How to Install OpenLiteSpeed Web Server and PHP 8 on Ubuntu 20.04

This tutorial will guide you step-by-step through the installation and configuration of OpenLiteSpeed and PHP 8 on Ubuntu.

OpenLiteSpeed ​​(OLS) is a free and open-source lightweight HTTP server developed by LiteSpeed ​​Technologies. It is a powerful, modular HTTP server and can handle hundreds of thousands of simultaneous connections with low resource usage.

It offers unbeatable performance, security, scalability, simplicity, and optimization bundled in a single package.

In addition, OpenLiteSpeed provides a web-based administration user interface for managing the web server through a web browser.

It is also important to mention that OpenLiteSpeed uses the same configuration as the Apache web server and is compatible with most features offered by Apache.

1. Upgrade the Current Ubuntu System

Before we move on to installing OpenLiteSpeed on Ubuntu, it’s essential to make sure our system is up to date by running the following apt commands in the terminal:

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

2. Add the OpenLiteSpeed Repository

OpenLiteSpeed provides a software repository we can use to download and install the server. But first, we need to add it to our Ubuntu system because it is not included in the Ubuntu default repositories.

So we will use the official script provided by OpenLiteSpeed to add the correct repository automatically to our Ubuntu system.

wget -O - | sudo bashCode language: JavaScript (javascript)
Adding OpenLiteSpeed Repository

3. Install OpenLiteSpeed Web Server on Ubuntu

Once the repository is added, the OpenLiteSpeed server is available for installation using the command below:

sudo apt install openlitespeed

Next, verify the status of the OpenLiteSpeed service with the following command:

sudo systemctl status lshttpd
Checking OpenLiteSpeed Service Status

4. Install PHP 8 for OpenLiteSpeed

When we install OpenLiteSpeed, it automatically installs PHP 7.3 build made for OpenLiteSpeed. But, of course, we want to have a more up-to-date version so that we can install PHP 8.0 with the following command:

sudo apt install lsphp80 lsphp80-mysql lsphp80-common lsphp80-opcache lsphp80-curl

Once all the packages are installed, you can proceed to the next step. If you wish to install a different PHP version, replace lsphp80 in the command above with lsphp74, for example.

5. Setup OpenLiteSpeed Admin Password

OpenLiteSpeed provides a web console that listens by default on port 7080. You’ll need to set an admin username and password to access it. 

After running the below command, you will be prompted to input the admin username and password.

If you hit “Enter” without choosing a new username defaults to admin as the new administrative username. A password follows the username input. So, retype the password and hit “Enter.”

sudo /usr/local/lsws/admin/misc/
Set an Administration Username and Password

6. Access OpenLiteSpeed Admin Console

Point your browser to http://your-server-ip:7080, and you should get a login page as shown below. Provide your admin username and password and click the “Login” button. 

Admin Web Console Login

The OpenLiteSpeed dashboard view then greets you.

OpenLiteSpeed Admin Web Console

This is where the majority of your configuration for the web server will take place.

7. Configure PHP 8 for OpenLiteSpeed

Next, click the “Server Configuration” menu on the left and choose the “External App” tab. To add the new PHP 8 configuration, click the add “+” button on the right.

Configure PHP 8

For the type, choose the “LiteSpeed SAPI App” and click the “Next” button.

Configure PHP 8

Provide the following information:

  1. Name: lsphp80
  2. Address: uds://tmp/lshttpd/lsphp.sock
  3. Max Connections: 100
  4. Initial Request Timeout (secs): 60
  5. Retry Timeout (secs): 0
  6. Command: lsphp80/bin/lsphp

Next, click on the “Save” button to save the configuration.

Configure PHP 8

You should see the following page.

Configure PHP 8

Now you need to change the default PHP for OpenLiteSpeed to the PHP 8.0 version. First, click on the “Script Handler” tab and then hit the “Edit” button. 

Configure PHP 8

Select lsphp80 from the dropdown menu in the “Handler Name” and click on the “Save” button.

Configure PHP 8

You should see the following page.

Configure PHP 8

8. Change OpenLiteSpeed Default Port

By default, OpenLiteSpeed listens on port 8088. However, we can change it to port 80 instead, the default port for HTTP requests.

To do this, click “Listeners” in the list of options on the left side of the interface. Then on the right, under “Actions,” click on the “View” icon.

Change the OpenLiteSpeed Default Port from 8088 to 80

This will load a page with more details about the default listener. Next, click the “Edit” icon on the Address Settings.

Change the OpenLiteSpeed Default Port from 8088 to 80

In the default listener address settings, change the port from 8088 to 80 and click on the “Save” (floppy disk) icon to save the settings.

Change the OpenLiteSpeed Default Port from 8088 to 80

Next, click on the “Restart” icon and perform the graceful restart to apply the changes.

Change the OpenLiteSpeed Default Port from 8088 to 80

When prompted, hit the “Go” button.

Change the OpenLiteSpeed Default Port from 8088 to 80

Now, you can access your OpenLiteSpeed web server using the URL http://your-server-ip.

OpenLiteSpeed Web Server Default Web Page

You can also enter http://your-server-ip/phpinfo.php in the browser to test PHP 8 with the OpenLiteSpeed web server. As a result, you should get the phpinfo page as below.

PHP 8.0 Installed and Configured Successfully in OpenLiteSpeed on Ubuntu


Congratulations! At this point, you should have OpenLiteSpeed and PHP 8 installed and running on an Ubuntu. We hope this tutorial helped you.

There is so much that the OpenLiteSpeed web server can do. For more about OpenLiteSpeed, you can refer to the official documentation.

Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments box below.

Bobby Borisov

Bobby Borisov

Bobby, an editor-in-chief at Linuxiac, is a Linux professional with over 20 years of experience. With a strong focus on Linux and open-source software, he has worked as a Senior Linux System Administrator, Software Developer, and DevOps Engineer for small and large multinational companies.

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