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I've borrowed some mod_expires code from the HTML5 Boilerplate that adds some sensible defaults for asset expiry (I have filename version revving configured with htaccess so I can add mtimes before asset extensions like script.123456789.js):

ExpiresActive on
ExpiresDefault                                      "access plus 1 month"

ExpiresByType text/css                              "access plus 1 year"

# Data interchange
ExpiresByType application/json                      "access plus 0 seconds"
ExpiresByType application/xml                       "access plus 0 seconds"
ExpiresByType text/xml                              "access plus 0 seconds"

# ... etc ...

However, I'd like to disable these on my development server (which sets a DEVELOPMENT=1 environment variable). Is it possible to conditionally disable mod_expires (perhaps ExpiresActive On) in 2.4.4 like you can with mod_access if an environment variable is set (Allow from env=DEVELOPMENT) ?

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1 Answer 1

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I don't know any easy way of doing this based on the value of an environment variable. You might be able to figure out a way with mod_rewrite, but it would be ugly.

An easier method is to have your development server set a command-line switch, -DDEVELOPMENT, for Apache, instead of (or in addition to) the environment variable. Then the Apache config becomes trivial:

ExpiresActive on

The right place to set the switch depends on your distro. In Debian & family, you set


in /etc/apache2/envvars. In RHEL, you set


in /etc/sysconfig/httpd.

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+1 This is genius! Plus it's part of the core so my host won't choke on <IfDefine>. Many thanks! –  PhpMyCoder Jul 14 '13 at 6:48
Good :) One thing to add is that command-line switches apply to all virtual hosts on your server. But for something general like -DDEVELOPMENT that's probably fine. –  Andrew Schulman Jul 14 '13 at 10:29
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