Setup osTicket on Ubuntu 18.04 | 16.04 with Nginx

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install and configure osTicket customer support platform on Ubuntu 18.04 | 16.04 with Nginx HTTP servers..

Our previous tutorial showed you how to setup osTicket on Ubuntu with Apache2. This shows you how to run it with Nginx instead.

For the uninitiated, osTicket is an open source Customer support | help desk software that can serve as a strong alternative to the popular support platforms in use today.

If you currently running a ticketing platform and feel like it’s lacking in some areas, you might want to try osTicket. It comes with intuitive mechanisms that allow to easily migrate from popular solutions to osTicket.

osTicket helps you manage issues and customer request via its  rich and simple dashboard, allows you to add, edit, and delete your help desk topics that suit your preference, ticket filtering and much more.

This free customer support software is built on the LAMP / LEMP stack, and offers features that will help you run your business and collaborate with your customers, employees and partners.

For more about osTicket, please check its homepage….

To get started with installing osTicket, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Install Nginx HTTP Server

osTicket requires a web server and Nginx HTTP server is the most popular open source web server available today…

To install Nginx server, run the commands below:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install nginx

After installing Nginx, the commands below can be used to stop, start and enable Nginx service to always start up with the server boots…

sudo systemctl stop nginx.service
sudo systemctl start nginx.service
sudo systemctl enable nginx.service

Now that Nginx is installed…. to test whether the web server is working, open your browser and browse to the URL below…

http://localhost
nginx default home page test

If you see the page above, then Nginx is successfully installed…

Step 2: Install MariaDB Database Server

osTicket also requires a database server to store its content… If you’re looking for a truly open source database server, then MariaDB is a great place to start…

To install MariaDB run the commands below:

sudo apt-get install mariadb-server mariadb-client

After installing MariaDB, the commands below can be used to stop, start and enable MariaDB service to always start up when the server boots…

Run these on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS

sudo systemctl stop mysql.service
sudo systemctl start mysql.service
sudo systemctl enable mysql.service

Run these on Ubuntu 18.10 and 18.04 LTS

sudo systemctl stop mariadb.service
sudo systemctl start mariadb.service
sudo systemctl enable mariadb.service

Next, run the commands below to secure the database server with a root password if you were not prompted to do so during the installation…

sudo mysql_secure_installation

When prompted, answer the questions below by following the guide.

  • Enter current password for root (enter for none): Just press the Enter
  • Set root password? [Y/n]: Y
  • New password: Enter password
  • Re-enter new password: Repeat password
  • Remove anonymous users? [Y/n]: Y
  • Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n]: Y
  • Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n]:  Y
  • Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n]:  Y

Now that MariaDB is installed, to test whether the database server was successfully installed, run the commands below…

sudo mysql -u root -p

type the root password when prompted…

mariadb welcome

If you see a similar screen as shown above, then the server was successfully installed…

Step 3: Install PHP 7.2-FPM and Related Modules

osTicket is a PHP based platform… and PHP 7.2 may not be available in Ubuntu default repositories… To run PHP 7.2-FPM on Ubuntu 14.04, you may need to run the commands below:

sudo apt-get install software-properties-common
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ondrej/php

Then update and upgrade to PHP 7.2-FPM

sudo apt update

Next, run the commands below to install PHP 7.2-FPM and related modules.

sudo apt install php7.2-fpm php7.2-common php7.2-mysql php7.2-gmp php7.2-curl php7.2-intl php7.2-mbstring php7.2-xmlrpc php7.2-apcu php7.2-gd php7.2-bcmath php7.2-soap php7.2-ldap php7.2-imap php7.2-xml php7.2-cli php7.2-zip

After installing PHP 7.1, run the commands below to open PHP default configuration file for Nginx…

sudo nano /etc/php/7.2/fpm/php.ini

The lines below is a good settings for most PHP based CMS… Update the configuration file with these and save….

file_uploads = On
allow_url_fopen = On
short_open_tag = On
cgi.fix_pathinfo = 0
memory_limit = 256M
upload_max_filesize = 100M
max_execution_time = 360
date.timezone = America/Chicago

Everytime you make changes to PHP configuration file, you should also restart Nginx web server… To do so, run the commands below:

sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Step 4: Create osTicket Database

Now that you’ve installed all the packages that are required for osTicket to function, continue below to start configuring the servers. First run the commands below to create a blank osTicket database.

To logon to MariaDB database server, run the commands below.

sudo mysql -u root -p

Then create a database called osticket

CREATE DATABASE osticket;

Create a database user called osticketuser with a new password

CREATE USER 'osticketuser'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'new_password_here';

Then grant the user full access to the database.

GRANT ALL ON osticket.* TO 'osticketuser'@'localhost' WITH GRANT OPTION;

Finally, save your changes and exit.

FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
EXIT;

Step 5: Download osTicket Latest Release

osTicket community edition can be downloaded from its download page here..

To get osTicket latest release you may want to use Github repository… Install git tool to download Bagisto packages…..

sudo apt install git curl
curl -sS https://getcomposer.org/installer | sudo php -- --install-dir=/usr/local/bin --filename=composer

After installing curl above, change into the Nginx root directory and download osTicket packages from Github…

cd /var/www/
sudo git clone https://github.com/osTicket/osTicket osticket
cd /var/www/osticket
sudo php manage.php deploy --setup /var/www/osticket/

Rename the sample file include/ost-sampleconfig.php to ost-config.php by running the commands below:

sudo mv /var/www/osticket/include/ost-sampleconfig.php /var/www/osticket/include/ost-config.php

Next, run the commands below update osticket root directory permissions so the web server can access.

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/osticket/
sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www/osticket/

Step 6: Configure Nginx

Finally, configure Apahce2 site configuration file for osTicket. This file will control how users access osTicket content. Run the commands below to create a new configuration file called osticket

sudo nano /etc/nginx/sites-available/osticket

Then copy and paste the content below into the file and save it. Replace the highlighted line with your own domain name and directory root location.

server {
    listen 80;
    listen [::]:80;

    server_name  example.com www.example.com;
    root   /var/www/osticket;
    index  index.php;
    
    access_log /var/log/nginx/example.com.access.log;
    error_log /var/log/nginx/example.com.error.log;

    client_max_body_size 100M;
  
    autoindex off;

    if ($request_uri ~ "^/api(/[^\?]+)") {
          set $path_info $1;
       }

    location ~ ^/api/(?:tickets|tasks).*$ {
          try_files $uri $uri/ /api/http.php?$query_string;
       }

     if ($request_uri ~ "^/scp/.*\.php(/[^\?]+)") {
          set $path_info $1;
      }

     location ~ ^/scp/ajax.php/.*$ {
        try_files $uri $uri/ /scp/ajax.php?$query_string;
      }

    location / {
    try_files $uri $uri/ index.php;
      }

    location ~ \.php$ {
         include snippets/fastcgi-php.conf;
         fastcgi_pass unix:/var/run/php/php7.2-fpm.sock;
         include fastcgi_params;
         fastcgi_intercept_errors on;
    }
}

Save the file and exit.

Step 7: Enable the osTicket and Rewrite Module

After configuring the VirtualHost above, enable it by running the commands below

sudo ln -s /etc/nginx/sites-available/osticket /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/
sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Then open your browser and browse to the server domain name. You should see osTicket setup wizard to complete. Please follow the wizard carefully.

http://example.com/

Then follow the on-screen instruction to complete the setup.

Before you begin, the installer will check your server configuration to make sure you meet the minimum requirements to run the latest version of osTicket.

osTicket Ubuntu install

Next, type in the database name, username and password.. then create a backend admin account and continue.

osTicket Ubuntu Setup

Your osTicket installation has been completed successfully. Your next step is to fully configure your new support ticket system for use, but before you get to it please take a minute to cleanup.

osTicket Ubuntu Setup

Conclusion:

You have successfully learned how to install osTicket platform on Ubuntu.. You may need to configure additional settings, but the steps above give you a basic starting point.

If you find errors with the steps above, please comment below:

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