cPanel is an easy to use fully featured hosting control panel developed to make it easy to manage your website files, databases, email accounts, and much more.
Here we will detail just a few of our favorite and best features of a cPanel hosting account from the vast array on offer!
If your hosting package allows, you can set up multiple email addresses for your domain name.
For example if your website was named www.yoursite.com you could have email addresses such as firstname.lastname@example.org, or email@example.com etc.
Your emails can be sent and recieved via cpanels built in webmail or you can set them up to be recieved at your preferred desktop email manager, such as Outlook or Thunderbird.
Alternatively you can use cPanels ‘forwarders’ utility to forward your emails to your web based email provider such as Gmail or Hotmail etc.
Another feature of cPanels mail section is Spam Assassin, which enables you to set your preferred security levels to protect your from receiving unwanted spam emails.
A good host provider will always create weekly or monthly backups of your website, however if you have an active site, which has a lot of daily changes, you may want to make daily backups of your website.
Within cPanel ‘Backups’ section you are able to back up your files, databases and email whenever you want with just a single click
You will also be able to set these up automatically by setting up a ‘Cron’ job – another cPanel feature!
Should you at any time wish to move your website to a new host, or a dedicated server you also have the facility to make a complete backup. This is a special type of backup file that you could forward to your new host provider, who will restore your site and settings for you on your new server.
Adding images, scripts and downloadable files to your website is a regular task for webmasters, and many will use a preferred FTP program for management.
However, cpanel has its easy to use File Manager, which works in exactly the same way as FTP for simple file management.
The interface is easy to understand, and you can simply login, select your task such as upload/download files just like you would on your home PC.
You can also manage and delete files in the File Manager dashboard, as well as create more complex task such as editing PHP files.
Every website owner wants to know how much traffic they are receiving and where its coming from, and the cPanel AWstats is just the tool for providing a multitude of information.
You will learn how many hits each page of your website has had, how many of these hits were unique (First time visitors) how long they spent on the website, as well as identifying the keywords used and the country of origin.
Although not as detailed as the excellent Google Analytics, it is still a great tool, offering great statistics and information for your website traffic.
If your hosting package allows sub domains, this is a great way to build sub sections to your website, and is built in to cPanel as standard.
Typical examples of a subdomain uses are forums and stores, as the website owner may own a blog without the facility to have a store or forum without paying expensive development costs.
He could therefore purchase a more economical ‘ready made store or forum’ as a seperatate website, and then add it on as a stand alone site as a sub – domain
Sub domain addresses would look like store.yoursite.com, so it integrates seamlessly with the main website.
Password Protect Directories
You are able to password protect pages or parts of your sites, that only people with the password can gain access.
This is a handy utility if you are running a membership site, or if you have a simply download page, that you do not want everyone to have access too.
Fantastico De Luxe
Fantastico is an excellent program for quick and easy installation of over 50 open source web applications which include: Forums , Blogs, Content Management Systems, Support desks, eCommerce and shopping cart solutions, Image Gallerys and lot more.
There are many favorite applications included within the software, such as WordPress and Joomla, and these can all be installed in a couple of minutes, without the need for uploading files and setting up databases, as this is all automatically done for you!
In summary, cPanel really is a great and easy to use hosting management system, that allows for complete control of your website files, and hosting settings.
We have covered a very small section of the multitude of facilities that cPanel has to offer, and will cover more of other features in future articles.