The Perfect Server - Debian Lenny (Debian 5.0) With MyDNS & Courier [ISPConfig 3]

Version 1.2
Author: Falko Timme

This tutorial shows how to prepare a Debian Lenny (Debian 5.0) server for the installation of ISPConfig 3, and how to install ISPConfig 3. ISPConfig 3 is a webhosting control panel that allows you to configure the following services through a web browser: Apache web server, Postfix mail server, MySQL, MyDNS nameserver, PureFTPd, SpamAssassin, ClamAV, and many more.

Please note that this setup does not work for ISPConfig 2! It is valid for ISPConfig 3 only!

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


1 Requirements

To install such a system you will need the following:


2 Preliminary Note

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


3 The Base System

Insert your Debian Lenny network installtion CD into your system and boot from it. Select Install (this will start the text installer - if you prefer a graphical installer, select Graphical install):

Choose your language:

Then select your location:

Choose a keyboard layout:

The installer checks the installation CD, your hardware, and configures the network with DHCP if there is a DHCP server in the network:

Enter the hostname. In this example, my system is called, so I enter server1:

Enter your domain name. In this example, this is

Now you have to partition your hard disk. For simplicity's sake I will create one big partition (with the mount point /) and a little swap partition so I select Guided - use entire disk (of course, the partitioning is totally up to you - if you like, you can create more than just one big partition, and you can also use LVM):

Select the disk that you want to partition:

Then select the partitioning scheme. As mentioned before, I select All files in one partition (recommended for new users) for simplicity's sake - it's up to your likings what you choose here:

When you're finished, select Finish partitioning and write changes to disk:

Select Yes when you're asked Write changes to disks?:

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14 Comment(s)

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By: JcDenaes

It did the trick,

 Thx a lot



By: kaiscch


versuch doch mal folgendes..
datei /etc/debian_version
inhalt: 5.0.1
ändern in: 5.0

ciao... kai


Hi there,

Nice tutorial. It was smooth until the utmost end :

>> Initial configuration 

Notice: Undefined variable: distver in /tmp/ispconfig3_install/install/lib/install.lib.php on line 135
Notice: Undefined variable: distid in /tmp/ispconfig3_install/install/lib/install.lib.php on line 135
Notice: Undefined variable: distbaseid in /tmp/ispconfig3_install/install/lib/install.lib.php on line 135

Linux Distribution or Version not recognized.

Distributor ID:    Debian
Release:    5.0.1
Codename:    lenny

 Nothing in the Ispconfig forum, just a trace in the bugtracker (FS#689 - centos 5.3)

Any suggestion?



By: CoffeeJunk

I had exactly the same problem as you had. I put the full paths in/tmp..../lib/install.lib.php. And at last I changed the part that finds the Debian version in lib/install.lib.php, line 73, into

if(trim(file_get_contents('/etc/debian_version')) == '5.0.1' || trim(file_get_contents('/etc/debian_version')) == 'lenny/sid') {


That solved my problem.


Good luck!

By: Dave

Just out of curiosity, why is Ruby not installed?


I was looking for this excellent tutorial to check whether or not this tutorial is amended and corrected regularly, if at all [I had submitted a correction to the path reported by SquirrelMail and wondered if this would be incorporated into this document along with other amendments and improvements].

This tutorial is filed under Debian and not under the heading Control Panels as is ISPConfig2.


By: Anonymous

here is another step by step for lenny apache2-courier-postfix-ssl-squirrelmail server


This tutorial is correctly filed under Debian and ISPConfig category. by the way, this tutorial is about ISPConfig 3 and not ISPConfig 2.



By: Fawkes

I wanted to install vm ware server 2.0 on that server too

 do I need to install ispconfig first or after vmware server ?

By: bouncy castle hire weston-super-mare

This really helped me , I handt used ispconfig before and was dreading installing it to ubuntu, so now I have saved a bit of time and effort and just used the debian, will report any problems, but so far everything smooth.. Thank you !

By: Horfic

You shoud add php5-curl package to the installation.

By: Anonymous

When the installation is finished, I reboot the server, but when the server starts, jumps and all that I can write, erase and rewrite. Do not run with Apache, MySQL, PHP and even SSH. What do you do?

When I log in as root and give

/etc/init.d/apache2 restart

Restarting web server: apache2rm: cannot remov "/var/run/apache/*ssl_scache*": Read-only file system
(30) Read-only file system: apache2: could not open error log file /var/log/apache2/error.log
Unable to open logs

By: Anonymous

Thanks, a very usefull tutorial.