CGIwrap allows users to run their own CGI programs from their personal accounts. This has been incorporated into our web server to assist with the many security concerns with having a central location for all CGI programs. Normally all CGI programs must be located within the web server's main cgi-bin directory and all run with the web server's user ID. But with hundreds of users on the College of Engineering's web server, this is very impractical and would open many security holes.
Instead, with CGIwrap, all of a user's applications should be located within the user's "U:\public_html\cgi-bin" directory and run under their own Engineering user ID. This means that any files the CGI program creates are also owned by the same user. This eliminates most of the security concerns with a centrally located cgi-bin directory. The CGIwrap method also automatically performs several security checks on the CGI application being run. The CGI application will not run if any of the security checks fail.
Follow these Instructions
Set up your form
You should now be able to use your CGI application. To access it, you will need to use the following URL in your form's "action" attribute:
Of course you would replace "username " with your Engineering user name and "scriptname" with the actual name of your CGI script.
If you need to debug your CGI application, replace "cgiwrap" in the URL above with "cgiwrapd" (e.g.: add a "d" to the end). This will cause the internal environmental variables associated with the script to be displayed on the browser's window.
When you run a CGI script using CGIwrap, you are running the scrip with you as the process owner. This means that the script will have the same permissions that you do on the web server. This may lead to problems with some CGI applications that require access to certain restricted web server locations or files. Because of security concerns, we can obviously not allow this.
It is important to remember that since a CGI program is executable, it is basically the equivalent of letting the world run a program on your system. This isn't the safest thing to do. As a result, there are some precautions that should be observed when you implement a CGI program on your site:
If you have any questions or conerns beyond what this page was able to answer, please contact ENS.
This document last modified Wednesday May 06, 2015