htaccess deny access to directory and subdirectories

Htaccess deny access to directory and subdirectories; In this tutorial, i am going to show you how to deny access to directory and subdirectories using htaccess with Apache web server.

htaccess deny access to directory and subdirectories

There are three way to deny access to directory and subdirectories; as follows:

  • Deny Access to .htaccess Itself
  • Disable Directory Indexing
  • Prevent access to certain files

1. Deny Access to .htaccess Itself

Open .htaccess file and add the following line of code to deny access file or folder; as follows:

# Deny access to .htaccess
<Files .htaccess>
Order allow,deny
Deny from all
</Files>

2. Disable Directory Indexing

The following line in .htaccess will remove directory indexing and make the server respond with a 403 forbidden message.

# Disable directory browsing 
Options -Indexes

To simply hide all the contents of the directory without forbidden message, use the IndexIgnore directive.

# Hide the contents of directories
IndexIgnore *

To hide some filetypes only, use

# Hide files of type .png, .zip, .jpg, .gif and .doc from listing
IndexIgnore *.png *.zip *.jpg *.gif *.doc

3. Prevent access to certain files

Even if you remove directories and files from listing, they are still accessible if you type the path.

To remove unauthorized access to cetain file extensions, use

# Deny access to files with extensions .ini, .psd, .log, .sh
<FilesMatch "\.(ini|psd|log|sh)$">
Order allow,deny
Deny from all
</FilesMatch>

To prevent access to all filenames starting with dot(.) like .htaccess, .htpasswd, .env and others use

# Deny access to filenames starting with dot(.)
<FilesMatch "^\.">
Order allow,deny
Deny from all
</FilesMatch>

You may also password protect files and directories and store the passwords in a .htpasswd file

# Password protect files
<FilesMatch "^(execute|index|myfile|anotherfile)*$">
AuthType Basic
AuthName "Mypassword"
AuthUserFile <Full Server Path to .htpasswd file>/.htpasswd
Require valid-user
</FilesMatch>

Replace the <Full Server Path to .htpasswd file> with your actual path.

You may also place .htaccess file inside each sub-directory with specific over-rides. The access rules can be directly defined inside Apache’s main configuration file httpd.conf. But if you don’t have access to the main configuration file (which is normally the case if your using a shared hosting service), you have to resort to .htaccess based access rules.

Note: Over-riding httpd.conf settings using .htaccess is only allowed if the AllowOverride Directive is set inside httpd.conf which is the default case.

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