Managing web hosting accounts can be a little confusing. Most of us start out using shared hosting, which is simple to operate and comes with a convenient web hosting control panel. Because of that simplicity, many are afraid of moving to а Virtual Private Server (VPS).
VPS hosting plans have a reputation of being technically challenging. While part of this is simply the nature of the service (you are managing an entire server), an intuitive control panel solution can simplify things significantly.
Why You Need a VPS Control Panel?
VPS hosting plans are mostly empty servers. They come without anything installed, and only the virtual hardware is in place. For remote users who may not be overly familiar with networking, things can get confusing real quick.
That’s where the web hosting control panel comes in.
Without a VPS control panel, you would need to connect to your server manually and input instructions via the command line. It takes time and skill to set up the VPS environment to the specifications required to run whatever you need.
The VPS control panel introduces a Graphic User Interface (GUI)-driven approach to server management. Most control panels have multiple utilities that are intuitive and simplify deployment and configuration.
What is SPanel?
SPanel is a web hosting control panel developed and offered by ScalaHosting. As with most similar solutions, it is operated via a GUI, allowing easy access to VPS management features. From this centralized point of control, users can do everything, from installing applications to database modifications.
SPanel is both easy to use and offers a good range of functionality. As long as you’re used to shared hosting, you will surely be able to use SPanel to handle your VPS account at ScalaHosting without being a tech wizard.
There are many benefits to using most web hosting control panels, and SPanel makes no difference. Of course, the first thing you’ll notice is the GUI-driven dashboard that helps you get things done more easily and quickly.
Other advantages of using SPanel include:
- Free and cPanel compatible – cPanel users face the pressing concern of rising licensing prices. SPanel is a very viable alternative since it’s fully compatible with cPanel. Users who want to migrate and take advantage of the zero-cost SPanel model can do so easily and without extra configurations.
- SShield Protection – With increasing cybersecurity risks, safeguarding your web hosting should be a top priority. ScalaHosting’s SPanel includes real-time cybersecurity protection from SShield. The solution has seen a 99.998% success rate in blocking suspicious web activity.
- Lightweight – SPanel is a lightweight solution, omitting much of the bulk that would typically weigh down a VPS platform. Because of this, you get to fully utilize your account resources in places where it does the most good.
SPanel is available at two levels – one for VPS account management and another for managing individual web hosting instances. At the account management level, you will get snapshot information of your virtual server. From there, you can partition it into multiple slices if necessary.
Once you’ve created your first account, you can then log in and manage it via the SPanel web hosting control panel interface. SPanel comes with six task-oriented groups and two informational groups.
The informational groups don’t do anything but offer statistics that can be helpful indicators of overall account health. Examples of what you’ll find here are – disk, Inode, domain, and database usage statistics.
To do something with your web hosting account, you will need to turn to one of the six action groups:
Your VPS account can act as an email server, and SPanel offers all the features to help you manage that. This group of features handles everything from the creation of individual email accounts to routing and spam management.
Almost all web applications, such as WordPress, will require a database to function correctly. These applications can create and modify the database independently, but sometimes direct intervention is needed.
For example, if you want to make direct changes to a database field, most apps won’t allow this. You can open the related database using the tools here and make direct field modifications.
The settings group in SPanel is mainly for account-related activities such as changing your access password or the language of the control panel.
Managing your domain name is an integral part of running your website. SPanel offers numerous domain name management utilities that can help with this as well. These features include linking your domain name to a specific root folder or allowing you to make DNS record edits.
Most often, you will need to work with a significant number of files for your website. SPanel offers two ways of doing this.
The first is via File Transfer Protocol (FTP), which allows an application to connect to the server and handles file management. For FTP to work, you’ll need to use SPanel to set up an FTP account.
You can also opt to use the included File Manager in SPanel. This web-based file management utility acts similarly to FTP in the sense that you can upload, download, edit, copy, or move files with it.
Aside from file management, the same group of icons also offers access to backup and restore functions. You can use the Backup utility to create on-demand backups and restore them at any time.
The utilities included under the Tools label aren’t part of your core web hosting activities but can be equally important.
For example, this section offers an easy way to manage Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certification.
One notable inclusion in this area is the WordPress Manager, also designed and developed by ScalaHosting. It is a quick way to keep your various WordPress installations up to date at any time without needing you to access multiple administration dashboards.
SPanel accounts can now include the Softaculous web application installation utility as well. It is an optional extra that VPS users can opt-in for at any time.
SPanel vs cPanel
While it may not be widely available at the moment, SPanel provides ScalaHosting customers a highly compatible alternative to cPanel at a much lower cost.
Many web hosting control panels are available today, but two names dominate the market – cPanel and Plesk. The former is better known among Linux hosting users, while Windows-based hosting users would most often use Plesk.
While these are inherently good control panels, their market share also means the company behind Plesk and cPanel (they are now actually owned by the same enterprise) can raise licensing fees with impunity, as they have done so already.
For those who are using cPanel and find themselves worrying about rising costs – you’ll be glad to know that you can migrate your cPanel account directly to SPanel.
Suppose you’d like to do so but are unsure how – simply contact the ScalaHosting Support Team. Once you submit a migration request with us, we’ll be happy to process it for you. You can just sit back and relax.
If you’ve been considering some of the finer points of VPS ownership, the web hosting control panel must have come into focus. Despite their numerous uses, control panels nonetheless add up to the resource consumption of your VPS account. That’s where cost-effective and lightweight solutions like SPanel come to the fore.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a web hosting control panel necessary?
No, you do not need a web hosting control panel to use your VPS account. However, it offers a convenient interface for you to do many things without knowing code commands. Some examples of these are – website management, domain management, email management, and more.
How much does a SPanel cost?
SPanel comes absolutely free with ScalaHosting’s Managed VPS plans. If you’re using another web hosting control panel such as cPanel, the support team at ScalaHosting can migrate your account to SPanel, thanks to the high compatibility between the two solutions.
What can I do with SPanel?
SPanel comes packed with utilities that let you manage various aspects of your web hosting effortlessly. For example, you can directly create, modify, or delete databases for any of your web applications or even handle your DNS records.