Lighttpd restrict or deny access by IP address

by on December 12, 2006 · 14 comments· LAST UPDATED December 4, 2007

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So how do you restrict or deny access by IP address using Lighttpd web server?

Lighttpd has mod_access module. The access module is used to deny access to files with given trailing path names. You need to combine this with remoteip conditional configuration. Syntax is as follows:

$HTTP["remoteip"] == "IP" : Match on the remote IP
$HTTP["remoteip"] !~ "IP1|IP2" : Do not match on the remote IP (perl style regular expression not match)
$HTTP["remoteip"] =~ "IP1|IP2" : Match on the remote IP (perl style regular expression match)

Task: Match on the remote IP

For example block access to url if IP address is NOT and (restrict access to these 2 IPs only):

Open /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf file
# vi /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf
Append following configuration directive:

$HTTP["remoteip"] !~ "|" {
    $HTTP["url"] =~ "^/stats/" {
      url.access-deny = ( "" )

Save and restart lighttpd:
# /etc/init.d/lighttpd restart

Task: Block single remote IP

Do not allow IP address to access our site:

$HTTP["remoteip"] == "" {
       url.access-deny = ( "" )

Do not allow IP address, to access our site:
Do not allow IP address to access our site:

$HTTP["remoteip"] =~ "|" {
       url.access-deny = ( "" )

See also

=> Lighttpd deny access to certain files

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Bryan December 15, 2006 at 7:04 pm

Great article! I have a question relating to restricting access to a local server.

I have two applications(Radiant & Mephisto) on the same shared server. I want to be able to restrict access to RSS feeds generated by Mephisto to the other application (Radiant).

I reasoned that this could be accomplished using either the servers IP address or localhost. When I tried, it did not restrict anyone.

Am I on the right track with my logic for this type of mod_access module? Alternatively, is it possible to restrict by domain?




2 nixCraft December 15, 2006 at 7:21 pm

Hello Bryan, is local loopback IP address. This ip address is not routable so you cannot use this IP for restriction i.e. any traffic that a server program sends on the loopback network is addressed to the same server.

To solve your problem use IP address. For example

IF user agent is not foo and if it is not our server IP address do something or
deny access

$HTTP["useragent"] !~ "foo" {
$HTTP["remoteip" ] != "SERVER-IP" {

You can restrict RSS usage using URL match also.


3 Bryan December 15, 2006 at 11:48 pm


Thanks for the information. I tried several variations without success.

I spoke with my hosting provider. He explained that the remote ips will be because of the Apache 2 proxy.

Is there a way to use the Apache HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR in the conditional instead of remoteip?

The access seems to use that to record ips. This article talks about it a little.

Thanks again for your help. I know this isn’t a standard question but there are probably a lot people in similiar Apache 2/Lighttpd setups.




4 nixCraft December 16, 2006 at 12:09 am

I don’t think so you can get HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR in conditional tags. However you can try something as follows:.

$HTTP["url"] =~ "^/path/to/rss/" {
$HTTP["remoteip"] != "your-shared-server-ip" {
url.access-deny = ( "" )

Or just paste your current config (removing your actual domain and IP for security purpose) and exact requirements (output) you want. Then may be I can help you out.

Another possibility is – If you just need to give access to localhost lighttpd from Apache, configure iptables to drop all access.


5 xmlspy February 13, 2007 at 8:03 am

how to block multi IPs use mod_access in lighttpd?
From To


6 nixCraft February 15, 2007 at 4:57 am


Noop, it is not possible to specify range using –. However, you can specify network such as network or 70.6.2..5/29. For example:

  $HTTP["remoteip"] != "" {
   url.access-deny = ( "" )


7 xmlspy February 26, 2007 at 2:25 am

reply nixcraft

thanks :)


$HTTP[“remoteip”] !~ “||||||||″ {
url.access-deny = (“”)

why can’t access wesite ?


8 Dude May 2, 2008 at 10:08 am

When using a regular expression match, I seem to have had success by simply leaving out the octet I wanted to use as a wild card.

instead of “/24″: $HTTP[“remoteip”] =~ “|10.0.0″
instead of “/16″: $HTTP[“remoteip”] =~ “|10.0″

It’s been more than a year since the last reply, but hey, a search led me here.


9 Shougun September 30, 2008 at 10:01 am

How would you allow on one IP address to view the site, but deny the rest?


10 André January 19, 2009 at 8:21 am

Did you even look at the first example?


11 Dan August 30, 2009 at 1:50 pm

What about denying access to subdomains? How is this done as what I have tried doesn’t work. If I have and I only wish IP 12.345.678.23 to access it how would this be done. The following doesn’t work:

$HTTP["remoteip"] != "" { #example ip
$HTTP["url"] =~ "^" {
url.access-deny = ( "" )


12 dr_agon February 16, 2011 at 2:57 am

Nice info, thanks.

Note, that you must be careful with comparison operators.
If you want to deny access from everywhere except given IPs like in the example:

$HTTP[“remoteip”] !~ “|″ {

the IPs like (i.e., .52. and so on) FAILS the condition and are allowed access.
!~ and =~ are substring operators. You must either use them with ^ and $, or just use != and ==.

$HTTP[“remoteip”] != “|″ {
will do exact IP matching.


13 dr_agon February 23, 2011 at 7:59 pm

correction to my previous post:

$HTTP[“remoteip”] != “|″ {
in incorrect, of course.
You can match only one IP using == or != operator, like this:
$HTTP[“remoteip”] != “″ {


14 chebe April 12, 2013 at 6:35 am

How would you deny access from all but from a /64 (IPv6) ?
thanks for you help


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