Apache Error Client Denied By Server Configuration

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Q. I’m running Apache 2 Web sever under CentOS Linux and getting an error that read as follows:


[Wed Sep 17 21:53:49 2008] [error] [client 122.1xx.y9.zzz] client denied by server configuration: /var/www/examples.com/

How do I fix this error?

A. By default Apache is configured as restrictive server. It will not allow end users (client) to do anything on default DocumentRoot. To fix this issue you need to add following lines to your VirtualHost configuration directives:

<Directory "/var/www/example.com">
    Options -Indexes FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride AuthConfig FileInfo
    Order allow,deny
    Allow from all

‘Order allow,deny’ and ‘Allow from all’ will set appropriate permission for the directory. At the end it should look like as follows:

<VirtualHost *:80>
	ServerAdmin webmaster@example.com
        DocumentRoot "/var/www/example.com"
        ServerName example.com
        ServerAlias www.example.com
        ErrorLog "/var/logs/httpd/example.com/error.log"
        CustomLog "/var/logs/httpd/example.com/access.log" common
        ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ "/var/suexec/example.com/cgi-bin/"
<Directory "/var/www/example.com">
	Options -Indexes FollowSymLinks
	AllowOverride AuthConfig FileInfo
	Order allow,deny
	Allow from all
  SuExecUserGroup user group

Restart apache:
# service httpd restart


Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.

15 comment

  1. While I thought this was going to be the ticket I still ended up with errors I am going to try again using each of these inside each vhost config directive.

  2. It turned out to be an invalid vhost config and not the allow directives, thanks for the stating place!

  3. Something else worth noting for people turning up on this page;
    I had this same issue (exactly the same error) – and it turned out to be that the person who reported the issue was repeatedly calling the same file in a non-stop loop, and http-Security.conf had been setup for DDOS protection ;)

    Added the IP into whitelist, slapped a few wrists, and all is well again!


    1. Hi FingAZ!

      I’m having the exact same problem you stated, about people calling the same file non-stop. This has been a real problem for me, especially with scripts using AJAX. However, I am a newbie in Linux/CentOS. Could you please clarify about the http-Security.conf? Is it a file? I haven’t found it in my system.
      Thanks in advance!

      1. I finally discovered what the problem was: mod_evasive. Because of this I kept getting too many false positives, especially with AJAX. I disabled it and everything works fine now. :)

  4. Thank you.. thank you so much! Did the trick nicely.

    BTW, will it not compromise the site’s security since we used “Allow from All”?

  5. Hi. Thanks for the tip, but it still didnt work when i tried accessing a server located on a local machine
    So i found this article which also mentions ACL and it solved by adding this to the section which you had above.
    Allow from ::1/128

  6. I have been getting these errors also but when I check them against my blocked IP addresses I found that they were all from IP that I had already blocked. So for me it looks like my IP filters are working.

  7. Hai sir,

    i was as accessing login page of this url, 403 forbidden error was encounterd, evevn i change change permission for that file in cpanel and also while edit .htaccess file internal server error occur

    what i do plz help me


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