We recently started installing suPHP on a few of our servers, which is an implementation of phpsuexec, only a ton faster and with less overhead. Yesterday I posted a tutorial on how to install suPHP on a PHP5/Apache server outside of EasyApache, but today I shall go over how to enable PHP directives in your .htaccess instead of using the php.ini.
First of all, if you’d rather use the .htaccess than the php.ini capabilities of a phpsuexec environment, then shame on you. But, we have some customers who are terrified of php.ini and would rather use the .htaccess. So what? Ok, well there is a workaround. Mr. Joye released a newer version of htscanner that now works with suPHP, and allows you to use php directives in your .htaccess just like you did when PHP was installed as and Apache module. All you have to do is download the tarball and install like any other PHP module:
tar -xvzf htscanner-0.8.1.tgz
./configure && make && make install
Then add a loader for the resulting binary to your php.ini:
From here, you can add your php_value and php_flag statements to your .htaccess as usual within <ifmodule> tags. I should note that the reason why you normally would not be able to overwrite php.ini values in your .htaccess is because .htaccess is an Apache file. Under phpsuexec/suPHP, PHP runs as a CGI module so Apache does not understand what those mean, so it will either ignore them all together or return a nasty 500 error.