Is there an apache setting where I can kill processes that run longer than 90 seconds? I got a DDOS attack and almost ran out of memory because a bunch of apache process were running for a long time.


Request timeouts

Take a look at the Apache module mod_reqtimeout, the config setting used with it is RequestReadTimeout.

Example: Allow for 5 seconds to complete the TLS handshake, 10 seconds to receive the request headers and 30 seconds for receiving the request body:

RequestReadTimeout handshake=5 header=10 body=30

To enable the module run these commands:

sudo a2enmod reqtimeout            # enable mod_reqtimeout
sudo service apache2 restart       # Re-start Apache

For more details consult Apache 2.4 mod_reqtimeout

Response Timeouts

On the response side, where a DDOS attack has induced lengthy PHP processing, look at max_execution_time PHP setting, which is normally set in php.ini.

The Apache TimeOut setting is for network I/O timeouts. It restricts the time Apache waits for a TCP packet from a client, and the time Apache waits for acknowledgement when a TCP packet is sent to a client.

  • I am on amazon Linux. I see LoadModule reqtimeout_module modules/mod_reqtimeout.so in /etc/httpd/conf.modules.d/00-base.conf. Does this mean it is loaded? – Chris Muench Aug 3 '19 at 5:17
  • To be certain - apachectl -M will list all loaded modules – suspectus Aug 3 '19 at 8:03
  • I have the module enabled. It says their is a default value. Is this used even though I never set directive? – Chris Muench Aug 3 '19 at 23:53
  • Yes, that is correct. You can of course override the settings in your config. Default for body is RequestReadTimeout body=10,minrate=500 – suspectus Aug 4 '19 at 12:16
  • What would you think is a reasonable value. I have a couple file processing uploads that could take 60-90 seconds but is rare – Chris Muench Aug 4 '19 at 15:58

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