Originally Posted by manyowls
Still not sure about the mysql stuff. Is it important whether the mysqladmin -h server1.example.com -u root password yourrootsqlpassword step is performed?
If you have phpMyAdmin installed, you can open the mysql.user table. IT should have two lines for root. In one of them the hostname is localhost or localhost.localdomain, and in the other one it most likely has something different that server1.example.com. That's why your attempt to change the password failed. You can change the hostname through phpMyAdmin, then restart MySQL. Afterwards you can try again to change the password.