XAMPP Upgrade from 1.7.X to 1.8.X

I use XAMPP to develop PHP applications on my desktop. As part of the requirement of my new project, I needed to upgrade XAMPP 1.7.X to the latest version, as of this writing it is 1.8.1. Before the update, I back up my configuration files. Likewise, I know that all functions, virtual hosts and aliases are working properly.

Without wasting too much time, I upgraded my XAMPP, restored my configurations files, started XAMPP and happily open my development virtual host. What greeted me is an "Access forbidden" error.

I tried looking at the error log file. The error is

client denied by server configuration

I have searched he net on possible solutions but no concrete answer was given so I needed to research on the issue. I started what changed on XAMPP 1.7.7 to 1.8.1.

The most significant changes are

XAMPP version 1.7.7
  + Apache 2.2.21
  + MySQL 5.5.16 (Community Server)
  + PHP 5.3.8 (VC9 X86 32bit thread safe) + PEAR

XAMPP 1.8.1
  + Apache 2.4.3
  + MySQL 5.5.27 (Community Server)
  + PHP 5.4.7 (VC9 X86 32bit thread safe) + PEAR 

From above, I am currently using Apache 2.4.3 from the old 2.2.21. I needed to know what actually changed in the Apache configuration file. Apache provided the answers I was looking to solve the error.

Apache 2.2 configuration:

Order allow,deny
Allow from all

Apache 2.4 configuration:

Require all granted

Following the above configuration, I changed my configuration files and presto, the error is gone.