As I mentioned in an earlier post, many Associate-O-Matic users have problems with GoDaddy as a hosting service. And I’m not keen on it myself – I think their control panel is so simplistic as to actually make it more difficult to use, and they don’t make simple tasks any easier by dumbing them down (i.e., setting file permissions). I’d use Filezilla to set permissions, except that their FTP interface protocol is also mind-numbingly harder than it needs to be.
However, I recently had a chance to do some work for an AOM customer with a GD account, and I wanted to recount how I accomplished a task that many users ask about – setting up .htaccess to load www.mysite.com/shop.php by only using www.mysite.com. The basic principle was covered here. But this method does not always work with GoDaddy accounts, and while various suggestions have been put forth as workarounds, here’s what I found that seemed to do the trick:
- Create an .htaccess file, as mentioned in the above referenced post.
- Add the command, DirectoryIndex shop.php to the first line of the file (a user recently suggested making this lower-case; directoryindex shop.php. I don’t know if it makes a difference or not).
- Disable or delete the welcome.html file GoDaddy includes in the directory.
The welcome.html file is that annoying page that comes up, telling you the website files have not been uploaded, or not uploaded correctly. GD’s directory structure makes this file operate in the same capacity as a normal index.html file. Meaning it’s the default file unless you actually have an index file to replace it (and even then, perhaps not). But since AOM does not include an index file (using shop.php instead), the welcome file never goes away.
If you delete or rename this file, the DirectoryIndex command in the .htaccess will make shop.php the default file. Then when someone types or clicks on ‘www.mysite.com’, they will be taken to ‘www.mysite.com/shop.php’.
I would recommend renaming the file, since I’m somewhat conservative in how I operate in directories. If for some reason someday you need this file again, you may kick yourself for deleting it. By renaming it (I use welcome_old.html), the file is rendered inoperative, but retained, just in case.
Hopefully this will help with the frustration that many Associate-O-Matic users have with GoDaddy.
In other news, the next upgrade is tenatively set for several weeks hence. Look for a Beta announcement soon in the forum.