Cannot write to directory /etc/webmin/virtual-server/ (extra text for dupe title)

OS type and version Rocky Linux 8.6
Webmin version 1.994
Virtualmin version 7.1 Pro

So the system rebooted at about 9:30 a.m. I don’t know why yet. It may have been a node reboot. I’m looking into it.

At the time, it may have been in the process of migrating a cPanel backup as a test. That failed without an error several times, and then seemed to complete, but without any features enabled at all on the migrated site.

The system them gave me a warning that the configuration hadn’t been checked since the most recent update (there was no update that I know of). Running the configuration check results in the error

The feature *Administration user* cannot be disabled, as it is used by the following virtual servers :

followed by the two previously created virtual servers (which are still working, oddly enough).

Next the system went into post-install configuration, again for reasons unknown at this time. When it got to the plain text / hashed password option, it returned the error

Cannot write to directory /etc/webmin/virtual-server/

Which also comes up when I attempt to fix things using suggestions in previous posts of this nature.

The dashboard also isn’t working in either Webmin or Virtualmin.

Any ideas?



I’m having this same issue and I’m not sure what to do. Were you able to find a solution @RJM_Web_Design ? please let me know

I wound up reinstalling the OS and Virtualmin because there were other things going on at the same time that made it impossible to diagnose the problem, and the server wasn’t in production status anyway.

Were you migrating a cPanel site when the problem occurred?


No, unfortunately this server has been in use for a couple of years now. I think it must have happened after an update, but I’m not 100% sure on the timing.

vultr docs recommend: don’t use “Work out from backup” - this feature is known to almost always fail.

maybe this is a old bug. docs are old Last Updated: Fri, Mar 6, 2015

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If you mean on the password, no, it wasn’t that. I may have ticked that option for the username, however.

Yep, not sure thats your issue anyway.


Has anyone found a solution for this? I have an active system which was working great… also Rocky Linux. I did have to do a network change, so all new IP addresses. That went as smooth as it could, but then a few months later, after a reboot, recheck virtualmin popped up. I can’t write to /etc/webmin/virtual-server/ but the directory positively exist. I do also get a message when trying to check the features. When I work on those it says Administration user cannot be disabled because is using it. Oddly, there is no place to check or uncheck that feature. Seems it is enabled by default.

Thanks for any help. LetsEncrypt has disappeared in the process and I’m getting closer to expirations.

I have had the same thing happen, no idea what has changed, nothing i have done myself.

traced down the problem to the following file: /etc/webmin/virtual-server/config

renaming it, then copied back a version from another system → reboot system,

Virtual min may now have some weird things in the template settings, though at least it works again.

For me this happened on a system that only is used as a slave-nameserver for virtualmin that has been running since 2019. the config on my 3 NS nodes is identical, so i do not have problems after doing this. If you try this, be careful, you may break your virtual domains doing this!.

I never did fix it because one of the senior techs at the DC told me there was a problem with the OS template on their end, and suggested (and offered) to reinstall from ISO.

In other words, there was no point in fixing Webmin / Virtualmin if the underlying OS might have problems due to the installation template.

It would still be nice to have an answer, though. But I’m afraid I haven’t one to give.


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