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From "Boyle Owen" <Owen.Bo...@swx.com>
Subject RE: [users@httpd] How to hide Apache server type from public
Date Tue, 03 May 2005 08:55:49 GMT
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Computer Programmer [mailto:myprogram@gmail.com]
> 
> I went to http://www.whois.sc/ to check info about my domain 
> and included 
> in that info is my server type (which is Apache). How do they 
> know that my 
> server type is Apache? 

Because your server tells them. It is normal for a webserver to respond with a "Server:" in
the message header. This information is useful to identify the server when it is part of a
chain of proxies.

> And how can I hide such info or at 
> least let them 
> think I'm using a different type of server?

Does it worry you that the lock on your front door has the word "Yale" embossed on it?

You can control the level of information with ServerSignature and the related ServerTokens
directives, see
http://httpd.apache.org/docs-2.0/mod/core.html#serversignature for details.

If you want to lie about it, you'll need to edit the source code and recompile (look for the
server_signature constant).
 
I assume you're worried about this because you imagine that advertising to the world your
server brand-name is some kind of security risk? It isn't. For many cross-correlated reasons:
1) hackers do not preselect on server signature. If they did, apache users would not get their
logs filled with IIS exploits (nimda, code red, etc.) and we do.
2) if a vulnerability *did* exist in your version of apache, you would get hacked anyway.
Lying about your product-name wouldn't save you - because of reason (1).
3) Apache is subject to fewer exploits than IIS. If (1) wasn't true, lying about your product
name would only *attract* exploits.


The only way to ensure security is to keep the server software, all modules (PHP, mod_ssl
etc.) and the underlying OS up-to-date all the time.

Rgds,
Owen Boyle
Disclaimer: Any disclaimer attached to this message may be ignored. 



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