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Sep 12 2009

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wordpress on lighttpd

I have commented in the past how I prefer lighttpd to apache, particularly on low powered machines such as the slug. I used to be a big apache fan, in fact I think I first used it at version 1.3.0 or maybe 1.3.1, having migrated from NCSA 1.5.1 (and before that Cern 3.0) back in the day when I ran web servers for a living. However, those days are long gone and my web server requirements are now limited to my home network and VPSs so I don’t need, nor do I want, the power of an industrial strength apache installation. In fact, my primary home web server platform (the slugs) struggles with a standard apache install. Lighttpd works very well on machines which are low on memory.

Having got used to lighttpd, it seemed a natural platform to use on my VPSs. And it performs very well on those machines for the kind of traffic I see. Moving trivia to my bytemark VPS meant that I had to take care of some minor configuration issues myself – most notably the form of permalinks I use. Most of the documentation about running your own wordpress blog assumes that you will be using apache (since that is the most popular web server software provided by shell account providers). For those of you who, like me, want to use lighttp instead, the configuration details from my vhosts config file are below. Lighttpd is remarkably easy to configure for both virtual hosting in general, and for wordpress in particular. Note that I also choose to restrict access to wp-admin to my home IP address, this helps to keep the bad guys out.

Extract of “conf-enabled/10-simple-vhost.conf” file:

# redirect www. to domain (assumes that “mod_redirect” is set in server.modules in lighttpd.conf)

$HTTP[“host”] =~ “www.baldric.net” {
url.redirect = ( “.*” => “..”)
}

#
# config for the blog
#
$HTTP[“host”] == “baldric.net” {
# turn off dir listing (you can do this globally of course, but I choose not to.)
server.dir-listing = “disable”
#
# do the rewrite for permalinks (it really is that simple)
#
server.error-handler-404 = “/index.php”
#
# reserve accesss to wp-admin directory and wp-login to our ip address
#
$HTTP[“remoteip”] !~ “123.123.123.123” {
$HTTP[“url”] =~ “^/wp-admin/” {
url.access-deny =(“”)
}
$HTTP[“url”] =~ “^/wp-login.php” {
url.access-deny =(“”)
}
}

}

# end

Enjoy.

Permanent link to this article: http://baldric.net/2009/09/12/wordpress-on-lighttpd/