Mac OS X, Web Sharing / Apache, and Symlinks

Mac OS X comes with an Apache installation which is very handy, but by default it’s configured not to follow symlinks. A lot of times I have projects in other directories which I want to share via the web server, but end up getting errors such as the following:


You don’t have permission to access /~tlrobinson/Editor/ on this server.

And in the error log file:

[Wed Jun 25 16:17:14 2008] [error] [client ::1] Symbolic link not allowed or link target not accessible: /Users/tlrobinson/Sites/Editor

To enable following of symlinks, edit your account’s configure file located at /private/etc/apache2/users/username.conf

Here’s the default:

Options Indexes MultiViews
AllowOverride None
Order allow,deny
Allow from all

You can either add “FollowSymLinks” to the Options directive (“Options Indexes MultiViews FollowSymLinks”), or change the AllowOverride directive to “All” (“AllowOverride None”) and place a .htaccess with it’s own Options directive (“Options FollowSymLinks”) in your Sites directory.

Then just restart Apache (“sudo apachectl graceful”) and symlinks should work.