very responsive. Within an hour of him having access to my site, he was working on the problem. He improved my site speed and identified the next steps I would need to improve the speed substantially. I highly recommend this service! Quick response, knowledgeable, reasonable rates, and available on an as-needed basis (no contract). I now have a "computer guy"! Thanks, Rich!
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My large Drupal 8 site was down for 5 days. I cont
My large Drupal 8 site was down for 5 days. I contacted Rich on a Friday evening at 2200 hrs CET, provided the access codes and less than 30 minutes later it was fixed. I have been online since 2003 and I have never seen work like this, Rich is a true Pro and I will definitely recommend Computer Geeks to all friends and colleagues. Many thanks, Jeremy - UK
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We were in a pinch and needed a new website built fast. We stumbled upon The Computer Geek and reached out to them for a consultation. After the first call we felt it was a no brainier to go with them to build our site. The professionalism was second to none. Rich and his team built our new site with lightning speed and provided exceptional communication. We love the new website! Thank you for your professionalism, amazing communication, and always going above and beyond for us. We look forward to working with you in the future.
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heck.. I sell car parts.. make special car parts v
heck.. I sell car parts.. make special car parts very, very well...... BUT.. I'm pretty bad when it comes to being a computer guy.. I just don't know.. don't have the time.... and till now our oscommerce sites were increasingly not really being maintained.. I NEEDED HELP.. BUT . WHO DO YOU TRUST..?? Somehow I found Rich.. MY ADVICE is don't look around.. get onto Rich.. be polite.. his bills are ok.. and his service excellent. 5 star.
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I do not often write reviews however I felt I should with Computer Geek. I have a fair knowledge of servers and php code that I have built up since 2003. I had spent some days trying to get a new bit of stock control software to work. Having narrowed down what was causing the problem and with a few alterations managed to bring the entire site down. I am laughing about it now but 20 minutes ago I was almost sick. Having spent an hour trying to fix it or undo the damage with no success, I contacted Richard and within 2 minutes the site was up and running and within 10 minutes the bit of software I had been trying to get to work now works. Thank you again Richard
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