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forcing ssl with mod_rewrite

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Hi ive posted this in the apache section and havent had any luck with replies etc so I thought you php monkeys would like a go [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":wink:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"wink.gif\" /] ... this isnt a php question, its more of a mod_rewrite or htaccess question, but maybe someone here has used this method on a site etc?

Im looking for a way to make [a href=\"http://example.com\" target=\"_blank\"]http://example.com[/a] (www.example.com - [a href=\"http://www.example.com)\" target=\"_blank\"]http://www.example.com)[/a] to be forced to go to [a href=\"https://example.com\" target=\"_blank\"]https://example.com[/a] ... a working example would be entering www.paypal.com into your browsers address bar and it takes you straight to their https:// secure site.

Also on a note, would forcing ssl make sites load slower as ive looked around and https is a lot slower then http ... but does the speed depend on the quality of your ssl provider?

Also one last thing... I have never used mod_rewrite before so go easy on me ;)

thank you all in advance for your help :)

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