Which control panel do you use?

Which control panel do you use? What would you recommend? cPanel? Plesk? Anything else? What are you using and are you happy with it?

It generally comes down to what you’re most used to I think. In my case I find my way in cPanel easier, but I have rarely had trouble doing something, even with proprietary panels. In some there may be things missing, but most of the absolutely needed stuff is present.

There aren’t all that many control panels one can trust to keep on their current track. Too many were bought by Parrallels and will eventually be merged into a single panel. They’re essentially spelling “trouble ahead”.

One control panel that has its fans is Direct Admin, though I don’t personally have much experience with it. It has a smaller user base, which means it’s easier to be gobbled up by another developer at some point.

cPanel, InterWorx, DirectAdmin and Plesk are the popular ones.I will prioritize the control panels as:

From Administrator point of view:

  1. cPanel
  2. InterWorx
  3. DirectAdmin
  4. Plesk

From End user point of view:

  1. cPanel
  2. InterWorx
  3. Plesk
  4. DirectAdmin

cPanel is the first choice if you want to have a complete hosting panel. I would say that “cPanel is not just a control-panel, but a complete server setup”.

It provides alot of features for the users to manage their websites and the servers. For administration point of view it provides scripts that can be used to fix/upgrade installed applications.It provides a clean setup and you don’t have to rely on cPanel. Most of the applications can be upgraded easily.

The first thing that I like about InterWorx is its cool interface . From end user perspective, it provides limited features but that are almost enough to manage the websites.It is not resource hungry and a light control panel. For administration point of view, it is also easy to manage, fix and upgrade the installed applications.

Directadmin is a very light control panel with very limited features. If you don’t need much features and need a simple control panel that can run your websites then go for it. Its three access levels are somewhat confusing at start.From administration point of view, it also provides few scripts and the installed applications are easy to upgrade.

Last but not the least Plesk, it provides a cool interface to the end user and is a light control panel. It is easy to manage for end users and the interface is quite easy to use. But installations/up gradations of installed applications are quite complicated in it and really sometimes it will give a tough time to upgrade any installed application. Mostly you have to rely on Parallels that when they officially support the latest version so that it can be installed on it.

I use webmin. It is a bit trickier to get going with it but if you stick it out it works great and you will end up learning way more about how your server actually works and that is always good. Also it is free!

I have run cpanel in the past and it is very good but unless you have a data center that is helping to absorb some of the cost it is very very expensive.

If you’re in to open source there is ispconfig

I just had a look at Webmin. I remember seeing it a couple of years ago and my, my, my… It has changed a lot. The user interface is user friendly, the way it’s supposed to be.

I agree cPanel is very, very expensive at $425 a year. If they would make it a bit more accessible I’d go for it but this is just too much… I’ll be testing Webmin instead.

I use kloxo. It works well and is free.

None. Straight RDP/SSH/whatever.

Plesk looks good on the surface, but it imposes way too many dependencies, and it puts itself between you and most essential server functions. For example, want to change something about the Apache configuration? Plesk has background control of httpd.conf, so all you can do is tag something onto the end of it by editing a Plesk-defined file. Cpanel, combined with WHM, is the most user-friendly server setup system I’ve seen, for both webmaster and hosting client.