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htaccess failure

Can anyone else help me out here, please?

To my knowledge, protecting a directory using the .htaccess file method
has always worked without a hitch for me on my local machine (Debian
2.2r2 + proposed-updates) -- but has "suddenly" stopped functioning.

 mwheeler@startext:~$ apache -v
 Server version: Apache/1.3.9 (Unix) Debian/GNU
 Server built:   Jan 26 2001 00:10:13

is what I'm running (stable hasn't progressed to 1.3.12 yet); the
access.conf file contains:

 <Directory /var/www>
  Options Includes Indexes FollowSymLinks
  AllowOverride None
  order allow,deny
  allow from all


 # Do not allow retrieval of the override files, a standard security
 <Files .htaccess>
  order allow,deny
  deny from all

srm.conf contains:

 # AccessFileName: The name of the file to look for in each directory
 # for access control information.
 AccessFileName .htaccess
but no way will Apache stop and ask for authentication when any user
goes into any directory containing a valid .htaccess file pointing to a 
valid htusers/.htpasswd data file.

I'm also using PHP 4.0.3 to run phpwiki (very successfully) -- does
anyone know of any clashes between Apache 1.3.9 and PHP 4.0.3 which
might cause this?

Or is it something else?

Any help appreciated.  (access/error logs give me no help whatsoever.)
Martin Wheeler       -        StarTEXT - Glastonbury - BA6 9PH - England
[1] mwheeler@startext.co.uk                   http://www.startext.co.uk/

     - Share your knowledge. It's one way to achieve immortality. -

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