cPanel web hosting for beginners
This blog will take you step-by-step on how to use cPanel to manage your website. cPanel is used by 90 percent of hosting companies, and for this reason, I find it helpful to show you all that I know about this interface.
What is a cPanel
cPanel is a graphical interface that allows you to manage your domains, create emails, publish your websites, and generally manage your web hosting account.
Why do you need cPanel?
The reason why most hosting companies provide their users with cPanel as a control panel is that it is:
- Easy to use interface
- cPanel has regular updates that improve its functionality regularly.
How to log in to your cPanel
The first step is to log in to your cPanel provided by your hosting provider. In this section, let me show you how to log in to your cPanel from the HOSTAFRICA client area.
Log in to the HOSTAFRICA client area.
- Locate services on the menu bar, then click on my services
- Click on the particular service you want to access the cPanel for
- On the actions sidebar, click on login to cPanel.
Every hosting company will guide you on how to access your cPanel. If you cannot find any guide, make sure to contact your hosting company.
How to use the cPanel dashboard
cPanel may look different from one hosting provider to another but, the elements are the same with some exceptions depending on what your provider makes available. Let me break down everything to you step-by-step so that you get the best out of this blog.
Lets us start with the top navigation.
The search option allows you to navigate the dashboard by directing you to the specific element you want. For example, if you type the word subdomain, it will take you to where you need to create your subdomain.
The preference dropdown menu allows you to:
- Change the account preference where you change the position where you want your account notifications to appear.
- Change your password and security
- Your language
- Your style
- Your contact information
- And reset page settings
Notification bell – this shows the updates, security issues, and just any notification related to your account.
Logout – this function allows you to log out of your account.
The search bar under navigation allows you to navigate the different sections of the cPanel example, files, and databases.
Home is the primary page of the cPanel.
User manager allows you to add or remove users, see your emails and get to know who has access to your FTP and Webdisk if you happen to share an account.
Preference is the section where you customize the interface to fit your needs and style. You can:
- Change password and security
- Change language
- Change style
- Customize contact information
- User manager
The Email is the section where you manage your email accounts. The features available in this section are:
- Email accounts – from here, you can create and manage your email accounts. Learn how to access webmail from cPanel.
- Forwarders – this feature allows you to set up your forwarding system. For example, if you want emails coming from a particular email address to be forwarded to one of your emails accounts.
- Email filters – helps you to create and manage filters for your Email account.
- Autoresponders – This function allows you to automate emails when you are away or busy.
- Manage disk – helps you to recover storage space by deleting old messages.
- Spam filters – this function helps you to filter out spam emails that can compromise your security before they reach your inbox.
- Calendar and contacts – helps you to set up your calendar and contacts.
Softacoulus apps installer
From this section of your cPanel, you can install different apps such as:
- and a host of other apps
This section allows you to backup your website, manage your files via FTP and upload files.
- Backup – this feature helps you download a zip copy of your website or part of it on your computer just in case something goes wrong.
- You can check your disk usage.
- FTP accounts – from this feature, you can add FTP accounts. It is good practice to create different FTP accounts for each project.
- File manager – this function allows you to manage your files without an FTP account.
This is where your website contents and user data are stored. The functions that you can perform here include:
- Create database – If you are new to creating a database, use the MySQL Database Wizard and follow the steps presented to you.
- Manage database – click on the MySQL database to change password, rename and delete your database
In this section, you will be able to add domains, subdomains and manage them.
- Domain addons – this feature allows you to add new domains.
- Domains – this function allows you to remove a domain name and manage redirection.
- Subdomain – this function allows you to edit or remove subdomains and manage redirection.
- Redirects – From this feature, you can permanently redirect one domain to another domain. For example, if you want your visitors to get redirected, to a specific website after typing a different domain name. examplethis.com redirect to examplethat.net
- Aliases – This function allows you to make your website read the contents of another website
If your website is handling sensitive informations, then this section helps you to enforce security.
- Auto instant SSL – this is where you paste your SSL codes after purchase
- IP Blocker – this feature allows you to deny some IP addresses from accessing your site
- SSL/TLS status – this feature helps you to know your SSL status, exclude or include SSL on domains.
- Two-factor authentication – this is additional login security. You install a third-party app on your phone to generate a code when logging in to your account alongside your password.
- Hotlink protection – This feature prevents other websites from linking to your specific articles.
- Leech protection – this feature allows you to prevent your website users from publicly posting their passwords to your restricted pages.
This section will give you the overall status of your website such, as your visitor status:
- Visitors, Raw access, Webalizer, and Awstats – these functions give you data on your website visits.
- Errors – This function shows you the recent entry error logs in a reverse chronology
- Resource usage – this feature gives you information on your bandwidth usage.