Community Blog How to Install and Configure RainLoop Webmail on Alibaba Cloud

How to Install and Configure RainLoop Webmail on Alibaba Cloud

In this tutorial, we will show how to install and set up OpenMeeting on Alibaba Cloud Elastic Compute Service (ECS) with Ubuntu 16.04.

By Arslan Ud Din Shafiq, Alibaba Cloud Community Blog author.

OpenMeeting is a conferencing software used for online training, web conferencing, presenting, document editing, collaborative whiteboard drawing, and user desktop sharing. It is built on HTML5, Flash and Red5 media server. OpenMeeting also provides mobile-client for Android and offers a private message center that allows users to chat, create polls, and cast votes.

In this tutorial, we will install and configure RainLoop Webmail on Alibaba Cloud Elastic Compute Service (ECS) along with Ubuntu 16.04.


  • You must have Alibaba Cloud Elastic Compute Service (ECS) activated and verified your valid payment method. If you are a new user, you can get $300 – $1200 worth in Alibaba Cloud credits for your new account. If you don't know about how to setup your ECS instance, you can refer to this tutorial or quick-start guide. Your ECS instance must have at least 1GB RAM and 1 Core processor
  • A domain name registered from Alibaba Cloud. If you have already registered a domain from Alibaba Cloud or any other host, you can update its domain nameserver records.
  • Domain name must be pointed to your Alibaba Cloud ECS's IP address
  • Access to VNC console in your Alibaba Cloud or SSH client installed in your PC
  • Set up your server's hostname and create a user with root privileges.

Setting Up Your Server

Firstly, use the following command to update your Ubuntu system before proceeding with the installation of any type of package. For executing this command, remember to login from non-root user with Sudo privileges.

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

Install PHP

Rainloop Webmail requires the installation of PHP 5.4 or a later version of PHP. For this tutorial, we will install PHP 7.2 by executing the following steps.

Step 1: Install python software properties and software properties common as these are necessary for the installation of PHP 7.2. To do so, execute the command below.

sudo apt-get install software-properties-common python-software-properties

You need to add a repository for the later versions of PHP by executing the commands below.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ondrej/php

Step 2: Update the system to refresh the available repositories and make PHP 7.2 repository available for installation. Execute the following command for updating the Ubuntu system.

sudo apt update

Step 3: Once PHP 7.2 repository loads successfully, install PHP 7.2 by using the following command.

sudo apt install -y php7.2

Install PHP Extensions

RainLoop Webmail requires the multiple PHP extensions, including php7.2-cli, php7.2-fpm, php7.2-curl, php7.2-json, php7.2-common, php7.2-mbstring, php7.2-xml, php7.2-mysql, php7.2-pgsql, and php7.2-sqlite3. Execute the following command to install all the required extensions.

sudo apt-get -y install php7.2-cli php7.2-fpm php7.2-common php7.2-mbstring php7.2-mysql php7.2-xml php7.2-pgsql php7.2-sqlite3 php7.2-json php7.2-curl

After successful installation, the domain or IP address can be accessed via a browser.

To check whether you have correctly installed PHP, you can execute the following command and verify the installed PHP version.

php --version

Install MariaDB

Rainloop Webmail supports MySQL, SQLite, and PostgreSQL. For this tutorial, we will use the MariaDB server for MySQL. By default, the Ubuntu repository has an older version of the MariaDB server. We need to add MariaDB repository to the Ubuntu system for using the new version of MariaDB by following the steps listed below.

Step 1: Verify the keys by executing the command shown below.

sudo apt-key adv --recv-keys --keyserver hkp://keyserver.ubuntu.com:80 0xF1656F24C74CD1D8

Step 2: Add the repository using the following command.

sudo add-apt-repository 'deb [arch=amd64,i386,ppc64el] http://mirror.nodesdirect.com/mariadb/repo/10.2/ubuntu xenial main

Step 3: Now update the system by using the command below.

sudo apt update

Step 4: Now install MariaDB using the following command.

sudo apt install -y mariadb-server

Step 5: Start and enable the MariaDB server to ensure that after reboot, the server starts automatically.

sudo systemctl start mariadb

sudo systemctl enable mariadb

Step 6: Now run the following command to enhance security of MariaDB server and set password for the root user.

sudo mysql_secure_installation

Also, connect to the MySQL shell as the root user by executing the command below and enter your password.

sudo mysql -u root -p

Execute the following MySQL queries in your MariaDB server.

CREATE USER 'aareez'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY '654321Ab';
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON plane.* TO 'aareez'@'localhost';

Another alternative is Alibaba Cloud Aspara DB for RDS. It is recommended to use Alibaba Cloud AsparaDB for RDS as it relieves you from managing a database so that you can focus on your business. It is ready to use service that is highly scalable, available, secure to use, and offers protection against SQL injections, network attacks, brute force attacks and several other types of database attacks.

Install Unzip

You also need to install Unzip which will later be used to unzip the compressed zip folder. Execute the following command to install unzip.

sudo apt-get install unzip -y

Install RainLoop Webmail

To install RainLoop Webmail, you will need to follow the steps.

Step 1: Navigate to /var/www/html using the command.

cd /var/www/html

Next, you need to change the ownership of /var/www/html directory as shown below.

sudo chown -R aareez:aareez /var/www/html

Step 2: Remove index.html file using the command below.

rm index.html

Also, download the latest stable release of RainLoop Webmail using the command below.

wget http://www.rainloop.net/repository/webmail/rainloop-latest.zip

Step 3: Unzip the downloaded zipped folder as shown below.

unzip rainloop-latest.zip

Step 4: Now, execute the following command to remove RainLoop Webmail.zip.

rm -r rainloop-latest.zip

Step 5: Provide ownership of /var/www/html to www-data to ensure that Apache server can access the required files.

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/html

Configure Apache Server

Let's create a virtual host configuration file for InvoicePlane. Execute the following command to open a file in the Nano text editor.

sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/invoice.conf

Copy and paste the following code and save the file.

<VirtualHost *:80> 
    ServerAdmin admin@xyz.com
    ServerName softpedia.xyz
    DocumentRoot /var/www/html/
    DirectoryIndex index.php index.htm index.html
   <Directory /var/www/html>
        AllowOverride All
        Require all granted
   <Directory /var/www/html/data>
        Order Deny,Allow
        Deny from all
 ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/RainLoop_error.log
    LogLevel warn
    CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/RainLoop_access.log combined

Next, execute the command below to disable the default site.

sudo a2dissite 000-default.conf

You also need to enable the newly created virtual host. To do so, execute the command below.

sudo a2ensite rain

Another thing that is required here is to enable rewrite mod by either editing configuration file in Apache2 directory or by simply executing the command below.

sudo a2enmod rewrite

Next, you need to enable SSL engine. You can do so by either editing configuration file in Apache2 directory or executing the following command.

sudo a2enmod ssl

Restart the Apache server to apply the changes and load the settings by executing the command below.

sudo service apache2 restart

Now you can access RainLoop Webmail via your domain name or ECS IP address. For this tutorial, we have accessed via http://softpedia.xyz. Once you get access, you will be redirected to the following page.


Install SSL Certificate

To install the SSL certificate using Let's Encrypt, you need to use Certbot. To do so, execute the following steps.

Step 1: Update the package using the following command.

sudo apt-get update

Step 2: Install software-properties-common by executing the command below.

sudo apt-get install software-properties-common

Step 3: Add the Certbot repository by using the following command.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:certbot/certbot

Step 4: Use the command below to update the package for loading the added Certbot repository.

sudo apt-get update

Ensure to stop Apache before issuance of the SSL certificate as shown below.

sudo systemctl stop apache2

Step 5: Now, install python-certbot-apache using the command below.

sudo apt-get install python-certbot-apache

Step 6: Execute the following command to get Let's Encrypt SSL issued.

sudo certbot --apache -d softpedia.xyz

Select Option 2 to redirect the link to https and update virtual host settings for SSL.


After a successful issuance of the SSL certificate, you will be navigated to the following screen.


Now, run the following command to restart the Apache server.

sudo systemctl start apache2

Finally, you can access InvoicePlane by hitting your URL.

Set Up Firewalls and Ports

If you have activated firewalls, you need to define a rule in Alibaba Cloud security group for your cloud server to add an exception for port 80/TCP and 443/TCP. You can enable these ports while creating ECS instance, but in case if you have forgotten to unblock these ports, you can follow the procedure in this guide: https://www.alibabacloud.com/help/doc-detail/25471.htm

Configure RainLoop Webmail

To configure RainLoop Webmail, you need to access the admin panel via https://your_domain.tld/?admin. On the login page, enter your credentials to successfully log in Rainloop Webmail. Once you are logged in to the admin account, you will be redirected to the following page.


Click Change to modify the password. Fill the form below and click Update Password.


Now, click Contacts on the left sidebar. In the Storage section, set up your database credentials and click the Test button to save settings.


There you go! With this, you have successfully installed and configured RainLoop Webmail on your Alibaba Cloud ECS.

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