When I installed Magento 1.8.xx on Windows, the database had the
web/secure/base_url entries in the
path, which I was able to change from
127.0.0.1 to resolve the well-known 'cookie issue'. But in my 22.214.171.124 installation on my Ubuntu, these columns are missing. I have removed the Magento installation and reinstalled it, but still with the same result. Eventually, as advised by @benmarks in the answers, I simply added them and it worked.
But will anyone be able to tell me why they are missing in my new installation? Is it simply a bug, or because of my OS, or because of the different versions of Magento?