Zimbra Collaboration Suite (ZCS) Open Source Edition v5.0 On Debian Etch

Version 1.0
Author: Oliver Meyer <o [dot] meyer [at] projektfarm [dot] de>

This document describes how to set up the Zimbra Collaboration Suite (ZCS) Open Source Edition v5.0 on Debian Etch. The resulting system provides a full featured collaboration-suite with many features that I can't list all here - please have a look at the feature list. It also comes with a nice (themeable) AJAX web interface for administration and user access.

This howto is a practical guide without any warranty - it doesn't cover the theoretical backgrounds. There are many ways to set up such a system - this is the way I chose.


1 Preparation

Install a standard Debian Etch system and update it. I used a network installation (only standard system).


2 Hostname

You have to assign the hostname to the server ip. It is very important that the fqdn entry appears before the hostname.

vi /etc/hosts

It should look like this:       localhost.localdomain localhost   server1.example.com server1

# The following lines are desirable for IPv6 capable hosts
::1     ip6-localhost ip6-loopback
fe00::0 ip6-localnet
ff00::0 ip6-mcastprefix
ff02::1 ip6-allnodes
ff02::2 ip6-allrouters
ff02::3 ip6-allhosts


Afterwards insert the hostname into the hostname file ...

echo server1.example.com > /etc/hostname

... and reboot the system.


When the system is up again, the output of the both commands ...


... and ...

hostname -f

... should be:




You need a running DNS server in your LAN that contains a valid A & MX record for this server - otherwise Zimbra won't work. I used another server ( running mydns for this howto. Add the nameserver's IP to the resolve configuration:

vi /etc/resolv.conf

The nameserver on your LAN has to be the first entry. It should look like this:



4 Exim

Deinstall Exim - Zimbra comes with it's own mailserver.

apt-get remove --purge exim4 exim4-base exim4-config exim4-daemon-light


5 Needed packages

Let's install some needed packages (maybe some of these packages are already installed on your system).

apt-get install libc6-i686 sudo libidn11 curl fetchmail libgmp3c2 libexpat1 libgetopt-mixed-perl libxml2 libstdc++6 libpcre3 libltdl3 ssh


6 Get Zimbra

Please take a look at http://www.zimbra.com/community/downloads.html to see which is the latest version. Download and unpack it.

cd /tmp/
wget http://files.zimbra.com/downloads/5.0.2_GA/zcs-5.0.2_GA_1975.DEBIAN4.0.20080130234700.tgz
tar xvfz zcs-5.0.2_GA_1975.DEBIAN4.0.20080130234700.tgz
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