How To Install Open Web Analytics on CentOS 7

Install Open Web Analytics on CentOS 7

In this tutorial, we will show you how to install and configure Open Web Analytics on your CentOS 7.  For those of you who didn’t know, Open Web Analytics (OWA) is an open-source alternative to commercial web analytics software. Use it to track and analyze traffic on your websites and applications. OWA analytics can easily be added to pages with simple Javascript, PHP, or REST-based APIs. OWA also comes with built-in support for tracking websites made with popular content management frameworks such as WordPress and MediaWiki.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of Open Web Analytics (OWA) on a CentOS 7 server.


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: CentOS 7.
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • SSH access to the server (or just open Terminal if you’re on a desktop).
  • A non-root sudo user or access to the root user. We recommend acting as a non-root sudo user, however, as you can harm your system if you’re not careful when acting as the root.

Install Open Web Analytics on CentOS 7

Step 1. First, let’s start by ensuring your system is up-to-date.

yum clean all
yum -y update

Step 2. Install the LAMP server.

A CentOS 7 LAMP stack server is required. If you do not have LAMP installed, you can follow our guide here. Also, install the required PHP modules:

yum install php-mysql php-gd php-ldap php-xml php-xmlrpc php-mbstring php-mcrypt curl zlib libtool-ltdl php-pdo

Step 3. Installing Open Web Analytics (OWA).

The first thing to do is to go to Open Web Analytics’s download page and download the latest stable version of Open Web Analytics, At the moment of writing this article it is version 1.6.0:

wget https://github.com/padams/Open-Web-Analytics/archive/1.6.0.zip

Unpack the Open Web Analytics archive to the document root directory on your server:

unzip 1.6.0.zip
mv Open-Web-Analytics-1.6.0/ /var/www/html/owa/

We will need to change some folders permissions:

chown apache:apache -R /var/www/html/owa/

Step 4. Configuring MariaDB for Open Web Analytics.

By default, MariaDB is not hardened. You can secure MariaDB using the mysql_secure_installation script. you should read and below each step carefully which will set a root password, remove anonymous users, disallow remote root login, and remove the test database and access to secure MariaDB:


Configure it like this:

- Set root password? [Y/n] y
- Remove anonymous users? [Y/n] y
- Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n] y
- Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n] y
- Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n] y

Next, we will need to log in to the MariaDB console and create a database for Open Web Analytics. Run the following command:

mysql -u root -p

This will prompt you for a password, so enter your MariaDB root password and hit Enter. Once you are logged in to your database server you need to create a database for Open Web Analytics installation:

create database owa;
grant all privileges on owa.* to owa@localhost identified by 'your_password';
flush privileges;

Step 5. Configuring Apache web server for Open Web Analytics (OWA).

We will create an Apache virtual host for your Open Web Analytics (OWA) website. First, create ‘/etc/httpd/conf.d/vhosts.conf’ file with using a text editor of your choice:

nano /etc/httpd/conf.d/vhosts.conf
IncludeOptional vhosts.d/*.conf

Next, create the virtual host:

mkdir /etc/httpd/vhosts.d/
nano /etc/httpd/vhosts.d/yourdomain.com.conf

Add the following lines:

<VirtualHost YOUR_SERVER_IP:80>
ServerAdmin webmaster@yourdomain.com
DocumentRoot "/var/www/html/owa/"
ServerName yourdomain.com
ServerAlias www.yourdomain.com
ErrorLog "/var/log/httpd/yourdomain.com-error_log"
CustomLog "/var/log/httpd/yourdomain.com-access_log" combined

<Directory "/var/www/html/owa/">
DirectoryIndex index.html index.php
Options FollowSymLinks
AllowOverride All
Require all granted

Save and close the file. Restart the apache service for the changes to take effect:

systemctl restart httpd.service

The next step, create a configuration file for OWA. Copy owa-config-dist.php to a new owa-config.php file:

cp owa-config-dist.php owa-config.php

Add the following line and save:

 * Connection info for databases that will be used by OWA.

define('OWA_DB_TYPE', 'mysql'); // options: mysql
define('OWA_DB_NAME', 'owa'); // name of the database
define('OWA_DB_HOST', 'localhost'); // host name of the server housing the database
define('OWA_DB_USER', 'owa'); // database user
define('OWA_DB_PASSWORD', 'your_password'); // database user's password

define('OWA_PUBLIC_URL', 'http://your_domain.com/');

Step 6. Accessing Open Web Analytics.

Open Web Analytics will be available on HTTP port 80 by default. Open your favorite browser and navigate to http://your-domain.com or http://server-ip and complete the required steps to finish the installation. If you are using a firewall, please open port 80 to enable access to the control panel.

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Open Web Analytics. Thanks for using this tutorial for installing Open Web Analytics (OWA) on CentOS 7 system. For additional help or useful information, we recommend you to check the official Open Web Analytics website.

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r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to idroot.us, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
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