How to Install Varnish 4 on CentOS 6 / CentOS 7

Varnish, an open-source web accelerator, is typically deployed in front of web servers like Apache or Nginx. It’s also known as an reverse proxy and is designed to serve static content, such as images, stylesheets, or scripts.

Varnish stores copies of pages when users visit the same web server (Apache or Nginx) and reuses the cached copy for subsequent requests. This significantly improves the response times of dynamic websites like WordPress or Joomla and reduces the server load.

While Varnish can be downloaded from EPEL (Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux) package repositories, the latest major versions may not be available, and it may not be up-to-date.

This guide will walk you through the steps to install Varnish 4 on CentOS 6 and CentOS 7.

Installing Varnish 4 on CentOS 6

Set up the Varnish repository:

rpm -Uvh http://repo.varnish-cache.org/redhat/varnish-4.0/el6/noarch/varnish-release/varnish-release-4.0-4.el6.noarch.rpm

Set up the EPEL repository:

rpm --import https://dl.fedoraproject.org/pub/epel/RPM-GPG-KEY-EPEL-6
rpm -Uvh https://dl.fedoraproject.org/pub/epel/6/x86_64/epel-release-6-8.noarch.rpm

Install Varnish:

yum install varnish -y

Start Varnish and make it start at boot:

service varnish start
chkconfig varnish on

Installing Varnish 4 on CentOS 7

Set up the EPEL repository:

rpm --import https://dl.fedoraproject.org/pub/epel/RPM-GPG-KEY-EPEL-7
rpm -Uvh https://dl.fedoraproject.org/pub/epel/7/x86_64/e/epel-release-7-5.noarch.rpm

Alternatively, you can install it using the yum command:

sudo yum install epel-release -y

Install Varnish:

sudo yum install varnish -y

Start Varnish and make it start at boot:

sudo systemctl start varnish.service
sudo systemctl enable varnish.service

Commands Mentioned

  • rpm -Uvh – This command is used to install or upgrade a package.
  • rpm –import – This command is used to import a public key for package verification.
  • yum install – This command is used to install a package.
  • service varnish start – This command is used to start the Varnish service.
  • chkconfig varnish on – This command is used to make Varnishstart at boot.
  • sudo systemctl start varnish.service – This command is used to start the Varnish service on systems with systemd.
  • sudo systemctl enable varnish.service – This command is used to make Varnish start at boot on systems with systemd.
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Conclusion

Varnish is a powerful tool that can significantly enhance the performance of yourwebsite by serving static content quickly and reducing server load. This guide has provided a step-by-step process for installing Varnish 4 on CentOS 6 and CentOS 7, two of the most popular Linux distributions used in dedicated server, VPS server, cloud hosting, and shared hosting environments.

Remember, while Varnish can be downloaded from the EPEL package repositories, it’s recommended to install it directly to ensure you’re getting the latest version. The commands used in the tutorial have been explained for better understanding and future reference.

See also  How to Pass Clients/Visitors IP Through Varnish to Nginx

The FAQ section addresses some of the common queries related to Varnish and its installation. However, if you have more questions or face any issues during the installation, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

By following this guide, webmasters and website administrators can ensure that their websites are optimized for speed and performance, providing a better user experience for their visitors.

FAQs

  1. What is Varnish and why is it important?

    Varnish is an open-source web accelerator or HTTP reverse proxy that is designed to serve static content. It is important because it improves website response times and reduces server load by storing copies of pages and reusing them for subsequent requests.

  2. What is the purpose of the EPEL repository?

    The EPEL (Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux) repository is a community effort to create a repository of high-quality add-on packages that complement the Fedora-based Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and its compatible spinoffs such as CentOS.

  3. Why do we need to start Varnish at boot?

    Starting Varnish at boot ensures that the web accelerator is automatically up and running whenever the server is restarted. This is crucial for maintaining fast response times and reduced server load without manual intervention.

  4. What is the difference between installing Varnish on CentOS 6 and CentOS 7?

    The installation process of Varnish on CentOS 6 and CentOS 7 is largely the same. The main difference lies in the commands used to start Varnish and make it start at boot. CentOS 7 uses systemd, so the systemctl command is used instead of the service and chkconfig commands used in CentOS 6.

  5. Can I use Varnish with web servers other than Apache or Nginx?

    Yes, Varnish can be used with any web server that uses HTTP. While it’s typically deployed with Apache or Nginx, it’s not limited to these servers. The configuration might differ based on the web server used.

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