Joomla Full URL Redirects
There is a lot of "small redirection" that takes place in Joomla. Sometimes though, you need some big redirection.
My experience today is the following:
.httaccess in Joomla Directory is best for redirecting, say, from an IP Based URL resolution to your primary Domain Name.
It is also the easiest way to redirect, at least initially, a sub domain you want to close down. The caveat here is that you need to be sure that you have your SSL covered, or that you are simply moving traffic from one port to another port so you are not requiring a SSL setup for the sub domain you are closing down (I need to finish this in fact).
For SSL setups themselves, it is best to set everything up in Apache under Virtual Hosts.
I have had some success with Apache Rewrites directly but the issue is that you may have multiple Apache Virtual Hosts and some redirection there will kill your site (so walk slowly).
I will try to fill in more as we go forward.