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Would anyone know what the reason for apache2 ignoring my .htaccess files?
I have previously installed the same php program called claroline on a mandrake 9.1 and it worked fine, but with SusE 8.2, it just plainly ignores the .htaccess files (they are generated during the installation of the php program)
Does anyone know if there is a place in httpd2.conf I can look to check that apache is looking for .htaccess files?
Check that the AccessFileName directive in your http2.conf says to look for .htaccess files and not some other name. That's the first thing to look for. Also, make sure your server has mod_auth enabled. See the fine documentation at http://httpd.apache.org/docs-2.0/howto/auth.html for additional help.
check you httpd.conf for a line AllowOveride
default it gets set to none
set it to AuthConfig for start then do some research for more options but that should get it started.
Also if you are using Virtual Hosting make sure you did'nt overide this setting in the VH directives.
After changing every httpd.conf file I had (3 in all!!), the .htaccess is now recognised, although the pages I protect are available by url after you have navigated away from them until you close the browser and open a new instance.