Setup Linux MySQL, PHP, nginx, php-fpm, varnish and APC on Centos (LEMP)

LEMP stack is a group of open source software to get web servers up and running. The acronym stands for Linux, nginx, MySQL, and PHP. In short, people who are looking into nginx is really looking for better web server as compare to apache which nginx perform better in many aspect although apache is still the most usage web server around due to its stability!


Before we can start with all the installation for our fresh installed Centos server, we will need to download and install 2 extra repositories to our server. Below is a 32 bits Centos 6 installation

sudo rpm -Uvh
sudo rpm -Uvh

64 bits Centos 6 installation you will need to fire the below command,

sudo rpm -Uvh
sudo rpm -Uvh

We will need to do this in order to get nginx and php-fpm off our centos machine since its not available on our fresh Centos installation.

Install Nginx on Centos

Firstly we will need to install our Nginx web server by firing the below command,

sudo yum install nginx -y

now we will need to update our nginx configuration at /etc/nginx/nginx.conf to the following

# For more information on configuration, see:
#   * Official English Documentation:
#   * Official Russian Documentation:

user              nginx;
worker_processes  4;
worker_rlimit_nofile 8192;

error_log  /var/log/nginx/error.log;
#error_log  /var/log/nginx/error.log  notice;
#error_log  /var/log/nginx/error.log  info;

pid        /var/run/;

events {
    worker_connections  1024;
        # Only for Linux 2.6 or >
        use epoll;
        # Accept as many connections as possible
        multi_accept on;

http {
    include       /etc/nginx/mime.types;
    default_type  application/octet-stream;

    log_format  main  '$remote_addr - $remote_user [$time_local] "$request" '
                      '$status $body_bytes_sent "$http_referer" '
                      '"$http_user_agent" "$http_x_forwarded_for"';

    access_log  /var/log/nginx/access.log  main;

    sendfile        on;
        tcp_nodelay                     on;

    #tcp_nopush     on;

    #keepalive_timeout  0;
    keepalive_timeout  65;
        client_body_timeout             30;
        client_header_timeout           30;
        send_timeout                    30;
        client_max_body_size            8M;
        reset_timedout_connection       on;

        # Gzip module configuration
        gzip                    on;
        gzip_disable            "MSIE [1-6].(?!.*SV1)";
        gzip_vary               on;
        gzip_comp_level         3;
        gzip_proxied            any;
        gzip_buffers            16 8k;

    #gzip  on;

    # Load config files from the /etc/nginx/conf.d directory
    # The default server is in conf.d/default.conf
    include /etc/nginx/conf.d/*.conf;


The Above configuration allows nginx web server configuration to be setup properly with gzip enabled. Next we need to edit /etc/nginx/conf.d/default.conf to the following

server {
        listen       80 default_server;
        root /usr/share/nginx/html; 
        error_log /var/log/nginx/error.log;
        access_log /var/log/nginx/access.log;

        location / {
                root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
                index  index.html index.htm index.php;

        error_page  404              /404.html;
        location = /404.html {
                root   /usr/share/nginx/html;

        error_page   500 502 503 504  /50x.html;
        location = /50x.html {
                root   /usr/share/nginx/html;

        location ~ \.php$ {
                root           /usr/share/nginx/html;
                try_files $uri =404;
                fastcgi_intercept_errors on;
                fastcgi_index  index.php;
                fastcgi_param  SCRIPT_FILENAME  $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
                include        fastcgi_params;


The above setup our default directory for this server so if you fire up your server hostname, you will reach the directory as written on the default conf file. Now, we will need to test our nginx configuration before starting it,

nginx -t
nginx: the configuration file /etc/nginx/nginx.conf syntax is ok
nginx: configuration file /etc/nginx/nginx.conf test is successful

Once this is done, our nginx web server has been setup and we will need to make sure that it will starts itself every times when it restart by setting up on chkconfig

sudo chkconfig --levels 235 nginx on

All done, we'll need to start up nginx

service nginx start

and we are good to go, you should be able to test whether this is working by firing up your ip address. And you can know your ip address by doing this

ifconfig eth0 | grep inet | awk '{ print $2 }'

But you should know 😉

Install PHP on Centos

Next, we will need to install php by firing

sudo yum install php-cli php-gd php-imap php-ldap php-odbc php-pear php-xml php-xmlrpc php-magickwand php-magpierss php-mbstring php-mcrypt php-mssql php-shout php-snmp php-soap php-tidy

Now edit php.ini file and find "cgi.fix_pathinfo" section then set it to 0 and save it.

Install APC on Centos

Next, we will need to install php-apc by firing

sudo yum install php-apc -y

We will need to update our php.ini file so that is enabled and is working fine. Edit the file at /etc/php.d/apc.ini and make sure that is enabled

; Enable apc extension module
extension =

Now we will need to install php-fpm

Install PHP-FPM on Centos

In order for php-fpm to work, we'll need to install it by running

yum install php-fpm -y

Once php-fpm is installed, we will need to configure it. Open up the file at /etc/php-fpm.d/www.conf and look for the following lines

; RPM: apache Choosed to be able to access some dir as httpd
user = apache
; RPM: Keep a group allowed to write in log dir.
group = apache

and change it to

; RPM: apache Choosed to be able to access some dir as httpd
user = nginx
; RPM: Keep a group allowed to write in log dir.
group = nginx

we are doing this because we are running nginx instead of apache. Next we will need to setup chkconfig so that it will starts itself when our server restart

sudo chkconfig --levels 235 php-fpm on

Lastly we need to start php-fpm

service php-fpm restart

And we are good to go!

Install MySQL on Centos

We will begin installing MySQL server into our machine,

sudo yum install mysql mysql-server 

Once the installation is completed, we will need to secure it!

sudo /usr/bin/mysql_secure_installation

It will prompt and ask you for your current root password.

Since you just installed MySQL, you most likely won’t have one, so leave it blank by pressing enter.

Enter current password for root (enter for none): 
OK, successfully used password, moving on...

Then the prompt will ask you if you want to set a root password. Go ahead and choose Y and follow the instructions.

At the end, MySQL will reload and implement the changes.

By default, a MySQL installation has an anonymous user, allowing anyone
to log into MySQL without having to have a user account created for
them.  This is intended only for testing, and to make the installation
go a bit smoother.  You should remove them before moving into a
production environment.

Remove anonymous users? [Y/n] y                                            
 ... Success!

Normally, root should only be allowed to connect from 'localhost'.  This
ensures that someone cannot guess at the root password from the network.

Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n] y
... Success!

By default, MySQL comes with a database named 'test' that anyone can
access.  This is also intended only for testing, and should be removed
before moving into a production environment.

Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n] y
 - Dropping test database...
 ... Success!
 - Removing privileges on test database...
 ... Success!

Reloading the privilege tables will ensure that all changes made so far
will take effect immediately.

Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n] y
 ... Success!

Cleaning up...

All done!  If you've completed all of the above steps, your MySQL
installation should now be secure.

Thanks for using MySQL!

we need to setup chkconfig so that mysql will start itself upon reboot,

sudo chkconfig --levels 235 mysqld on

Next we start our database!

service mysqld restart

And we are good here.

Install Varnish on Centos

First off, install varnish!

sudo yum install varnish

Then we will configure varnish to act as the middle man between our visitors and our web server! Open up varnish configure file at /etc/sysconfig/varnish and change the port from

# # Default address and port to bind to
# # Blank address means all IPv4 and IPv6 interfaces, otherwise specify
# # a host name, an IPv4 dotted quad, or an IPv6 address in brackets.


# # Default address and port to bind to
# # Blank address means all IPv4 and IPv6 interfaces, otherwise specify
# # a host name, an IPv4 dotted quad, or an IPv6 address in brackets.

this is to ensure that our varnish will be listening to port 80 which is what our nginx server is currently doing! So we will need to update our nginx configuration so that it will listen to other port. This is my blog nginx virtual host which is listening to port 8080 instead of 80, you'll need to change that from the original 80 to 8080 so that it won't crash with varnish!

server {
    listen       8080;
    root   /var/www;
    index  index.php;

    location / {
        try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php?$query_string;



P.S: i have alter a bit on the configuration to avoid unnecessary headache lol. Once this is done you will still have to configure varnish! Open up the file at /etc/varnish/default.vcl and make sure that your server ip and port is correctly updated.

backend default {
.host = "";
.port = "80";


backend default {
  .host = "";
  .port = "8080";

The above means that all request from varnish that it doesn't have cache on will redirect to port 8080 which is where our nginx server lies! Ok, so same stuff here, we will need to make sure varnish starts itself or else all our web sites on this web server will die if it got rebooted!

chkconfig varnish on

Finally, reboot both nginx and varnish in this sequence!

service nginx restart

this will change nginx listening port from 80 to 8080 and varnish from 8080 to 80! And we are done!


Ok to be honest, this tutorial was setup using the same exact same steps as how i've setup for this website and also prove whatever is written here works pretty well! So try it out and let me know if you faced any issue with your installation!

Installing mod_pagespeed into cpanel/whm in centos

Here is another exciting thing that google has release and i really wish to document this down so that i could reuse it on all of my servers since i can see a good amount of optimization done on the server by mod_pagespeed. Anyway without anymore bull crap, i shall starts.

Firstly, you might want to visit mod_pagespeed download page and standby for the time being. And my machine is a 64bit machine so if you are running on 32bit just remove all the '64' you see in the instruction. eg. "lib64"

Firstly login into your server as "root" and start firing the below commands,

cd /usr/local/src
mkdir mod_pagespeed
cd mod_pagespeed
rpm2cpio mod-pagespeed-stable_current_x86_64.rpm | cpio -idmv
cp /usr/local/src/mod_pagespeed/usr/lib64/httpd/modules/ /usr/local/apache/modules/
cp /usr/local/src/mod_pagespeed/etc/httpd/conf.d/pagespeed.conf /usr/local/apache/conf/
chmod 755 /usr/local/apache/modules/
mkdir /var/mod_pagespeed/{cache,files} -p
chown nobody:nobody /var/mod_pagespeed/*

mod_pagespeed has a dependency that you'll want to enable: mod_deflate (the httpd source directory (httpd-2.2.21) may vary depending on your install):

/usr/local/apache/bin/apxs -c -i /home/cpeasyapache/src/httpd-2.2.21/modules/filters/mod_deflate.c

After that, we'll have to edit the mod_pagespeed configuration file located at /usr/local/apache/conf/pagespeed.conf to reflect the correct paths, the LoadModule directives should fetch the modules in "modules/":

LoadModule pagespeed_module /usr/local/apache/modules/
LoadModule deflate_module /usr/local/apache/modules/
ModPagespeedFileCachePath            "/var/mod_pagespeed/cache/"
ModPagespeedGeneratedFilePrefix      "/var/mod_pagespeed/files/"

And then open /usr/local/apache/conf/includes/pre_main_global.conf and add:

Include "/usr/local/apache/conf/pagespeed.conf"

Next restart apache

/etc/init.d/httpd restart

And we are done!

Installing CSS Tidy For WordPress W3 Total Cache Plugin

In my previous two article where i explain how to install Memcache and HTML Tidy for WordPress W3 Total Cache plugin, i forgotten about CSS tidy as shown below,

CSS Tidy allows the server to minimize your CSS without you doing it yourself. However, this largely depend on whether your web hosting provider had installed it for you. Nonetheless,  it is a great additional for every webmaster to have!

Installing CSS Tidy For WordPress W3 Total Cache Plugin

Installing CSSTidy is quite simple on a centos linux machine. All you have to do is to issue the following command.

yum install -y csstidy.x86_64

If its successfully installed, it would really be that simple. However, if you can't find this option, it will be time to do some work.

Installing CSS Tidy alternative

Since the simple step wasn't there for you, we will have to try something manual. Fire up the below command,

rpm -ivh

and see whether it went successful. If it does, csstidy is installed. If it doesn't try download it and rpm again.

rpm -ivh csstidy-1.4-1.el5.x86_64.rpm

If it still doesn't work, you should find it on your yum using the following command.

yum install -y csstidy.x86_64

since the rpm was added into your repo. Hope it works 🙂

Installing Memcache For WordPress W3 Total Cache Plugin

Today is a very distracted day. I was busy programming until i lose interest and read up google seo blog. There was this article about google page speed that suddenly makes me feel like speeding up all my website just for some seo benefits. The number one thing i notice about speeding up my website are surrounding caching. Hence, i digged down to my WordPress cache plugin W3 total cache and start exploring him a bit (after 10 months). However i was in a shared environment so the only option other than disk caching would be to install memcache on the server (quite some resources for some speed gain). But it does the trick. My server was using Centos 5.6 with cPanel installed.

Installing Memcache on WordPress Server

Follow the below sequence to get memcache install on your server.

#install require library
yum install libevent libevent-devel
#download the latest memcached. take note i'm downloading version 1.4.6
cd /usr/local/src && wget && tar -xzf memcached-1.4.6.tar.gz && cd memcached-1.4.6
#install it and compile
./configure && make && make install
# make sure memcache starts on boot
touch /etc/init.d/memcached
echo '#!/bin/sh -e' >> /etc/init.d/memcached
echo '/usr/local/bin/memcached -d -m 128 -p 11211 -u nobody -l localhost' >> /etc/init.d/memcached
chmod u+x /etc/init.d/memcached
echo '/etc/init.d/memcached' >> /etc/rc.local
# start memcached
# install memcache
pecl install memcache
# restart apache
/etc/init.d/httpd restart
# test whether we get memcahce
php -r 'phpinfo();' | grep 'memcache'

Upon completing the above steps, you should get yourself the option in W3 total cache plugin to use memcache as an option to use as a cache mechanism.

Setup Dell Openmanage on Centos 5.5 with Nagios check_openmanage plugin

Another tutorial that i wish to keep in mind before i need to do research again whenever i setup a new server.Basically for all dell server, you will most likely will like to setup Dell Openmanage software in your Linux server. The reason is pretty simple, Dell openmanage allows you to monitor almost every hardware in your server which can really benefit you a lot whenever some hardware fails.

Anyway, here we go. Firstly, we will need to setup openmanage into my centos 5.5 server. The shortages road to prevent pain is just to key in the following command.

wget -q -O - | bash
yum install srvadmin-all -y

P.S: if you see Missing Dependency: perl(LWP::UserAgent) error, please try to go into your /etc/yum.conf to see whether any repo is disabled!

The above command will install dell openmanage for you in centos 5.5. Next you will pretty much need to start dell openmanage service before nagios can do any checking on it. Fire up the following command to start or stop dell openmanage service.

/opt/dell/srvadmin/sbin/ start
/opt/dell/srvadmin/sbin/ stop

There are also other commands such as enable|disable|help|start|stop|restart|status. Once your Dell Openmanage is successfully installed and started. We will have to install one of nagios check_openmanage plugin. Here are the steps to install check_openmanage.

wget ""
rpm -ivh nagios-plugins-check-openmanage-3.7.2-1.el5.x86_64.rpm

then go to your server nrpe.cfg folder located at /usr/local/nagios/etc/nrpe.cfg and add the command below

command[check_dell_storage]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only storage
command[check_dell_fans]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only fans
command[check_dell_memory]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only memory
command[check_dell_power]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only power
command[check_dell_temp]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only temp
command[check_dell_cpu]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only cpu
command[check_dell_voltage]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only voltage
command[check_dell_batteries]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only batteries
command[check_dell_amperage]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only amperage
command[check_dell_intrusion]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only intrusion
command[check_dell_sdcard]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only sdcard
command[check_dell_esmhealth]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only esmhealth
command[check_dell_esmlog]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only esmlog
command[check_dell_alertlog]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only alertlog
command[check_dell_critical]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only critical
command[check_dell_warning]=/usr/lib64/nagios/plugins/check_openmanage --only warning

Then your monitor server should be able to pick up the instruction and start monitoring your dell hardware 🙂