OpenLiteSpeed on DirectAdmin

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How DirectAdmin Supports OpenLiteSpeed

Generally speaking, OpenLiteSpeed supports its own native virtual hosts only. Unlike LiteSpeed Enterprise, OLS cannot read Apache virtual host configurations. Most of popular control panels, including DirectAdmin, are based on Apache virtual host configuration, and as such do not support OpenLiteSpeed.

However, DirectAdmin developers made an effort in 2019 to integrate OLS into their existing control panel environment through Custom Build 2. CB2 converts all existing Apache configurations to OLS native server and virtual host configurations, enabling you to easily upgrade from Apache to OpenLiteSpeed on DirectAdmin, with no tedious one-by-one virtual host re-creation. As a result, DirectAdmin users can now enjoy the lighting fast performance LiteSpeed can bring, for free with OpenLiteSpeed.

Web Servers Supported by DirectAdmin

DirectAdmin was built for Apache. Since LiteSpeed Web Server Enterprise can read Apache configuration and .htaccess directives, Direct Admin supported LSWS from the beginning. Direct Admin added LiteSpeed Enterprise integration to their control panel via Custom Build.

DirectAdmin also supports nginx, despite it’s lack of any .htaccess support, but nginx must run its own configuration conversion.

Most recently, DirectAdmin has added OpenLiteSpeed support, which converts Apache configurations to OLS configurations through Custom Build 2. You can easily switch between web servers to compare performance and features, and decide which one is the best fit for your needs.

We’ve repeatedly shown through benchmarks that LiteSpeed Enterprise and OpenLiteSpeed achieve much better performance than nginx and Apache. Of course, you can run your own test to compare.

LiteSpeed vs OpenLiteSpeed

In term of performance, OpenLiteSpeed is nearly as good as LiteSpeed Enterprise.  So, which one should you choose?

The main differences between LSWS and OLS are:

  • .htaccess support
  • Apache configuration support
  • ESI for cache

LiteSpeed Enterprise can read existing Apache configurations and directives in .htaccess, and can be a drop-in-replacement for Apache. On the other hand, OpenLiteSpeed doesn’t read or recognize Apache configurations or directives in .htaccess. As such, OLS requires a native configuration and requires you to spend a small amount of time converting your existing Apache setup.

LiteSpeed Enterprise requires a license to run, and may cost money depending on your requirements. OpenLiteSpeed is free and open source.

In terms of caching, both servers support LSCache, but only LSWS Enterprise has ESI support. You can run certain CMS without ESI (such as WordPress), but many eCommerce solutions, like Magento or PrestaShop, require ESI in order to correctly cache private shopping carts and such. For applications that require ESI, Enterprise is your only choice.

To install OpenLiteSpeed with CustomBuild 2, use the ./build openlitespeed command.

To install LiteSpeed Enterprise with CustomBuild 2, use the ./build litespeed command.

Getting Support

Although OpenLiteSpeed is developed by LiteSpeed Technologies, the integration of OLS with DirectAdmin is handled by DA developers.  Generally speaking, DirectAdmin support has a better understanding of the integration process and the location of various OLS configuration files.

It’s probably a good idea to log a ticket with DirectAdmin support first. They will bring LiteSpeed support into the discussion if necessary. OLS developers work very closely with DA to fix any identified bugs and add requested features expediently.