Installing phpBB Forum/Bulletin Board on Debian 🌱

  1. Log into the Debian device
  2. Run the following commands in a terminal:
    # update repositories and install any available software updates
    sudo apt update
    sudo apt upgrade -y
    # install Apache HTTPD and MySQL
    sudo apt-get install apache2 mariadb-server mariadb-client curl
    # install PHP components
    sudo apt install php php-mysql php-cli php-json php-opcache php-gd php-curl php-gd php-mbstring php-xml php-xmlrpc php-soap php-intl php-zip
    # configure the MySQL database
    sudo su
  3. Press Enter to login as root
  4. Type Y and press Enter to set a root password, type the password twice to confirm
  5. Type Y and press Enter to remove anonymous users
  6. Type Y and press Enter to disallow root login remotely
  7. Type Y and press Enter to remove the test database
  8. Type Y and press Enter to reload privilege tables
  9. Run the following command to login into MySQL:
    mysql -u root -p
  10. Authenticate with the root password set earlier
  11. Run the following commands to create the phpbb database and database user
    GRANT ALL ON phpbb.* TO 'phpbb_rw'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY '!!phpBB##';
  12. Continue with the following commands to download and extract phpBB in the Apache webroot
    # download latest phpbb version
    sudo wget -O phpbb.tar.gz
    # extract phpbb.tar.gz
    sudo tar xvf phpbb.tar.gz --directory /var/www
    # rename phpbb folder
    sudo mv /var/www/phpBB* /var/www/phpbb
    # create a new phpbb.conf file to configure the site
    sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/phpbb.conf
  13. Paste the following configuration into phpbb.conf

    Alias /phpbb "/var/www/phpbb/"
    <Directory /var/www/phpbb/>
        AllowOverride All

  14. Press CTRL+O, Enter, CTRL+X to write the changes to phpbb.conf
  15. Continue with the following commands to enable the site and restart Apache:
    # enable the phpbb site and required PHP modules
    sudo a2ensite phpbb
    sudo a2enmod rewrite
    # set the owner of the new phpbb directory to www-data
    sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/phpbb
    # restart apache2 service
    sudo systemctl restart apache2
  16. Open a web browser and navigate to http://DNSorIP/phpbb
  17. Input an administrator username, email address and password > Click Submit
  18. Enter the database hostname, username, password and database name > Click Submit
  19. Click the Submit button on the Server configuration page
  20. Click the Submit button on the E-mail configuration page
  21. Enter a title and short description on the Bulletin board configuration page > Click Submit
  22. When the installation completes run the following command in terminal to delete the /install directory
    sudo rm /var/www/phpbb/install -r
  23. In a web browser, navigate to http://DNSorIP/phpbb
  24. Welcome to your very own, self-hosted forum with phpBB