As you probably already know, the terminal provides tech professionals a lot of flexibility when it comes to managing Linux operating systems. But what if you’re not a tech professional and still have a need to effectively manage several Linux servers? Well, we have a solution for you! In this article, we’ll show you how to install and start using Webmin – an open-source web-based tool which allows users to manage almost every aspect of your operating system right from you web browser!
For example, you can use Webmin to manage user accounts, configuration firewall, configure DNS settings, updating OS and its packages.
Here’s a list of Webmin’s features which you might be interested in:
- See server’s utilization stats.
- Install, update, and remove software packages.
- Manage user accounts: create and delete users, change user’s passwords.
- Configure network settings, eg: network interfaces IPs, DNS, DHCP.
- Enable firewall and manage its rules.
- Set up disk limits for services and users.
- Run commands from interactive shell.
You must have sudo privileges to install and set up Webmin on Ubuntu Linux.
Webmin is not listed in the official Ubuntu repository, so you need to use the following steps to install it by manually adding the Webmin repository to your Ubuntu server first:
Updating system repository
It is extremely important that update your APT repository before getting the new package:
sudo apt update
Installing prerequisite packages
Once all the packages and repositories are updated, you need to install following dependency packages that will help you to manage the Ubuntu software repositories:
sudo apt install -y wget apt-transport-https software-properties-common
Extracting GPG key
To extract the GPG key, use the command given-below:
sudo wget -q http://www.webmin.com/jcameron-key.asc -O- | sudo apt-key add -
Adding Webmin repository
When the GPG key is in place, copy and paste the command into the terminal to add the Webmin repository:
sudo add-apt-repository "deb [arch=amd64] http://download.webmin.com/download/repository sarge contrib"
Installing “Webmin” on Ubuntu
As soon as you’ve added Webmin repository, it is a good idea to update your package list again:
sudo apt update
Now, install the Webmin application by typing the command:
sudo apt install -y webmin
The Webmin has been successfully installed as a service inside of your system.
Verification of installation
Check the status of the Webmin service and make sure, that it is in active and running state:
sudo systemctl status webmin
To check the version of the Webmin, use the following command:
dpkg -l | grep webmin
It displays that we have installed version “1.974”.
Webmin listens on port 10000, but your firewall blocks it, you must first allow port 10000 on your firewall so that you can log in to Webmin.
sudo ufw allow 10000/tcp
After that, restart the firewall to see the changes:
sudo ufw reload
To check the status of the firewall, use:
sudo ufw status
Using Webmin on Ubuntu
In this section we’ll cover the first steps at Webmin, so you can feel the taste of ease Linux server management.
Accessing Webmin’s UI
Once the port 10000 is opened, you can use your browser and enter your server IP address or hostname to connect to it:
At first login, the warning web page will appear, which tells you that the website you’re connecting to has invalid SSL certificate. This happens because Webmin produces its own SSL certificate during the installation, and your browser can not validate it.
You can install your own valid (paid) certificate later.
As for now, click on the “Advanced” tab:
Then, click “Accept the risk and continue“:
The login page for the Webmin will appear, provide your system user username and password and click on the “Sign-in” button:
The Webmin dashboard will show you an overview of system statistics such as CPU and RAM consumptions and other system’s information.
You will see a panel with a list of options on the left side where you can choose any administrative functions.
Creating a new user
You can easily create a new user at your server using Webmin.
To do that, click on the “System” tab and then select “Users and groups” from the drop-down menu.
You can create a new user by clicking on the “Create a new user” button as shown in the image:
Enter the required details in the form:
When you click on the “Create” button after giving all the details, a new user will be created.
If you want to modify the user’s password, click the “Change Passwords” option in the “System” menu.
The list of users will appear on the screen.
Select the user whom you want to change the password:
You can delete the Webmin from your system using the the following command:
sudo apt remove webmin
The Webmin tool has been deleted from your Linux system.
The Webmin is a powerful browser-based system configuration tool for handling server administration tasks such as user accounts, DNS settings, configure files and many others.
The Webmin makes it easy to complete tasks without having to use a terminal.
In this guide, we’ve covered how to install the Webmin, it’s interface and a couple of most commonly used actions.
Happy system administration of your Ubuntu Linux servers using the web browser and Webmin.
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