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In Snow Leopard Server I was able to add lines to the Apache vhost files in /etc/apache2/sites in order to add custom configuration options.

In Lion Server those changes are overwritten as soon as the Web service is restarted. Is there any way to add such configuration options in a way they'll be preserved?

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Yes. In Lion, you do this by:

  • Creating a .conf file that contains your custom Apache configuration directives
  • Creating a .plist file in /etc/apache2/webapps that references your configuration file — see the manage for webapp.plist
  • Running webappctl to load your configuration file into one or more of your websites (virtual hosts) — see the manage for webappctl

A bit more about this can be seen at http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4813

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