3.2. Renaming the pyblosxom.cgi Script

In the default installation, the PyBlosxom script is named pyblosxom.cgi.

For a typical user on an Apache installation with user folders turned on, PyBlosxom URLs could look like this:


That gets pretty long and it's not very good looking. Telling your mother the URL over the phone would be difficult. It would be nice if we could shorten it.

So, we have some options:

  1. Change the name of the pyblosxom.cgi script.

  2. And if that's not good enough for you, use the Apache mod_rewrite module to get URLs internally redirected to the pyblosxom.cgi script.

Both methods are described here in more detail.

3.2.1. Change the Name of the pyblosxom.cgi Script

There's no reason that pyblosxom.cgi has to be named pyblosxom.cgi. Let's try changing it from pyblosxom.cgi to blog. Now our example URLs look like this:


That's better looking in the example. In your specific circumstances, that may be all you need.

You might have to change the base_url property in your config.py file to match the new URL.

Warningwarning: base_url value

The base_url property should NOT have a trailing slash.

If you're running on Apache, you might have to tell Apache that this is a CGI script even if it doesn't have a .cgi at the end of it. If you can use .htaccess files to override Apache settings, you might be able to do something like this:

# this allows execution of CGI scripts in this directory
Options ExecCGI 
# if the user doesn't specify a file, then instead of doing the
# regular directory listing, we look at "blog" (which is our
# pyblosxom.cgi script renamed)
DirectoryIndex blog 
# this tells Apache that even though "blog" doesn't end in .cgi,
# it is in fact a CGI script and should be treated as such
<Files blog> 
ForceType application/cgi-script  
SetHandler cgi-script  

You may need to stop and restart Apache for your Apache changes to take effect.

3.2.2. Hiding the .cgi with RewriteRule

Apache has a module for URL rewriting which allows you to convert incoming URLs to other URLs that can be handled internally. You can do URL rewriting based on all sorts of things. See the Apache manual for more details.

In our case, we want all incoming URLs pointing to blog to get rewritten to cgi-bin/pyblosxom.cgi so they can be handled by PyBlosxom. Then all our URLs will look like this:


To do this, we create an .htaccess file (it has to be named exactly that) in our public_html directory (or wherever it is that /~joe/ points to). In that file we have the following code:

RewriteEngine on
RewriteRule    ^blog?(.*)$      /~joe/cgi-bin/pyblosxom.cgi$1      [last]

The first line turns on the Apache mod_rewrite engine so that it will rewrite URLs.

The second line has four parts. The first part denotes the line as a RewriteRule. The second part states the regular expression that matches the part of the URL that we want to rewrite. The third part denotes what we're rewriting the URL to. The fourth part states that after this rule is applied, no future rewrite rules should be applied.

If you do URL rewriting, you may have to set the base_url property in your config.py accordingly. In the above example, the base_url would be http://www.joe.com/~joe/blog with no trailing slash.

For more information on URL re-writing, see the Apache documentation.