Apache HTTP Server

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LAMP refers to a common combination of software used in many web servers: Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP. This article describes how to set up the Apache HTTP Server on an Arch Linux system. It also tells how to optionally install PHP and MySQL and integrate these in the Apache server.

If you only need a web server for development and testing, Xampp might be a better and easier option.


# pacman -S apache php php-apache mysql

This document assumes you will install Apache, PHP and MySQL together. If desired however, you may install Apache, PHP, and MySQL separately and simply refer to the relevant sections below.

Note: New default user and group: Instead of group "nobody", apache now runs as user/group "http" by default. You might want to adjust your httpd.conf according to this change, though you may still run httpd as nobody.



For security reasons, as soon as Apache is started by the root user (directly or via startup scripts) it switches to the UID/GID specified in Template:Filename

  • Check for the existence of the http user by looking for http in the output of the following command:
 # grep http /etc/passwd
  • Create the system user http if it does not exist already:
 # useradd -d /srv/http -r -s /bin/false -U http
This creates the http user with home directory Template:Filename, as a system account (-r), with a bogus shell (-s Template:Filename) and creates a group with the same name (-U). localhost.localdomain localhost
If you want a different hostname, append it to the end: localhost.localdomain localhost myhostname
 # Networking
  • Make sure the hostname appears in /etc/hosts or apache will fail to start. Alternatively, you can

edit Template:Filename and comment the following module:

 LoadModule unique_id_module        modules/mod_unique_id.so
  • Run the following in a terminal to start the HTTP server:
 # /etc/rc.d/httpd start
Apache should now be running. Test by visiting http://localhost/ in a web browser. It should display a simple Apache test page. If you receive a 403 Error, comment out the following line in Template:Filename:
Include conf/extra/httpd-userdir.conf
  • To start Apache automatically at boot, edit Template:Filename and add the httpd daemon:
 DAEMONS=(... httpd ...)

User dirs

 Include conf/extra/httpd-userdir.conf
  • You must make sure that your home directory permissions are set properly so that Apache can get there. Your home directory and Template:Filename must be executable for others ("rest of the world"). This seems to be enough:
 $ chmod o+x ~
 $ chmod o+x ~/public_html
  • More secure way to share your home folder with apache is to add http user in group that your home folder belongs. For example, if your home folder and other sub-folders in your home folder belong to group piter, all you have to do is following:
 $ usermod -aG piter http
  • Ofcourse, you have to give read and execute permissions on Template:Filename, Template:Filename, and all other sub-folders in Template:Filename to the group members (group piter in our case). Do something like following (modify commands for your specific case):
 $ chmod g+xr-w /home/yourusername
 $ chmod -R g+xr-w /home/yourusername/public_html
Note: This way you do not have to give access to your folder to every single user in order to give access to http user. Only http user and other potential users that are in piter group will have access to your home folder.

And then

 $ /etc/rc.d/httpd restart

to restart apache.


Create self-signed certificate (you can change key size and days of validity)

 # cd /etc/httpd/conf
 # openssl genrsa -des3 -out server.key 1024
 # openssl req -new -key server.key -out server.csr
 # cp server.key server.key.org
 # openssl rsa -in server.key.org -out server.key
 # openssl x509 -req -days 365 -in server.csr -signkey server.key -out server.crt

In Template:Filename uncomment line

 Include conf/extra/httpd-ssl.conf

Restart apache

 # /etc/rc.d/httpd restart

Virtual Hosts

If you want to have more than one host, make sure you have

# Virtual hosts
Include conf/extra/httpd-vhosts.conf

in Template:Filename.

In Template:Filename set your virtual hosts according the example, e.g.:

NameVirtualHost *:80

#this first virtualhost enables:, or: http://localhost, 
#to still go to /srv/http/*index.html(otherwise it will 404_error).
#the reason for this: once you tell httpd.conf to include extra/httpd-vhosts.conf, 
#ALL vhosts are handled in httpd-vhosts.conf(including the default one),
# E.G. the default virtualhost in httpd.conf is not used and must be included here, 
#otherwise, only domainname1.dom & domainname2.dom will be accessible
#from your web browser and NOT, or: http://localhost, etc.

<VirtualHost *:80>
    DocumentRoot "/srv/http"
    ServerAdmin root@localhost
    ErrorLog "/var/log/httpd/"
    CustomLog "/var/log/httpd/" common
    <Directory /srv/http/>
		    DirectoryIndex index.htm index.html
		    AddHandler cgi-script .cgi .pl
		    Options ExecCGI Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews +Includes
		    AllowOverride None
		    Order allow,deny
		    allow from all

<VirtualHost *:80>
    ServerAdmin your@domainname1.dom
    DocumentRoot "/home/username/yoursites/domainname1.dom/www"
    ServerName domainname1.dom
    ServerAlias domainname1.dom
    <Directory /home/username/yoursites/domainname1.dom/www/>
		    DirectoryIndex index.htm index.html
		    AddHandler cgi-script .cgi .pl
		    Options ExecCGI Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews +Includes
		    AllowOverride None
		    Order allow,deny
		    allow from all

<VirtualHost *:80>
    ServerAdmin your@domainname2.dom
    DocumentRoot "/home/username/yoursites/domainname2.dom/www"
    ServerName domainname2.dom
    ServerAlias domainname2.dom
    <Directory /home/username/yoursites/domainname2.dom/www/>
		    DirectoryIndex index.htm index.html
		    AddHandler cgi-script .cgi .pl
		    Options ExecCGI Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews +Includes
		    AllowOverride None
		    Order allow,deny
		    allow from all

Add your virtual host names to your Template:Filename file(NOT neccesary if bind is serving these domains already, but will not hurt):	domainname1.dom	domainname2.dom

Restart Apache:

sudo /etc/rc.d/httpd restart

If you setup your virtual hosts to be in your user directory, sometimes it interferes with Apaches 'Userdir' settings. To avoid problems disable 'Userdir' by commenting it out:

# User home directories
#Include conf/extra/httpd-userdir.conf

As said above, take care, you have the proper permissions:

sudo chmod 0775 /home/yourusername/

If you have a huge amount of virtual hosts you easily want to dis- and enable, its recommended to create one config file per virtualhost and store them all in one folder, eg: Template:Filename.

First create the folder:

sudo mkdir /etc/httpd/conf/vhosts

Then place the single config files in them:

sudo nano /etc/httpd/conf/vhosts/domainname1.dom
sudo nano /etc/httpd/conf/vhosts/domainname2.dom

In the last step, "Include" the single configs in your Template:Filename:

#Enabled Vhosts:
Include conf/vhosts/domainname1.dom
#Include conf/vhosts/domainname1.dom

You can enable and disable single virtual hosts by commenting them out or uncommenting them.

Advanced Options

These options in Template:Filename might be interesting for you:

# Listen 80

This is the port Apache will listen to. For Internet-access with router, you have to forward the port.

If you setup Apache for local development you may want it to be only accessible from your computer. Then change this line to:

# Listen

This is the admin's email-address which can be found on e.g. error-pages:

# ServerAdmin sample@sample.com

This is the directory where you should put your web pages:

# DocumentRoot "/srv/http"

Change it, if you want to, but do not forget to also change the

<Directory "/srv/http">

to whatever you changed your DocumentRoot to, or you will likely get a 403 error (lack of privileges) when you try to access the new document root. Do not forget to change the Deny from all line, otherwise you will get 403 error too.

# AllowOverride None

This directive in <Directory> sections causes apache to completely ignore .htaccess files. If you intend to use rewrite mod or other settings in .htaccess files, you can allow which directives declared in that file can override server configuration. For more info refer to http://httpd.apache.org/docs/current/mod/core.html#allowoverride

Note: If you have issues with your configuration you can have apache check the configuration with: Template:Codeline


  • Install the "php-apache" package from extra using pacman.
Place this in the "LoadModule" list anywhere after Template:Codeline:
 LoadModule php5_module modules/libphp5.so
Place this at the end of the "Include" list:
 Include conf/extra/php5_module.conf
Make sure that the following line is uncommented in httpd.conf in the section/(after the line)Template:Codeline:
 TypesConfig conf/mime.types
Uncomment the following line in httpd.conf(optional):
 MIMEMagicFile conf/magic
 application/x-httpd-php		php php5
Note: If you do not see Template:Filename in the Apache modules directory (Template:Codeline), you may have forgotten to install the php-apache package.
  • Restart the Apache service to make changes take effect:
 # /etc/rc.d/httpd restart
  • Create the file test.php in your Apache DocumentRoot Directory(E.G. /srv/http/ or ~/public_html) and inside it put:
 <?php phpinfo(); ?>
  • Remember to copy this file to Template:Codeline if you permitted such a configuration.
If the PHP instruction is not executed (you see : <html>...</html>), check that you have added "Includes" to the "Options" line for your root directory in Template:Filename. Moreover, check that TypesConfig conf/mime.types is uncommented in the <IfModule mime_module> section, you may also try adding the following to the <IfModule mime_module> in httpd.conf:
 AddHandler application/x-httpd-php .php

Advanced options

 DirectoryIndex index.php index.phtml index.html
  • If you want the libGD module, install php-gd package and uncomment in Template:Filename:
Note: php-gd requires libpng, libjpeg, and freetype2


Pay attention to which extension you uncomment, as this extension is sometimes mentioned in an explanatory comment before the actual line you want to uncomment.

  • If you want to display errors to debug your php code, change this line of Template:Filename:


  • If you want the mcrypt module, install php-mcrypt package and uncomment in Template:Filename:
Warning: If you get error like:
[XXX Debug] PHP Notice: in file /index.php on line 86: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system'XXXX
[XXX Debug] PHP Notice: in file /index.php on line 86: getdate(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings.XXXX

change this line of Template:Filename

;date.timezone = 


date.timezone = Europe/Berlin
Note: more infos about Time Zone in PHP

restart httpd with

# /etc/rc.d/httpd restart

Using php5 with apache2-mpm-worker and mod_fcgid

Uncomment following in Template:Filename:


Uncomment following in Template:Filename:

Include conf/extra/httpd-mpm.conf

Install mod_fcgid and php-cgi packages:

# pacman -S mod_fcgid php-cgi

Create Template:Filename with following content:

# Required modules: fcgid_module

<IfModule fcgid_module>
	AddHandler php-fcgid .php
	AddType application/x-httpd-php .php
	Action php-fcgid /fcgid-bin/php-fcgid-wrapper
	ScriptAlias /fcgid-bin/ /srv/http/fcgid-bin/
	SocketPath /var/run/httpd/fcgidsock
	SharememPath /var/run/httpd/fcgid_shm
        PHP_Fix_Pathinfo_Enable 1
        # Path to php.ini – defaults to /etc/phpX/cgi
        DefaultInitEnv PHPRC=/etc/php/
        # Number of PHP childs that will be launched. Leave undefined to let PHP decide.
        #DefaultInitEnv PHP_FCGI_CHILDREN 3
        # Maximum requests before a process is stopped and a new one is launched
        #DefaultInitEnv PHP_FCGI_MAX_REQUESTS 5000
        <Location /fcgid-bin/>
		SetHandler fcgid-script
		Options +ExecCGI

Create needed directory and symlink for php wrapper:

# mkdir /srv/http/fcgid-bin
# ln -s /usr/bin/php-cgi /srv/http/fcgid-bin/php-fcgid-wrapper

Edit Template:Filename

#LoadModule php5_module modules/libphp5.so
LoadModule fcgid_module modules/mod_fcgid.so
Include conf/extra/php5_fcgid.conf

Make sure Template:Filename has the directive enabled:


Now you need restart apache:

# rc.d restart httpd


  • Configure MySQL as described in MySQL.
Caution:Some users have reported typos on this line. Please make sure that it reads Template:Codeline and not Template:Codeline.
  • You can add minor privileged users for your web scripts by editing the tables found in the Template:Codeline database. You have to restart MySQL for changes to take effect. Do not forget to check the Template:Codeline table. If there is a second entry for root and your hostname is left with no password set, everybody from your host probably could gain full access. Perhaps see next section for these jobs.
  • Run in terminal:
 # /etc/rc.d/mysqld start
  • You may also need to restart Apache. Run in terminal:
 # /etc/rc.d/httpd restart
  • MySQL should now be running. Set the root password and test it by running:
 # mysqladmin -u root password password
 # mysql -u root -p
Type exit to exit from the CLI MySQL client
 DAEMONS=(... mysqld ...)

Or add this line to Template:Filename:

 /etc/rc.d/mysqld start


Tip: You may want to install phpmyadmin, Template:Package Official or adminer to work with your databases.

Useful terminal shortcuts

Adding these to your Template:Filename file could save you a lot of typing:

alias mysqls='sudo /etc/rc.d/mysqld' #mysqls start/stop/restart starts/stops/restarts mysql
alias apache='sudo /etc/rc.d/httpd' #apache start/stop/restart starts/stops/restarts apache

See also

  • MySQL - Article for MySQL
  • PhpMyAdmin - Web frontend for MySQL typically found in LAMP environments
  • Adminer - A full-featured database management tool which is available for MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite, MS SQL and Oracle
  • Xampp - Self contained web-server that supports PHP, Perl, and MySQL
  • mod_perl - Apache + Perl

External links