CENTOS 5 virtual hosting howto

February 03, 2008 at 06:58 PM | categories: Horde, Centos, Howto, Exim, Cyrus, Linux, Email | View Comments


This tutorial shows how to set up a CentOS 5.x server to offer all services needed by virtual web hosters. These include web hosting,smtp server with (SMTP-AUTH and TLS,SPF,DKIM,Domainkeys),DNS,FTP,MySQL,POP3/IMAP,Firewall,Webalizer for stats.

I will use the following software:

  • Database Server: MySQL 5.0.22
  • Mail Server: Postfix 2.3.3
  • DNS Server: BIND9 9.3.3
  • Web Server: Apache 2.2.3 / PHP 5.1.6
  • FTP Server: Vsftpd 2.0.5
  • POP3/IMAP server: Dovecot 1.0
  • Webalizer: for site statistics 2.01_10
  • Virtualmin: Control panel

OS installation


To install the system you will need

  • Centos 5.1 Install media
  • A good internet connection

Install the Base system

  • Boot from the DVD or CD media and at the boot prompt type linux text
  • Skip the media test
  • Select your language
  • Select keyboard layout
  • Configure your network, i will be using dhcp if you do not have dhcp you can use static entires
  • Select Yes to initialize drive
  • Select custom layout for partitioning type
  • Create partitions
  • Configure networking
  • Set the timezone
  • Set the root password
  • Select server group and select customize software selection
  • Package groups select as follows:

    • DNS name server
    • bind-chroot
  • Editors

    • vim-enhanced
  • FTP server
  • Mail server

    • dovecot
    • spamassassin
    • postfix
  • Mysql Database

    • mysql-server
  • Web server

    • mod_ssl
    • webalizer
    • php
    • php-pear
    • http-suexec
    • php-mysql

Services to disable

To enhance security and free system resources on the system we need to disable any services that are not required. You can run this script to do this for you.

  • acpid
  • anacron
  • apmd
  • autofs
  • bluetooth
  • cups
  • firstboot
  • gpm
  • haldaemon
  • messagebus
  • mdmonitor
  • hidd
  • ip6tables
  • kudzu
  • lvm2-monitor
  • netfs
  • nfslock
  • pcscd
  • portmap
  • rpcgssd
  • rpcidmad
  • sendmail
  • smartd
  • yum-updatesd


We need to fix a few issues to prepare the system for configuration

Install updates

 # yum upgrade

Switch the mta to postfix

 # alternatives --config mta
 There are 2 programs which provide 'mta'.
   Selection    Command
    1           /usr/sbin/sendmail.postfix
 *+ 2           /usr/sbin/sendmail.sendmail
 Enter to keep the current selection[+], or type selection number: 1

Install caching-nameserver config

 # yum install caching-nameserver

Install Build tools

 # yum install gcc cpp gcc-c++ automake automake14 automake15 automake16 automake17 openssl-devel subversion ncurses-devel -y

Configure network alias

 # cp /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0 /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0:1

Modify the file /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0:1 to look like this


Install webmin / virtualmin

Import webmin pgp key

 # wget http://www.webmin.com/jcameron-key.asc
 # rpm --import jcameron-key.asc

Download the rpm

 # wget http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/webadmin/webmin-1.390-1.noarch.rpm

Verify the rpm (should say OK or else download again)

 # rpm --checksig webmin-1.390-1.noarch.rpm

Install the rpm

 # rpm -Uvh webmin-1.390-1.noarch.rpm

Initial webmin config

We need to secure webmin by editing /etc/webmin/miniserv.conf and make the following changes

Using SSL only


Change the port to 443 and bind to the second nic only


Disable UDP broadcasts


Change host lockout on login failures to 3


Increase host lockout timeout to 120


Change user lockout on login failures to 3


Change user lockout timeout to 120


Change the realm to something else


Log logins to utmp


Install the webmin Tiger theme

Install php-pear module

Install virtualmin

Remove unwanted modules Go to webmin → webmin configuration → delete and select the following

  • ADSL client
  • Bacula backup system
  • CD Burner
  • CVS Server
  • Cluster change passwords
  • Cluster copy files
  • Cluster cron jobs
  • Cluster shell commands
  • Cluster software packages
  • Cluster usermin servers
  • Cluster users and groups
  • Cluster webmin servers
  • Command shell
  • Configuration engine
  • Custom commands
  • DHCP server
  • Fetchmail mail retrieval
  • File manager
  • Frox ftp proxy
  • HTTP Tunnel
  • Heartbeat monitor
  • IPsec VPN
  • Jabber IM server
  • LDAP server
  • Logical volume management
  • Majordomo list manager
  • NFS exports
  • NIS client and server
  • OpenSLP server
  • PPP dialin server
  • PPP dialup client
  • PPTP vpn server
  • PPTP vpn client
  • Postgresql database server
  • Printer admin
  • ProFTPD server
  • QMAIL mail server
  • SMART drive status
  • SSH / Telnet login
  • SSL tunnels
  • SAMBA windows file sharing
  • Scheduled commands
  • Sendmail mail server
  • Shoreline firewall
  • Squid analysis report generator
  • Squid proxy server
  • Voicemail server
  • WU-FTP server
  • Idmapd server

Restart webmin

 # service webmin restart

Configure rpmforge repo

 # rpm -Uhv http://packages.sw.be/rpmforge-release/rpmforge-release-0.3.6-1.el5.rf.i386.rpm

NOTE: If you are using a different architecture check on https://rpmrepo.org/RPMforge/Using for the correct rpm

Disable the repo (such that base packages not overwritten) edit /etc/yum.d/rpmforge.repo and set the following option

enabled = 0

Install extra required packages

Install clamav

 # yum --enablerepo=rpmforge install clamav clamav-db clamav-milter clamd -y
 # wget http://www.topdog-software.com/files/clamav-milter.patch
 # patch /etc/init.d/clamav-milter < clamav-milter.patch
 # chkconfig --del clamd
 # freshclam

Install sanesecurity signatures

 # wget http://www.sanesecurity.co.uk/clamav/update_sanesecurity.txt -O /usr/local/bin/update_sanesecurity.sh
 # chmod +x /usr/local/bin/update_sanesecurity.sh
 # ln -s /usr/local/bin/update_sanesecurity.sh /etc/cron.hourly/
 # /usr/local/bin/update_sanesecurity.sh

Install PHP eaccelerator

 # yum --enablerepo=rpmforge install php-eaccelerator

Install newer spamassassin package from rpmforge

 # yum --enablerepo=rpmforge upgrade spamassassin

Install spamass-milter

 # yum --enablerepo=rpmforge install spamass-milter

Install perl modules1) required by spamassassin

 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Mail::SPF'
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Mail::SPF::Query' 
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Net::Ident'
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install IP::Country::Fast'
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Mail::DomainKeys'
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Mail::DKIM'

Install fuzzyOCR

 # yum --enablerepo=rpmforge install netpbm-progs ocrad gocr gifsicle giflib-utils giflib -y
 # svn co https://svn.own-hero.net/fuzzyocr/trunk/devel/
 # cd devel/
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install String::Approx'
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Time::HiRes'
 # perl -MCPAN -e 'install Log::Agent'
 # cp -rv {FuzzyOcr.cf,FuzzyOcr.scansets,FuzzyOcr.preps,FuzzyOcr.pm,FuzzyOcr.words,FuzzyOcr/} /etc/mail/spamassassin
 # chcon -R system_u:object_r:etc_mail_t /etc/mail/spamassassin/{FuzzyOcr.cf,FuzzyOcr.scansets,FuzzyOcr.preps,FuzzyOcr.pm,FuzzyOcr.words,FuzzyOcr/}
 # wget http://www.gbnetwork.co.uk/mailscanner/FuzzyOcr.words -O /etc/mail/spamassassin/FuzzyOcr.words

Install Razor

 # yum --enablerepo=rpmforge install razor-agents -y

Install roundcube

 # yum install php-imap
 # rpm -Uvh http://www.topdog-software.com/oss/roundcube/roundcube-0.1-rc2.noarch.rpm

Install imapproxy

 # wget http://imapproxy.org/downloads/up-imapproxy-1.2.6.tar.gz
 # rpmbuild -tb up-imapproxy-1.2.6.tar.gz
 # rpm -Uvh /usr/src/redhat/RPMS/i386/up-imapproxy-1.2.6-1.i386.rpm

Activate services

 # chkconfig --level 345 httpd on
 # chkconfig --level 345 postfix on
 # chkconfig --level 345 spamassassin on
 # chkconfig --level 345 spamass-milter on
 # chkconfig --level 345 clamav-milter on
 # chkconfig --level 345 mysqld on
 # chkconfig --level 345 named on
 # chkconfig --level 345 vsftpd on
 # chkconfig --level 345 dovecot on
 # chkconfig --level 345 imapproxy on



We will be setting up postfix with the following features

  • Virtual hosting
  • UCE prevention
  • Anti virus
  • SMTP authentication
  • TLS
  • RBLs
  • SPF
  • Attack mitigation

The adding of accounts and domains with be configured through virtualmin although it can be done manually as well. The setup is designed to be resource friendly so should be able to run on machines that are not over spec'ed so enabling the resources to be put to better use. To make it resource friendly we are not using external databases to store virtual user information like most other how-to's do as well as using milters for spam and virus checking as opposed to running amavisd-new.

The basics

To begin with we will configure the basics such as the hostname, mail origin, networks, hash maps spool directory. All these configuration options should be added to /etc/postfix/main.cf unless stated. Sample configuration files are available for download at the end of this page.

command_directory = /usr/sbin
daemon_directory = /usr/libexec/postfix
mydomain = example.com
myorigin = $mydomain
mynetworks =
alias_maps = hash:/etc/aliases
alias_database = hash:/etc/aliases
canonical_maps = hash:/etc/postfix/canonical
sender_canonical_maps = hash:/etc/postfix/canonical
recipient_canonical_maps = hash:/etc/postfix/canonical
virtual_alias_maps = hash:/etc/postfix/virtual
mail_spool_directory = /var/spool/mail


We will use the much improved maildir format as opposed to the default mbox format

home_mailbox = Maildir/


To perform SMTP authentication we will be using SASL, however we will not use the Cyrus SASL as that requires us to run the saslauthd daemon, we will instead use dovecot sasl since we will be running dovecot for IMAP and POP3 thus killing 2 birds with one stone.

smtpd_sasl_type = dovecot
smtpd_sasl_path = private/auth
smtpd_sasl_auth_enable = yes


We need TLS to ensure that the plain text passwords are not transmitted over the wire during SMTP authentication, servers that support TLS are also able to communicate with this server over a secured connection.

Instructions on creating your server certificate signed by cacert.org are can be found here

Set TLS random source

tls_random_source = dev:/dev/urandom

Enable server TLS

smtpd_use_tls = yes
smtpd_tls_key_file = /etc/pki/postfix/key.pem
smtpd_tls_cert_file = /etc/pki/postfix/server.pem
smtpd_tls_CAfile = /etc/pki/postfix/root.crt
smtpd_tls_loglevel = 1
smtpd_tls_received_header = yes
smtpd_tls_session_cache_timeout = 3600s
smtpd_tls_session_cache_database = btree:/var/spool/postfix/smtpd_tls_cache

Enable client TLS

smtp_use_tls = yes
smtp_tls_session_cache_database = btree:/var/spool/postfix/smtp_tls_cache
smtp_tls_note_starttls_offer = yes

Spam prevention

Require a valid EHLO / HELO

smtpd_helo_required = yes

Prevent email address harvesting attacks

disable_vrfy_command = yes

Change reject codes to permanent (By default postfix issues 4xx error codes which implies temporary failure we need 5xx for permanent errors)

unverified_recipient_reject_code = 550
unverified_sender_reject_code = 550
unknown_local_recipient_reject_code = 550

Setup sender address verification

address_verify_map = btree:/var/spool/postfix/verify
smtpd_sender_restrictions = hash:/etc/postfix/sender_access

Create /etc/postfix/sender_access and add

#sample /etc/postfix/sender_access contains frequently spoofed domains
aol.com     reject_unverified_sender
hotmail.com reject_unverified_sender
yahoo.com reject_unverified_sender
gmail.com reject_unverified_sender
bigfoot.com reject_unverified_sender

Mitigate attacks from zombies and broken clients

smtpd_error_sleep_time = 5s
smtpd_soft_error_limit = 10
smtpd_hard_error_limit = 20

Only allow pipelining from authenticated clients

smtpd_data_restrictions = reject_unauth_pipelining

Install postfix-policyd-spf-perl and enable SPF support

 # wget http://www.openspf.org/blobs/postfix-policyd-spf-perl-2.005.tar.gz
 # tar xzvf postfix-policyd-spf-perl-2.005.tar.gz
 # cd postfix-policyd-spf-perl-2.005
 # cp postfix-policyd-spf-perl /etc/postfix/

Add this to /etc/postfix/master.cf

spfpolicy unix  -       n       n       -       -       spawn user=nobody argv=/usr/bin/perl /etc/postfix/postfix-policyd-spf-perl

Add DKIM support

Instructions on adding DKIM support can be found here

Add domainkeys support

Instructions on adding domainkeys support can be found here

Getting it all to work depends on the smtpd_recipient_restrictions option so we set it below

smtpd_recipient_restrictions =
        check_recipient_access hash:/etc/postfix/access
        reject_rbl_client list.dsbl.org
        reject_rbl_client zen.spamhaus.org
        reject_rbl_client l1.spews.dnsbl.sorbs.net
        reject_rbl_client combined.njabl.org
        reject_rbl_client bl.spamcop.net
        reject_rhsbl_sender dsn.rfc-ignorant.org
        reject_rhsbl_sender bogusmx.rfc-ignorant.org
        reject_rhsbl_sender rhsbl.sorbs.net
        reject_rhsbl_client dsn.rfc-ignorant.org
        reject_rhsbl_client bogusmx.rfc-ignorant.org
        reject_rhsbl_client rhsbl.sorbs.net
        check_policy_service unix:private/spfpolicy

Milters [spamassassin & clamav]

For your spam classification using spamassassin and virus scanning using clamav we will be using postfix's milter interface instead of using the resource intensive amavisd-new daemon. This is a very efficient way of doing it as we don't even have to run clamd the clamav milter does the scanning itself.

smtpd_milters = unix:/var/clamav/clmilter.socket unix:/var/run/spamass.sock
non_smtpd_milters = unix:/var/clamav/clmilter.socket unix:/var/run/spamass.sock

Create db files

 # postmap /etc/postfix/canonical
 # postmap /etc/postfix/access
 # postmap /etc/postfix/virtual
 # postmap /etc/postfix/sender_access

Sample configuration files


This will setup dovecot as our IMAP/POP3 server.

Basic configuration

We will setup dovecot for IMAP and POP3 and disable SSL.

protocols = imap pop3
listen = *
ssl_listen = *
ssl_disable = yes


We will use the maildir format as opposed to the default mbox format.

mail_location = maildir:~/Maildir

Authentication & SASL

Configure dovecot to use LOGIN and PLAIN as the authentication mechanisims as many MS clients are unable to use encrypted authentication mechanisms. We also setup the SASL socket to enable postfix to authenticate SMTP connections using dovecot.

auth default {
  mechanisms = plain login
  passdb pam {
  userdb passwd {

  socket listen {
    client {
        path = /var/spool/postfix/private/auth
        mode = 0660
        user = postfix
        group = postfix

Client Issues

Some MS imap clients in the outlook family have issues with both thier IMAP and POP3 implementations so we need to accommodate them by setting up these work arounds

protocol imap {
 imap_client_workarounds = outlook-idle delay-newmail

protocol pop3 {
 pop3_client_workarounds = outlook-no-nuls oe-ns-eoh

Run IMAP behind proxy

The imap server is configured to run on port 10143 such that port 143 is handled by the imap proxy server that will improve performance for your webmail by caching connections to the imap server. The listen option under protocol sets this up.

protocol imap {
 imap_client_workarounds = outlook-idle delay-newmail
 listen =

Sample files


imapproxy was written to compensate for webmail clients that are unable to maintain persistent connections to an IMAP server. Most webmail clients need to log in to an IMAP server for nearly every single transaction. This behaviour can cause tragic performance problems on the IMAP server. imapproxy tries to deal with this problem by leaving server connections open for a short time after a webmail client logs out. When the webmail client connects again, imapproxy will determine if there's a cached connection available and reuse it if possible. - according to the imapproxy website.


Make the following changes in the file /etc/imapproxy.conf

cache_size 3072
listen_port 143
server_port 10143
cache_expiration_time 900
proc_username nobody
proc_groupname nobody
stat_filename /var/run/pimpstats
protocol_log_filename /var/log/imapproxy_protocol.log
syslog_facility LOG_MAIL
send_tcp_keepalives no
enable_select_cache yes
foreground_mode no
force_tls no
enable_admin_commands no

Sample files


Bind will be setup chrooted to improve security we will also use views to prevent abuse of the dns server.

Basic configuration

The basic configuration disables by default, recursive queries and zone transfers. We also obscure the version of BIND we are running such that we are not hit by zero day vulnerabilities from script kiddies.

options {
        directory "/var/named";
        pid-file "/var/run/named/named.pid";
        listen-on {
        version "just guess";
        allow-recursion { "localhost"; };
        allow-transfer { "none"; };


The logging is customized to remove the annoying “lame-server” and update errors that appear in the logs

logging {
        category update { null; };
        category update-security { null;        };
        category lame-servers{ null; };


Ensure that this is set in the file /etc/sysconfig/named (its usually set by the bind-chroot package)


Point server

Let the machine use this server for dns resolution edit /etc/resolv.conf and prepend


Sample files


We will use vsftpd as our ftp server. This has a better track record as opposed to the proftpd & wuftpd servers.

Basic setting

Our basic setup disables anonymous users, and enables local system users to connect to the ftp server

ftpd_banner=Welcome to example.com server


All users will be chrooted to their home directories (except usernames in the /etc/vsftpd/chroot_list file) meaning the cannot break out and see other users files.


Banned users

Users added to the file /etc/vsftpd/user_list will not be allowed to login


Sample files

Clamav milter

Edit /etc/sysconfig/clamav-milter


Patch the init file to fix socket permissions

   # wget http://www.topdog-software.com/files/clamav-milter.patch
   # patch /etc/init.d/clamav-milter < clamav-milter.patch


Basic config

listen only to the localhost, edit /etc/my.cnf under the mysqld section

bind-address =

Set root password

 # mysqladmin -u root password NEWPASSWORD

Start mysql

 # service mysqld start


Basic config

required_hits 5
report_safe 0
rewrite_header Subject [SPAM]

Create mysql database

Create the database

# mysqladmin -p create bayes

Populate the database

 # mysql -p bayes < /usr/share/doc/spamassassin-$(rpm --qf %{VERSION} -q spamassassin)/sql/bayes_mysql.sql

Create the user

 # mysql -p
 mysql> GRANT ALL ON bayes.* TO bayes@localhost IDENTIFIED BY 'password';

Configure to use db

Edit the file /etc/mail/spamassassin/local.cf and add

bayes_store_module  Mail::SpamAssassin::BayesStore::MySQL
bayes_sql_dsn       DBI:mysql:bayes:localhost
bayes_sql_override_username bayes
bayes_sql_username  bayes
bayes_sql_password  password

Configure FuzzyOCR

We will be storing the image hashes in a mysql database to improve on performance such that images that we have already scanned do not get scanned again as OCR is a resource intense activity.

Create mysql Database

The sql script creates the database and tables and adds a user fuzzyocr with the password fuzzyocr

# mysql -p < /usr/local/src/devel/FuzzyOcr.mysql

Change the password

 # mysqladmin -u fuzzyocr -p fuzzyocr password

Basic settings

Edit /etc/mail/spamassassin/FuzzyOCR.cf and set the basic options

focr_path_bin /usr/bin:/usr/local/bin
focr_minimal_scanset 1
focr_autosort_scanset 1
focr_enable_image_hashing 3
focr_logfile /tmp/FuzzyOcr.log

Make FuzzyOCR use the database

Edit the file /etc/mail/spamassassin/FuzzyOcr.cf and add

focr_mysql_db FuzzyOcr
focr_mysql_hash Hash
focr_mysql_safe Safe
focr_mysql_user fuzzyocr
focr_mysql_pass password
focr_mysql_host localhost
focr_mysql_port 3306
focr_mysql_socket /var/lib/mysql/mysql.sock

SARE rule updates

Import the GPG key used to sign the rules

 # mkdir /etc/mail/spamassassin/sa-update-keys/
 # chmod 700 /etc/mail/spamassassin/sa-update-keys/
 # wget http://daryl.dostech.ca/sa-update/sare/GPG.KEY
 # sa-update --import GPG.KEY

Create the channels file /etc/mail/spamassassin/sare-sa-update-channels.txt


Create an update script /usr/local/bin/update-sa

sa-update -D --channelfile /etc/mail/spamassassin/sare-sa-update-channels.txt --gpgkey 856AA88A &>/var/log/sa-updates.log

Make it executable and add to cron

 # chmod +x /usr/local/bin/update-sa
 # ln -s /usr/local/bin/update-sa /etc/cron.daily/
 # ln -s /usr/local/bin/update-sa /etc/cron.hourly/

Spamassassin milter

Edit /etc/sysconfig/spamass-milter

EXTRA_FLAGS="-m -r 8"


We need to patch the init file to fix the permissions of the socket created such that postfix is able to use the socket.

 # wget http://www.topdog-software.com/files/spamass-milter.patch
 # patch /etc/rc.d/init.d/spamass-milter < spamass-milter.patch


Disable modules

We will disable some modules that we are not using thus freeing up memory and also improving security.

Edit /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf and comment out the modules as below.

#LoadModule ldap_module modules/mod_ldap.so
#LoadModule authnz_ldap_module modules/mod_authnz_ldap.so
#LoadModule dav_module modules/mod_dav.so
#LoadModule status_module modules/mod_status.so
#LoadModule dav_fs_module modules/mod_dav_fs.so
#LoadModule proxy_module modules/mod_proxy.so
#LoadModule proxy_balancer_module modules/mod_proxy_balancer.so
#LoadModule proxy_ftp_module modules/mod_proxy_ftp.so
#LoadModule proxy_http_module modules/mod_proxy_http.so
#LoadModule proxy_connect_module modules/mod_proxy_connect.so
#LoadModule cache_module modules/mod_cache.so
#LoadModule disk_cache_module modules/mod_disk_cache.so
#LoadModule file_cache_module modules/mod_file_cache.so
#LoadModule mem_cache_module modules/mod_mem_cache.so

Edit /etc/httpd/conf.d/proxy_ajp.conf and comment out as below

#LoadModule proxy_ajp_module modules/mod_proxy_ajp.so

Listen to one ip for https

Apache has to be configured to listed to one address for port 443 as webmin will be using the same port. Edit /etc/httpd/conf.d/ssl

Listen 192,168.1.6:443

Enable gzip compression

We setup gzip compression via the mod_deflate module to improve web server performance and to cut down on bandwidth usage by compressing responses to the client.

SetOutputFilter DEFLATE
BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4 gzip-only-text/html
BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4\.0[678] no-gzip
BrowserMatch \bMSIE !no-gzip !gzip-only-text/html
SetEnvIfNoCase Request_URI \
\.(?:gif|jpe?g|png)$ no-gzip dont-vary
Header append Vary User-Agent env=!dont-vary

Setup logging for the deflate module

DeflateFilterNote deflate_ratio
LogFormat "%v %h %l %u %t \"%r\" %>s %b mod_deflate: %{deflate_ratio}n pct." vhost_with_deflate_info
CustomLog logs/deflate_access_log vhost_with_deflate_info

Increase PHP max memory

Edit the file /etc/php.ini and set the following

memory_limit = 64M

Enable virtual hosting

NameVirtualHost *:80

Create default virtual host

This needs to be the first virtual host, it will be the default on the server the equivalent of the server with out virtual hosting.

<VirtualHost *:80>
        Servername localhost.localdomain
        Serveradmin root@localhost.localdomain

Roundcube webmail

Create database

Create the database and add the roundcube user.

 # mysqladmin -p create roundcube
 # mysql -p
 # mysql> GRANT ALL ON roundcube.* TO roundcube@localhost IDENTIFIED BY 'password';

Initialize the database

 # mysql -u roundcube -p roundcube < /usr/share/doc/roundcube-0.1/SQL/mysql5.initial.sql

Basic config

Configure database DSN in /var/www/roundcube/config/db.inc.php

$rcmail_config['db_dsnw'] = 'mysql://roundcube:password@localhost/roundcube';

Configure roundcube in /var/www/roundcube/config/main.inc.php

$rcmail_config['default_host'] = 'localhost';
$rcmail_config['default_port'] = 143;
$rcmail_config['virtuser_file'] = '/etc/postfix/virtual';
$rcmail_config['smtp_server'] = 'localhost';
$rcmail_config['smtp_port'] = 25;
$rcmail_config['smtp_helo_host'] = 'localhost';

Setup catch all virtualhost

As we will be providing webmail for all domains that are created on the system we need to setup a catch all virtualhost that can display roundcube when ever a user accesses http://webmail.domainname

<VirtualHost *:80>
ServerName webmail.example.com
ServerAlias webmail.*
DocumentRoot /var/www/roundcube
<Directory /var/www/roundcube>
Options -Indexes IncludesNOEXEC FollowSymLinks
allow from all


This is a basic firewall it may not suit your needs, firewalling is an art so i recommend to read into it to improve on this basic one.

Basic config

Add these rules in your configuration file /etc/sysconfig/iptables




-A INPUT -i lo -j ACCEPT
-A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 22 -j ACCEPT
-A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 21 -j ACCEPT
-A INPUT -p tcp -m multiport -j ACCEPT --dports 80,443,25,110,143,53
-A INPUT -p udp -m udp --dport 53 -j ACCEPT
-A INPUT -p icmp -m icmp -m limit --icmp-type 8 --limit 5/min -j ACCEPT

Activate config

 # service iptables restart


Virtualmin is a powerful and flexible hosting control panel that integrates with webmin. We will be using it to provide the virtual hosting functions such as creation of domains, accounts and maintaining configurations on the system.

Start services

You need to start up services that are required to be able to configure virtualmin. Start the following services

 # service named start
 # service spamassassin start
 # service spamass-milter start
 # service clamav-milter start
 # service postfix start
 # service dovecot start
 # service imapproxy start
 # service httpd start

Initial settings


Webmin needs to be able to communicate with mysql since we have set a password for mysql we need to set that up in webmin, go to servers → mysql and enter this information

Configure Features

You need to enable the features and plugins that we want to use. On login this is the screen that you will see.

Enable the following features and save

  • Home directory
  • Administration user
  • Mail for domain
  • BIND DNS domain
  • Apache website
  • Webalizer reporting
  • Log file rotation
  • Mysql database
  • Webmin user

Configure server templates

Server template are used to customize the services and to create packages for different hosting account types.

Apache template

You can make changes to the way apache virtual hosts are created by editing this template, The defaults however will do for purposes of this howto.

Domain owner template

This template is used to configure various server limits such as number of mailboxes,aliases,databases,virtual servers and other options like bandwidth limits, admin abilities. For this howto we will use the default values.

Home directory template

This template allows you to set a skel directory to hold setting for new users for this howto we will use the defaults

Administration user

This template lets you set the quota for the virtual server and the admin user for this howto we will use the default quota 1GB.

Mail for domain template

This template sets various mail related options, we will modify the email message sent on server creation to have to content below

The following virtual server has been set up successfully :

Domain name:             ${DOM}
Hosting server:          ${HOSTNAME}
Virtual IP address:      ${IP}
Administration login:    ${USER}
Administration password: ${PASS}
Administration URL:      ${WEBMIN_PROTO}://www.${DOM}:${WEBMIN_PORT}/

Website:                 http://www.${DOM}/
Webalizer log reporting: Enabled
Webalizer log reporting: Disabled

Email domain:            ${DOM}
SMTP server:             mail.${DOM}
POP3 server:             mail.${DOM}
Webmail:                 webmail.${DOM}

DNS domain:              ${DOM}
Nameserver:              ${HOSTNAME}

MySQL database:          ${DB}
MySQL login:             ${MYSQL_USER}
MySQL password:          ${PASS}

PostgreSQL database:     ${DB}
PostgreSQL login:        ${USER}
PostgreSQL password:     ${PASS}


We will leave the other options as the defaults.

BIND DNS domain template

This template is used to customize the zones that will be created by virtualmin. The changes to be made are adding a spf record, add the following records to auto generated text box (replace ns1.home.topdog-software.com. with your slave server)

@     IN NS ns1.home.topdog-software.com. ;slave
admin IN A ;virtualmin
webmail IN A ;webmail

In the directives text box add the following with the ip address of your slave server such that the slave is allowed to do zone transfers.

allow-transfer {; };

Mysql Database template

Contains options on creation of databases by virtualmin, for the howto we will use the defaults.

Webmin login template

Contains option on creation of new users by virtualmin, for the howto we will use the defaults

Create virtual server

Finally we have a working virtual server system, lets create our first virtual server. Go to servers → virtualmin virtual servers and click add new virtual server, owned by new user.

Fill in the require fields and click create.

Add a mail user to the domain. click on the domain name, then click edit mail and FTP users, then add user and fill in the information.



Test smtp

telnet 25
Connected to localhost.
Escape character is '^]'.
220 tds mail cluster
helo me
250 hosting1
mail from:address@yahoo.com
250 2.1.0 Ok
rcpt: andrew@example.com
250 2.1.0 Ok
354 End data with <CR><LF>.<CR><LF>
Subject:This is a test
This is a test
250 2.0.0 Ok: queued as 4ACCC7C5A6

telnet 25
Connected to localhost.
Escape character is '^]'.
220 tds mail cluster
ehlo me
250-SIZE 10240000
250 DSN

Test dkim

Send a mail to autorespond+dkim@dk.elandsys.com

Test domainkeys

Send a mail to autorespond+dk@dk.elandsys.com


Test pop3

telnet 110
+OK Dovecot ready.
user andrew.example
pass password
+OK Logged in.
+OK Logging out.

Test imap

telnet 143
* OK Dovecot ready.
01 login andrew.example password
01 OK User logged in
01 list "" "*"
* LIST (\HasNoChildren) "." "Trash"
* LIST (\HasNoChildren) "." "Drafts"
* LIST (\HasNoChildren) "." "Junk"
* LIST (\HasNoChildren) "." "Sent"
* LIST (\HasNoChildren) "." "INBOX"
01 OK List completed.
01 logout
* BYE LOGOUT received
01 OK Completed


dig example.com @


We are using the test virus from www.eicar.org

telnet 25
Connected to localhost.
Escape character is '^]'.
220 tds mail cluster
helo me
250 hosting1
mail from:address@yahoo.com
250 2.1.0 Ok
rcpt: andrew@example.com
250 2.1.0 Ok
354 End data with <CR><LF>.<CR><LF>
550 5.7.1 virus Eicar-Test-Signature detected by ClamAV - http://www.clamav.net
221 2.0.0 Bye

Take a lot at your /var/log/maillog you should see something like this

73BC87C4E4: milter-reject: END-OF-MESSAGE from localhost[]:
5.7.1 virus Eicar-Test-Signature detected by ClamAV - http://www.clamav.net; 
from=<address@yahoo.com> to=<andrew@example.com> proto=SMTP helo=<me>


We are using the test message from http://spamassassin.apache.org/gtube/

telnet 25
Connected to localhost.
Escape character is '^]'.
220 tds mail cluster
helo me
250 hosting1
mail from:address@yahoo.com
250 2.1.0 Ok
rcpt: andrew@example.com
250 2.1.0 Ok
354 End data with <CR><LF>.<CR><LF>
550 5.7.1 Blocked by SpamAssassin
221 2.0.0 Bye

You will see this in your log files

spamd: result: Y 1002 - AWL,GTUBE,MISSING_SUBJECT,TVD_SPACE_RATIO,UNPARSEABLE_RELAY scantime=0.5,size=723,user=root,uid=99,required_score=5.0,


Got any comments/bugs drop me a mail my contact info is on the home page.

blog comments powered by Disqus