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A Simple Powered by Apache Web Server Configuration for the IBM i (AS/400, iSeries, System i)

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A Simple Powered by Apache Web Server Configuration for the IBM i (AS/400, iSeries, System i)

This topic was covered in the Proof of Concept article for this site, but I also wanted to create an article simply for the configuration file that 99% of the time will be all you need when setting up a web server on your IBM i .

Listen 192.168.1.23:80

AddDefaultCharset utf-8

LogFormat "%h %l %u %t \"%r\" %s %b\"" Common
ScriptLog /www/logs/greenboard/cgierrorlog
ErrorLog /www/logs/greenboard/errorlog
RewriteLog /www/logs/greenboard/rewritelog
UseCanonicalName Off
CustomLog /www/logs/greenboard/accesslog Common
CustomLog /www/logs/greenboard/refererlog "%{Referer}i -> %U"
ErrorDocument 404 /index.html

CGIConvMode %%EBCDIC/EBCDIC%%

DocumentRoot /www/greenboard/html
DirectoryIndex index.html
ScriptAliasMatch ^/forum/(.*) /qsys.lib/greenboard.lib/$1.pgm

<Directory />
   Options None
   order deny,allow
   deny from all
</Directory>

<Directory /www/greenboard/html>
   order allow,deny
   allow from all
   <FilesMatch "\.(html|xml)(\..+)?$">
       Options +Includes
       SetOutputFilter Includes
  </FilesMatch>
</Directory>

<Directory /qsys.lib/greenboard.lib>
   allow from all
   order allow,deny
   Options +ExecCGI +Includes
   SetOutputFilter Includes
</Directory>

If we take a look at each section we can see what we're trying to accomplish here.

Listen 192.168.1.23:80

First, we need to tell the server what IP address and port to listen to.  I see a lot of times this is left out entirely or the IP address is replaced with a * which means "listen on every IP address".  Well, with the IBM i, you can assign multiple IP address to a network card (unlike PCs and other servers).  So that * comes from the PC world, but shouldn't apply to the IBM i.  

You should always specifically specify the IP address/interface that you'll be working with.

AddDefaultCharset utf-8

LogFormat "%h %l %u %t \"%r\" %s %b\"" Common
ScriptLog /www/logs/greenboard/cgierrorlog
ErrorLog /www/logs/greenboard/errorlog
RewriteLog /www/logs/greenboard/rewritelog
UseCanonicalName Off
CustomLog /www/logs/greenboard/accesslog Common
CustomLog /www/logs/greenboard/refererlog "%{Referer}i -> %U"
ErrorDocument 404 /index.html

This next part is pretty self-explanatory and deals mainly with where we want our logs to be placed.  These can be omitted if you want but I suggest keeping logs for all these things.  You'd be surprised how when you are debugging an application how the information you need may be buried in one of these logs.

DocumentRoot /www/greenboard/html
DirectoryIndex index.html
ScriptAliasMatch ^/forum/(.*) /qsys.lib/greenboard.lib/$1.pgm

This next section sets the document root and index.  The ScriptAliasMatch directive is also used to show how to map requests to a library on the IBM i.  So in this case, any request for /forum/foo will call program foo in library GREENBOARD and also add .pgm to the end of the request.

Soo, /forum/myprogram will be maped to program MYPROGRAM in library GREENBOARD.

A lot of times you'll see /cgi-bin used as the CGI path.  In this case we chose not too.

<Directory />
   Options None
   order deny,allow
   deny from all
</Directory>

Our first Directory container basically says "we don't allow access to anything on this system unless we specifically say so".  This is a good thing.  If we were to stop here with our configuration, nothing could be accessed.  But, in our case we do want to allow access to web files (HTML, JS, CSS, Images, etc) as well as CGI programs.

<Directory /www/greenboard/html>
   order allow,deny
   allow from all
   <FilesMatch "\.(html|xml)(\..+)?$">
       Options +Includes
       SetOutputFilter Includes
  </FilesMatch>
</Directory>

Our next directory container is saying "allow access to the /www/greenboard/html directory.  This gives specific access since previously we shut it all down.

The FilesMatch directive used inside the Directory container is used for Server Side Includes (SSI).  When the server finds an SSI statement in the HTML it will process it properly.

<Directory /qsys.lib/greenboard.lib>
   allow from all
   order allow,deny
   Options +ExecCGI +Includes
   SetOutputFilter Includes
</Directory>

Finally we use a Directory container to allow access to the GREENBOARD library.  This is where our programs are that will be used to create dynamic output.

Again, we also want any SSI statements produced by our CGI programs to be processed, so we add the Options and SetOutputFilter directives to handle this.

So as you can see, it's not difficult to set up a basic web server.  We've been using this standard template for over 15 years and hundreds of sites and have yet to have an issue.

 


Last edited 01/25/2019 at 07:59:30



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GreenBoard(v3) Powered by the eRPG SDK, MAILTOOL Plus!, GreenTools for Google Apps, jQuery, jQuery UI, BlockUI, CKEditor and running on the IBM i (AKA AS/400, iSeries, System i).