A web based open source control panel for Linux servers, Ajenti, provides a graphical user interface (GUI) for performing almost all the operations needed for configuring and maintaining your server. Ajenti has been designed for fulfilling the same purpose as Webmin and is quite similar to it except that it is comparatively simple and easy to use. However, it doesn’t offer same number of features and in case you want a simple but robust control panel that is trendy too, then Ajenti is perfect for your requirement.
1. Connecting To VPS
Authenticate as root following establishing a SSH connection with your virtual server. In case you do not want to utilize root, then you may utilize “sudo su” for creating a root shell.
The most recent package files need to be downloaded:
2. Add Ajenti Repository/ Import Keys
2.1. Importing the repository key
The repository key is utilized for guaranteeing that the package has originated from the valid source, thereby ruling out the deployment of any packages likely to be infected.
The command given below will download the key and will add it automatically to your system.
key -O- | apt-key add -
2.2. Adding the APT repository
The command given below can be utilized for adding the repository to your sources.list
echo "deb http://repo.ajenti.org/ng/debian main main ubuntu" >> /etc/apt/sources.list
OR, additionally, in case you wish, you can open /etc/apt/sources.list using your favourite text editor, and repository url can be pasted there.
Move on to the file’s end and paste the line given below
deb http://repo.ajenti.org/debian main main debian
Finally save the changes and exit (ctrl+x).
3. Installing Ajenti
The package sources can be updated and ajenti package can be installed by:
apt-get update && apt-get install ajenti -y
Execute the command below for starting Ajenti
service ajenti restart
In case a firewall is being used, then kindly open port 8000 for enabling access to the control panel.
4. Login to Ajenti
A warning will be received that will indicate that some issue is there with the certificate of the server. No risk is there as it only means that the certificate was self-generated and was not issued from a trustworthy source. Instead you may use a trusted certificate if you have one. An option of disabling SSL is also offered but we recommend that it should be kept enabled, as SSL encrypts your traffic and the login credentials are also not provided in plain text.
The default login credentials:
5. Configuring Ajenti
First step after logging in is to modify the password of root user. Move on to the “Configure” menu for doing it.
On root account, click “Change password” and write a new password.
Also, you can create a new user and grant him access to certain features as per your wish. For doing it, first click on “Create”, click “unnamed” for setting the name and writing the new name. Lastly permissions can be set by clicking the icon on the left from the name.
On finishing it, click on “SAVE” at the top of the page.
In case you changed any other settings, then remember to restart the control panel for applying all changes.
A good amount of useful information can be displayed at once by utilizing the dashboard. A welcome widget is only displayed by default. Widgets can be removed by gripping them from the dotted area and dragging them down.
Also, click on “Add widget” to add new widgets and dragging them to the desired position.
A number of functionalities of Ajenti are provided by the plugins. At present many plugins are available, and this number is increasing with passing time.
More plugins can be viewed and installed from the “Plugins” page. By default, a few plugins are disabled possibly as the application that they control is not deployed. In case an application is installed later for which Ajenti has a plugin, then Ajenti control panel should be restarted and it must be enabled.
Setting Up a Website
Ajenti control panel may be utilized for installing and configuring your web server, and lastly uploading the website.
At present, LAMP (Linux Apachhe MySQL PHP) is the general web server setup for Linux. Some other alternatives, like Lighttpd and Nginx are also there but Apache is only covered in this guide.
Installing the web server
- Click on “Packages” in the menu and select the “Search” tab.
- Type “apache2” in the text field and click on “Search”. Find “apache2” from the list and click on the tick icon for selecting the package. apache2:amd64 should be chosen if the server is of 64-bit, otherwise apache:i386 should be chosen.
- Type “php5” in the text field and click on “Search”. Find “php5:all” in the list and click on the tick icon.
- Type “mysql-server” in the text field and click on “Search”. Find “mysql-server:all” in the list and click on the tick icon.
- Click “Apply” button for installing the packages. A new tab will be opened in the control panel, write y and press enter whenever it is asked in the new tab.
- Next you’ll be asked for setting the password for the root (admin) user of MySQL. Write a password, click on enter and repeat for confirming the password.
- On completion of installation, the terminal tab closes automatically.
- You now have a live website which can be accessed by utilizing your domain or IP on a browser.
The installation of web server is done, but it’s not displayed by Ajenti, as the updation of plugins is done upon restart.
- On the menu, click “Configure”
- Click on “Restart” for restarting Ajenti control panel and enabling the plugin.
You need to again log in. Apache will appear on the menu, where you can stop, start, reload, configure and restart Apache.
Upload your website
Although Ajenti comprises a file browser, but it’s much easier and effective to utilize SFTP for uploading your files. The client that is most commonly utilized is FileZilla, but any SFTP client can be used as per your wish.
- Establish connection to sftp://your-ip, and type in root’s username and password when asked.
- Move on to the folder /var/www
- From the directory, delete index.html
- From your explorer or local file browser, drag the files to FileZilla’s remote folder, and wait for finishing of uploading.
In this guide, a test file named info.php will be uploaded for checking that both PHP and Apache are deployed and working.
Contents of index.php:
<?php phpinfo(); ?>
Any text editor may be used on your local computer, then saved as info.php and uploaded to the web root (/var/www), or rather the command line given below can be used:
When file is made and the editor has opened up, the php code that’s shown above should be pasted, ctrl + x should be pressed and then when it is asked whether the file should be saved, then y should be pressed for confirming save.
When file has been saved, move on to http://your-ip, and you will see the text “Yay, the web server works!”. If you get the text, the web server is successfully installed. If the text is not shown or the page doesn’t respond, then ensure that all the steps are followed, and that the server firewall permits connections on ports 80 and 443.
The website may be updated by modifying the existing files or uploading the new ones at any times by utilizing SSH or SFTP client.