Debian Linux install wifidog auth server

Install prerequisites

Before we install anything lets be sure we have access to internet and that our apt database is updated

apt-get update

The authentification server require apache and php (we install the latest version)

apt-get install apache2 php5

Database server install

It also require a database server. PostgreSQL 8.1 is available. 8.1 is harder to configure but faster on current computer.

apt-get install postgresql-8.1

Configure PostgreSQL 8.1

If you selected postgresql-8.1, it will crash at install. You must configure postgresql.conf before being able to launch the services.

nano /etc/postgresql/8.1/main/postgresql.conf

This isn't a good security setting, you should make sure to configure the whole thing later on! Right now, you need, at least to change:

SSL = true


SSL = false

Install prerequisites - step2
We also need some specifics librairies

apt-get install xml-core gettext mcrypt libapache2-mod-php5 php5-cgi
apt-get install php5-mcrypt php5-mhash php5-pgsql php-pear php5-xmlrpc php5-curl

if you are using a current/2011 debian/ubuntu, you have to enable long variable names in suhosin - otherwise php will not work as expected:

vi /etc/php5/apache2/conf.d/suhosin.ini
-> add: = 100
-> add:  suhosin.request.max_varname_length = 100

To get the latest version of wifidog-auth we will need subversion:

apt-get install subversion

If you want multi-locales support, you will have to install that packages (or configure every one of them).

apt-get install locales-all

Some more libs

pear install XML_RPC
cd /tmp
pear install Phlickr-0.2.5.tgz 
rm Phlickr-0.2.5.tgz

Some stuff that isn't needed for the install, but still nice to have on a server (and which won't be install by default). If you don't what these are, you might not need them ;-) Openssh-server will allow you to launch command remotly, very useful for the third screen of install.php

apt-get install openssh-server less

Install the auth server

svn checkout
mv wifidog-auth/ /var/www/

Apache 2 configuration file
We need to change the document root. We take for granted that this server will be of no other "web" use... if it is, guess you'll have to learn how to configure apache2.

nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/default

and change (at the fifth line):

DocumentRoot /var/www/


DocumentRoot /var/www/wifidog-auth/wifidog

remove the rewrite rule around line 17

restart apache2:

cd /etc/init.d/
./apache2 restart

Configure locale in wifidog.conf

If you have installed locales-all and you want to keep the "French" default portal page, this step isn't needed. In other cases: you will have to change the file config.php

nano /var/www/wifidog-auth/wifidog/config.php

on line 208 (ctrl+w+enter, ctrl+t+enter, 208) remplace

define('DEFAULT_LANG', 'fr_CA');


define('DEFAULT_LANG', 'en_US');

Configure mail server

You need to have a valid mailer in order to mail account confirmation!

Installing postfix

apt-get install postfix

Select the "internet site with smart host" configuration option and answer the next series of questions.

Configure the auth server

Go to and follow the instructions. You can follow the following walk-though, under the install step: auth-server. It isn't updated though. Or you can follow the onscreen introduction ;-)

They will ask to :

1) First screen

create a wifidog user in postgres

su - postgres
createuser wifidog --pwprompt 

IF you have PostgreSQL 8.1 : answer no to the three questions

create a database owned by this new user

createdb wifidog --encoding=UTF-8 --owner=wifidog

you must then

cat /tmp/dog_cookie.txt

and click next in your browser (it will ask for the password in dog_cookie.txt)

2) Second screen: Verification of the installed software. If you followed this guide, you have everything install (except Radius support).

3) Third screen:

You will have to copy-paste the big serie of command, click refresh and next. The easiest way of doing that is if you have a ssh connection to your box (this is why I proposed openssh-server package earlier)

4) Fourth screen You may need to install Smarty. Let it do that. NEXT.

Click install for simplepie, (you may need to do this manually in your ssh session by changing /branches/ to /releases/ in the failed command from your web console session as the svn repo has changed structure at, then click NEXT.

Click install for feedpressreview, then next.

Click NEXT when asked to install Phlickr (it is already installed, even if the system doesn't see it).

5) Fill out your db information..

Remove installation files

Of course, the only one that should have access to the install.php file is you. You will need to move the file "install.php" out of public sight.

1) Go to your wifidog directory (/var/www/wifidog-auth/wifidog in our case).

cd /var/www/wifidog-auth/wifidog

2) Move "install.php" file to the parent directory which is not visible to the public:

mv install.php ../install.php

note that you can move it wherever you want, but make sure it's not public.

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