.htaccess is a powerful configuration file used by webservers. It is not a file extension, but a file name in full, .htaccess. To some Operating Systems, .htaccess is usually seen as a strange file because of the leading period (.) in the file name.
By default, the .htaccess file is always hidden in the server because all files and directories that start with a period (.), are always hidden. You would have to manually show it by using the built-in server configuration feature, or contact your Joomla hosting provider.
Mainly, Joomla uses the .htaccess file to create SEO friendly or human readable URLs.
The .htaccess file can be used to alter many server configuration settings. .htaccess can: redirect error pages, password protect directories, ban IP, etc. It is usually placed in the root directory of your website.
.htaccess is a configuration file in the sense that; any little misconfiguration can break the entire website/server.« Back to Glossary Index