I have a web server (Apache2) that i access with FileZilla.

On my web server i have a dir /home/admin/www that i binded to /var/www. So i can access it with FTP. This works perfect!

But everytime i restart my web server i have to do the bind again and again. Can't i say to my webserver that those maps need to be binded for always? Also i need to reset all my permissions everytime again, what am i doing wrong?

1 Answer 1


A better and more secure solution (i get uneasy with the internet having access to an admins home folder!) is to create a webroot folder in /

Terminal time!

cd /
sudo mkdir /webroot
sudo groupadd webdev
sudo usermod -a -G webdev yourusername 
sudo chown www-data:webdev /webroot/

Now point apache to your new document root /webroot at the bottom of your apache config. This can be found here: /etc/apache2/apache2.conf

sudo nano /etc/apache2/apache2.conf

CTRL-O to save, CTRL-X to exit in nano if you are not familiar with it.

Simply replace DocumentRoot /var/www/ with /webroot/

Copy your webfiles now to webroot.

sudo /etc/init.d/apache2 reload

Apache should now have restarted with all the configurations loaded.

This has created a directory in root called webroot, owned by apache2, and group owner is the new group webdev, which your user is now appended to member of (this does not replace any groups!). This will allow you to edit the files in the FTP!

This is a very simple solution for a one-website apache server. More work is required if you plan on running multiple sites (creating separate folders for them in webroot for example)

The advantages of this are that if someone does find a vulnerability, they are locked into the webroot folder, and not your home folder! Also if you ever needed to allow any more users to modify the site, you can add their user to the webdev group with sudo usermod -a -G theirusername webdev

Hope this helps!

Kind Regards

  • Not a problem :) do you mind if i rename the title to better reflect the answer i have given?
    – Laice
    Oct 17, 2011 at 10:31
  • certainly not :-) Oct 17, 2011 at 12:20
  • for some reason I was getting no such user webdev when I used your command >sudo groupadd webdev I tried this and it seemed to work. Well added the user in /etc/group file anyway. sudo usermod -a wwwlogin -G webdev
    – Benaiah
    Mar 30, 2013 at 15:20
  • This was my fault, in my answer I switched round the user and group inadvertently, this was corrected by Damon, lesson learned!
    – Laice
    Oct 4, 2013 at 9:27
  • @Damon, I think you need to set appropriate permissions such that the owner (www-data) and group (webdev) have the same permissions like for a directory: it should be 775 (instead of default 755) and 664 (instead of 644) for files.
    – Eduardo B.
    Feb 11, 2014 at 18:35

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