System administrators

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Setting Your Hostname

On the internet, servers are identified using an identifier known as a FQDN (or Fully Qualified Domain Name). An FQDN is a name given to a computer which can only be interpreted by the users in a single manner. "srv1" is an example of a name that can be treated ambiguously by other networks (as they might also have a srv1). However, if you named the server, the name can only be interpreted one way (unless the network is seriously hackish). Whilst OpenPanel doesn't require that your hostname is properly configured, it is recommended to properly configure it.

In the following example, we will use the address It is comprised of the following components:

Short name: srv1
IP address: (this is unique to YOUR server. Use ifconfig to identify your REAL address. Generally it's listed under eth0).

The following procedure is only tested for Debian.

  1. Firstly, open a terminal/bash session to your server, and ensure you are running as root (type su to escalate if required).
  2. Type echo FQDN > /etc/hostname (example command: echo > /etc/hostname)
  3. You need to add IPADDRESS FQDN SHORTNAME to /etc/hosts. It should look something like: srv1
    1. If you suck at bash, use nano /etc/hosts to make the changes. For reference, ^ means Ctrl, so ^Q means Ctrl+Q.
  4. We need to set the mailname to be the same as the hostname. So type: cp /etc/hostname /etc/mailname
  5. Restart your server (you can generally type reboot)
  6. You will notice that the bash prompt should now look different (something like srv1:~#).
  7. To ensure the server works. The following commands should show the following:
    1. hostname -s: SHORTNAME (srv1)
    2. hostname -f: FQDN (
    3. hostname -d: DOMAIN (
  8. If they don't match, you possibly missed a step or other mistakes were made.


Pre-compiled Packages

Please refer to the Download page.

From Source

We recommend grabbing binaries if at all possible. If you need to build specific parts (or all of OpenPanel, of course), from source, use apt-get source to grab source packages, or clone from hg. Then use dpkg-buildpackage.


Currently OpenPanel does not yet offer a built-in backup function. In order to be able to restore your system, it is recommended to backup your system just as you would backup it as if OpenPanel would not run on it. As far as OpenPanel is concerned you need at least:


Also, do not forget to backup your mysql data. This is sometimes done by including /var/lib/mysql in the backup. Another way is to use a small script such as Automysqlbackup to do that for you. Also, people's home dirs do not automatically backup, so include /home if you want them to return after any recovery.

A word about restore

The OpenPanel data resides in two sqlite db files in /var/openpanel/db. In theory, if you put those two files back, and all the unix users, you can recreate all the objects in OpenPanel by updating them in the gui or cli without changing them.

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