Ubuntu – Apache Alias Folder: 403 Access Forbidden


Ok, I have set up an alias on my apache server to point to a directory on a second HD. The Directory is /media/MediaServer/Videos.

The point of all this, is to stream videos from that folder, to my TV using Roku, and Roksbox. Everything worked fine when I kept my video files in my www folder…but I was running low on HD space..

Took me a while to get the damn thing to even look in the right place. Now it looks to the right folder…but gives me the 403 Access Forbidden error.

I am a bit of a noob at this stuff…so forgive me for lack on info. If I do not include something you need to see in order to help me, just let me know.

First: after following countless tutorials on how to set up the Alias…the only one that worked…was this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIEr_jz1oYA

Finally, after following that, I have the following .conf file:

Alias /Videos/ /media/MediaServer/Videos

Options +Indexes FollowSymLinks +ExecCGI
AllowOverride AuthConfig FileInfo
Order allow,deny
Allow from all

Now, when I type in localhost/Videos in my browser, it actually looks at the Videos folder (at least it appears too, compared to before when the best I could do was get it to tell me that www/Videos did not exist…)
But it tells me "You don't have permission to access /Videos/ on this server."

I have tried changing the permissions on the Videos directory to 777, 775, 750, etc…nothing seems to work. Even tried to change the permissions to the /media directory (found a few forum topics that suggested that the parent directories needed full permissions as well.)

Nothing seems to work. Help! Please!


I opened a terminal and logged in as www-data (which is what the apache server uses) and am able to access the Videos folder…so…unless I am completely off here…that means it's not a permissions issue…


Ok…not sure why this worked…but here's what I did that works..

I went back into the Alias Conf file…and instead of pointing to /media/MediaServer/Videos, I pointed to /media/MediaServer

Now, all of a sudden, when I try to access localhost/Videos (which is no longer what should work…) it works…perfectly…Not sure what is going on…ut it works…and that is all that matters.

Best Answer

Have you tried using a Symbolic Link instead of an Alias?

In the Terminal:

ln -s /media/MediaServer/Videos /var/www/Videos

Then in your Apache config file you need to add Options FollowSymLinks to the <Directory /> section, as seen here

This will create a symbolic link at /var/www/Videos that points to /media/MediaServer/Video. Basically the system will see the folder on 'MediaServer' as the contents of /var/www/Videos/.

More information about Symbolic Links can be found here and here. I use them with apache all the time, and never have any problems. Hope it helps.

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