AlternC works well with Linux Debian distribution, either Wheezy, Jessie (or Stretch as a pre-release).

To install AlternC, you’ll need:

  • a SSH access to the server.
  • administrator rights (sudo -s or su)
  • ensure that #includedir /etc/sudoers.d is present in /etc/sudoers with the command visudo.

Easy Install

To install AlternC with just a few questions, use the easy-install, a shell-script that installs everything quickly

You can also install AlternC manually thanks to the documentation below:

Manual Install


AlternC depends on ACLs to manage user rights for the web folders. You need to ensure your filesystems didn’t disable ACL in the partition that will contain your user data. If necessary, look at /etc/fstab and remove any noacl (for ext3/4) or noattr2 (for xfs). As an example, this is bad:

/dev/md1 / ext4 auto,relatime,noacl 0 0

On most recent (post-2012) systems, ACL is enabled by default.


AlternC can also manage disk quotas for each user. As opposed to ACLs, quotas are not mandatory for AlternC to work. If they are not enabled or installed, AlternC will consider that each user has unlimited web space. To enable the quotas, install the quota package:

apt-get install quota

Then, change /etc/fstab again to enable them:

/dev/md1 / ext4 acl,grpquota,errors=remount-ro 0 0

Note that some virtualization or containerization systems don’t allow you to change fstab, or need to change it from the host system. Ask your hosting provider in that case.

Remounting the partition

Then, you need to remount the partition that will contain the user data (in this example, /) with:

mount -o remount,acl,grpquota /



To run AlternC, you need a MySQL server. You can host it on the same machine by using the following command:

apt-get install mysql-server

WARNING : Enter an administrator password and REMEMBER IT, you’ll need it during AlternC install.

You can store this password in a file named /root/.my.cnf, with the lines below, that will allow you to connect to your MySQL server by just typing the mysql command:

[client] user=root password=<your MySQL administrator password>

Setup the repositories

To install AlternC on a server, you need a text editor to add our repository to your repository list:

deb jessie main

Of course, replace “jessie” by the version of Debian you are using (Squeeze, Wheezy, Jessie, Stretch available as of today)

put it in the /etc/apt/sources.list.d/alternc.list file.

The Debian packages are digitally signed. Before launching apt-get update, you need to add the pgp key of our repository to your server with the following command:

wget -O - | apt-key add -

It’s a PGP key owned and maintained by the team of developers at AlternC, who have the right to write into our repository at


Then, update your package list for apt with:

apt-get update

Then you need to install AlternC (don’t forget the post install process later on):

apt-get install alternc alternc-ssl alternc-api

You can add auxiliary packages of AlternC:

  • alternc-mailman to manage discussion and mailing lists with Mailman,
  • alternc-roundcube to use a webmail with Roundcube,
  • alternc-awstats to generate web statistics of your websites with Awstats,

or other AlternC’s plugins

DNS - name servers

The name servers aim is to distribute the information on the domain names installed in your server. You need two different name servers. If you need a secondary name server, AlternC offers you one for free on In that case, you can enter:

  • Primary DNS:
  • Secondary DNS:

If you have your own name servers, enter them here. (Usually, the primary is your own server’s domain name)

Your Server’s Domain Name

Warning: if you have a domain name you want to use to host a website, don’t enter it here, because the domain name you enter here will allow you to access your AlternC control panel.

Use another name pointing to your machine, or a subdomain like

As an example, if your server has the IP and you have the domain for your personal website, don’t enter, but either the IP address, or, or the domain name provided by your hosting provider, such as

  • phpMyAdmin

During the install process, Debian ask you to configure PhpMyAdmin. You can let it do it. It will ask you for the password of the MySQL administrator account to install its database. However, AlternC will change some of those parameters later on.

  • Postfix

Choose “Internet Site”, then follow the instructions, one of them being the fully qualified domain name of your server (see above)

Install Post Process

Once the installation of the package is done, the script alternc.install must be launched. It will generate configuration files for your server to make AlternC work.


If you want to install an SSL/TLS certificate for your panel (that will also be used by Dovecot, Proftpd, Postfix etc.) we recommend you to use LetsEncrypt and to configure your certificate.

Installation End

First login

You can now access your AlternC Panel on the domain name or IP address you entered. You should see a login page whose default access that you need to change at once is:

  • login: admin
  • password: admin

Don’t forget to change your administrator password by going to the “Manage AlternC account” menu!