noob needs help with alias locations and php

Francis Daly francis at
Thu May 28 08:02:53 UTC 2015

On Wed, May 27, 2015 at 09:49:27PM -0700, Mike Wright wrote:

Hi there,

In general in nginx, one request is handled in one location. Only the
configuration in, or inherited into, that location, matters.

It you use rewrite-module directives, things are a bit more complicated.

There is lots at; it may be hard to find the
one piece of information you want, but it is probably there somewhere.

> The server handles files and php scripts as long as they are at or
> beneath the document root.  Here are the two problems I haven't been
> able to figure out:
>     Directory index of ... is forbidden

What one request do you make that leads to that problem?

What is the one location that handles that request?

>     Can't get to docs not beneath the document_root.

Same questions.

> Example of places I want to go:
> non-root targets:               as:
> /home/mike/Movies/index.html    /movies/index.html    200
> /home/mike/Movies/index.php     /movies/index.php     "File not found."
> /home/mike/Movies/1/index.html  /movies/1/index.html  404
> /home/mike/Movies/1/index.php   /movies/1/index.php   "File not found."
> File not found : "Primary script unknown";
> 404 : the log shows the correct GET path;
> A lot of my experiments end up with 301 : endless redirects;
> http {
>   index             index.html index.php;
>   ...
> server {
>   listen            80;
>   server_name       localhost lo;
>   root              /var/www/sites/localhost/www;
>   location          / {
>     try_files       $uri $uri/ /index.html /index.php;
>   }

The request "/movies/index.html" will be handled in this location:

>   location          /movies {
>     alias           /home/mike/Movies/;
>   }

(Usually, it is good if the number of /s at the end of "alias" and and
the end of "location" are the same.)

The request "/movies/index.php" will be handled in this location:

>   location       ~  \.php$ {
>     root            /var/www/sites/localhost/www;
>     include         fastcgi_params;
>     fastcgi_pass;
>     fastcgi_index   index.php;
>     fastcgi_param   SCRIPT_FILENAME $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
>   }
> }

Enable more logging; or "tcpdump", to see what nginx sends to your fastcgi
server. "/movies/index.php" is unlikely to be correctly handled here.

Good luck with it,

Francis Daly        francis at

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