Bitcatcha's content is reader-supported. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

What Is cPanel? (And Why It’s So Popular With Web Hosts)

WRITTEN BY
Daren Low
UPDATED
March 04, 2024

 

Whenever we talk about web hosting and control panels, you’ll almost always hear the term ‘cPanel’.

 

It’s one of the most popular control panels in web hosting and is known for its user-friendly interface, wide range of features, and reliability. Today, we’ll break down what it is and which web hosts make use of it.

 

 

What Is cPanel?

 

cPanel login page

cPanel Log in.

 

cPanel is a well-known web hosting control panel that offers automation tools and a graphical interface to help you streamline how you manage your web hosting .

 

It’s one of the most popular hosting control panels in the world and is used by millions of websites.

 

There’s no wonder why cPanel is a top choice of panel for many of the best web hosts – it makes it dead easy to manage your website, create email accounts, add databases, and lots more.

 

 

The Two Interfaces of cPanel

 

cPanel has two main interfaces: the User Interface and the Server Management Interface.

 

1. cPanel’s User Interface

 

The cPanel user interface is the graphical interface you use to interact with your hosting account. You use it to do most of the tasks related to managing your hosting account (such as creating email accounts and databases, managing files, and configuring your website).

 

2. cPanel’s Server Management Interface

 

The server management interface called Web Host Manager (WHM) is the backend interface you use to manage your server. This interface is designed for server administrators that allow them to do tasks such as adding new users, configuring server settings, and managing server services.

 

 

What’s The Difference Between the User Interface & WHM?

 

cPanel WHM

Web Host Manager (WHM) interface.

 

The main difference is that WHM gives web hosting providers more control over the server.

 

With WHM, providers can manage multiple websites on a single server, as well as create and manage user accounts with a more advanced interface for managing server settings.

 

 

How Does cPanel Work?

 

Hoasted cPanel

cPanel Tools. (Credit: Hoasted)

 

cPanel is divided into sections, each with its own function. The main sections are:

 

  • Home
    The Home section is the default landing page when you first log in to cPanel. From here, you can quickly access the most commonly used features.
  • Mail
    The Mail section is where you can manage email accounts and settings.
  • Domains
    The Domains section is where you can add, remove, or manage your website’s domains.
  • Files
    The Files section allows you to manage your website’s files, including uploading and downloading.
  • Databases
    The Databases section allows you to manage your website’s databases, including setting up and accessing phpMyAdmin.
  • Security
    The Security section is where you can manage security settings for your website, including setting up SSL certificates and password protection.

  • Preferences
    Preferences section allows you to manage your cPanel settings, including changing your password and contact information.

 

 

How To Use cPanel – An Overview

 

With its very purpose of making things easy for users, using cPanel shouldn’t be difficult to navigate. Using HostPapa, let’s take a look at how you can actually use cPanel.

 

To get started with cPanel in HostPapa:

 

  1. First, log in to HostPapa and click on the My Account link at the top right-hand side of the screen.
  2. Second, click on My Server from the menu bar across the top of the page.
  3. Then click on cPanel. This will take you directly into cPanel, where you can easily add new FTP accounts, MySQL databases, and more.

 

To access multiple cPanel accounts, you’ll need to click on the domain name again.

 

Some of the most popular cPanel features are creating email accounts and adding a domain. So how do you use them?

 

1. Creating email accounts

 

  1. To create an email account, go to the Email section of cPanel.
  2. Click on the Email Accounts icon.
  3. When you reach the next page, the email address you want, as well as your password, and mailbox quota.
  4. Once you’ve filled out the required information, click the Create Account button.

 

2. Adding a domain

 

  1. To add a domain to your HostPapa account, go to the My Domains section of cPanel.
  2. Click on Register New Domain.
  3. On the next page, enter the new domain name, subdomain, and document root.
  4. Once you’ve filled out the required information, click on the Add Domain button.

 

That’s just a quick overview of how to use cPanel. For more detailed instructions on how to use cPanel, you can visit the HostPapa Knowledge Base.

 

 

The Pros and Cons of cPanel

 

What we love about cPanel

 

Despite the existence of other control panels, cPanel is still one of the best control panels to use. There are several reasons for this.

 

  1. cPanel is very user-friendly
    It’s easy to use and navigate, even for beginners. This is one of the most important factors for many users.
  2. cPanel is very versatile
    It can be used for a wide range of hosting needs, from simple shared hosting to more complex VPS and Dedicated Server hosting. This means that it can be used by both small and larger businesses.
  3. cPanel is very reliable
    It’s rare for there to be any downtime or major issues with cPanel. This is important for users who need their websites to be up and running at all times.
  4. cPanel comes with a wide range of features
    It includes everything from email management to security features. This means that users can tailor cPanel to their specific needs.
  5. cPanel is backed by a strong support team
    Their team is always on hand to help users with any issues they may have.

 

What we don’t love about cPanel

 

There are many reasons why we don’t love cPanel, but the main ones are the high price, unattractive interface, and encryption problems.

 

  1. High Price
    cPanel is one of the most expensive control panels on the market. If you want to use it for your website (and it’s not offered by your web host), you have to pay $15.99/month. This is a lot of money, especially when other control panels are much cheaper, like DirectAdmin – which will only cost you $2/month.
  2. Unprofessional Interface
    The interface of cPanel may be easy to use and user-friendly, but we can’t deny it looks a little backdated. This can be a turnoff for some users, especially those looking for a more polished and modern control panel.
  3. Encryption Problem
    cPanel also depends on the software server it’s managing. This makes getting hacked easily if the server isn’t properly secured.

 

 

Which Web Hosting Services Use cPanel?

 

With cPanels popularity as a control panel for web hosting, many providers offer cPanel in their plans. HostPapa, A2 Hosting, Bluehost, and SiteGround are all web hosting providers known for including cPanel in their hosting packages.

 

1. HostPapa

 

hostpapa cpanel

 

HostPapa offers cPanel with all their plans, and is an excellent hosting provider. Their plans are very affordable and offer a wide range of features and options. Starting from $8.95/month for beginners, you can already enjoy some of the cPanel features for your website. Their most popular plan costs $10.95/month.

 

2. A2 Hosting

 

A2 hosting cpanel

 

If you’re interested in using A2 Hosting, their Startup plan is an excellent choice if you only have one website, and you’ll be able to manage everything from cPanel. If you need more than one domain name or more than unlimited storage with cPanel feature, you can choose the Drive plan, Turbo Boost, and Turbo Max plans – all are very fast.

 

3. Bluehost

 

bluehost cpanel

 

Bluehost is a popular hosting provider for a number of reasons, including that they use cPanel inclusion with all of their hosting plans. It provides excellent documentation and support to help you get started with cPanel if you’re still new to it.

 

If you’re looking for something perfect for one website, Bluehost’s Basic plan is at $2.95/month for a 12-month term which is a good start. But the recommended one for unlimited websites is their Choice Plus plan, which is around $4.45 for a 12-month term.

 

4. SiteGround (Update: No longer uses cPanel)

 

SiteGround cpanel

 

In the past, SiteGround used cPanel as their control panel for their hosting service plans. Since cPanel increased its prices in recent years, many companies have dropped using cPanel as a result – and SiteGround is one of those.

 

Many companies have switched over to other control panel options, including DirectAdmin, Nginx Plus, Plesk, and Site Tools.

 

Today, SiteGround now includes Site Tools in their hosting service plans – a control panel that is similar to cPanel but is more affordable.

 

 

Is cPanel the Right One for You?

 

One thing that has always been true is that when it comes to web hosting and control panels – there are a lot of options! With so many different control panels on the market, it can be hard to know which one is right for you.

 

We can’t deny that cPanel is a control panel that offers a huge array of features and functionality allowing their users to manage their web hosting with ease.

 

If you’re looking for a way to manage your hosting needs, keeping an eye out for a control panel that’s intuitive and easy – like cPanel – is definitely important.

 

 

Web Hosting Guides & Best Web Host Services

Learn about web hosting and make informed decision while shopping for quality web hosting services.