Configuration

How much time do you have to set up lighttpd? 5 minutes? 10 minutes? More?

5 minutes

Want to run a fast, low-resource server for static content? It's easy. Create a text file named lighttpd.conf with the following content:

server.document-root = "/var/www/servers/www.example.org/pages/" 

server.port = 3000

mimetype.assign = (
  ".html" => "text/html", 
  ".txt" => "text/plain",
  ".jpg" => "image/jpeg",
  ".png" => "image/png" 
)

lighttpd will listen on TCP port 3000 and bind to all interfaces by default. The few important MIME types are assigned
and the document root (the base directory that is used for all requests) is set. The files in the document root have to be
readable by the user starting the web server.

First, check that your configuration is ok:

$ lighttpd -t -f lighttpd.conf

Now start the server for testing:

$ lighttpd -D -f lighttpd.conf

and point your browser to http://127.0.0.1:3000/

To stop the server, return to the command prompt and press ctrl-c.

A real daemon

Next you should familiarize yourself with some settings necessary for your server's security:

server.document-root = "/var/www/servers/www.example.org/pages/" 

server.port = 80

server.username = "www" 
server.groupname = "www" 

mimetype.assign = (
  ".html" => "text/html", 
  ".txt" => "text/plain",
  ".jpg" => "image/jpeg",
  ".png" => "image/png" 
)

static-file.exclude-extensions = ( ".fcgi", ".php", ".rb", "~", ".inc" )
index-file.names = ( "index.html" )

Now the web server is listening on port 80, the default for HTTP traffic, and will switch to the user www and the group www.
The server has to be started as root to take control of port 80, but it's not necessary or a good idea to continue running as root after port acquisition, so the server switches to user www.

Lastly, access to view the contents of some types of files is forbidden as they are used for generating dynamic content. Requests directly to a directory are rewritten to the index.html file in that directory.

Assuming you have already created the /etc/init.d/lighttpd service as described in TutorialInstallation, place the config file in /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf and start the server with:

# /etc/init.d/lighttpd start

To stop it use:

# /etc/init.d/lighttpd stop

10 minutes

Conditionals, conditionals, conditionals:

The most important part in Lighty's configuration is the use of conditionals. Using simple or regular expression conditions, default setting can be overridden.

server.document-root = "/var/www/servers/www.example.org/pages/" 

server.port = 80

server.username = "www" 
server.groupname = "www" 

mimetype.assign = (
  ".html" => "text/html", 
  ".txt" => "text/plain",
  ".jpg" => "image/jpeg",
  ".png" => "image/png" 
)

static-file.exclude-extensions = ( ".fcgi", ".php", ".rb", "~", ".inc" )
index-file.names = ( "index.html" )

$HTTP["host"] == "www2.example.org" {
  server.document-root = "/var/www/servers/www2.example.org/pages/" 
}

Now we have a new virtual server, www2.example.org, which uses the same settings as the first server, only the document root is different.

The following server configuration adds a download area and enables the built-in directory listing feature:

server.document-root = "/var/www/servers/www.example.org/pages/" 

server.port = 80

server.username = "www" 
server.groupname = "www" 

mimetype.assign = (
  ".html" => "text/html", 
  ".txt" => "text/plain",
  ".jpg" => "image/jpeg",
  ".png" => "image/png" 
)

static-file.exclude-extensions = ( ".fcgi", ".php", ".rb", "~", ".inc" )
index-file.names = ( "index.html" )

$HTTP["host"] == "www2.example.org" {
  server.document-root = "/var/www/servers/www2.example.org/pages/" 
  $HTTP["url"] =~ "^/download/" {
    dir-listing.activate = "enable" 
  }
}

As you can see, conditionals can be nested: only the download folder and its sub-folders have the directory listings enabled.

There's also the else clause for conditionals. Despite the name, it's an else if construct similar to some programming languages, as it has to be followed by another condition.

Here's an example of conditional-based vhosts. The else is being used to configure behavior that should be present only in "default" vhost.

$HTTP["host"] == "example.org" {                                                                                         
  # options specific to example.org
  expire.url = ( "" => "access plus 25 hours" )                                                                                        
} else $HTTP["host"] == "static.example.org" {
  # options specific to static.example.org
  expire.url = ( "" => "access plus 2 weeks" )                                                                                        
} else $HTTP["host"] =~ "" {                                                                                                           
  # options applied to any other vhosts present on this ip 
  # ie. default options
  expire.url = ( "" => "access plus 3 hours" )                                                                                        
} 

Now that we've covered the basics, you're ready to learn some more advanced topics like includes and configuring PHP with FastCGI

After 30 minutes

Now you know the basic set up, include files, and maybe even how to set up PHP or Ruby. But there's so much more to find out.

Most of it is described in examples in the default configuration file that you can find in the doc directory of the tarball or in the repository (source:trunk/doc/lighttpd.conf).

For the configuration file syntax and the complete list of configuration options, visit the reference section of the wiki: Reference Documentation

Also check out our community.

lighttpd.conf Magnifier (11.2 KB) Anonymous, 2006-09-18 21:34