I have Lost my website

Hi everyone I have a Ubuntu Linux 20.04.1 I have a WordPress website installed in DigitalOcean, after a couple of weeks I have discovered Virtualmin, and the amazing features that allow managing multiple websites within the dashboard, so I decided to install Virtualmin using putty to install Virtualmin, now the only problem is that I had already installed WordPress on digital ocean and all I wanted to do is to manage it from the Virtualmin control panel to be able to have later on more website to manage within this website manager, but sadly during the process it looks like my site is still there somewhere on the internet, but I cannot access it because something went wrong, it there anybody who could help?please

The docs are pretty clear that you should install Virtualmin on a freshly installed OS.

But, the problem here is likely that your original site was using Apache in a non-VirtualHost mode (i.e. not in a VirtualHost section, probably pointing to /var/www). Apache can either serve one website or many websites. When it is configured for one website, if you then add VirtualHosts to make it serve many websites, the original one website becomes unreachable because the VirtualHosts all match the request more precisely.

So, don’t do that. It never makes sense to setup websites using the non-VirtualHost mode of Apache.

But, since you’ve already done that, you either need to manually make that old single website into a VirtualHost, or you need to create a new domain in Virtualmin and copy the site and data into it. Virtualmin can import existing VirtualHosts, but since you lost access to it, it probably means it is not in a VirtualHost (or the VirtualHost is less specific than any VirtualHosts you created with Virtualmin). It may be a “the wrong site shows up” situation, as well…we have a FAQ for that: Website Troubleshooting | Virtualmin

If your old site is in a VirtualHost, then it’s almost certainly the latter rather than the former, and fixing it is easier.

So, two things to take away from this for the future:

  • Don’t install Virtualmin on a production system. Start with a freshly installed supported OS, like the docs say.
  • Always use VirtualHosts for your Apache sites. If you don’t, the first site will “disappear” when you decide to add more sites to your server.
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Thank you for your reply, Joe, it is very clear now, but since I am new to this platform and IT, now I wouldn’t know how to solve this issue, could you help me?

You can still save your site but it’ll take some work.

What you need to do is download your entire var/www folder to an external drive.
Then back up all of your databases to an external drive.
Then you would format that server with a fresh install of Ubuntu 20.04.
Then you would go here and run the two commands that will install Virtualmin.

Then you will create a new virtual server for your original site.
Then upload the www contents to that virtual servers public_html folder.
Then you will have to import the database data from your old Wordpress database to the new database created for your new virtual server.
Then you simply edit your wp config php file so that it has the proper information (name, user, password) for the new database you’ve restored.

That’s it. It sounds like a whole lot but it really isn’t. Just take it slow, don’t try anything fancy and you’ll be fine.

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It’s not necessary to backup and reinstall. I gave two other options above that don’t require reinstalling, but I just don’t have time to document it…it’s basic Apache VirtualHost configuration stuff.

That’s assuming the Virtualmin install is otherwise working fine, of course. In many cases when you preinstall stuff, it prevents Virtualmin installation from completing and so, you end up with a broken install and fixing it is much more trouble than reinstalling on a fresh system, so it may still be worth starting from scratch.

Given he installed Virtualmin over the top of an existing website to begin with and used putty than rather two simple command lines, I figured the path of least resistance would be the clean slate approach.

I assumed when OP said installed using putty that they used putty to login to their server and run the Virtualmin installer. PuTTY is just an ssh client.

It was a big mess guys ,I am a new Virtualmin user never used this interface before, but now it has been solved “somehow” :slight_smile:

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All’s well that ends well.

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