Too many children (51 > 50)


I manage several servers with Webmin/Virtual min, all running the same configuration and setup (Ubuntu 16.04) and on the one running in Europe (strangely only here, not the one hosted in Asia).

I frequently get the error: “too many children (51 > 50)” in the /var/webmin/miniserv.error
Always along with many “/usr/bin/perl /usr/share/webmin/ /etc/webmin/miniserv.conf” is ps aux. I didn’t count but it could be my 50…

Everytime there is no user or 1 user connected on Webmin and I don’t see more from the log (mass access or something)

Once a restart webmin we are back to normal until the next time.

All research I made point to old mail-list without answer or some old post with old version and “solved” in newest version. I use the latest version of Webmin/Virtualmin and all packages are up to date. Also there is no limit of ressource on the server (when it happen there is still plenty of ram/cpu and no heavy workload).

  • Any idea what could be the issue?
  • Any idea how to check what could be the issue?
  • Where can I change the max user? (At least temporary to see what should be the limit until I find the real solution)


I allow myself to up the post as there were no reply after 2 weeks and my issue is still recurring and I have no better idea.

If that help other I ended up writing a little script to run by corn to verify that my webmin is not over capacity or stopped


if /usr/sbin/service webmin status | grep “stopped” >/dev/null
echo “Webmin is stopped. Restarting…”
/usr/sbin/service webmin start
echo “Webmin is running.”
if tail -1 /var/webmin/miniserv.error | grep “too many children” >/dev/null
echo “Webmin is over capacity. Restarting…”
/usr/sbin/service webmin restart
echo “Webmin is ok.”

(inspired from

Not the best but until a better solution…