Recommended method to configure custom maintenance page with Shibboleth SP and Apache HTTPD

Dang, Minh (GE Global Research) m.dang at
Wed Apr 2 13:50:20 EDT 2014

I don't see any errors in the shibd or httpd logs. This is the page I see
if I try to access any resource:

"Service Temporarily Unavailable

The server is temporarily unable to service your request due to
maintenance downtime or capacity problems. Please try again later.

Additionally, a 302 Found error was encountered while trying to use an
ErrorDocument to handle the request."

This makes me think that one of my redirect rules is incorrect, but they
seem to work fine if I disable shibd. Here are the exact HTTPD rules I've

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{DOCUMENT_ROOT}/maintenance.html -f
RewriteCond %{DOCUMENT_ROOT}/maintenance.enable -f
RewriteCond %{SCRIPT_FILENAME} !maintenance.html
RewriteRule ^.*$ /maintenance.html [R=503,L]
ErrorDocument 503 /maintenance.html

Here's an interesting behavior. So everything setup as normal. I access
our app and authenticate regularly. If I then create the
"maintenance.enable" file to redirect all traffic to our custom
maintenance page and refresh, I see the custom maintenance page as
expected. If I open up a new incognito tab without session info and access
a page, I get the default "Service Temporarily Unavailable" page pasted

- Minh

On 4/2/14 10:33 AM, "Cantor, Scott" <cantor.2 at> wrote:

>On 4/2/14, 1:21 PM, "Dang, Minh (GE Global Research)" <m.dang at>
>>Without Shibboleth, I usually do the following with Apache HTTPD. Create
>>rewrite rules to redirect all traffic to a custom maintenance page if a
>>certain file (maintenance.enable) exists. That way I can just create that
>>file and all traffic is directed to the custom maintenance page without
>>having to restart HTTPD. This doesn't seem to work the same with
>>Shibboleth SP protecting resources.
>There is no reason why that should be the case in general, and you will
>need to find out what the actual error is.
>-- Scott
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