So noticed I haven’t posted in a while. Mostly because my learning curve for VestaCP has plato-ed a bit.
Learning curve wise. Although Softaculous was a great experience with VestaCP, problem is that I’ve been using VestaCP exclusively for VPS. And the life of a VPS compared with a server is much less stable. For example, the VPS may melt down, or the VPS business may fold, etc etc which means VestaCP will be deleted and all of the content of the VPS moved elsewhere. Softaculous is not very portable. Websites created with Softaculous may have serious issues if you want to move them to the next VPS where a fresh installation of VestaCP will have to be loaded.
So I let go of my Softaculous licenses, and am installing my WordPress sites from the command line only. No more Softaculous.
Issue wise for cPanel. If one checks the Forum, which in essence is where all inquiries are dealt with for free and one can find a VestaCP solution very easy, it’s VERY quiet. If one checks through discussions it would seem the bulk of the staff that supported the Panel Script have moved on to HestiaCP. And last I heard there are now bugs in the panel. So there’s that. There are also a couple or more members in the Forum who have created forks of VestaCP, some that are apparently very good. I’m still sticking with the VestaCP that is provided from the download page including creating a bash script as it is working. Also the owner gave the assurance VestaCP is well supported. So not sure whether I completely believe it, but for now I’m good with this.
So, another success for both Softaculous and VestaCP when VestaCP added Softaculous as an App to its panel during December 2017. When one adds Softaculous to the VestaCP install script it installs a free version of Softaculous. The free version of course is very limited and excludes the more popular regularly used scripts like WordPress and myBB:
I thought the 12 US$ per year for a Softaculous License for a VPS was doable as an experiment to see how VestaCP can deal with the scripts. Only problem was when I tried to subscribe for the premium version, Softaculous identified the free license number as belonging to a dedicated server – premium license of which was double the price. I then created a Softaculous ticket that was answered very promptly by an Admin who changed the license number so I could get the 12 US$ price. He asked that I go back into my VestaCP Admin Panel and that’s really when the fun started, as all of a sudden I was no longer able to access my apps in the VestaCP Panel. Then learned that in order for that to happen I first needed to add Ioncube.
Ioncube is for the protection of Softaculous php scripts. I soon learned that it’s very difficult to install as first one has to load Zend Guard in a million and one steps. And then Ion Cube. After a few hours of checking out a great number of tutorials I got it successfully loaded on my VPS – accept, the VestaCP Apps page was still unavailable and asking for Ioncube to be loaded. Next I made an inquiry at the VestaCP Forum and after a few hours one of the Admin provided me with a miracle one line command that worked instantly:
I finally was able to get into my VestaCP Softaculous App page and change the settings of the server to VPS. Then clicked on the license link to make it premium and successfully subscribed. Am now ready to try out some of the scripts. Think I’ll start with myBB as with my last myBB installation from the command line it took hours and many commands to install in comparison with WordPress that is effortless and fast on the command line. So let’s see how this goes.
So since my last post at genesis.clouded.us, have used VestaCP many times. Am happy to report that VestaCP seems to have worked through all of its bugs, and it is effortless to install it these days. Previously there had been some issues with phpmyadmin and databases, but now I’m not worrying about that anymore. All I need to do when I install VestaCP is to get the installation bash command script from VestaCP installation page and everything else is in place.
With my most recent installation of VestaCP I discovered the option of including Softaculous. I hesitated a little, but then thought to include it in my bash command script so that I could check it out.
Looks like there are some free scripts offered, but the most popular ones like WordPress and myBB one needs to be subscribed for. Subscription is not very expensive for a VPS. 12 US$ per year. So I may just try it out one of these days. I checked out the panel a little and it’s basically the same as for cPanel. I probably don’t really need it, but want to try it out at least once to see how it works.
Note: So last night (19 January 2018) decided to try out a subscription of Softaculous with my HostUS VPS VestaCP. I was all set to subscribe for the reduced VPS rate of 12 US$ a year. Yet unfortunately the installation of Softaculous must have produced a license number for a dedicated server. Which is double the rate. So thought of leaving that for now. I don’t really need Softaculous and feel more secure with creating installations at the command line. I’ve got WordPress down to four commands. Just myBB I’ve got to find an easier way to install from the command line. Last myBB installation was a struggle.
This Website was started in July 2016 and one year later I can notice how much VestaCP has improved. With previous installations phpmyadmin was almost impossible to sort out. I had to search for solutions and usually after using a script that was recommended at the VestaCP Forum by one of the Admin, I more or less got it functional. But for the greater part it was a real headache. Roll on to July 2017 and there is no issue whatsoever. Installation of VestaCP is fast, seamless and all one has to do is go into the panel and set up the users and domains.
Another mile stone that VestaCP reached was to incorporate the Let’s Encrypt free SSL certificates. It’s still buggy though as not everyone has had success with the installation of this tool, whereas with cPanel this works awesome. Better yet, cPanel has installed its own brand of SSL certificates that one can choose to automatically be set up for all new hosting accounts.
cPanel is still the better Control Panel by far, however of course much bulkier and slower. VestaCP is lightweight and lightning fast in comparison. For a small VPS VestaCP is definitely the recommended option though. I’m quite happy with it – it’s getting easier and easier to install. WordPress installation from the command line has also got easier too.
This WordPress site is built on a hosting account that works with VestaCP and I can feel the speed when I work with WordPress. It’s still the fastest of all of my hosting accounts. Hats off to the owner of afreecloud and a warm appreciation for providing this free hosting account. It’s only been a pleasure so far.
So when FileZilla created havoc with the file permissions of my WP script, and VestaCP doesn’t have a File Manager or a script installer, I went for installing WP with the command line instead.
I thought I would record the steps I followed here in case this will be the route I follow in future.
Step 1: Change directory to public_html
Step 2: Download WordPress Script
Step 3: Unzip WordPress Script
unzip latest unzip
Step 4: Move content of WordPress folder up one folder into public_html
mv * .[^.]* ..
Step 5: Remove empty WordPress folder and index.html file
Step 6: Edit WP-Config.php file
mv wp-config-sample.php wp-config.php
Save (Ctrl+O) and Exit (Ctrl+X)
So learned through really hard experience that if one uploaded individual files of a script from a local computer to a server with FileZilla that it creates a problem with the file permissions. Previously, on shared hosting, I had used FileManager in cPanel to upload zipped scripts to the File Directory. With VestaCP and Webuzo I’m using SSH with FileZilla instead. Felt quite good about using it, until I realized that it was creating a problem with my WordPress script. I’d get the white screen of death when I used it.
How I discovered this is that when I was using Webuzo CP a few days ago on another server, I used FileZilla to upload a WP script with individual files vs zipped. I then received the white screen of death. Later on I used the softaculous installer in WordPress to upload the script. And it then worked perfect. At the time I concluded Webuzo was the problem. Then more recently when I started a new server with VestaCP exactly the same thing happened. I tried to upload an unzipped WP script with FileZilla SSH and the very same thing happened. White screen of death. This time round I installed WordPress using the command line. And it worked. Refer my post about how to install WordPress with using the command line.
So now we have a nice challenge on hand. How to zip and unzip files while using FileZilla OR where can one find a free FTP client that has a zip and unzip capability? I’ve done extensive searches and found nothing so far. Think I may now explore the possibility of adding a File Manager of VestaCP instead. Only negative of course is that the script is paid. I’ll check also with Webuzo whether the FileManager has a Zip and Unzip tool.
Last night very successfully added a new user to my VestaCP for frihouse.net. However then found that I couldn’t use the SFTP feature for the new user to upload files in FileZilla. If I were to use VestaCP for multiple users, I would have to enable FTP. Or do I? It’s what happened anyway. Question for this lesson is, how to allow a new user to upload files through SFTP when there is no FTP server?
Found this solution at VestaCP Forum – for testing:
Need to test this.
I also made a mistake, and hope I will remember it. When I add on a new domain I have to enable child template for the Name DNS Server. Otherwise the domain will just redirect to frihouse.net. Important lesson to remember.
Two days ago discovered a great plugin for making a site private. I was looking for something where one can set up members oneself, without opening the Website for everyone to register.
The Jonradio Private Plugin works perfect! I get to set up the member in WordPress, and it then sends an e-mail to the user to set up a password. One can choose different levels for membership. Subscriber is profile only. Contributor can add posts and edit the posts the contributor added only. Then Editor can add all posts and pages.
Here is a link to the plugin:
So after the successful second installation of VestaCP decided it was time to test an add on domain. I was wondering whether there would be any challenges with DNS. I was blown away by how easy and smooth all of it went. Part of it may be that VPS 27 is a very fast VPS. And VestaCP is also a lightweight fast panel. I’d purchased one of those cheap domains at Namecheap earlier in the day. Then added my frihouse.net name servers to it. It was very easy to add on a domain in VestaCP, only thing to make sure in the DNS setup is to set it on a child template. Not the default template.
I then experimented with copying the WordPress Website on frihouse.net to the add on domain. I first created an empty database. Then uploaded the frihouse.net database to the new database in phpmyadmin. That went super fast. Then used FileZilla to SFTP a fresh installation of WordPress to the new add on domain. Also added the plugins, themes and uploaded artwork to the new installation in the add on domain. All that was left to do was to sort out the domain information in the database and config.php of WordPress, and it worked perfect. One final tweak was to give permission to the new add on domain to own the public_html of the new add on domain. Totally blew me away how fast all of that went. Like under 20 minutes.
So had a second opportunity for a VestaCP installation with a new VPS that I received from freevps.us. Fantastic VPS called VPS27, courtesy of the admin and staff of freevps.us and GalaxyHostPlus. Specs of the VPS are:
Disk Size: 50 GB
Monthly Traffic: 1 TB
Memory: 1 GB
IP Addresses: 1x IPv4 & /80 IPv6
Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Control Panel: SolusVM
Connection: 1 Gbit/s
I was obviously more experienced with the second installation of VestaCP, however phpmyadmin gave me another big hurdle. Think I got mixed up with the tutorial that I was following and the patch that is provided for the configuration of phpmyadmin. As with the first installation, it was easy to install the database. I then did things different, wondering whether just the patch provided by VestaCP would be OK on its own. Then after that set up the configuration file by using the one that was provided by the tutorial, and think that is where I blundered. At any rate, I then ended up with lots of errors. Tried to follow the tutorial by uploading a new phpmyadmin database, creating user, etc as well as tables. That also resulted in errors. Finally I went back to the VestaCP patch and tried both versions that were provided. Then copied the configuration file for dhsites.net to frihouse.net. And finally it worked.
The DNS worked flawlessly for the second installation as well. I found that I had to add permission for frihouse.net to own WordPress. So at least now know a few of the VestaCP quirks, and was able to negotiate all of them. Wish I could be a little more sure of the steps for phpmyadmin. At least I know it’s a challenge, and after a bit of struggles have been able to get past it.