Managing your Vybe Networks web space

This document is about managing your basic web pages. If you have a virtual domain on Vybe Networks you should also check out the virtual hosting tech sheet.

Most accounts on Vybe Networks come with web hosting. You can view your page, once you have created one, as http://www.Vex.Net/~login/ where “login” is your user login on Vybe Networks.

We can’t tell you how to actually create your site but there are many resources on the net that discuss HTML and related aspects of web development.

Once you have created your web site you need to copy it to your Vybe Networks account under the directory “/home/WEB/login” where “login” is your Vybe Networks login. You can do this with various SFTP (Secure File Transfer Protocol) programs, with scp (secure copy) or rsync. For example, Windows users can download the free (for personal use) program at Another option is There is also a version of rsync for Windows. Connect to s and log in using your Vybe Networks login and password.

There is a symlink under your home directory on the web server called public_html pointing to your actual web directory for convenience. This allows your existing setups to work if they are using the traditional location.

If you prefer to edit your site on your local system there are existing tools that help you build sites and these generally will allow you to connect to your site using the above information and synchronize it with your local changes. Also, many file transfer programs have a facility to edit a remote file using whatever program you like. For example, the current version of Putty: allows you to right-click on a remote file and edit it. The default editor is usually “Wordpad” but you can change that to your preferred editor. Just make sure that you select a plain text editor and not a word processesor such as Word.

If you have a shell account, you can use it to manage your pages. You can get a current copy of your site with this unix command: rsync -av /home/login/public_html/ Replace “login” with your Vybe Networks login. It will ask for your password. To sync up your local copy with the web server run this command: rsync -av /home/login/public_html/

Once the files are in your web directory your web page will be served to the world. Some caveats:

  • Make sure that your files are world readable

  • Make sure that you have an index file in the directory

  • Make sure that the files are installed under your web directory

The index file is usually called “index.html” but, depending on how it is written it may also be called “”, “index.php”, “index.shtml” or something else. A basic HTML page is “index.html.”

You can also use web publishing software. Check the web for these. With these it is much easier to create and publish web pages.

You can also hire a company such as Vybe Networks to build and maintain your site. Contact for details.

The web server is actually on a different machine than that which you log in to as shell, and the web server machine is not generally accessible by regular users for security reasons. This means, at this time, you can not directly access the error logs.

Most times, however, the error logs are wanted in order to debug CGI scripts; and there are other ways to go about this. In PERL for example, try putting the following code near the top of your script: use CGI::Carp qw(fatalsToBrowser);

In Python there is a simple and flexible technique whereby you can easily redirect the stderr output to the browser, with code like the following:

import cgitb; cgitb.enable()

Putting the above code near the beginning of your Python script will cause any run-time error messages to get output to the browser with a full trace of the error, the error condition and the line that caused the error as well as some of the surrounding code.

With a little effort it’s very easy (and even more robust in many cases) to debug your scripts without the server error log access.

While we have our own web based logging utility for your web logs, we also make standard logs available to our clients. Each day we can put your access logs into a directory called “logs” in your home directory. The file is called “web_access” and includes all access to your page accessed under your virtual domain. Any existing web_access file is renamed to web_access.<date> and previous one are similarly renamed.

There is no need for a cgi-bin directory to run CGIs on your Vybe Networks web site. You can, however, create one for yourself under your web directory (usually public_html) if you want, but it will be the same as any other directory.

Any filename which ends in .cgi, and has been given the proper executable file permissions (chmod 755 or chmod a+rx), in any web directory will be considered a CGI script and executed.

Further, any file which ends in .py will also be considered a CGI script (because we like Python so much).

To password protect your page, go into the directory that you want to protect and create a file .htaccess with the following lines.

AuthType Basic
AuthName "Some description/name of the Site"
require valid-user
AuthUserFile /home/user/passwd/anything

Whatever you use instead of “Some description of the sub-site” will appear on the pop-up login box. Replace “user” with your Vybe Networks login name. The “anything” can be the name of the directory or something else identifying the sub-site. This allows you to set up other protected sites later.

Now go into your home directory and create a directory called passwd with the command mkdir passwd. This directory should be accessible to the web browser so set its permissions with chmod 711 passwd”. Run htpasswd -c /home/user/passwd/anything login_name putting your login name as login_name to create your first password. You can then add or modify users by issuing the command htpasswd /home/user/passwd/anything name for each name you want to give access to. Do not add the “-c” in the command after the first run of the command. Make sure that this file, and the .htaccess file, is world readable with chmod 644 <filename>.

Server side includes are always available, but require you to name your files with an .shtml extension.

If you want plain .html files all to be processed with server side includes you must create an .htaccess file in your web directory with the following directive in it:

AddHandler server-parsed .html

If you have a lot of web pages that do not require SSI you may find this will slow down your site as the server will have to parse every single file even if there are no SSI commands. In that case you would be better to use the .shtml extension method.

<P> There is a web form script available for general use. You can access it as To use it simply make sure that you have the following fields defined in your script. Use something like this to specify variables and values:

<INPUT TYPE="HIDDEN" NAME="<variable>" VALUE="<my data>">

The variable names are defined below. These two are mandatory:

  • _TO_: Who to send the results to. Multiple recipients will work fine. Each recipient must end in @Vex.Net.

  • SUBJECT: What the subject should be on the mail message sent to recipients

The following fields are optional:

  • _REPLY-TO_: Who should be listed in the “Reply-To” field of the mail message. Default is to have no Reply-to field.

  • _CHECK_EMPTIES_: Colon separated list of fields that should not be blank. Default is empty string.

  • _TITLE_: Title to use for page. Default is “Form accepted”

  • _ERR_TITLE_: Title to use for page on error. Default is “Error”.

  • _RETURN_URL_: URL to return to on success Defaults to using internal page

  • _USE_RECAPTCHA_: Use to verify humanity (private key in ~login/.recaptcha) Defaults to not using

In addition, any other variables from your script will be reported in the email.

There are many web counters out there but you can simply use the one that Vybe Networks has installed. Contact and we will set up a counter for you. You will get a URL which can be treated as an image on your site.

However, perhaps a counter is not what you are really looking for. If what you are looking for is statistics on how many hits you are getting you may find the web logging and stats generating features more useful.