How do I configure apache to always return a 404 for URLs whose path component starts with two slashes (i.e. "//")?

We're getting such requests only from bots that don't understand scheme-relative URLs (so when they see a URL like "//somecdn.com/thingy.js" they request "http://oursite.com//somecdn.com/thingy.js"). They get a 404 response, which is fine. The problem is the 404 comes from our Django code, which dutifully then sends us an email saying someone got a 404 and their referrer was our site.

Here's our relevant apache config:

DocumentRoot /nowhere

Alias /static/ /our/static/files
Alias /uploads/ /our/uploaded/files

<VirtualHost :*80>

  ServerName oursite.com

  WSGIScriptAlias / /our/wsgi/script


I tried inserting RedirectMatch 404 "^//" After DocumentRoot, but the request still ended up at the WSGI script. Changing the regex to "^/.*$" 404'd every request (as I would expect). "^\/\/" didn't seem to match anything.

I'm assuming I'm running afoul of some kind of multiple-/ squashing, but I don't know how to get around it.

This Apache 2.2.22 with mod_wsgi 3.3 on Ubuntu 12.04.

  • So I don't have to update my apache configs every time we use a scheme-relative URL with a new domainname. – morganwahl Dec 1 '14 at 15:16
  • For the record, I also tried defining a Location, which the Apache docs seem to say would be doable, but I couldn't figure out the right invocation. – morganwahl Dec 2 '14 at 20:47

You can use a RewriteCond on %{THE_REQUEST}:


The full HTTP request line sent by the browser to the server (e.g., "GET /index.html HTTP/1.1"). This does not include any additional headers sent by the browser. This value has not been unescaped (decoded), unlike most other variables below.

Which unlike %{REQUEST_URI} will not have already been decoded or have duplicate slashes folded.

# method, space(s), then URL
RewriteCond %{THE_REQUEST} ^\S+\s+//
RewriteRule .* - [R=404]
  • So it is possible =). +1. – AD7six Dec 2 '14 at 20:36
  • I didn't think of looking for a variable with the unmodified path. I'll try that out when I get a chance. – morganwahl Dec 2 '14 at 20:45
  • Doesn't seem to be matching any request. I've added those directives at the root of the config, maybe they need to be within the virtualhost? – morganwahl Dec 10 '14 at 19:25
  • RewriteEnging on helps :-). – morganwahl Dec 10 '14 at 20:53
  • Also, @covener , this didn't work for me in the server config, (rewrite log had nothing written to it), but did work in the vhost. Oh well, good enough. – morganwahl Dec 10 '14 at 20:54

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