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You can host virtual servers on a debian host.


A minimal, standard install would be good.

Services on the root server

You probably do not want to run any services on your root server. (We should list the way to disable services).

Services on the root server that bind to all IP addresses will block you from providing them from within the virtual servers.

To find out about running services look at the output of the command "netstat -aep":

tcp 0 0 *:smtp *:* LISTEN .... /inetd

A service bound to all IP addresses will show up with * instead of the IP or hostname on the 4th column ("*:smtp")

Bound to one address it will show up the host name of the bound IP address or the IP address itself:

tcp 0 0 vs1.this.is:smtp *:* LISTEN .... /xinetd

If you need to run services on the root server you will have to tell them to only bind to the ip address of the root server.

ssh on the root server

If you want to use ssh for remote administration of the root server, you will have to tell the ssh daemon process to only bind to the ip address of the root server.

In /etc/ssh/sshd_config inside the root server put:

ListenAddress? root.server.IP.address

and restart sshd

(x)inetd on the root server

For inetd you can install xinetd

Add to start of /etc/xinetd.conf:



bind = my.IP.addr.here



apt-get install kernel-source-2.6.8 kernel-patch-vserver kernel-package patch
cd /usr/src
tar -xjf kernel-source-2.6.8.tar.bz2
cd /usr/src/kernel-source-2.6.8
cp /boot/config-2.6.8* ./.config
zcat /usr/src/kernel-patches/diffs/vserver/patch-2.6.8-16-vs1.9.5.x-5.diff.gz | patch -p1
make oldconfig
man make-kpkg
make-kpkg --initrd binary
dpkg -i kernel-image-2.6.8*.deb

if you need SATA SMART support while retaining security-supported packages, as i did, use ubuntu hoary's linux-source-2.6.10 & debian sarge's kernel-patch-vserver. (ubuntu supports security updates for 18 months and debian for 6 months into the next stable release.) follow the same directions as above for pure sarge, but download and install [linux-source-2.6.10], get an example config from the [linux-image-2.6.10] package for your architecture, and apply patch-2.6.10-5-debian-vs1.9.4.diff.gz.

sid & woody (outdated)

You must patch or find a Kernel.

You could read http://vserver.strahlungsfrei.de/tiki-index.php?page=GetTheKernelAndInstall

but the info there is a bit out-dated.

Install vserver

It includes newvserver and vserver-copy.

Vserver is part of Sid (Unstable) so you if you are willing to use what Debian

calls unstable (and a lot us us do) you can use Dselect or apt-get to install.

Woody-Backports are at:


insert int /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb http://www.backports.org/debian stable util-vserver

another backport:

add deb http://debian.opal.dhs.org stable main

to /etc/apt/sources.list

Also there is a problem with bind running on a virtual server, read


NOTE: The kernel-patch-ctx (version 17-1) Debian package does not seem to patch kernel-source-2.4.21 despite reporting that "Patch /usr/src/kernel-patches/i386/apply/ctx processed fine"