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How can you avoid using chmod 0777 to enable installs?

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On a private server with a small, controlled set of users, there is no need to use a chmod 777 to make the Joomla! folders writable in order to perform installs. You can set the server up so that both Apache and FTP have control of site files.

Directions

  1. Edit the Apache user.conf file and tell apache to run under the FTP account.
  2. chmod the entire site to 644 or 744. Apache should be able to run just fine that way.

Optional

  1. chgrp the entire web space to the FTP group so that only those with FTP access can write to the server.
  2. chmod the entire web space to 764 or 664 will be possible giving other users write access as well