Keeping it Small and Simple


Zimbra on Debian Etch

Filed under: Debian, Zimbra — Lorenzo E. Danielsson @ 20:12

Zimbra is an open source collaboration suite. Basically that means, a pretentious email software. I’m not a big fan of Zimbra myself, but one of our clients wanted it implemented, so I didn’t really have a choice.

At the time of writing, there are no Zimbra packages for Debian Etch, only for Sarge. However, it can be installed on Etch, with a bit of massaging. There is a thread about it on the Zimbra Forums, and you’ll probably want to read that first. But, I was unable to install it following the instructions there, so I’m documenting what I did, just in case you, dear reader, happen to also be stuck.

The first thing I did was download the Zimbra packages for Sarge. Uncompress this and cd into the zcs directory. If you try to run the script, it will fail. Even if you install all the dependencies it will still fail. This is because your platform is not recognized. I tried editing this file in zcs/bin (I cannot remember the name, there is only one file there), and make it recognize DEBIAN4.0 as a platform, but only with limited success.

So I used a different trick. I edited /etc/debian_version and changed it from 4.0 to 3.1. It’s ugly, I know, but at least it worked. I’m sure there are better ways of doing this, but it would mean digging into a bit of code and I was lazy, had a dead-line and my solution worked.

You might still notice that fails on the dependencies. If your problem is with libgmp then simply edit the file zcs/utils/, search for the string DEBIAN and right underneath it where you see a list of dependencies, change libgmp3 to libgmp3c2.

After that, the installation should go without a hitch. In a few minutes you will have Zimbra up and running. I don’t know if there will be any hidden issues that may appear later, but at least for now Zimbra seems to be working fine.

Hopefully this post will become obsolete soon because the Zimbra team really ought to build some debs for Etch.

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