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(Nerd) How to: Setup Virtual Hosts on Ubuntu 9.10 using Apache2 + MySQL5.X + PHP5

I have been working on a couple projects that are hosted on gitHub. As the scale and scope of the projects grow, I ended up needing to setup multiple virtual hosts on my development machine. It wasn’t hard, but the information online that I found was fairly dated, so I created this tutorial.

This entire tutorial is done after entering the ‘sudo -i’ command which allows us to act as the SUPER-USER for the entirety of our terminal session. You’ve been warned.

sudo -i

NOTICE!!! I am aware that we could use the ‘a2ensite’ and related commands. But for the sake of understanding the entire process, I will not be using it.

1) Install the required modules from the command line

apt-get install apache2 mysql-server mysql-client php5 php5-cli php5-mysql

2) Change the directory to /etc/apache2/sites-available

cd /etc/apache2/sites-available

3) If you run the ‘ls’ command while in the sites-available directory you should see the following

ls

Output

default  default-ssl

4) Copy the ‘default’ config to a site specific config. For this tutorial I am using dev.acloudtree.com.

cp default dev.acloudtree.com.conf

5) Make the application directory

mkdir /var/dev.acloudtree.com

6) Open the file with an editor of your choosing. I prefer VIM.

vi dev.acloudtree.com.conf

The output below is the entire file but I will discuss certain parts that we will need to edit.

<VirtualHost *:80>
        ServerAdmin webmaster@localhost
 
        DocumentRoot /var/www
        <Directory />
                Options FollowSymLinks
                AllowOverride None
        </Directory>
        <Directory /var/www/>
                Options Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews
                AllowOverride None
                Order allow,deny
                allow from all
        </Directory>
 
        ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ /usr/lib/cgi-bin/
        <Directory "/usr/lib/cgi-bin">
                AllowOverride None
                Options +ExecCGI -MultiViews +SymLinksIfOwnerMatch
                Order allow,deny
                Allow from all
        </Directory>
 
        ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/error.log
 
        # Possible values include: debug, info, notice, warn, error, crit,
        # alert, emerg.
        LogLevel warn
 
        CustomLog /var/log/apache2/access.log combined
 
    Alias /doc/ "/usr/share/doc/"
    <Directory "/usr/share/doc/">
        Options Indexes MultiViews FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride None
        Order deny,allow
        Deny from all
        Allow from 127.0.0.0/255.0.0.0 ::1/128
    </Directory>
 
</VirtualHost>

7) Add the name of the server. This will be the name that you type in the URL field of your web browser (IE: Firefox)

<VirtualHost *:80>
        ServerAdmin webmaster@localhost
	ServerName dev.acloudtree.com
...

8 ) Point the Virtual host to the correct directory

...
        DocumentRoot /var/dev.acloudtree.com
        <Directory />
                Options FollowSymLinks
                AllowOverride None
        </Directory>
...

9) Also make the change here.

...
        <Directory /var/dev.acloudtree.com/>
                Options Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews
                AllowOverride None
                Order allow,deny
                allow from all
        </Directory>
...

10) So this is what your dev.acloudtree.com.conf file should look like when you are done. Write/Quite the file and we will move on.

<VirtualHost *:80>
        ServerAdmin webmaster@localhost
	ServerName dev.acloudtree.com
 
        DocumentRoot /var/dev.acloudtree.com
        <Directory />
                Options FollowSymLinks
                AllowOverride None
        </Directory>
        <Directory /var/dev.acloudtree.com/>
                Options Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews
                AllowOverride None
                Order allow,deny
                allow from all
        </Directory>
 
        ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ /usr/lib/cgi-bin/
        <Directory "/usr/lib/cgi-bin">
                AllowOverride None
                Options +ExecCGI -MultiViews +SymLinksIfOwnerMatch
                Order allow,deny
                Allow from all
        </Directory>
 
        ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/error.log
 
        # Possible values include: debug, info, notice, warn, error, crit,
        # alert, emerg.
        LogLevel warn
 
        CustomLog /var/log/apache2/access.log combined
 
    Alias /doc/ "/usr/share/doc/"
    <Directory "/usr/share/doc/">
        Options Indexes MultiViews FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride None
        Order deny,allow
        Deny from all
        Allow from 127.0.0.0/255.0.0.0 ::1/128
    </Directory>
 
</VirtualHost>

10a) IMPORTANT! Make a symbolic link in the sites-enabled directory

ln -s /etc/apache2/sites-available/dev.acloudtree.com.conf /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-dev.acloudtree.com.conf

11) We need to edit our /etc/hosts file

vi /etc/hosts

Output

127.0.0.1       localhost 
127.0.1.1       servername
 
# The following lines are desirable for IPv6 capable hosts
::1     localhost ip6-localhost ip6-loopback
fe00::0 ip6-localnet
ff00::0 ip6-mcastprefix
ff02::1 ip6-allnodes
ff02::2 ip6-allrouters
ff02::3 ip6-allhosts

12) Right beneath the ‘localhost’ definition, add the following

127.0.0.1      dev.acloudtree.com

13) The complete file looks like this.

127.0.0.1       localhost
127.0.0.1       dev.acloudtree.com
127.0.1.1       servername
 
# The following lines are desirable for IPv6 capable hosts
::1     localhost ip6-localhost ip6-loopback
fe00::0 ip6-localnet
ff00::0 ip6-mcastprefix
ff02::1 ip6-allnodes
ff02::2 ip6-allrouters
ff02::3 ip6-allhosts

14) Create an index.php file in /var/dev.acloudtree.com for testing purposes.

vi /var/dev.acloudtree.com/index.php

Contents of .php file.

<?php
 
        echo 'Jared Folkins\' tutorial on acloudtree.com really works!';
        phpinfo();
 
?>

15) Reboot the apache2 process.

/etc/init.d/apache2 restart

16) Now open up your web browser and enter dev.acloudtree.com into the URL bar and it should work!

UPDATE: I forgot to mention that in this environment, I like to configure log files for each virtual host. This is our current dev.acloudtree.com file.

<VirtualHost *:80>
        ServerAdmin webmaster@localhost
	ServerName dev.acloudtree.com
 
        DocumentRoot /var/dev.acloudtree.com
        <Directory />
                Options FollowSymLinks
                AllowOverride None
        </Directory>
        <Directory /var/dev.acloudtree.com/>
                Options Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews
                AllowOverride None
                Order allow,deny
                allow from all
        </Directory>
 
        ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ /usr/lib/cgi-bin/
        <Directory "/usr/lib/cgi-bin">
                AllowOverride None
                Options +ExecCGI -MultiViews +SymLinksIfOwnerMatch
                Order allow,deny
                Allow from all
        </Directory>
 
        ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/error.log
 
        # Possible values include: debug, info, notice, warn, error, crit,
        # alert, emerg.
        LogLevel warn
 
        CustomLog /var/log/apache2/access.log combined
 
    Alias /doc/ "/usr/share/doc/"
    <Directory "/usr/share/doc/">
        Options Indexes MultiViews FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride None
        Order deny,allow
        Deny from all
        Allow from 127.0.0.0/255.0.0.0 ::1/128
    </Directory>
 
</VirtualHost>

Just change the ErrorLog and CustomLog names to match the virtual host.

...
        ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/dev.acloudtree.com_error.log
 
        # Possible values include: debug, info, notice, warn, error, crit,
        # alert, emerg.
        LogLevel warn
 
        CustomLog /var/log/apache2/dev.acloudtree.com_access.log combined
...
</VirtualHost>

Cakephp

So, in my free time I am trying to write a web app for some folks at the District. I selected Cakephp as the framework for two reasons.

  1.  I know PHP
  2. It was suggested to me
  3. Ok, here is a third. It is freakin easy.

I needed something to develop in rapidly and am making progress with cake by leaps and bounds. The only thing that has really slowed me down is rolling my own RBAC. If there was a library to do this type of security, it would make life a lot easier.

The application itself is a Position Control System. With budget cuts at a state level, monitoring FTE with greater clarity and control is becoming very important. The complexities go beyond a normal system because of the way FTE can be transferred in a School District. I haven’t worked yet on how to calc these complexities, I only have identified them. But. I figure my solution will probably be interesting to some.

Once I have some code built, I will share.

-later