[22]Admin folder Location

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[22]Admin folder Location

Post by sp1ke77 » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:46 am

I would like to suggest the inclusion of a variable to define the location of the administrator folder during the installation process.

I always saw that everyone knowing where the admin folder was, as a BIG security risk.

Thank you

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Hackwar » Sun Feb 17, 2008 9:55 am

You can already change this by changing the constants in /includes/defines.php and /administrator/includes/defines.php
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Chris Davenport » Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:31 am

Hannes, I know that is possible in theory, but has it been tested? If it is an officially supported option then I'd like to get it documented.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Hackwar » Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:50 am

I have to admit, I didn't check this yet. I read reports that others have tried this and it worked for them.
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by sp1ke77 » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:12 pm

but couldnt we change all those constants in /includes/defines.php and /administrator/includes/defines.php so that they would respond to the variable defined in configuration.php?

That way, users would need a few seconds to change only one field.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by mihu » Mon Feb 18, 2008 4:19 pm

I think it's a reasonable request to add this to global configuration and also set it up during the installation (if it's possible).
Will this impact backward compatibility?
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by sp1ke77 » Mon Feb 18, 2008 4:31 pm

I think that all the components that use absolute admin paths would need to be changed.
Its a lot of work, but someone has to start it.

I think its worth the trouble. hacking would have be more difficult if the location is not known...

Maybe we could use some redirect script for those components, that would redirect them during install or during use. I'm trying to think a way to do it...

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by kelb » Mon Feb 18, 2008 7:55 pm

I agree on this issue. This might improve security.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by sp1ke77 » Mon Feb 18, 2008 8:28 pm

Let's see if i have a good idea...

In my server, i have some folders that act like redirect links to another folders in the server.

Possible Solution:
1 - At installation, user defines name to admin folder
2 - A redirect folder (or link) is created to redirect the old "administrator" folder to the new user defined one
3 - At components installation and use, every time the folder is called, the files end up in the new one.
4 - After a few months, or in the next joomla release the components are already updated and link is no longer required.

I know this might make harder for the older components, but considering the beneficts, i would be willing to change all my components and share the modified files with the community.

Maybe the change isnt that hard to make if the community helps out.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by kelb » Mon Feb 18, 2008 8:39 pm

Name of admin folder will be stored in the database or configuration file. Then joomla will read database or config file. Then joomla will redirect all queries to this folder. This is so easy...?

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by sp1ke77 » Mon Feb 18, 2008 10:14 pm

So, we all agree its doable?

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by moodsign » Wed Feb 20, 2008 9:02 am

Hi,
Good idea indeed
If we store this variable in the main configuration file, that would mean if you change it admin > site configuration, the whole admin folder will be renamed/moved then . possible that ??
I guess there is an impact on upgrades too, as the admin folder will not be generic then

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Nakebod » Wed Feb 20, 2008 12:41 pm

I don't know if storing this in the configuration file is a smart idea, IF.. you can also change it via a global configuration.

Because, what if:
You change your admin folder via the global configuration.
The /administrator/ folder needs to be moved/copied to the new location.
There are enough reasons to think of that this can fail, wrong permissions, diskspace/quota, etc...
So, your Joomla install thinks it needs to be /thisisabetterplace/ but this directory doesn't exist because it failed somehow.
It needs a lot of error checking.

If you let the user decide the location during the install, and it's written in the config file, but can't be changed afterwards via the global configuration, it shouldn't be a big problem.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by mihu » Tue Mar 04, 2008 5:26 pm

Hackwar wrote:You can already change this by changing the constants in /includes/defines.php and /administrator/includes/defines.php
I did the change mentioned above and also rename the folder; however, I have no luck.
I did a quick search, and we got lots of constant "administrator" float around.

I got a strange behavior. If I change administrator folder to other name, the back-end will try to load mootools from xxx.com/new_name/media/... instead of xxx.com/media (correct place).
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Tonie » Sun Mar 09, 2008 10:11 am

If it's a setting, it won't automatically rename the /administrator directory, in my opinion this is file system realm.

This will have consequences for each extension that uses /administrator in one way or the other somewhere in their code.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by mihu » Sun Mar 09, 2008 7:31 pm

We could provide the capability for user to rename the folder manually in the future if it's possible.
As Hackwar pointed out, we have defined "constant", but it seems to me we are not using it everywhere.
If we do use the constant instead of hard code "administrator", it might save us sometimes later on.
What do you think?
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by JasynL1977 » Tue Mar 11, 2008 6:00 pm

I have already tried some of the things suggested in this thread, particularly renaming/moving the control panel to another location. Let me tell you, it is NOT EASY!

The problem is that references to the control panel are hard-coded in many, many places. At this time, it is not feasible, nor recommended.

I did manage to move many of the site's folders (including the configuration file) outside of the public directory. This requires changing the following two files:

includes/defines.php
administrator/defines.php

Although, it would be easy to make all references based on a variable, for a future version of Joomla, I would also advocate going one step further. I have created a thread on this called "Loosely-Couple Control Panel, Web Site; Add Authoring Site." Please visit this thread...

http://forum.joomla.org/viewtopic.php?f=500&t=273822

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Tonie » Tue Mar 11, 2008 8:16 pm

Having all references to /administrator coming from one variable or constant would be a step in the right direction (whichever that is). If this would be incorporated in 1.6, extension developers would also be able to use this (which is pretty important if an admin directory is to be moved).

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by mihu » Tue Mar 11, 2008 8:50 pm

Tonie wrote:Having all references to /administrator coming from one variable or constant would be a step in the right direction (whichever that is). If this would be incorporated in 1.6, extension developers would also be able to use this (which is pretty important if an admin directory is to be moved).
I would recommend "joomla" to inform 3rd party as soon as we are sure about this "constant" administrator thing.
It will be a mess if we are trying to take care this for backward compatibility in the future.
What do you guys think ?
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Chris Davenport » Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:06 pm

I would argue that if you find anywhere that /administrator is used instead of JPATH_ADMINISTRATOR it is a bug and you should report it as such (preferably with a patch that fixes it). Ideally this should be fixed for 1.5.2.

As for being able to change the path in global configuration, that is rightfully a white paper proposal for 1.6.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by willebil » Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:31 pm

More likely 1.5.3 because we're about to freeze code-base for 1.5.2 ;-)

And Chris outlines the best way to make this happen, a patch is the best way to solve this.

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by mihu » Wed Mar 12, 2008 12:40 am

I'll create a patch after 1.5.2 release. I will put it into my to-do list.
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by CirTap » Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:10 pm

Hi,

moving the admin, framework and site into distinct locations is already possible using the various "defines.php" as mentioned before, simply "toggling" a few values; no hacking of absolute paths.
However, it needs a .htaccess in /administrator in order to catch the /media folder which is used in "both" applications.
The Administrator would then be available via it's own top-secret subdomain.

WG members can find a post about my experiment in the private forum; search for: Separation of Front-end, Back-end, and Framework aka "The Paranoid's Guide to Joomla!"

Final directory structure was
/htdocs/administrator ~~ admin.example.com
/htdocs/libraries
/htdocs/www ~~ http://www.example.com
*after* installing J! as-is in the "www" root, then moving things around.
It works *now*, but requires all extensions to use the offical JPATH_* constants and Framework API.
Legacy stuff will likely fail, didn't tested any of it.

according to Louis:
louis.landry wrote:This is absolutely the direction we intend to move things. 1.6 will have yet another step in this direction as we make things more decoupled. In future releases keep an eye on the /media directory too as we incorporate cross-application asset loaders etc.
Have fun,
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Valc » Sat Mar 15, 2008 4:03 pm

Wow, nice post!
I was very happy when read about the "Good news" into Joomla! 1.5 and worry when, into de practice, this one does not work by default. (stil.. but sure works fine by default in a future :) )
I can to see some problems than cause this one does not work by default and, for me, a "clean and fast" solution is not easy in this moment.

For example:
The word "administrator" is used into more than one file types (xml, php, db, etc)
The word "administrator" is used for "access level" (administrator, author, publisher, etc), "system/language messages" and paths/URLs
The word "administrator", than we need to change for another word/or constant, can appear into Joomla! CMS or other non Joomla! extensions (when they are not using/implementing the "constant value" or "JPATH_ADMINISTRATOR"

(and the same for other folder than into Joomla! 1.5 have a "constant value"; but, than is not used always into the source code like"installtion", "libraries", etc)

A very dirty and fast solution than can work is, for example:
change every "administrator" word into the source code of CMS or extensions by "another_word"

From GNU/Linux, we can to do that very easy using something like this one:

Change in every file the word administrator for another_word:

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs perl -pi -e 's/administrator/another_word/g'
Change in every folder the word administrator for another_word

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -type d | xargs perl -pi -e 's/administrator/another_word/g'
When is finish, you can to install Joomla! and access to de administrator by URL "http/tusitio/another_word/ ; but, into the messages from the system/language, you can begin to read "another_word" and into de access user level, the same.. (is working, you have changed, but is not usefull :P )

If there are people than want to practice/experiment only for hobby or than does not want to wait the "default solution" can try to implement de "constant value" or the "other_word" only into the files were is necessary to replace it.

Here are some console instructions than you can combine o adaptate for help you to found "strings by criteria"

Find and create file "lista1.txt" of all file lines than contain the string "/administrator"

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs grep "/administrator" > lista1.txt
Find and create file "lista2.txt" of all file than contain the string "administrator/"

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs grep "administrator/" > lista2.txt
Find and create file "lista3.txt" of all file than contain the string "administrator"

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs grep "administrator" > lista3.txt
if you need to replace "/administrator" or "administrator/" for anorther word then you need scape the special chartset "/" using "\"/. For example:

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs perl -pi -e 's/\/administrator/\/another_word/g'
(change into every file the string /administrator for /another_word)

If you only want to search into specific type files, then you can to use something like this one:

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -name "*.php" | xargs grep "/administrator" > lista4.txt

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.1-Stable-Full_Package -name "*.xml" | xargs grep "/administrator" > lista5.txt
I am not windows user, but i know about some tools than let you to do similar from a more intuitive and graffic environment
Notepad ++ is a free tool; but, you only can to change massive strings into files "folder-by-folder"
Search and replace is a shareware tool and you can use for free into a period of time
Dreamweaver has a very good search and replace tool; but, i thing is very much money if you only needs a "search and replace tool"

Experiment!! Experiment!! :P

I have attached the file lista.txt than contain the word "administrator" into Joomla! 1.5.1 package

Cheers and good look!
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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by CirTap » Sat Mar 15, 2008 8:18 pm

well, if no-ne would ever install a legacy extension and has too much time to go through all the fuzz applying this "hack" for each update ... We've been there already with J! 1.0. Why start it all over again for no good?

The reason why I posted my experiments in a private forum and not in public, was to prevent users to try-and-error this method without really understanding what they're doing.
Telling people to grep thru the source is a pretty bad idea, imho. If this works for you, fine, but I'd suggest to remove your instruction. Seriously.

Changing the (four) define.php files of each J! application seems more reasonable to me and definitely safer[/i] to me. And since any native 1.5+ extension would have to support the constants, there'll be no issues.
Simply put, due to the thousands of legacy extensions out there in the wild, this directory layout was not made the default in 1.5. I'm confident it will officially supported in a future release, maybe in 1.6, maybe later.

Have fun, and good luck to you, too :)

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Re: Admin folder Location

Post by Valc » Sun Mar 16, 2008 1:20 am

Hi CirTap :)
Nah, this is not a "hack" is only a "very dirty and fast solution than can work; but not usefully".. i prefer wait for the "oficial solution" than sure works fine by default.. than use this one over a production site!.

I was only talking about:
The problems a can to see in Joomla! 1.5.1 package than does not let this one work fine

A posible "fast and dirty solution than i tests and work" and you can to apply the same into an extension (only replacing every "administrator" for "another_word")

A posible way to found and replace trying to implement constant/another word but knowing what are you exactally doing and change a source line when is necessary for the purpose (sure, in this case, if you don't know what are you doing never "only testing-error and praying god.. this one can not to work")

If you don't like talk abut experiment in public is right; but, when i write in a public place, you and others, can to say what thing about that.. and i like more that because finally i thing every person than read all the topic can take conclusions, ideas, learn, participate, etc and then a "very dirty and fast solution can to be convert into a right provisional hack" (or no jajajaj)

Of curse, every hack than you apply to the original source code can cause integration conficts when you need upgrade CMS/extensions or simply install extensions.

Is not my idea purpose a "crazy test" if you undertand that.. :eek:

If you have some previous public work to show, can you link the information?

Sorry for my english is dificult for me to be very expresive or extended/found the best and more right words in english language.. but i tryyyyyyyyyyy!!

See you
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Re: [22]Admin folder Location

Post by ricky_porto » Sun Dec 21, 2008 1:42 am

It's not as easy as it sounds.
Just installed a clean Joomla 1.5.8 to test
changed both /includes/defines.php and /administrator/includes/defines.php to:
define( 'JPATH_ADMINISTRATOR', JPATH_ROOT.DS.'xpto' );
I can now login using www.exemple/xpto
but once logged in the menus do not work there is a javascript error!

checked the source of the document and noticed that the new xtpo/index.php tries to load the 2 js files from a different folder

<script type="text/javascript" src="/joomla/xpto/includes/js/joomla.javascript.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript" src="/joomla/xpto/media/system/js/mootools.js"></script>

as oposed to the administration/index.php that loads them as following:
<script type="text/javascript" src="/joomla/includes/js/joomla.javascript.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript" src="/joomla/media/system/js/mootools.js"></script>

this problems is from CORE module itself, which mean that joomla is not following its own rules!!

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Re: [22]Admin folder Location

Post by Valc » Sun Dec 21, 2008 12:05 pm

Hello,
Yes, i try to say that before. The source code is not following its own rules.
Now than PHP4 is dead, maybe into Joomla! 1.6.x and using PHP 5, SimpleXML and SimpleXMLElement->xpath can help to solve and implement very much thinks.

If for security reasons i needs now to change the administrator folder name, i thing the best way, for me, is apply the "dirty and fast solution". In this way, you must take the control and test over everything than you needs to use, update, etc (sure, maybe is not the best for you or for others.. and maybe for you it's not as easy as it sounds; but you are sure about one think, every word "administrator" is changed to "any_other_word", and that, can work fine if you control and test over every think).

have a nice day
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Re: [22]Admin folder Location

Post by baibhav » Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:55 pm

As mentioned above I changed every "administrator" string in Joomla files into "mydesiredfoldername".
(Used Dreamweaver for it).And I changed the administrator folder name to it as well. I tackled and solved few problems, it showed up. Like Javascripts n other third party components problems.

Now my site shows everything without any problems even the components.
But the only problem is some of the menus in backend administrator side aren't displayed.
Such as components, install/uninstall etc.

So how do I solve this?
Anyone have any idea?
:D
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Re: [22]Admin folder Location

Post by Valc » Thu Jan 08, 2009 8:20 pm

Yes, of course... i have a lot of ideas :P jajajajja
I think the problem is than with "dreamweaver" you need to do more steps and maybe not all files are "scanneds" if the dreamweaver configuration is "wrong" (i try to say that before)

With the GNU Linux operating system i follow the next steps:
1º Take a look about "how many administrator words there are into the package/extensión"

Console:
Find the word administrator inside all the files (that includes ".php", ".sql", ."xml", etc):

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs grep "administrator" > lista1.txt
Find the word administrator into all of the folder names

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package -type d  -name "*administrator*" > lista_2.txt
Find the word administrator into all of the file names

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package -type f  -name "*administrator*" > lista_3.txt
Well, if we take a look to the "lista_1.txt", "lista_2.txt", and "lista_3.txt"...

... into the "lista_1.txt", we can to see than the word administrator can appear as:

ADMINISTRATOR
Administrator
administrator

(For the program, is not the same "minuscle and mayuscle" then we need to change "three types" or "three times" the same word )

... into the "lista_2.txt", we can to see than the word administrator appear ONLY as the folder name "administrator":

... into the "lista_3.txt", we can to see than the word administrator appear ONLY as the file name called "../Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package/administrator/help/en-GB/screen.modulesadministrator.edit.html":

"list2 and list3", maybe is not very usefull when we are talking about the Joomla! CMS package... but maybe is very usefull when we try to apply the "dirty option" over a Joomla!' extension.

2º Change the the administrator word into the package or extensión following some simple rules.

After study the "lista.txt files", we know some things and then we can begin to apply changes:

Console:
Find and repalce every "ADMINISTRATOR" word for "PITIPUM" (pitipum is the "sample word" than i am using) -Changes applieds only "inside files"-

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs perl -pi -e 's/ADMINISTRATOR/PITIPUM/g'
Find and repalce every "Administrator" word for "Pitipum" (Changes applieds only "inside files")

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs perl -pi -e 's/Administrator/Pitipum/g'
Find and repalce every "administrator" word for "pitipum" (Changes applieds only "inside files")

Code: Select all

find /path/to/Joomla_1.5.8-Stable-Full_Package -type f | xargs perl -pi -e 's/administrator/pitipum/g'
Now, into this case, we know than have a directory called "administrator", and a file called "screen.modulesadministrator.edit.html"... of curse, we need to change the name of the folder to "pitipum" and the name of the file to "screen.modulespitipum.edit.html"

3º Create the package, install and test
When we finish to apply the changes, then we can to create the "new package modified", and, of course.. install and test, test, test...

http://luzblanco.com/pack_modificado/Jo ... enamed.zip

(Here is a "sample pack with pitipum folder working". I dont know how many days is downdloable... maybe in two weeks i erase all.. or no)

Another considerations
If you are using other programs (as dreamweaver), maybe you needs to do "extra steps"

If the word "administrator" is "ofuscated" inside de source code (normally when we try the same with "special or non-pure GNU/GPL" extensions), this one is a problem.. and the "dirty solution" or an "official solution", can fail

If you try to modify extensions than have bugs or are for to be used with "legacy mode" enabled, if the original source code fail and original extension does not work propely over Joomla!.. apply the "dirty solution" does not solve thats problems.

If the Joomla! CMS have bugs than makes fail the Joomla! CMS.. apply the "dirty solution" does not solve thats problems.

If you have problems for install/configure/use the original CMS package inside a remote or local server, apply the "dirty soution" does not solve thats problems.

Finally, if you need to update the CMS, install extensions, update extensións... if you are using a "modified administrator folder" ALWAIS before to try an update, or install new things, patchs, etc... you needs to aply the "dirty solution over every thing than you want to use over that "Joomla! package modified".. and test, test, test.." (CMS updates, new extensions, updates for extensions, etc).

There are not a "perfect method". The tip is than you first needs to study the "pack or extension", and then, normally you can to apply "similar steps for a dirty and fast solution". Of course, maybe there are people than say "for the Joomla! package, follow this steps and instruction".. a litle bit the same than for "install an original Joomla!", than you does not need to know "how work the environmment, but you can to installa a Joomla! inside a concret server... following some standar instructions".

Sorry for my english again, i hope than you can to understand better this time.
Coordinador General en: http://www.comunidadjoomla.org
Member of the Spanish[es-ES] Joomla! Translations Team Group:
http://community.joomla.org/translations.html


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