Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Open Source: Free IT HelpDesk Ticketing System with Linux Mint + osTicket [Part 2]


Step 1: Prerequisite

Before we getting things started, I would like you to check if you have the following things ready:

Universal USB Installer
Linux Mint

What you need:
1 x bare computer machine
1 x USB stick (2GB +)
Internet connection

Step 2: Create a Bootable USB and Install Linux Distro from a USB Drive

I have wrote an tutorial of how to create a bootable USB and install from USB. Please read: OS Installation: Use USB to boot and install Linux Distro [Linux Mint]. Alternatively you can just burn the ISO file on to a CD/DVD and it is a much easier.

Now you should have Linux Mint OS loaded up, launch the desktop icon called "Install Linux Mint" to start the installation wizard and simply follow it until the end to finish the installation. The computer may get rebooted couple of times and ask you for several input like computer name, username, passwords, time zone and location but don't worry and just let the software do the job.


Step 3: Get Linux Mint up and prepared for osTicket

a. Few Steps after the installation
There is a list of recommendation of steps suggested by the official document from Linux Mint. Although, I am just going to run the two things for the matters now such as:
  • Updates
  • Install missing drivers

If you are a novice to Linux, I strongly suggest you to play around and just get the feel of using it first. Then do the updates and install the any missing drivers.

b. Install Web Server
I have found and used a tutorial in the Linux Mint community very useful, it is a step by step tutorial and it guides you through the whole process of web server installation and test the web server to make sure it is working.

osTicket Requirements
  • Web Server: Apache or IIS
  • PHP Version: 5.3+
  • MySQL Database: 5.0+

Read on: Installing LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP) On Linux Mint. For myself followed the tutorial, I have not found any problems of installing the web server but if you do, post it up on the comment section and see if I can help you out!

The Linux Mint Community is worth to take a look as there are many information on there about the OS and free to sign up for a member (link).

READ ME: When you at the phase of installing MySQL on Step 4, you will get an error message saying it's something is missing when you executed the following command to try download and install phpMyAdmin.

sudo apt-get install libapache2-mod-auth-mysql php5-mysql phpmyadmin

After some Googling on the internet and found that it is a bug officially been reported.
I get the impression that many people have ended up here because they want to install a LAMP stack, since some instructions somewhere state that this package should be installed to get a LAMP stack. This is incorrect. This package is only required for Apache authentication against MySQL (as opposed to doing it at the web app end, which is far more common). It appears to me that there are cargo culted instructions floating around the Internet.
Robie Basak
Just skip this step, as it is working fine with me without the package.

sudo apt-get install php5-mysql phpmyadmin

Once you have completed the installation, I strongly advice you to take a note of what username and password you have set during the installations for the logins of Linux Mint, MySQL and PhpMyAdmin.

Test everything that has been installed to see if they are working. If you have followed the tutorial I have linked, you should have no problem.

Step 4: Install osTicket

a. If you still haven't got osTicket downloaded, then please visit the download page and extract the folder files on your Linux Mint's desktop.

b. Opened the"www" folder as root user to give yourself full access, simply right click the "www" folder, click "Open As Root" and enter the local root user's password. Now create a folder called "TicketingSystem" in the directory of "/var/www" and finally copy the extracted folders and files to this"/var/www" directory (link),

c. Change ost-samepleconfig.php file name to ost-config.php that is located in var/www/ts/include directory.

d. osTicket installer needs to be able to write and modify ost-config.php found in the include directory. Please follow the instructions given by the installer.

d. Run the osTicket wizard and follow instruction by visiting "your PC name/ts" on web browser.


If you have the screen like the above screenshot, you have successfully installed osTicket system on your Linux machine!

Take a note of the details that has been given you on the installation completion page, as you will need to access those pages later on.

Step 5: osTicket Email Configuration

Right, I know you have osTicket setup and you might have spent sometime playing around with it i.e. creating users/administrators/staffs/groups, create new jobs, change priority levels, assign jobs to other staff, customers self reporting portal and more...

At this time you would have realised there is something missing. Yes the system wasn't integrated into the infrastructure. In order to get the email working, we will need to create a user account on your exchange server and create a email user account on the ticketing systems.

a. Setup an email accounts on your Exchange server and give appropriate name, username and password.

b. give it permissions to be accessed via POP or IMAP.

c. Log into ticketing system http://helpdesk/ticketingsystem/scp with the admin account and go to:

Admin panel -> Emails

d. Either Add a new address (or edit an existing one)

e. Configure the settings.

Email Address: [email]tickets@domain.ext[/email]
Email Name: tickets
New Ticket Priority: your preference
New Ticket Department: your preference
Auto Response: leave unchecked
Username: tickets
Password: whatever you set for the password
Status: Enable
Host: servername (This should be the server name)
port: 143
Protocol: IMAP
Encryption: None
Fetch Frequency: 2
Maximum Emails per Fetch: 10
Delete Messages: checked

SMTP Settings (Optional)
status: enable
SMTP HOST: servername (note: we use the netbios name)
SMTP Port: 25
Authentication Required: No.
f. Hit submit.

After you hit "submit", the page did not do anything and an error message showed up on top of the form page.

IMAP doesn't exist. PHP must be compiled with IMAP enabled.
So why isn't it working?!

Let me take you back to the beginning of the setup wizard screen. You would not have noticed there was some red crosses on the first page of installation wizard. Take a look below screenshot, that should remind you with something :)

X - PHP IMAP Extension (Protocol for mail fetching)
In order to get rid the error message just o the following steps.

Simply issue this command will resolve the issue on terminal and make sure you have root permission:

ln /etc/php5/conf.d/imap.ini /etc/php5/apache2/conf.d/20-imap.ini

"While this isn't an osTicket problem, it *is* a problem with Apache2/php5-fpm on Ubuntu 13.10.

The .ini isn't linked from php's config for Apache. It's in /etc/php5/conf.d, and it needs to be in /etc/php5/apache2/conf.d."

Now the email user creation should have no problem.

To confirm this is working, just create a new user or a new job on the ticking system and you should receive an notification email from the system about the incident.

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