Virtualmin vs. Webmin

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#1 Wed, 02/22/2006 - 00:43
freddyvaca

Virtualmin vs. Webmin

Hi,

New to this so if this question has already been asked sorry. I am setting up a red hat box that I would like to host mail, web and dns on. I have used webmin in the past but I really dont like the look and feel.

My question is, do you have to use webmin with virtualmin? can i just buy virtualmin professional and be done with it? please let me know, I would like to get going on this project.

FV

Wed, 02/22/2006 - 05:53
ChrisBlackwell

Hi Freddy,

I'll try and explain how it works, as i see it (Joe or Jamie may want to correct me) Webmin is the foundation tool on top of which Virtuialmin sits. Webmin provides most of the tools for manipulating a linux system, and Virtualmin takes advantage of those to create a hosting control panel.

So, you can't have Virtualmin without Webmin. Having said that when you buy Virtualmin professional the install script will download and setup Webmin, Virtualmin and all required modules for your system. If you're installing on a fresh OS, this *should* all be automagic, leaving you to tweak the setting to get things how you want.

If its just the "Look and Feel" of Webmin that you don't like (and i have to agree there ;)) then Webmin is the perfect product for you... as odd as that may seem. There are many skins available for Webmin, including new skins only available for Virtualmin Pro users. Personally i use the[a href="http://www.stress-free.co.nz/content/view/141/82/">StreeFree Tiger theme</a>. Or you can create your own theme!

I'm sure the look and feel and general UI for Webmin/Virtualmin will improve as the commercial product matures, and in the meantime i'm happy using some great features at a very good price.

Wed, 02/22/2006 - 07:21
freddyvaca

that is perfect, I now know what I need.

FV

Thu, 02/23/2006 - 17:34
Joe
Joe's picture

As Chris rightly stated, the installer should do all of the work for you--from fresh OS to pretty much fully functional hosting system (there are still issues that cause issues for some users in some environments, however...Thus the Early Adopter version number and warnings before you buy).

I will also point out that Virtualmin includes a vastly different theme from the standard Webmin theme, and I believe it is a vast improvement. I haven't posted any screenshots or Flash movies of the newest version of the theme, but really need to update the pics on the website because of all of the improvements over the past few months. The current Virtualmin Framed Theme rocks. Great icons by David Vignoni (taken from the Nuvola KDE theme, as well as many new icons designed just for us by David), along with a cool two-paned view that Jamie implemented a few months ago. Navigation is very fast with the new theme, and it looks really nice as well.

I spent the weekend adding new code to allow the dropdown menus and the status sections to rollout using CSS and JavaScript rather than reloading the page. Despite some small issues with Internet Explorers abyssmal CSS support, the "feel" is improved remarkably. Jamie is introducing some new caching techniques in a near future release that will speed up page loads a bit (though they shouldn't be slow on any modern system as it is), further improving the "feel". Obviously "feel" encompasses a lot, but instant feedback is a major requirement for making users feel in control.

Anyway, we're taking UI very seriously in Virtualmin Professional. Feature parity with the market leader is great and absolutely necessary for us to be the best on the market, but having a really useable UI is the difference between merely good software and great software. We're still not great on the UI front, but we're getting much closer. Our Early Adopters have been good about letting us know when things are stupid in the UI, and we try to fix them in the Right Way. The changes are usually subtle (like more verbose labeling, or splitting multiple actions into separate clickable options to make behavior more clear), but over time many subtle changes makes a much more useable product.

Obviously, I've been reading too much UI and useability literature. ;-)

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