What is it?
TightURL is a LAMP-based (Linux Apache MySQL PHP) blind redirection
service similar to TinyURL, designed for personal or company use by
those who prefer not to use external services, or cannot use them for
legal or logistical reasons. It may run correctly on a WAMP server
(Windows Apache MySQL PHP), but it is unknown if it does or not.
The major design consideration was simplicity from an installer's
perspective. To this end, the number of files has been kept to a
minimum, while allowing non-developers a fair amount of customization
by setting a few variables in the configuration file or editing the
included HTML template file. Under no circumstances does the
program script file ever have to be edited, unless you're a developer.
The primary reason for a blind redirection service is to avoid
e-mailing URLs to people that are broken when received, because the
recipient's e-mail program is unable to pick up the rest of the URL
after a line-wrap. It is called a blind redirection service because
you can't tell where you'll end up just by looking at the link.
For the purposes of TightURL, we want to generate the shortest
redirection URL possible, thus we use a blind redirection URL, and
encourage the use of mod_rewrite or the "404-page Method" to achieve
the shortest possible URL.
Why was it written?
This software was written for the oldest reason in the Free Software
book; to scratch an itch. The author had been looking for some
"McSoftware" to run his own URL shortening service. Finding no Free
Software that fit the bill, and wanting a first PHP project to work
on, TightURL was born. Issuing an HTTP Redirect is not exactly
rocket science, what the URL shortening service is really providing
is convenience and processing resources.
The software itself can be boiled down to a very few lines if it is
hard-wired to its configuration values and output screens. But
since the author had been looking for some cookie-cutter software and
couldn't find any, he decided to write this so that hopefully no one
else will have to. It can be cosmetically tweaked from the config
file very easily, and in more depth by editing the HTML templates.
Original author's code sucks. He is a rank amateur, evertything a
professional developer despises. (I wouldn't run code written by me
if I were you.)
Contributing (code) to TightURL
Patches welcome. Critical advice welcomed if gently given.
Access to CVS or Arch possible, please contact maintainer.
ron a-t vnetworx.net This project may be moving to SourceForge
for the sake of efficiency.
The Latest Version
Details about the latest stable and development versions are
available at the TightURL Web site at http://tighturl.com/ .
The documentation available as of the date of this release is the
contents of this README file. Additional documentation is available
at runtime in the browser for using TightURL.
PHP - Should work with any version >= 4.3.0
MySQL - Should work with versions greater than >= 3.x
* Can create very short URLs using mod_rewrite or the "404 Method"
* ID size kept very short by using Base-36 IDs
* The same URL entered more than once always returns the same ID
* All output is generated by templates.
* Site design is controlled by a single template.
TightURL probably works under Windows with Apache and MySQL, but we
have no way of knowing for sure until someone reports they've tested it
and it works. One possible problem would be if TightURL can't find
nslookup on the PATH. The Windows version uses nslookup as a kluge for
missing functionality in PHP for Windows.
Under Microsoft IIS, the 404-Method should work also, but you'll have
to figure out how to configure IIS (your author is too lazy), and
report back with that info so it can be shared with others.
TightURL might also work under Microsoft SQL Server or other
database servers. Please report back with anything you learn.
Please see the file called TODO.
Please see the file called INSTALL for detailed installation
A problem with blind redirection services is they can be abused by
spammers to conceal the domains their spam is trying to get people
to visit. Anti-spam systems could follow the redirection link to
see where it leads, but this is a messy, resource wasting process.
To keep spammers from abusing TightURL, it checks the URIBL
multi.surbl.org provided by SURBL (http://www.surbl.org). TightURL
will refuse to add URLs that appear on this URIBL.
Please see the file called LICENSE.
The TightURL developer(s) acknowledge the following copyrighted works
that make up portions of the TightURL software:
Portions of this software were developed under the custody of the
Open Web Application Security Project (http://www.owasp.org)
Copyright (c) 2002,2003 Free Software Foundation
Sanitization functions for PHP
by: Gavin Zuchlinski, Jamie Pratt, Hokkaido