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The Web server, php.scripts.psu.edu, is the rollout of a dynamic Web content service designed for use by students, staff, faculty, departments, courses, and student organizations who use PHP Hypertext Preprocessor technology. Information, guidelines and resources for using this service follow below.

NOTE: The Database Course-Related Service is currently a separate service. These services may be combined in a subsequent phase of this rollout.

General Guidelines and Information

  • The service is available to all Penn State students, staff and faculty with Personal Web space, student organizations with Web space on the Student Organizations Web Service, colleges and departments at University Park and other Penn State locations with ITS departmental Web space and courses with Course Online Accounts (COLA).

  • This is a production service for general purpose use. It must be used in accordance with Penn State policies such as AD-20, AD-52 and when appropriate AD-54, RAG-16 and RA-14.

  • Code auditing will not be performed. Users may update their respective code as they wish; however, it should be noted that there is an increased risk for error/failure compared to other production services, which may be caused by programming errors made by others using this service.

  • This service is for execution of PHP code only. SSI and PHP functions which call other programs have been disabled. CGI programs may be installed on other servers. Additional PHP security features such as safe_mode have been enabled.

  • Server Side Includes (SSI) and .htaccess files are enabled with policies similar to other ITS Web services. You may restrict access with passwords via .htaccess and .htpasswd files, or within the methods provided by PHP (HTTP auth, CGI/Cookies).

  • With the release of Phase II, Penn State WebAccess authentication will be provided to restrict access to select sites, per request. If you are interested in using WebAccess to authenticate Penn State Access Account and/or Friends of Penn State Account holders, please send a request to dbadmin@aset.psu.edu.

  • Phase II offers SSL encryption (HTTPS) for select sites by request. If you wish to use SSL with your site, send a request to dbadmin@aset.psu.edu. While SSL encryption provides added security, there remain other vectors for disclosure. For this reason, sensitive and confidential data should not be used on this service at this time even with SSL protection. The plan is to improve access methods with subsequent implementations, enabling developers to consider the management of more sensitive information.

  • Phase II upgrades PHP from version 4 to version 5. Please note some differences between the versions.

Resources

php.scripts.psu.edu may be used to process PHP content in ".php" files (files that end with ".php"). Content for various ITS Web services may be processed as PHP via:

  • Penn State Personal Web accounts
    The local URL paths will be the same on php.scripts.psu.edu as it is on www.personal.psu.edu. For example, content located on the Web at http://www.personal.psu.edu/users/x/y/xyz123/ will be visible on the PHP service as http://php.scripts.psu.edu/users/x/y/xyz123/.

    Information about Penn State Personal Access Account Storage Space (PASS) and Personal Web accounts.

  • Penn State Departmental Web accounts
    The local URL paths will be the same on php.scripts.psu.edu as it is under www.psu.edu/dept/. For example, content located on the Web at http://www.psu.edu/dept/department_name/ will be visible on the PHP service as http://php.scripts.psu.edu/dept/department_name/.

    Information about Departmental Web and Disk space.

  • Penn State Student Organization Web Service accounts
    The local URL paths will be the same under php.scripts.psu.edu/clubs/ as it is under www.clubs.psu.edu. For example, content located on the Web at http://www.clubs.psu.edu/up/organization_name/ will be visible on the PHP service as http://php.scripts.psu.edu/clubs/up/organization_name/.

    Information about Student Organization Web Service accounts.

  • Penn State Course On-Line Accounts (COLA)
    The local URL paths will be the same under php.scripts.psu.edu/courses/ as it is under www.courses.psu.edu. For example, content located on the Web at http://www.courses.psu.edu/art/art100_xyz101/ will be visible on the PHP service as http://php.scripts.psu.edu/courses/art/art100_xyz101/.

    Information about Course On-Line Accounts (COLA).

With the advent of Phase II, URLs ending in .php on the aforementioned sites will be automatically redirected to the corresponding URL on http://php.scripts.psu.edu/.

Discussion / Announcements mailing list

Users may subscribe to the L-PHPScripts list to discuss problems and challenges with other users and administrators and receive update announcements specific to php.scripts.psu.edu. In addition, all updates, pertinent information, etc. regarding this service will be posted to this list.

  • To subscribe:

    • Send an e-mail from your preferred e-mail address to L-PHPScripts-subscribe-request@lists.psu.edu. The subject and body should be left blank. Once your request is received, confirmation instructions will be sent to you.

  • To unsubscribe:

    • Send an e-mail from your subscribed e-mail address to L-PHPScripts-unsubscribe-request@lists.psu.edu. The subject and body should be left blank. Once your request is received, confirmation instructions will be sent to you.

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For assistance please write to helpdesk@psu.edu or see our Help Sources.

Last revised: Friday, April 26, 2013.