I am using an apache web server currently on my Ubuntu system running 12.04 to display backed up movies, music, and photos. I am in the process of coding it to make it more appealing to people who use it, but I am having trouble removing the Apache default directory contents list and replacing it (looks like below).

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How would I remove this default directory contents list and display my content in a grid-style with thumbnails?

In reply to gertvdijk's comment, what extra modules or extensions would I need?

  • Apache is the most featureful web server you'll find. Install the extra modules you need (search using your package manager). And yes, there are lots of alternatives, but those are mostly focussed on speed/performance rather than features. E.g. nginx, lighttpd. – gertvdijk Sep 1 '13 at 15:41
  • What extra modules would I need? Could you be more specific on how to customize Apache? – sameetandpotatoes Sep 1 '13 at 15:44
  • So many ways exist... have you tried Googling on fancy directory listing apache for example? – gertvdijk Sep 1 '13 at 16:22

This gives you a brief description of the Apache alternates, and how to customize Apache directory listing.

Let me start by saying that:

The Apache HTTP Server is the most popular web server on the Internet running on almost 60% of all web servers and also the one we now compare all others to. Apache’s security, stability and flexibility is why most web server administrators choose it and Apache has proven itself over the long run.Apache

Other alternatives that are available out there are:

Lighttpd (pronounced “Lighty”) was born out of a desire to create a fast, secure and reliable web server with a small memory footprint. From a functional standpoint it works much the same as Apache, the most widely used web server, but with less memory used on busy servers and also greater throughput when pushed to its limit. It currently powers several extremely high traffic websites such as Wikipedia and YouTube.Lighttpd

Nginx is bit of a different beast. While it does work as normal it is mainly utilized across higher trafficked websites as a web proxy; in other words when a user visits the nginx server with their browser it will send the request to other servers on its own private network depending on the type of content requested.

Documentation is not clear for beginners, but once you get to know the ins and outs of nginx you will see how powerful it is especially when running larger sites.Nginx

Information is available on the internet, and you may need to do some Googling to find specific instructions for your situation.

For customization, take a look at Better Default Directory Views with HTAccess Quoted form the site:

Beautify your default directory listings! Displaying index-less file views is a great way to share files, but the drab, bare-bones interface is difficult to integrate into existing designs. While there are many scripts available to customize the appearance and functionality of default directory navigation, most of these methods are either too complicated, too invasive, or otherwise insufficient for expedient directory styling. In this comprehensive tutorial, you will learn how to use the built-in functionality of Apache’s mod_autoindex module to style and enhance your default directory views with a smorgasbord of stylistic and functional improvements.

Also take a look at Official Manual

  • 1
    Hey, Mitch, this doesn't exactly answer the question they have since their massive question overhaul in their last edit. They are now specifically asking how to customize Apache to change how the directory autolisting is displayed... – Thomas Ward Sep 1 '13 at 15:59
  • Sorry Mitch, but based on gertvdijk's comment, I decided that since Apache seems to be the best web server to use, I should focus on customizing it to fit my requirements. – sameetandpotatoes Sep 1 '13 at 16:10
  • That's OK, take a look at the additions. – Mitch Sep 1 '13 at 16:12

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