What is a Web Panel?
A web panel is used to simplify complex server configurations. It offers a faster and efficient way to manage a server.
Without a panel, you have to log in to the server by the command line and do everything through the SSH and FTP client.
A web panel is much easier to operate while configuring your server. It offers a user interface, rich features, and server components.
This article gives an overview of the web panel and how it helps in managing a server.
Overview of a Web Panel
A new server usually comes with a blank OS, such as a Linux Ubuntu or Debian.
If you don’t use a server panel, you have to configure the server and install all the components on your own. It requires a lot of technical knowledge and skills.
A server has several components, such as Linux OS, NGINX, MySQL, Redis, and PHP. A web panel already comes with these server-side components to help run your application.
A web panel offers a well-configured stack:
- Linux distribution: Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora
- Web server: Apache, NGINX
- Cache support: Redis, Memcached
- FTP server: ProFTPD
It comes with an optimized stack so that it is not resource-intensive. Before you choose a panel, ensure that it is compatible with your preferred OS and application.
Standard components that a web panel supports:
- Domain name management
- SSH/FTP management
- Database management
- Application installation
- Log analysis
- File manager
- System administration
Some panels also offer email management. You can manage your website, email accounts, use a DNS manager, and so on.
Advantages of a Web Panel
1. User Interface
The panel’s interface is designed to be simple & user-friendly. You can perform all the basic & complex server-related tasks using the GUI.
The web-based interface is useful when you are not an advanced SSH user. You can easily do all the operations in the panel.
2. Well-configured Server Stack
Along with the interface, the panel also offers a high-performance technology stack and lightweight components.
- Debian 10
A stable GNU/Linux distribution with 29000 and more pieces of software. It is the base of many other distributions like Ubuntu. You can upgrade it without having to reinstall it.
- NGINX 1.18
NGINX is an open-source web server that is highly scalable. It is compatible with popular web applications. It supports more than 400 million websites globally. Its high performance can be 10 times faster than Apache.
PHP FastCGI Process Manager (PHP-FPM) is an alternative PHP FastCGI. It comes with additional features useful for heavy-loaded sites.
- MySQL 5.7 (Percona)
Percona Server for MySQL is an open-source relational database management system (RDBMS) created by Percona.
It is a free and fully compatible replacement for any MySQL database. The software provides high performance & scalability.
- PHP versions
PHP is a scripting language for web development. With the right panel, you can install web applications with multiple PHP versions.
- Redis 5
Redis is an in-memory data structure store used as a database, cache, and message broker. It supports different kinds of data structures.
Redis is open-source software released under the BSD license. It provides sub-millisecond latency & improves application speed.
- Node.js 14
ProFTPD is an FTP server compatible with Linux and Unix-based operating systems. The panel offers an FTP protocol to transfer files between a server and a client.
3. Web Application Installation
You can install web applications like a CMS, shop system, etc., using a web panel.
A lot of panels come with a one-click installation feature. You can click on the “Install” button, and the application is added to the server.
You do not have to install the software yourself. That means there is no need for file uploads or creating a database.
Most panels are compatible with popular web applications such as:
4. Access to Logs & Server Information
Logs record the events that occur on the server. You can access them via the panel for troubleshooting and analysis.
With Access Logs, you can monitor the visitor’s IP address, browser info, pages viewed, etc. Error Logs help identify the issues the server encountered while processing requests.
Some panels offer an Action Log, which records all the actions made by users in the panel.
A good backup strategy helps prevent the risk of data loss. Backup creates a copy of your data. You can recover it in case of data failure.
Data loss can occur due to breaches, hardware/software failure, data corruption, human error, etc. It can result in business disruption and revenue losses.
A good panel lets you create regular backups and access them anytime. You can restore your system to an earlier version. It helps in faster disaster recovery.
A panel should offer some basic or advanced security features.
Firewall: A firewall protects your system from unwanted or malicious traffic. You can configure individual firewall rules from the panel.
IP Blocker: The IP Blocker, you can block traffic from unwanted ipv4 or ipv6 addresses.
Bot Blocker: The Bot Blocking feature denies access to all your websites to specified Bots. It helps defend against brute force attacks.
SSL Certificate: Using the panel, you can install an SSL certificate for different domains. It verifies your site identity and protects sensitive data during its transfer. The panel also helps import an existing certificate or issue a new one.
Two-factor Authentication: Some panels offer a 2FA feature for secure login.
7. Time Efficient
A web panel speeds up server management tasks such as installation, patching, and configuration. Using the panel, you can quickly manage your hosting, mail server, manage user accounts, and so on.
Compared to working in the command line, you save more time by using the interface of the panel. It reduces the number of steps to execute the tasks.
The workloads only grow as you build your infrastructure. If you manage multiple servers (like VPS servers, cloud hosting), you will require more time & effort to keep the server running optimally.
With the panel, you can quickly manage daily routine tasks.
A web panel is an excellent solution for managing a server. It is especially beneficial when you do not have extensive knowledge of server administration.
It comes with an interface and a fully configured server stack. You don’t have to lose time or pay for technical support to install server-side components.
Many hosting companies offer a panel in their hosting package.
There are also free web hosting control panels designed to meet different requirements. You can choose the panel that best suits your business needs.