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Jurgens du Toit.
Systems Developer.
Problem Solver.

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18 March 2010

Redirect All Requests To Index.php Using .htaccess

By Jurgens du Toit

In one of my pet projects, I redirect all requests to index.php, which then decides what to do with it:

###Simple Example

This snippet in your .htaccess will ensure that all requests for files and folders that does not exists will be redirected to index.php:

RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteRule . index.php [L]

This enables the rewrite engine:

RewriteEngine on

This checks for existing folders (-d) and files (-f):

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f

And this does the actual redirecting:

RewriteRule . index.php [L]

###Extended Example

You can extend this to pass the requested path to the index.php file by modifying the RewriteRule to the following:

RewriteRule ^(.*)$ index.php?q=$1 [L,QSA]
  • The ^(.*)$ part tells the rewrite module that we want to pass down the whole requested path as one parameter.
  • The QSA part tells the module to append any query strings to the request.
  • The ?q=$1 tells the module how to pass down the parameter. In this case, it’s passed down as the q parameter.

You can extend this even further by using regular expressions. For example:

RewriteRule ^([^/]*)(.*)$ index.php?first=$1&second=$2 [L,QSA]

This will pass down the first part of the path as the first parameter, and the rest as the second. So the following request

will result in

This allows for some creative ways to do clean URLs.

###Trouble Shooting

If it’s not working, make sure that mod_rewrite is installed on Apache. On a unix system you can just do

sudo a2enmod rewrite

to achieve that.

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