Do Webmin and Virtualmin really break Ubuntu?

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#1 Tue, 02/07/2012 - 23:10
yngens Pro Licensee

Do Webmin and Virtualmin really break Ubuntu?

I have been utilizing Virtualmin together with Webmin on CentOS for more than a year. Now for the first time is going to try it on a remote Ubuntu server. However, before running I'd like to clarify are Webmin and Virtualmin really compatible?

I would not have such doubts if wouldn't state:

WebMin was in Ubuntu until 5.10 Breezy Badger, and was then dropped because it is not compatible with the way that Ubuntu packages handle configuration files, and caused unexpected issues with people's systems. See for more background. Note that the Debian (and Ubuntu) policy and requirements for how packages deal with configuration files is stricter than other distributions, which makes package installs and upgrades more robust. See Configuration files in the Debian Policy Manual for more information.

Some other sources also indicate users had issues with the combination:

Tue, 02/07/2012 - 23:59

I've been running them on Ubuntu 10.04 for 10 months now with no problems. Wow, um, Ubuntu 5 is, well, way old. There was one small problem with webmin not starting automatically, which was fixed, but that was the only problem.

Ubuntu 10.04 is fully supported OS for webmin/virtualmin.

Wed, 02/08/2012 - 00:08 (Reply to #2)
yngens Pro Licensee

I know LTS is supported by Virtualmin, the problem is Virtualmin is not supported by Ubuntu. I mean the fact the combination works for you really eases me and most probably I will give it a try (though if I break I have to pay to re-install the remote system), however even if they work fine with each other, the texting on is disturbing. I think if the problem is so old and if it has already been fixed, then Virtualmin/Webmin community or project leads should've conducted their voice over to Ubuntu community or project leads to get that misleading text changed. Unfortunately it does not state the problem relates only to Ubuntu 5, it states that Webmin was dropped since.

Wed, 02/08/2012 - 00:21

You can always throw it on a cheap linode or something with Ubuntu 10.04 and see how it works for ya so you don't have to mess with your live server until you are assured it will work. I used to run VM on CentOS as well, and it performs as good on this system. Ubuntu is just a lot easier to upgrade major versions than CentOS, so that's the main reason I switched. I'm sure others will chime in here.

Fri, 02/10/2012 - 15:54

I've been (successfully) using Virtualmin on Ubuntu 10.04 for about one and a half year now, and I think I can say that they definitely are "compatible" -- at least as compatible as any hosting control panel of VM's magnitude can be with any Linux. :D

So far I found no glitches that I'd not have been able to work around. Don't worry about what some Ubuntu guys wrote for a version that's 7 years old. :)

Mon, 02/13/2012 - 11:56
Joe Pro Licensee
Joe's picture

That information was misleading back then, and it's ridiculously incorrect today. I've attempted to talk to Ubuntu folks about correcting the misinformation (while it's still true that there is no Webmin package in the Ubuntu or Debian repos, the reasons for its removal have nothing to do with Webmin and everything to do with those Debian packages), but nothing has come of it. Webmin has always tried to do things in the way the OS does them, by default, and any time it doesn't, it can be corrected by filing a ticket about the incongruity.

It's misleading because these comments were about the Debian webmin packages (not the webmin packages for debian provided on; they are different things and the former was never maintained by Jamie or anyone related to the Webmin project), rather than Webmin itself. The webmin package in Debian and Ubuntu was always broken by design, and no one was wiling to maintain it.

Webmin will not break Ubuntu. It is the most OS-friendly control panel available, by far. No other control panel attempts to use native packages for everything, puts configuration files in the OS-standard location, and uses OS conventions by default (such as where to put virtual host data; on Debian/Ubuntu this is in sites-available and sites-enabled, while on CentOS it goes in httpd.conf, and on FreeBSD it goes into a vhosts folder). Jamie has gone to superhuman lengths to respect the user's OS choice.

There are thousands of Debian/Ubuntu servers running Virtualmin (and uncountable numbers running Webmin). Our ticket tracker and forums are searchable. If there were compatibility issues with any OS, you'd be able to figure that out really quickly. But, it's free software. Try it and judge for yourself. In a world with free virtualization tools, there's no reason not to play with it in a sandbox environment and see how things work for you.


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