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Best way to understand Apache Rewrite Implications

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Last Modified: 2015-08-20
Hi -

A client has the following rewrite code in his .htaccess file:
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^www\.
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.%{HTTP_HOST}/$1 [R=301,L]

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I would like to :
a) translate each line into an understanding of what the code does (ie. last line means something like "wildcard redirect all links to this domain to the home page", and I think the first line is about forcing www to be in the domain name.  );

b) understand the options to change it should we judge it to be not the best rewrite for SEO.  Here, I am wondering if someone can point us at a good reference for those that don't write apache code often.

Final question:  what if the domain is going to https -- must that be described in this code?

Thanks -
Scott
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