July 5, 1996
The major news this week has been the release of Apache 1.1. This is the end result of several months of beta testing, and represents a major upgrade in functionality since the 1.0 series. This issue of Apache Week is devoted to covering 1.1. We have also written a detailed guide to the changes in 1.1, with links to the full Apache documentation: check out our Guide to 1.1.
New in 1.1Apache 1.1 implements a lot of new features, and some changes to existing features. This is a short summary. For more details, see the Apache Week special Guide to 1.1.
Apache 1.1 implements persistent connections using Keep-Alives. It can handle virtual hosts without using additional IP addresses. The main server can listen to specified IP addresses and/or ports, and it can listen to more than one at once.
New modules provide details of the current configuration and the server's running status. Other new modules implement a means of passing environment variables to CGI programs, permitting 'anonymous' access to authenticated areas, and the use of more secure 'digest' authentication.
Internally, Apache now implements 'handlers' as a means of identifying processing to be applied to requests, which was previously done by using special 'magic' mime-types. CGI programs can now be called for particular extensions (mime types) or for a given request method (e.g. to implement a PUT script).
An initial proxy cache module is included, but the code hasn't been as fully tested as other parts of the server, so might still be a little unstable. The imagemap module has been overhauled, providing new directives and functionality.
It is now possible to turn off resolving hostnames at run time, and to use ErrorDocument and Redirect in .htaccess files.
Upgrading from Previous VersionsApache 1.1 is mostly a drop-in replacement for older versions. However there are some small changes over 1.0.*, which are listed here.
Upgrading to 1.1 is mostly a case of download the new server (either binary or source followed by compilation) and replacing the old binary. Then the new features can be tried and used. The following is a list of changes to existing functions that might affect a site.
BugsDespite the beta testing, a couple of bugs managed to crawl into the release. With software as complex as the Apache server, this should not be a big surpise, and no doubt others will be found. Expect a bug fix release in the near future.