Secure your server with htaccess

21/10/2013 § Leave a comment

apache_htaccessI apologize if this topic drifts a bit away from the usual ones you find here at ghacks but I thought it would be extremely useful for everyone who has a server or webspace that supports htaccess and htpasswd. Htaccess files can do much more than just secure a directory on your server or website but I want to concentrate on this topic because it is something that I have been using on some of my websites for a very long time to increase security.

I use it mainly to secure certain directories on my websites from being accessed without the proper authorization. This is the admin directory in the case of WordPress for instance but could also be used to secure a directory that hosts some valuable files.

I would like to point out two possibilities that secure a directory with .htacess. The first is to protect the directory by only allowing users with a certain IP or IP range access to it. Everyone else would receive an access denied error message.

The second possibility would be to create usernames and passwords that have to be supplied before accessing the content.

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Download the Windows 8.1 ISO image

19/10/2013 § Leave a comment

Windows-8.1-600x411Most Windows users can install Windows 8.1 only via the Windows Shop update, as Microsoft has not — yet — made available a public Windows 8.1 ISO image that users can download. While that may give the company more control over the download process and better metrics, it can be problematic for users.

For one, it is necessary to be connected to the Internet to make the upgrade. That may work if you are on broadband, but what if your computer does not or if your Internet connection is not the most reliable one. And that does not even take into account systems that are not connected to the Internet at all.

There is another problem. Say you want to do a clean installation of Windows 8.1 either on an existing computer or a new one. Microsoft’s vision for this seems to be that you need to run the full Windows 7 installation first (since there are no Windows 8 full setups provided officially) and install all the updates and patches for that operating system.

Once that is out of the way, you run the update to Windows 8 on the system, and install the patches and upgrades for that system as well. And then finally, you go to the store and install the Windows 8.1 update.

That’s highly inefficient if you ask me.
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