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New Book: .htaccess made easy

[ .htaccess made easy ] I’m proud to announce the launch of my new book on .htaccess, titled .htaccess made easy. It’s a book I’ve been wanting to write for years, since first getting hooked on .htaccess way back in 2006. Since then, I’ve learned a lot about .htaccess, Apache, security, and web-design in general — with many articles on the topic published here at Perishable Press and elsewhere on the Web. Everyone kept inspiring me to bring it all together and write a book on the subject, and so WHOOOP here it is!

About the book

.htaccess made easy is written for web designers, developers, admins, and really anyone who wants to understand how .htaccess works and implement some awesome techniques. The techniques range from basic to advanced, but are all explained in clear, concise language for easy implementation. The main goal of the book was to bring together the best techniques into a complete guide that’s focused and easy to use — check out the features:

  • Full-color design
  • Landscape format
  • Over 220 pages
  • Hyperlinked everything
  • Color-coded notes and links
  • Large, easy to read text
  • Nearly 300 links and references

Currently the book is available in PDF/eBook format, and printed copies are on the way. They’ll be printed in full-color with both spiral-bind and perfect-bind, if possible. Chris Coyier and I went with spiral-binding for Digging into WordPress and people seemed to love it. Not sure yet on pricing or other details, but will post soon with more informations. Here are screenshots showing a chapter intro and detail-view of chapter content:

[ .htaccess made easy - chapter intro ]
Screenshot showing a chapter intro
[ .htaccess made easy - chapter content ]
Detail-view of chapter content

Book contents

The book is designed to make learning and using .htaccess as easy as possible — not just the basics, but advanced techniques as well. Everything is easily referenced and clearly explained. If you can copy/paste and FTP files, you’ve got everything you need to make the most of .htaccess. Here is an overview of the structure and contents of the book:

  • Chapters 1, 2, 3 – Welcome, basics, and essentials
  • Chapters 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 – Awesome .htaccess techniques*
  • Chapter 10 – Bonus techniques and troubleshooting guide

* Here are some of the chapter-highlights:

  • Chapter 2 – .htaccess reference section
  • Chapter 3 – Essential techniques and configuration tips
  • Chapter 4 – Optimizing site performance
  • Chapter 5 – Improving SEO
  • Chapter 6 – Redirecting anything to anywhere
  • Chapter 7 – Beefing up site security
  • Chapter 8 – Enhancing usability
  • Chapter 9 – .htaccess for WordPress
  • Chapter 10 – Logging stuff and troubleshooting guide

And some of my favorite .htaccess techniques:

  • Optimizing site configuration
  • Universal URL-canonicalization
  • Redirecting with mod_rewrite and mod_alias
  • User-agent detection and delivery of custom content
  • Optimizing WordPress permalinks
  • Serving cookie-free domains
  • Compressing and caching content

The heart of the book are the Security and Optimization chapters, featuring:

  • How to set up a proxy firewall
  • How to password-protect files and folders
  • How to control IP-access, user-agent access, and more
  • How to whitelist access for good bots and browsers
  • How to block bad bots & evil scripts
  • Maximizing file-compression
  • Optimizing file-caching

And of course much, much more. For complete list, check out the free Demo version of the book, which includes the entire Table of Contents plus most of Chapter 3 (Essential Techniques).

[ .htaccess made easy - full page view ]
Full page view

New site

To give the book a place to call home, I set up a site at htaccessbook.com. It’s designed to match the look and feel of the book, and features some great stuff for people who buy either version of the book:

  • Member’s Area for downloading the book and bonus material
  • .htaccess Forum for getting help with specific .htaccess questions
  • Affiliate program offering 50% commission on all PDF/eBook sales
  • News & updates about the book and related events

Overall I think it’s a great site for the book. I put a lot of time especially into the (bbPress-powered) forums, and look forward to helping people with .htaccess while cultivating a thriving, focused community. For years I’ve helped folks via comment-threads on my .htaccess posts, so it will be nice to work in a more “official” venue.

[ .htaccess made easy - footer area ]
Detail-view of the footer area

Bonus material

Included with purchase of the PDF/ebook:

  • Access to the .htaccess Help Forums and Members Area
  • Starter, WordPress, and other .htaccess template files
  • Alternate wide-format and lite-version of the book
  • Free updates for the life of the book

Plus, excellent customer support (so I’ve been told) via email :)

Launch Sale!

Get the book now for $20 ($5 savings) during the official Launch Sale! Visit the Book Store for more info and to get your copy of .htaccess made easy.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone who buys the book and to those who have helped with the book — Thane Champie, Chris Coyier, Vitaly Friedman, Daniel Pataki, Ron Weech, Jennifer Starr, and everyone else — you know who you are and I couldn’t have done it without you!

About the Author
Jeff Starr = Creative thinker. Passionate about free and open Web.
The Tao of WordPress: Master the art of WordPress.

18 responses to “New Book: .htaccess made easy”

  1. Going through sample PDF… looks interesting and very useful for beginners to grasp on basics of htaccess concept.

    • Jeff Starr 2012/09/10 9:19 am

      Thanks – the book gets into plenty of advanced techniques, but I wanted to show something basic for the Demo. Flip through the Table of Contents for a better idea.

  2. airos chou 2012/09/10 7:04 pm

    congratulations to your new book online!

  3. Jeff Starr 2012/09/10 9:23 pm

    So true! Hard work but feels good to launch :)

  4. Congratz on your 2nd book my friend!

    no easy task these days…..

  5. Muhammad Adnan 2012/09/10 11:07 pm

    Congrats Jeff, It seems a good book.

  6. Congrats on the book! A must have for every webmaster, let us know when we can get it!

  7. Went through the demo and checked TOC, eager to grad a copy of it! All the best with sales Jeff.

  8. “Disable ETags” a good basic practise according Yahoo?
    Yahoo says: “ETags match, a 304 status code is returned reducing the response by 12195 bytes for this example. ”
    “But if you have multiple servers hosting your web site, and you’re using Apache or IIS with the default ETag configuration, your users are getting slower pages, your servers have a higher load, you’re consuming greater bandwidth, and proxies aren’t caching your content efficiently.”

    So, if you just use one server, Etags should NOT be disabled?? Or do i miss something here??

    • Jeff Starr 2012/09/15 1:01 pm

      Fixed in the latest version (1.1)! I’ve revised the ETags section with better information. Thanks for helping to improve the accuracy and quality of the book. Cheers!

  9. Omg I jump on it ! I follow your website for a while now,
    I see in my feed -> Paypal -> Read on the way !

    Great job and keep going

  10. Congratulation for a new book online…….thanks for such a good job…

  11. Alex Denning 2012/09/24 1:55 am

    A slightly belated congratulations, Jeff! I’ll have to take a look :)

  12. Congrats on the new book Jeff! Buying it now :)

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Perishable Press is operated by Jeff Starr, a professional web developer and book author with two decades of experience. Here you will find posts about web development, WordPress, security, and more »
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