Category Archives: Wordpress

VestaCP Update – October 2017

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.

Installing WP with command line

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

cd /home/admin/web/domain.com/public_html/

Step 2: Download WordPress Script

wget http://wordpress.org/latest.zip

Step 3: Unzip WordPress Script

unzip latest unzip

Step 4: Move content of WordPress folder up one folder into public_html

cd wordpress
mv * .[^.]* ..

Step 5: Remove empty WordPress folder and index.html file

rmdir wordpress
rm index.html

Step 6: Edit WP-Config.php file

mv wp-config-sample.php wp-config.php
nano wp-config.php

Save (Ctrl+O) and Exit (Ctrl+X)

SSH FileZilla Zip and UnZip Challenge

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.

Add on Domain Success

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.

Second VestaCP Installation

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
Virtualization: KVM
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.

SFTP WordPress Lesson

So last night spent hours trying to figure out why WordPress asks for FTP details when I want to load plugins or delete themes.  My searches first took me to WordPress.org where I worked through a large number of posts.  The suggestion that looked like a good one was to force the issue with the following addition to the wp-config.php:

define(‘FS_METHOD’,’direct’);

Initially that made me happy as on the face of it it looked as though it was working.  There was no request for FTP details, and when I attempted to delete a theme, it said it was “successfully” deleted, except the theme was still there.  When I tried to reinstall WordPress it attempted to install and looked as though it was doing something until it was obvious  it wasn’t.  WordPress Codex suggested by way of an alternative that “direct” could be replaced with “ssh2” or “ftpext” or “ftpsockets” in that order, however that didn’t work either.  WP reverted back to asking for FTP details again.

Next I navigated to the VestaPanel Community Forum and soon realized that the problem was unique to VestaPanel users – there were a good number of posts discussing the issue.  I was finally able to grasp that the owner of my WordPress installation was ROOT and not ADMIN and that was the reason WordPress was asking for FTP details.  When I had installed my VestaCP I had made a decision not to install an FTP server and to use SFTP .  Which in essence meant that ROOT and not ADMIN was the owner of my WordPress installation.  WordPress was looking for ROOT and since ADMIN didn’t have user privileges it asked for FTP details.  So found the following commands that I will be trying out tonight when I get home:

cd /home/admin/web/domain.tld/public_html/
chown admin -R *

Cross fingers it will work out.  If it does, then this is an important lesson for those with VestaPanel who elect to use SFTP instead of installing an FTP Server.

Note: It did work!  If one doesn’t install an FTP server and one uses SFTP one in effect installs scripts on public_html as ROOT.  One has to give ADMIN ownership of public_html otherwise it will have issues such as with WordPress.  The WordPress site I created is in perfect shape now.  Have to marvel at the speed of the site, especially when I’m working on it.  Probably a combo of VestaPanel as well as VPS speed.  Am very happy with the outcome!