Installing Lighttpd With PHP5 And MySQL Support On CentOS 6.0

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Author: Falko Timme <ft [at] falkotimme [dot] com>, Christian Schmalfeld <c [dot] schmalfeld [at] projektfarm [dot] de>
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Last edited 10/12/2011

Lighttpd is a secure, fast, standards-compliant web server designed for speed-critical environments. This tutorial shows how you can install Lighttpd on a CentOS 6.0 server with PHP5 support (through FastCGI) and MySQL support.

I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!


1 Preliminary Note

In this tutorial I use the hostname with the IP address These settings might differ for you, so you have to replace them where appropriate.


2 Installing MySQL 5.0

First we install MySQL 5.0 like this:

yum install mysql mysql-server

Then we create the system startup links for MySQL (so that MySQL starts automatically whenever the system boots) and start the MySQL server:

chkconfig --levels 235 mysqld on
/etc/init.d/mysqld start

Set passwords for the MySQL root account:


[root@server1 ~]# mysql_secure_installation


In order to log into MySQL to secure it, we'll need the current
password for the root user.  If you've just installed MySQL, and
you haven't set the root password yet, the password will be blank,
so you should just press enter here.

Enter current password for root (enter for none):
OK, successfully used password, moving on...

Setting the root password ensures that nobody can log into the MySQL
root user without the proper authorisation.

Set root password? [Y/n]
 <-- ENTER
New password: <-- yourrootsqlpassword
Re-enter new password: <-- yourrootsqlpassword
Password updated successfully!
Reloading privilege tables..
 ... Success!

By default, a MySQL installation has an anonymous user, allowing anyone
to log into MySQL without having to have a user account created for
them.  This is intended only for testing, and to make the installation
go a bit smoother.  You should remove them before moving into a
production environment.

Remove anonymous users? [Y/n]
 <-- ENTER
 ... Success!

Normally, root should only be allowed to connect from 'localhost'.  This
ensures that someone cannot guess at the root password from the network.

Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n]
 <-- ENTER
 ... Success!

By default, MySQL comes with a database named 'test' that anyone can
access.  This is also intended only for testing, and should be removed
before moving into a production environment.

Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n]
 <-- ENTER
 - Dropping test database...
 ... Success!
 - Removing privileges on test database...
 ... Success!

Reloading the privilege tables will ensure that all changes made so far
will take effect immediately.

Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n]
 <-- ENTER
 ... Success!

Cleaning up...

All done!  If you've completed all of the above steps, your MySQL
installation should now be secure.

Thanks for using MySQL!

[root@server1 ~]#


3 Installing Lighttpd

Lighttpd is not available from the official CentOS 6.0 repositories, but from the RPMforge repositories (see for instructions). We install the RPMforge package for RHEL 6 which works for CentOS 6.0 as well:

If you are on an x86_64 system:

rpm -Uhv rpmforge-release-0.5.2-2.el6.rf.x86_64.rpm

If you are on an i386 system:

rpm -Uhv rpmforge-release-0.5.2-2.el6.rf.i386.rpm

Afterwards, we can install Lighttpd like this:

yum install lighttpd

Then we create the system startup links for Lighttpd (so that Lighttpd starts automatically whenever the system boots) and start it:

chkconfig --levels 235 lighttpd on
/etc/init.d/lighttpd start

If Lighttpd fails to start with the following error message...

(network.c.203) socket failed: Address family not supported by protocol

... open /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf...

vi /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf

... and change server.use-ipv6 from enable to disable:

## Use IPv6?
server.use-ipv6 = "disable"

Then try to start Lighttpd again - it should now work without any problem:

/etc/init.d/lighttpd start

Now direct your browser to, and you should see the following page:

Lighttpd's default document root is /srv/www/lighttpd on CentOS 6.0 (there's no index file in that directory like index.html, that's why you get a 404 Not Found error), and the configuration file is /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf.


4 Installing PHP5

We can make PHP5 work in Lighttpd through FastCGI. Therefore we install the packages lighttpd-fastcgi and php-cli:

yum install lighttpd-fastcgi php-cli

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From: badger_fruit at: 2012-03-27 09:54:12


Thank you for an excellent article, one thing I came across was that when I tried to start the lighttpd, I received a "Permission denied" error:

 [root@webhost ~]# /etc/init.d/lighttpd start
Starting lighttpd: 2012-03-27 10:00:47: (server.c.722) couldn't set 'max filedescriptors' Permission denied                                                           [FAILED]

This was solved by following the tips from the link -->