Now that you know how to write a primitive handler, let's try something more complicated.
Let's say we want to password-protect this directory. We want the login to be "spam", and the password to be "eggs".
First, we need to tell Apache to call our authentication handler when
authentication is needed. We do this by adding the
PythonAuthenHandler. So now our config looks like this:
<Directory /mywebdir> AddHandler python-program .py PythonHandler myscript PythonAuthenHandler myscript </Directory>
Notice that the same script is specified for two different handlers. This is fine, because if you remember, mod_python will look for different functions within that script for the different handlers.
Next, we need to tell Apache that we are using Basic HTTP authentication, and only valid users are allowed (this is fairly basic Apache stuff, so I'm not going to go into details here). Our config looks like this now:
<Directory /mywebdir> AddHandler python-program .py PythonHandler myscript PythonAuthenHandler myscript AuthType Basic AuthName "Restricted Area" require valid-user </Directory>
Now we need to write an authentication handler function in myscript.py. A basic authentication handler would look like this:
def authenhandler(req): pw = req.get_basic_auth_pw() user = req.connection.user if user == "spam" and pw == "eggs": return apache.OK else: return apache.HTTP_UNAUTHORIZED
Let's look at this line by line:
This is the handler function declaration. This one is called
authenhandler because, as we already described above, mod_python takes
the name of the directive (
PythonAuthenHandler), drops the word
"Python" and converts it lower case.
pw = req.get_basic_auth_pw()
This is how we obtain the password. The basic HTTP authentication transmits the password in base64 encoded form to make it a little bit less obvious. This function decodes the password and returns it as a string.
user = req.connection.user
This is how you obtain the username that the user entered. In case you're wondering, the connection member of the Request object is an object that contains information specific to a connection. With HTTP Keep-Alive, a single connection can serve multiple requests.
NOTE: The two lines above MUST be in that order. The reason is that
connection.user is assigned a value by the get_basic_auth_pw()
function. If you try to use the
connection.user value without calling
get_basic_auth_pw() first, it will be None.
if user == "spam" and pw == "eggs": return apache.OK
We compare the values provided by the user, and if they are what we
were expecting, we tell Apache to go ahead and proceed by returning
apache.OK. Apache will then proceed to the next handler. (which in
this case would be handler() if it's a
else: return apache.HTTP_UNAUTHORIZED
Else, we tell Apache to return HTTP_UNAUTHORIZED to the client.