[Moin-user] why /var/www ?!?

John Perry john.perry at usm.edu
Wed Dec 2 15:14:15 EST 2009

> You shouldn't link all your home directories to be accessible via the
> webserver, because they are linked to be below documentroot.

Ooooooops. I happened to mention my difficulties with one of my 
security-conscious colleagues, and he promptly went and read everything on 
the machine, just to prove your point.

Okay, removed that symlink.

> > I set up MoinMoin successfully today. I thought I followed the directions,
> > but
> > I kept encountering a problem. The CSS did not seem to load, 
> That is usually because the Alias for /moin_static185 (e.g.) is missing
> or is not working.

This was in fact my problem. I didn't understand your hint until I looked 
carefully at both the Apache setup file and the wikiconfig.py. In case anyone 
else Googles across this, I'll explain my confusion, along with what I did to 
fix it.

The wikiconfig.py requires the assignment of three directories,


The defaults for the first two ('./data' and './underlay') don't work, at 
least not on my system. When it fails, a helpful error message recommends 
giving the absolute pathname, e.g., /home/luser/read/the/directions . (That's 
not the actual help text I saw, in case anyone's wondering. It's just how I 
felt. ;-))

I figured the third one (url_prefix) would need an absolute path, too, and I 
seem to have misread at least one of the many web pages online that discuss 
the setup & configuration of this file. So url_prefix had the absolute path 
to the static files, when it wants a *relative* path.

So that was the problem. I got it to work by changing url_prefix 
to '/moin_static160'. Likewise Apache's configuration *must* have the alias 

    Alias /moin_static160/ /absolute/path/to/moin_static160/

I should have caught this sooner, but I didn't understand the hint in 

    # For CGI, it should match your Apache Alias setting.

I understand what it's saying now, but that was weird.

If someone has better advice, I'm open to it. For reference, I'm running Moin 
1.90 on Ubuntu 8.04.3.

john perry
John Perry, PhD
University of Southern Mississippi
Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics
john.perry at usm.edu

endless loop: See endless loop.
(AmigaDOS 3.1 manual, Glossary, pg. 4)

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