help.ubuntu.com .htaccess is obsolete

Bug #1365194 reported by Doug Smythies on 2014-09-03
12
This bug affects 1 person
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Online publishing of the Ubuntu documentation
Undecided
Unassigned

Bug Description

The .htaccess file at the root of help.ubuntu.com makes no sense.
At the minimum, it is severely outdated and at the maximum it shouldn't be needed at all.

Typically, these days, options are set in the server configurations and not via .htaccess and the rest of the stuff in that file simply is not needed.

On my server, where I keep a test mirror copy of help.ubuntu.com, the .htaccess file has to be deleted otherwise my server complains of configuration errors and will not deliver any content at all. Once I delete the file everything works properly for all languages I have tried, including fallthrough to another language if the one asked for doesn't exist.

References:
http://bazaar.launchpad.net/~ubuntu-core-doc/ubuntu-docs/help.ubuntu.com/view/head:/.htaccess

It is interesting to note that the language stuff doesn't seems to be case sensitive because we use zh-CN and firefox uses zh-cn, for example.

Doug Smythies (dsmythies) wrote :

Peter M. asked me to post my server config file.

Doug Smythies (dsmythies) wrote :

same file but converted to <CR><LF> type text file so that I some people can read it.

Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

It just struck me that things in the file might be due to help.ubuntu.com/community. So we should probably have the community wiki in mind too when evaluating the need of the .htaccess file.

Doug Smythies (dsmythies) wrote :

Gunnar,

If it is true that this .htaccess file also applies to help.ubuntu.com/community, then I submit that it is doubly bad. Why? Because we (the doc committer group) have jurisdiction over help.ubuntu.com but not over help.ubuntu.com/community.

Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

I see your point. But under the assumption that /community is a physical subdirectory to the parent, I suppose it's true to the extent the file is not overridden by some other .htaccess file in the /community folder.

Peter Matulis (petermatulis) wrote :

Since this file can affect files we are not responsible for then I recommend we determine the proper configuration for our purposes and then ask the Canonical system administration team to put it on the server, where they may add a specific one per directory if they do not already exist. Does anyone see a benefit in having this file in our branch?

Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

Peter: I agree. Personally I won't miss it if it's dropped. ;)

Doug Smythies (dsmythies) wrote :

I will e-mail <email address hidden> (which Svetlana said one time is how one does it) and attempt to get help for this issue.

Doug Smythies (dsmythies) wrote :
description: updated
Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

@David: You seem to have been involved when the file was created. Do you know if it's still motivated for some reason?

Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

After having digged deeper into Apache's content negotiation feature together with Doug, I have changed my mind about this file. As regards all the AddLanguage directives, they serve as supplements to what's already in /etc/apache2/mods-available/mime.conf, and via revision 145 in the linked branch I just added a few more languages. I don't have access to the actual mime.conf on the server (Ubuntu 10.04), so there is a need to check it out further.

Changed in ubuntu-docs:
status: New → In Progress
Doug Smythies (dsmythies) wrote :

Due to Gunnar's good work, the .htaccess file is much much better now. I still think that this line:

RedirectMatch permanent (.*)serverguide/C/(.*) https://help.ubuntu.com$1serverguide/$2

is some old legacy thing and can be deleted. However, if we want to wait until the 10.04 LTS EOL deletion edits in April, that would be O.K. (some legacy 10.04 links are all I can think of that might still exist).

daniel (danielcandido82) on 2014-12-02
Changed in ubuntu-docs:
status: In Progress → Confirmed
assignee: nobody → daniel (danielcandido82)
information type: Public → Private
tags: added: buceta
tags: added: hmtl
removed: buceta
Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

Reversing vandalism.

information type: Private → Public
Changed in ubuntu-docs:
assignee: daniel (danielcandido82) → nobody
status: Confirmed → In Progress
tags: removed: hmtl
affects: ubuntu-docs → help.ubuntu.com
Gunnar Hjalmarsson (gunnarhj) wrote :

The remaining item, which Doug mentioned in comment #12, was fixed in revision 187.

Changed in help.ubuntu.com:
status: In Progress → Fix Released
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