It's not exactly a cPanel-style system, but it shares the same characteristics - weird, specific, one-click configurations that are pervasive and difficult to debug and tweak.

Is it legitimate to close these under the "no control panels" close reason? I feel like there's been a rise in them recently, and the folks asking almost always have no clue where the configs are, let alone how to modify them.


Bitnami stacks are off-topic for a very similar reason to why WAMP/XAMPP/etc stacks are off-topic - they encourage non-standard deployment methodologies, and actively discourage users from actually learning what they are using.

Users that post bitnami-related question should be gently encouraged to either post their question on a product-specific support forum or preferably switch to a more standard application deployment infrastructure.

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    Works for me! Thanks. – ceejayoz Jul 27 '16 at 17:00
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    Even when they get upvoted and on the hot list? :) I noticed that you read that one, but didn't touch it. – Michael Hampton Jul 27 '16 at 20:04
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    @MichaelHampton Hah, touché. I read it before I fully internalized my feelings on the issue. :) – EEAA Jul 27 '16 at 20:39
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    While I totally agree with Bitnami being off-topic I'm not sure that Bitnami encourages non-standard deployment methodologies is a good and systematic reason. Who decides what is a standard? Feels a bit arbitrarily. And when SF decides to label a technology as non-standard that might have an impact on the chances of a technology to become a new standard. I mean most technologies are kind of non-standard in an early phase. – Henrik Pingel Jul 29 '16 at 18:07
  • @knowhy I think the point of differentiation for me is "does it leave its server owners ignorant of the system's configuration?" If it assists you in putting together a config, that's one thing, but the one-click stuff is typically negative on a long-term maintenance standpoint. – ceejayoz Jul 31 '16 at 23:09
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    @ceejayoz But that applies to many systems. To me it seems like many people are using systems like docker. vagrant, puppetforge or ansible-galaxy (just to name a few) with the idea that the could avoid to understand how things work. – Henrik Pingel Aug 1 '16 at 6:39
  • @knowhy I'd still argue each of those are significantly more transparent to someone who wants to dig into the config. Looking at bitnami.com/stack/wordpress as an example, I can't see any obvious way to even figure out what web server the stack you'd be installing includes. ansible-galaxy is a bunch of pointers to Github projects with readable .yml files - Bitnami is an index of installers. – ceejayoz Aug 1 '16 at 12:54

Based on the current stats I don't think bitnami is much of a problem topic at the moment, so I would be in favour of treating each question on its own merits, rather than issuing a blanket ban.

The tag only lists 10 questions marked as such this year and a search for questions containing bitnami as a keyword (using: is:question bitnami as the search string) only returns a 113 results, not a huge number.

Roughly half of the questions which mention bitnami have been answered. (66 / 113)

Only a handful of questions has been down-voted with for ServerFault quite a few even (57/113) scoring one or more up votes

  • Five (not necessarily tagged, but with it in the question text) in the last 24 hours, with maybe one every two weeks prior to that. – ceejayoz Jul 27 '16 at 14:48
  • Ultimately, though, I'm not asking for a blanket ban, but I'm asking if it's generally legitimate to say "this is cPanel-style stuff, close" when someone comes around asking for help with Bitnami appliances. – ceejayoz Jul 27 '16 at 14:56
  • My search seems to be acting differently from yours as I get only 3 questions over the last month... Odd. - Although the arguments against bitnami as a one-click installer may be similar to those we use against control panels, that existing default close reason may be confusing to the OP without clarification. You can VtC with a custom reason instead as well – HBruijn Jul 27 '16 at 15:27
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    OK, I'll plan to use the cPanel reason with a clarifying comment. – ceejayoz Jul 27 '16 at 15:29
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    Agreed. IMHO bitnami questions don't have a place here. – EEAA Jul 27 '16 at 15:57
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    And do AWS questions have a place here? – Ryan Babchishin Aug 5 '16 at 1:37
  • @RyanBabchishin: Yes, many AWS questions are on topic. – HBruijn Aug 5 '16 at 5:22

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