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Installing Movable Type on Debian Server

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Movable Type

Movable Type is a widely-used proprietary weblog publishing system developed by California-based Six Apart. Movable Type also supports most popular weblogging features, including user accounts, comments, categories, and themes, and is extensible through a large library of third-party plug-ins. Movable Type is free of charge for personal blogs with unlimited authors and blogs; paid support and commercial licenses, which allow more authors and weblogs on a single installation of the software, are also available. Source:


This tutorial reviews how to install Movable Type (MT) on your local Debian server. This tutorial does NOT offer easy Movable Type installation instructions. This guide was created because the official Movable Type installation guide are not written for beginner users like me :D. Hopefully these guide are easier to understand for us normal people.

😀 Gud lak! I hope this helps save you time.


Movable Type requires the following:

  • An account on a webserver that allows you to run custom CGI scripts.
  • Perl installed on your server, version 5.004_04 or greater. Perl version 5.6 or higher is highly recommended.
  • BerkeleyDB or, preferably, a SQL-based database for storage of Movable Type data. Movable Type supports MySQL, SQLite, PostgreSQL. This guide use MySQL for Database server.
  • An FTP program to upload the necessary files to your webserver, or shell access if you wish to install the system from the shell.
  • A web browser with Javascript enabled.


Installing Perl, imagemagick, perlmagick, and libxml-atom-perl

aptitude install perl imagemagick perlmagick libxml-atom-perl

Installing Webserver

You can view my post about Installing Webserver on Debian Server.

CGI Config

We want to run cgi scripts from its default location (default on Debian is here: /usr/lib/cgi-bin) into a another location (under Movable Type folder: /var/www/myblog), therefore find this section in the httpd.conf file (/etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-default):

vi /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-default
ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ /usr/lib/cgi-bin/
    <Directory "/usr/lib/cgi-bin">
        AllowOverride None
        Options ExecCGI -MultiViews 
+SymLinksIfOwnerMatch Order allow,deny Allow from all </Directory>

Replace with:

ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ /var/www/myblog/
    <Directory "/var/www/myblog">
        AllowOverride None
        Options ExecCGI -MultiViews 
+SymLinksIfOwnerMatch Order allow,deny Allow from all </Directory>

Open and edit /etc/apache2/apache2.conf file, uncomment this:

vi /etc/apache2/apache2.conf
AddHandler cgi-script .cgi

Then restart your Apache

/etc/init.d/apache2 restart

Installing MySQL Database

You can view my post about MySQL Database Server on Debian.

Create MySQL Database and User

mysql> create database movabletype;
mysql> GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON *.* TO [email protected]
identified by 'suprimt' with grant option;
mysql> flush privileges;
mysql> q


The distribution can be downloaded from the Movable Type web site.

Download the full version. This file that you download is a .zip and .tar.gz file that contains hundreds of files and folders inside.

After downloading, the file that you downloaded is saved in .tar.gz format; this is a compressed bundle containing the files in the Movable Type distribution. Unpack this archive.

tar zxvf MT-3.33-en.tar.gz

Rename your MT-3.33 folder into myblog folder:

mv MT-3.33 myblog

Check your server configuration

Type the following URL into your browser: http://your-server-ip-address/myblog.
You should get this screen:

Movable Index Page

Then click “Movable Type System Check” link under Installing section or type the following URL into your browser: http://your-server-ip-address/myblog/mt-check.cgi.

You should get a screen that lists a bunch of technical mumbu-jumbo. Scroll to the bottom and there should be a message that tells you that your server checks out and will work with Movable Type.

Initialize Movable Type

Type the following URL into your browser: http://your-server-ip-address/myblog/mt-wizard.cgi. Make sure your myblog writable by server :). This Wizard will make configuration file into your myblog folder.

Movable Type Configuration Wizard

Movable Wizard Begin

Click Begin button to start configuration wizard.


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