Reading about facts is boring. Heck, some people new to the online world believe that topics on web hosting are completely boring, because all they talk about are facts. Luckily for us as more savvy webpreneurs, we enjoy learning about mundane things that make our internet ventures easier.
User-inspired words like “quick”, “easy” and “robust” are as exciting to us as hearing that “file management” functions are more readily enhanced by “server” improvements and “interface” capabilities.
It really doesn’t get much better than that. If you are like us and this terminology sets your heart to racing, then read on as we delve into the wild world of cPanel, exposing nothing but monotonous details, humourless facts and a humdrum showing of features that in all, will reveal exactly what you need to know to take control of your own online presence.
What is cPanel?
When you log into your shared hosting account, the graphical interface (GUI) that greets you is your “control panel”, a Linux based software that makes it easy for even the newest of webmasters to change and customize aspects of their hosting and website.
In its simplest terms, the web-based cPanel functionality allows you to make use of its easy to navigate point and click, icon-friendly automation tools to “control” practically all parts of your websites on your hosting account.
It is 3-tiered in structure, which simply means that it has capabilities not only for website end-users like you to utilize, but also that webhosting resellers and administrators can also manage its facilities from a standard web browser.
Access to your cPanel from your browser is as easy as inputting yourdomainname.com/cpanel and then entering your login details.
Features of cPanel
cPanel hosting is so feature-rich in tools that it offers near endless possibilities for even the greenest user to manage their site. A breakdown of the most popular features includes the following;
- Email – the email control panel allows for multiple business communication options like account creation, deletion, forwarding, filter creation and spam blocking to name a few.
- File Management – cPanel keeps your site information organized on the server with options for multiple domains, subdomains, FTP server access, disk space data and file backup.
- Domain Management – the single interface allows control of website properties including add-on and subdomain options, redirects, and parked domains.
- Script Editing – easy installation of new features like blogs, shopping carts, online chats and forums. The SimpleScript “Fantastico” allows for 1-click installation of many content management systems like WordPress.
- Security – access restriction capabilities, file connection and transfer, IP restriction options and SSL/TLS Manager website security.
- Database Administration – MySQL and phpMyAdmin for building custom databases.
- Server statistics – for managing your server’s performance.
Benefits of cPanel
For the user, the simple cPanel interface makes website control easy and intuitive without undertaking rigorous training exercises.
In terms of the software itself, the following additional benefits make this control panel the preferred choice for shared hosting users;
- Compatibility – congruent with plug-ins and a wide range of web applications.
- Easily Portable – allows for easy transfer of websites between hosting providers.
- Affordable – widely used program making it viable for hosting companies and end-users.
- Feature rich – offers a one-stop shop for most beginner and experienced website owners.
- Knowledge based – there is a lot of easy to access information online to learn more about cPanel. Options include the “Get Started Wizard” after logging into the hosting account, the “Help” link at the bottom of the cPanel interface, and reference to the creators of the software at their cpanel.net home page.
Drawbacks of cPanel
As with any user-based program, software or facility, drawbacks must at least be considered when taking into account the complete cPanel experience. The most concerning at present include;
- Unprofessional look – when compared to other interfaces available, some users demand a more “specialized” appearance.
- Size compatibility – cPanel is primarily for websites that are small to medium in size. Large sites may require other hosting options.
- Vulnerability – as with any software, cPanel data may be susceptible to security risks prior to running scheduled updates.
Through virtue of its merits, the cPanel software is today the most popular, feature-rich control panel for shared hosting on the web.
As fascinating as this is, we get that most people would rather read the ingredients on their cereal box than learn about the business that keeps their websites online. Luckily, you don’t need to stay on top of every tedious detail and fact.
Understanding at least the basics of your cPanel hosting however, goes a long way to ensuring that, whilst in a state of boredom, you remain well versed in the options available to you for keeping your website alive, up-and-running and online.