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So, is it a subject for ServerFault, or can you argue they're a DSL that combines some programming features, such as regular expressions?

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What kind of DSL is the right abbreviation explanation for this? –  random Feb 28 '11 at 20:53
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Um. I feel silly. DSL? –  Linus Kleen Feb 28 '11 at 21:11
    
@goreSplatter DSL = domain specific langauge –  Martin Beckett Feb 28 '11 at 23:16
    
Also see mod_rewrite questions getting migrated to SF (given most ".htaccess" questions end up being mod_rewrite questions). –  Tim Stone Feb 28 '11 at 23:31
    
@Shog9 odd, that didn't come up in any searches. Also, that question seems to have ended up with a different conclusion... –  Won't Mar 1 '11 at 14:10
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4 Answers

up vote 13 down vote accepted

They fit both.

I'm not browsing serverfault much, but I assume that they are a bit annoyed by the amount of dull .htaccess/RewriteRule questions we are moving over.

And factually .htaccess files do not constitute server configuration. They share the same format and obviously Apache evaluates those files. But semantically they are application configuration data (php_flag short_open_tag and SetEnv LC_ALL it_IT). There are very few server settings (ThreadsPerChild or PidFile) you can factually set via .htaccess. There are quite involving options like nested <Files> and LogFormats or complex authentication modules which certainly belong on SF. But the majority of RewriterRule+RewriteCond inquiries can actually be handled on Stackoverflow.

SF has one interesting page for that topic: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Mod_Rewrite Rules but Were Afraid to Ask? - but it doesn't quite cover regular expressions. I think it might actually make sense to create a similar reference question on SO, but concentrating on regex syntax and practical examples - which isn't yet covered.

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I would have said .htaccess was a programming language - not a Turing complete (AFAIK) but neither is SQL

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I'd argue they're a better fit for webmasters.stackexchange.com ... seems others have had the same thought (see Why do we need webmasters.stackexchange when we have stackoverflow? ).

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Many but not all questions are definitely ontopic for StackOverflow.com

Any question about how you get

mysite.com/users/view/toby/

to redirect to

mysite.com/index.php?action=view&userid=toby

although asked 1000 times before is still ontopic.

Questions about how you set up your .htaccess file to prevent access from 2 particular IP's on a thursday afternoon in February but only when the user has previously visited on a friday is probably better off on webmasters or serverfault.

is an important part of many programmers web application and as such is a neccessary part of their understanding.

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