OTRS (Open-source Ticket Request System) is a free and open-source trouble ticket system software package that a company, organization, or other entity can use to assign tickets to incoming queries and track further communications about them. It is a means of managing incoming inquiries, complaints, support requests, defect reports, and other communications.

Helpdesk System


Ubuntu already has a package for OTRS in the repositories. The problem is that often times some of OTRS' built-in features don't work with the provided package or the OTRS software itself is outdated. The following steps will enable you to download and install OTRS on an Ubuntu server using the files provided by OTRS and Perl modules from within Ubuntu's repositories.


The following conditions must be met before proceeding with the installation of OTRS

  1. Basic Ubuntu 12.04 LTS server / 13.04 server, fully updated
     sudo aptitude update
     sudo aptitude dist-upgrade
  2. OpenSSH server
  3. LAMP Server
     sudo tasksel
  4. Fetchmail Package
     sudo aptitude install fetchmail


Obtain a copy of a recent version of OTRS from the OTRS site (http://www.otrs.com/en/open-source).

wget http://ftp.otrs.org/pub/otrs/otrs-3.2.5.tar.gz

Extract the archive

tar -xzf otrs-3.2.5.tar.gz

Move the extracted directory to its permanent location

sudo mv otrs-3.2.5 /opt/otrs

Users and Permissions

OTRS needs to run as its own user. This presents an interesting situation as, by default, Apache2 runs as the user www-data. The following commands will add an OTRS service account/user and correct permissions for directories and files.

sudo useradd -r -d /opt/otrs/ -c 'OTRS user' otrs
sudo usermod -g www-data otrs
cd /opt/otrs/bin
sudo ./otrs.SetPermissions.pl --otrs-user=otrs --otrs-group=otrs --web-user=www-data --web-group=www-data /opt/otrs

Perl Modules

There are many features in OTRS, some of which require the installation of additional Perl modules. The base Ubuntu server install will leave your OTRS implementation with some broken requirements. You can check to see which Perl modules have failed by running the following:

cd /opt/otrs/bin
sudo ./otrs.CheckModules.pl

The following command should fix the failed Perl modules.

sudo aptitude install liblwp-useragent-determined-perl libapache2-reload-perl libnet-smtp-ssl-perl libnet-smtp-tls-butmaintained-perl

You can/should verify that, at the very least, all required modules are listed as "ok"

There are a number of optional moduels that should prove to be useful (i.e. PDF functionality, LDAP connectivity, etc.) The following command will install Perl modules that will enable many useful features in OTRS.

sudo aptitude install libgd-gd2-perl libgd-graph-perl libgd-text-perl libjson-xs-perl libnet-dns-perl libyaml-libyaml-perl libpdf-api2-simple-perl libtext-csv-xs-perl libxml-parser-perl libmail-imapclient-perl libnet-ldap-perl

*Please note that this does not install ALL optional modules.

Cron Jobs

The cron jobs for OTRS must be run as the OTRS user you created previously. The following steps/commands will enable you to setup the cron jobs for the OTRS user

cd /opt/otrs/var/cron
sudu su
for foo in *.dist; do cp $foo `basename $foo .dist`; done
sudo su otrs
cd /opt/otrs/bin
./Cron.sh start

While still logged in as the 'otrs' user, verify that the cron jobs are in place with the following command

crontab -l



The OTRS source files include a conf file specifically for Apache. The commands below make a copy of that conf file and includes it into the working Apache configuration

sudo cp -va /opt/otrs/scripts/apache2-httpd.include.conf /etc/apache2/sites-available/otrs.conf
cd /etc/apache2/sites-available/
sudo chown root:root otrs.conf
sudo a2ensite otrs
sudo service apache2 reload


At this point, you're ready to finalize everything. To do so, you need to access OTRS' web interface isntaller. You'll need to load your web browser with the URL for your OTRS instal. For instance, if it's going to be on host, you'll need to load



Installation of the ITSM module can be performed using the web interface for OTRS. This can be problematic if your connectivity to the server is interrupted or your browser is interrupted. The following steps allow you to install the ITSM module into OTRS from the command line. You don't have to install the complete ITSM package. If there are only certain pieces of ITSM you'd like to install, please feel free to download and install only those packages.


In order to install the ITSM module, you must first have the OTRS Helpdesk/Ticketing system up and running.


Obtain a copy of the ITSM module from the OTRS site (http://www.otrs.com/en/open-source) and move it to a location that youc an remember (i.e /tmp).

sudo mv ITSM-3.2.3.opm /tmp/

Change into the /opt/otrs/bin directory and run the install command for the OPM file

cd ~otrs/bin
sudo -u otrs ./opm -a install -p /tmp/ITSM-3.2.3.opm


OTRS (last edited 2014-06-21 16:18:46 by bryangrim)