13Nov/190

Plesk Obsidian: Try many new features for free!

The new Plesk Obsidian is available for quite a while now. Time for us to introduce it and, as the title of the posting suggests, make you aware of our exclusive promotion with Plesk:

You can try Plesk Obsidian one month for free in combination with every VPS and dedicated server at Contabo! Just select your preferred edition during the order process on contabo.com in the section "Administration panel". Further information is also available on our dedicated Plesk info site.

But what are the new and interesting features of Plesk Obsidian? To be honest, there are quite a lot and it is virtually impossible to list them all in our blog. So we will just concentrate on a few of them, you are of course free to check the Plesk website for more details!

New design!
Thanks to improvements in the user interface and user experience area the management of your projects is easier than ever and the new Plesk Obsidian offers a better customer experience!

PHP Composer v2.0
Less SSH interactions thanks to the new PHP composer: edit composer.json or run install and update commands easily!

Improved File Manager
Mass uploads of files and a new file search make working with Plesk Obsidian much more convenient.

Repair Kit
Issues with Plesk are a thing of the past. The Repair Kit automatically identifies problems and resolves them. It also provides a list of processes running on the server and you can manage / deactivate them if necessary.

Move domains between subscriptions
Organize your projects the way you like to and simply move & assign your domains to different subscriptions.

Personalized HTML notifications
... are available as e-mails now and easier to read than standard text messages. In addition to that, panel notifications are now available as well. Keep track of critical issues and solve them immediately!

Should you have questions about Plesk or about our services in general, please do not hesitate to contact our customer support. We are available to assist on 365 days per year!

1Jul/190

Hello Summer: Try Plesk one month for free with our Dedicated Servers!

While it is still pretty hot outside in Germany (as we let you know in our blog post last week) we joined forces with our partner Plesk and created a special summer promotion for you! As you surely know, you can try Plesk one month for free. However, this promotion was limited to our VPS so far.

During the summer months, we simply expand this promotion to our dedicated servers as well! All you have to do: When ordering your new dedicated server, just select Plesk Admin, Pro or Host and no fee is charged for the respective edition in the first month!

More information is available on our dedicated Plesk page!

The 2019 Contabo & Plesk Summer Promotion!

Available for a limited period of time only!

6Jun/190

Migration using Plesk

The migration of a website is always a challenging task for the webmaster. Beside a loss of reputation and ranking on search engines, dead links or famous 404-errors, there are some other risks during such a migration. But often it is more dangerous to leave the website on an old server, since old software can become a serious security risk.

Plesk Migrator

If you want to migrate from a current Plesk server with an outdated operation system or an EOL Plesk version, cPanel, Confixx, Helm or DirectAdmin server, Plesk provides the Plesk Migrator.

The Plesk Migrator is an extension which needs to be installed first. Within Plesk navigate to "Extensions", search for "Plesk Migrator" and then you can install it.

After the installation you can open the "Plesk Migrator" at the tab "My Extensions".

The next step is to "Start new Migration" and select the panel type, from which you want to transfer the data. Important: For this you need root access via SSH to the source server. Beside password authentication you can add an SSH key to the server.

If SSH access is not available and only FTP is possible, please see the next chapter Site Importer.

After you have entered the login data, the connection to the source server is started and depending on the server, different migration options are shown.

On a Plesk-to-Plesk migration you can see the subscriptions, customers, reseller and hosting plans.

In addition you can either migrate the customers of a reseller or assign them to a new reseller. After everything is selected, you can continue with a click on "Migrate". At first there are some checks on Apache modules or PHP versions. If there are no errors or you want to ignore possible hints, the migration will start and you can watch the status of the migration.

In case you want to restart the migration after some days, you can click on "Restart Migration".

You can find further information in the Plesk Migration Guide and also in a support article.

Site Importer

In many cases, you already have a running website and want to migrate it with a few clicks. Likely examples are: you have just started with Plesk, you manage your website using a different panel like cPanel or DirectAdmin, or you have a server with a pure LAMP installation.

In this case, Plesk offers an extension called Site Import.

This is also an extension which needs to be installed. Therefore navigate to "Extension" in your Plesk and search for "Site Import", which can be installed then.

There a two different ways to import your website with the Site Importer:

You can login as server administrator and open "Site Importer" at "Extension" - "My Extensions". Alternatively you can navigate to the subscription and select "Website Importing". In the next step, you need to enter the login data for SSH or FTP.

After you entered the login data and clicked "OK", the connection to the source server will be started and the necessary information will be gathered.

If the file structure can not be detected automatically, you can enter additional information like the location of the home directory.

Website software like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal und PrestaShop are recognised automatically and the import is easy. Further information can be found in the Plesk documentation.

Beside websites, this useful extension can also import email accounts. For this choose "Mail Importing" in the subscription. After a click on "Import mail messages", you need to enter the login data and destination email account. If the the email server can not be detected through the login data, you can enter the necessary details at "Show advanced options". With a click on "OK" the import starts.

Additional information is also available on the Plesk website.

Conclusion

We cannot eliminate the risks of a website migration, but minimize them since Plesk offers some useful tools to make a migration easier and reduce the human factor. But the most important thing for a successful migration is a detailed and well thought out planning.

Order a VPS from Contabo and you get the Plesk edition of your choice one month for free! You can also find further information on our Plesk information site.

Posted by: Torsten | Tagged as: , , , , No Comments
24Jan/190

Installation of Softaculous in Plesk and cPanel

Softaculous offers a huge number of scripts which can be installed by the popular „Auto Installer“ under the Plesk and cPanel administration. For Plesk you can activate Softaculous only on a Linux operating system. The free version gives you access to more than 50 scripts whereas the fee-based, fully-licensed version offers around 450 scripts. An overview of the supported scripts can be found here.

Procedure under Plesk

For Plesk 12.0+ versions

The installation of Softaculous under Plesk can be performed by just a few clicks. Please login to your Plesk Control panel with your root user. Afterwards go to the "Server Management -> Extensions" page and click on the "Extensions Catalog" tab. Once done you can search for Softaculous and click on the "Install" button.

Once you have finished the installation of Softaculous you can find it under the "My Extensions" tab.

Please take note that the free version of Softaculous is installed per default. In case that you need the full license for Softaculous, you can order it directly in the "My Extensions" tab next to Softaculous under the "Buy" button.

For older versions of Plesk please use the following procedure for the installation of Softaculous:

1. ionCube loader activation

Befor you start with the activation of the ionCube loader, you have to check if this one is not already installed and enabled on your server.

To check the ionCube version please connect to your server via SSH as root and use the following command:

find / -name 'ioncube_loader_*'

To check if the ionCube loader is activated you can use the following command:

php -m | grep -i ioncube

2. Installation of Softaculous

When the ionCube loader is activated you can continue with the installation of Softaculous. Therefore please take care that you have enabled POSIX. You can check this by executing the following command:

php -m | grep -i posix

In case that POSIX is not enabled, you can enable it in „Tools & Settings“ → „PHP Settings“ → Please select the related PHP handler and continue with the next steps. Once you have taken care that POSIX is enabled, please connect to your server via SSH as root and execute the following commands:

wget -N http://files.softaculous.com/install.sh
chmod 755 install.sh
./install.sh

Once the commands are executed the installer will start with the installation process of Softacoulous. During the installation scripts will be downloaded and the download activity will be shown on the screen. Afterwards you can select Softaculous in your Plesk administration.

Procedure under cPanel/WHM:

1. ionCube loader activation

To activate the ionCube loader on your cPanel administration please follow the steps below:
* Login to WHM (root)
* Got to Server Configuration → Tweak Settings → PHP
* Select „ioncube“ check box for „cPanel PHP loader“
* Click on „Save“ button.
* That's it. This will enable ionCube for you in 3rd party PHP binary.

ioncube_activation

2. Installation of Softaculous

Once you have activated the ionCube loader you have to connect to your server via SSH as root and execute the following commands:

wget -N http://files.softaculous.com/install.sh
chmod 755 install.sh
./install.sh

Afterwards go to WHM > Plugins > Softaculous – Instant Installs

The following webpage should open if the installation was successful:

softaculous_en

There you can purchase the fully licensed version, if required.

General information about Softaculous

More detailed information about Softaculous and an overview of the current apps can be found using the links below:

https://www.softaculous.com/
https://www.softaculous.com/softaculous/apps

30Nov/170

Comparison of administration panels: cPanel vs. Plesk vs. Webmin

We are often asked which panel we would recommend. Since there is a variety of different panels with different functions and focus, we cannot easily answer this question. Currently we offer cPanel, Plesk, LAMP und Webmin, which we will introduce here.

cPanel/WHM

cPanel is a webhosting panel which allows to administrate a great number of users in an easy way and configure the installed services. In order to avoid security breaches many settings are pretty restrictive, which may cause issues due to the demands of your software. In addition, without plugins from external developers, it would not be possible to use nginx as an example. The software cPanel is divided into two parts, the interface for users is called cPanel, the administration interface WHM (WebHostMananger).

The developers provide a really detailed documentation which explains nearly all functions cPanel/WHM provides:

https://documentation.cpanel.net/

If errors occur or special questions appear which are not answered within the documentation, it is always a good possibility to ask for this within the official forum:

https://forums.cpanel.net/

And for those who do not know cPanel/WHM or want to check out what was changed before updating the own installation, a demo and the changelog are available:

https://cpanel.com/demo/
https://documentation.cpanel.net/display/CL/Change+Logs

If you are a new user, you may check out their YouTube channel, too:

https://www.youtube.com/user/cpaneltv

Plesk Obsidian

Plesk understands itself as a platform for developers, thus it has a lot of software already installed and software like Docker, Ruby, etc. can be installed with a few clicks. In addition to this, a lot of features can be installed, using free or paid addons, which can be installed with a few clicks, too. Nevertheless, it is even an alternative to start a webhosting. At the moment, three different versions are offered, all details regarding the differences and the official addons can be found within the following website provided by Plesk:

https://www.plesk.com/editions/

Plesk provides a detailed documentation, too:

https://docs.plesk.com/en-US/obsidian/

In addition, a knowledge base with the most common problems and errors - and corresponding solutions - is provided:

https://support.plesk.com/hc/en-us

Moreover, the developers and community are active within the forum and provide assistance in case of problems:

https://talk.plesk.com/

Webmin

Webmin is no classic interface for webhosting, it is a server administration panel which provides a graphical interface to configure the installed services with the goal making server administration easier. An overview of the supported services can be found within the official documentation:

http://doxfer.webmin.com/Webmin/Webmin_Modules

In addition to the supported modules it is no problem to add additional software via SSH or develop more addons for Webmin to extend the list of services, this is possible due to the fact, that the source code is provided via GitHub:

https://github.com/webmin/webmin

As already mentioned, Webmin is by default no webhosting interface like cPanel or Plesk but there was an additional software stack developed which provides the functionality required for webhosting:

https://www.virtualmin.com/

If you only want to use the server as a mail server, cPanel, Plesk and even Virtualmin may be a little bit to heavy, you can think about Webmin, too, since there is an additional addon which provides the basic mail server software:

http://www.usermin.com/usermin.html

LAMP

LAMP has already been offered since a few years and is not a panel like the other ones already mentioned, it is a software stack which contains (Linux,) Apache, MySQL and PHP; this is the basic software to start with your own web presentation. We already published a tutorial about this called "LAMP made easy".

Webmin + LAMP

After we had started offering LAMP, we were often asked why it is not possible to select both Webmin and LAMP. Since we always note down your feedback, we started offering both solutions as one package, so that you can start directly with your webpage after we have sent out the login details to you.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are different Panels on offer and the decision, which one to choose, also depends on the chosen operating system: cPanel can only be combined with CentOS, whereas Plesk can also be used with Windows Server. By the way: You can test Plesk one month for free (available for our VPS) and get used to the many functions this panel offers!

29Jun/171

Plesk basics: The first steps

Plesk is a commercial web hosting platform initially developed by Parallels. It is available for Linux and Windows based operating systems and therefore for any operating systems offered by us.

Together with our partner Plesk, we are currently offering you Plesk Obsidian one month for free. Simply select one of the below listed editions of Plesk Obsidian and try it, before you buy and pay for it! Only available in combination with our VPS: Plesk Obsidian now one month for free.

The current version of Plesk is version 18 (Obsidian) which we offer in three different editions:

  • Web Admin Edition: This edition is targeted at users who only want to administrate their own websites. Unnecessary features such as customer/reseller management are not included in this edition.
  • Web Pro Edition: With this edition, you can host up to 30 different domains. Also, all features apart from the reseller management are available in this edition.
  • Web Host Edition: With this edition, you can host an unlimited amount of domains. There are no restrictions on behalf of Plesk. The Web Host Edition is the most extensive of all Plesk editions. It includes every feature - from reseller management over security core features until automatic outbound spam protection.

This tutorial, however, is restricted to the basics you need to know. We will show you how to add domains, FTP accounts, databases and e-mail accounts. The tutorial is written for the previous edition called Onyx, but it is working for Obsidian as well!

At first, we log in at our Plesk web interface. In order to do so, we use the browser and type in our IP address and port 8443 (e.g. https://198.51.100.3:8443).

We login with the login credentials we received via e-mail...

... and land directly on the main page of the Plesk webinterface. In our case there is already a domain added, in your webinterface the main page might look a little different.

Add a domain:

We click on "Add domain" on the main page and land on the following page:

We fill in all the text boxes. In the box "Domain name", we fill in our domain (without "www"). Our example domain is "example.com". As location for our new website we choose "Create a new webspace".

When choosing IPv4/IPv6 addresses, we choose the IP addresses which we want to use for our newly created domain. Choosing the username and the password are, of course, completely up to you.

The first step is already done now. After clicking on "OK", the new domain is added on our server.

Now we can upload the data for our homepage to the server. Usually, this is done via FTP. Luckily, Plesk already created an FTP account for us when creating the new domain. So all we have to do is opening an FTP client of our choice (e.g. FileZilla) and connect with the login credentials we just set for our new domain.

What is missing now is a database for our website. By clicking on "Databases" and "Add database", we can create a new database:

Again, we fill in all text boxes. In order to connect to that database, we have to create a new database user. Please note down its username and password, you will need it for your website later! When asked about access control, we choose "Allow local connections only".

After we created the database, the following screen will pop up:

Here, we could also import a dump of an already existing database. However, this tutorial is limited to the basics only.

Create an e-mail account:

What we need now is an e-mail account for our domain we just added. Plesk offers a comfortable way to do so as well. We click on "Mail" on the left side of the main menu and then choose "Create Email address":

After we filled in all the text boxes we click on "OK" in order to create the new mail account. Please remember to note down the access data, you will need them later!
Once the mail account is created, we can login on our mail webinterface on "webmail.example.com" for sending and receiving e-mails.

Sounds good to you? Great 🙂

If you are ready to try Plesk Obsidian now, we would like to mention our current campaign with Plesk Obsidian one more time. Get Plesk Obsidian one month for free, in combination with one of our VPS. Select the model of your choice in our VPS overview and opt for your preferred Plesk Obsidian edition during the configuration process.

Posted by: Florian | Tagged as: , , , , 1 Comment
1Jun/172

Using your nameservers in cPanel and Plesk

To use your domain in the Internet, you need to configure nameservers. The nameservers are needed to resolve the domain names into IP addresses. We recommend to use our nameservers (ns1.contabo.net, ns2.contabo.net, ns3.contabo.net) for your domains. We provide redundant servers in different data centers and you can easily manage your DNS zones over the customer control panel. But for several reasons it can be necessary to use your own nameservers.

This tutorial provides short instructions how to manage your own nameservers with cPanel and Plesk. For most domains extensions (TLD), it is necessary to use at least two different IP addresses for two different nameservers.

In this tutorial we are going to use the domain "yourdomain.com" and want to use the nameservers "ns1.yourdomain.com" and "ns2.yourdomain.com" with the IP addresses "1.1.1.1" and "2.2.2.2".

cPanel

To use an additional IP address for a second nameserver, you will need to add the IP address in WHM at "IP Functions" - "Add a New IP Address". The DNS server will be accessible on all configured IP addresses on your server. You can use different IP addresses for the nameservers than for your website.

To use the nameservers with your domains, you will need to add them in WHM at "Server Configuration" - "Basic Webhost Manager® Setup". At the end of the page you can enter the nameserver you would like to use. After you entered the nameserver, you need to select "Configure Address Records". Please enter the IP address you want to use for this nameserver and press "Configure Address Record". After this is finished you can close the windows using "Close". Please note, that in some conditions -- for example if the nameservers are currently configured on a different server -- the entries for the nameserver will not be updated immediately. After you have finished, please press "Save changes".

Now you can "Create a New Account" with your domain at WHM - "Account functions". The configured nameserver will be used in the configuration of your new account and the DNS zone will be created with default values. You can see all DNS entries at WHM - "Edit DNS Zone".

On this page you can manage all DNS entries of your domain. Most entries are for internal usage and should not be changed. To manage user defined values, we recommend to use the "Zone Editor" at "Domains" in the cPanel account.

At last, you will need to configure your domain settings at your domain registrar. You need to change the nameserver entries. If you want to use subdomains of your domain, for example "ns1.yourdomain.com" for your domain "yourdomain.com", you will need to configure so called "Glue Records". This means, the domain registrar does not only save the name of your nameservers, but also the IP address. In some cases it is required to configure the new IP addresses for the nameservers at the current DNS zone of your domain.

After you have finished the configuration, it can take up to 24 hours until the new settings are propagated correctly. To test your nameservers and the name resolution for your domain, you can use tools like intoDNS. This tool will test the settings at your DNS provider and of your nameservers.

Plesk

At first you will need to create your domain in Plesk. At "Websites & Domains" you can see an overview of your domains.

To use a second IP address for your nameservers, the IP address needs to be configured at "Tools & Settings" - "Tools & Resources" - "IP Addresses". The DNS server responds to all configured IPv4 and IPv6 addresses. You can use different IP addresses for your nameservers than for your websites.

All DNS zones in Plesk will be configured based on a DNS template. You can find the settings at "Tools & Settings" - "General Settings" - "DNS Template". In the DNS template you can configure all entries you need for all domains on your server. Beside some default entries and entries for internal services like webmail, the settings for the nameservers can be found here. By default Plesk creates two nameserver entries "ns1.yourdomain.com" and "ns2.yourdomain.com", but with the IP address of your domain. If you want to use the same nameservers for all your domains, we recommend to change the NS entries and the IP addresses of your nameservers in the template. If you want to use different nameservers, you can also change these settings later in the DNS zone of your domain. After you have finished the configuration of the DNS template, you will need to apply the DNS template to all domains.

Now you can see the new settings also in the DNS zone of your domain. You can manage the DNS zone at "Websites & Domains" - "yourdomain.com" - "DNS Settings". There you can add, edit and delete DNS entries.

At last, you will need to configure your domain settings at your domain registrar. You need to change the nameserver entries. If you want to use subdomains of your domain, for example "ns1.yourdomain.com" for your domain "yourdomain.com" as your nameservers, you will need to configure so called "Glue Records". This means, the domain registrar does not only save the name of your nameservers, but also the IP address. In some cases it is required to configure the new IP addresses at your current DNS zone of your domain.

After you have finished the configuration, it can take up to 24 hours until the new settings are propagated correctly. To test your nameservers and the name resolution for your domain, you can use tools like intoDNS. This tool will test the settings at your DNS provider and your nameservers.

Posted by: Torsten | Tagged as: , , , 2 Comments
2May/170

Plesk Onyx: One month for free now!

We are happy to inform you that we, in cooperation with our partner Plesk, are now offering you the popular administration panel Plesk Onyx one month for free. This offer is available for all our VPS - exclusively at Contabo - and applies for new orders.

You are free to choose which one of the three Plesk Onyx editions on offer you would like to try for free with one of our VPS:

Plesk Onyx Web Admin Edition (Price after the free month: 2.99 € / month)
Plesk Onyx Web Pro Edition: (Price after the free month: 4.99 € / month)
Plesk Onyx Web Host Edition: (Price after the free month: 8.99 € / month)

If you are convinced of Plesk after the free month, you do not have to do anything: The license renews automatically, if you haven't cancelled the Plesk license with us during the free month; however, the regular monthly price applies then, which you can find in the overview above.

Being a Gold-Partner of Plesk we have worked hard in order to present you with this exceptional offer, which is only available at Contabo.com. In addition to that, we provide you with an excellent support for Plesk Onyx, just get in touch with us in case you have any detailed inquiries.

Please note that this offer is valid for a limited period of time only. So what are you waiting for? Just give it a try and opt for the edition which suits your needs and order it in combination with one of our VPS.

Posted by: Markus | Tagged as: , , , , No Comments
19Oct/160

Upgrading Plesk to Obsidian

With this short tutorial we will show you how to upgrade your Plesk installation to Plesk Obsidian.

Before proceeding you should perform a backup of all important data. An upgrade always bears the risk of data loss.

On an SSD VPS you will have the ability to create a snapshot, creating a snapshot will give you the possibility to perform easily a rollback to the state "before upgrading".

On any other VPS or dedicated server we recommend downloading all backup files to your local PC or to our FTP backupspace.

After you have saved all important data you will be able to continue upgrading:


Linux:

1. Login via SSH and use sudo -i to start a shell with "root" privileges
2. Type in the following command:

plesk installer

If this command is not working, you can download and execute the installer using the following commands:

wget http://autoinstall.plesk.com/plesk-installer
chmod +x plesk-installer
./plesk-installer


Windows:

1. Login via RDP and open the CMD.exe with Administrator rights (Windows-Key + R)
2. Type in the following command:

"%plesk_bin%"\ai.exe --console


Once you have opened the Plesk Installer you will probably see a warning telling you to backup all your important files.

plesk_windows

After you have agreed you should see something like the image below, there should be displayed your current version of Plesk; if you want to perform the upgrade you will have to select the right version by typing the correct number, in this case number 2. You can only upgrade to Plesk Obsidian from Plesk Onyx. So if you have an older Plesk Version installed, you will have to upgrade to Plesk Onyx first!

plesk_upgrade_versionen

After typing in the number of your desired Plesk installation you will accept the download of those new packages. Please note that this step can take up to 30 minutes, it really depends on the Plesk extensions you have installed.

plesk_upgrade

After the upgrade was completed you should verify that everything is working properly.

If you plan to install additional software or change some software you can of course run the Plesk Installer again and select the packages which should be installed.

plesk_software

We kindly ask for your understanding that analysing problems can be very difficult for us, in case you encounter issues after having added or removed some software through the Plesk Installer. In any case we recommend backing up all your files before making any changes to your Plesk installation.

By the way: Plesk offers tutorials about the upgrade process as well, just click here to access the Plesk University!

There is also the option to start a clean reinstallation of your server with the latest version of Plesk within your customer control panel, in this case creating a backup of your important data prior to the installation is vital, because all data stored on your server will be lost.

Posted by: Gianni-Donato | Tagged as: , , , , , No Comments
17Oct/160

Just released: Plesk Onyx available now!

As of today, we offer you the latest version of the administration panel Plesk Onyx for your VPS and Dedicated Servers. Just released by Parallels, you can get this brand-new version from us already  – after all, we always want to offer you the latest version of every software and we do not want to withhold the many new "Onyx" features from you!

So.. what are these new features? Among others, you will get a Git support for an easy deployment of your website, the support of docker containers and Windows Server 2016. Please find an overview of the new features here.

Contabo is a Gold Partner of the Plesk developer Parallels. Thus it is possible for us to offer you an excellent support for your Dedicated Servers and VPS equipped with Plesk. In addition, we receive favorable purchasing conditions for all Plesk versions from Parallels. This means that we are able to pass on savings to you, our valued customers and offer you Plesk at an extremely attractive price.

We are happy to provide you the new Plesk Onyx in three different editions at a great price. Now it is up to you to select the version that fits your requirements best:

Plesk Onyx for Dedicated Servers:
Plesk Onyx Web Admin Edition: 2.99 € / month
Plesk Onyx Web Pro Edition: 4.99 € / month
Plesk Onyx Web Host Edition: 24.99 € / month

Plesk Onyx for virtual private servers (VPS):
Plesk Onyx Web Admin Edition: 2.99 € / month
Plesk Onyx Web Pro Edition: 4.99 € / month
Plesk Onyx Web Host Edition: 8.99 € / month