Vepp as a cPanel alternative
Vepp and cPanel are control panels for web server and site management. They help create a website on VPS hosting, assign a domain and SSL certificate, configure mail. They provide many other features but in this article, we describe the main functions used by the most part of clients.
cPanel is an old-school control panel. It’s more than 20 years old and is widely used by thousands of professional admins. cPanel has several versions including those for hosting providers. We will describe cPanel & WHM VPS, a version for end users that helps them manage websites on a virtual server.
Vepp is a new control panel by ISPsystem, a company with more than 15 years in hosting software development. Vepp is created with a focus on common users who need a website and don’t have system administration skills.
Interface and approach to user tasks
Not everyone evaluates a web interface when selecting a software product. And how wrong he is! A more user-friendly interface means that tasks will be performed quicker (a user may search for a button for 5 minutes or for 5 seconds) and the customer service will be better (e.g. if a web studio provides access to an ordering customer). That’s why we offer you first to look at the web interface without a deeper dive into its functionality.
When we look at the web interfaсe there is no doubt that the cPanel has a 20-year old admin history. There are a great number of control elements and this is only half of the elements that are displayed on the screen! It is convenient for a professional, but not for an end user.
Beauty is a relative concept. But we won’t argue with the fact that Vepp is more user-friendly.
Every website has a card with the main parameters: an SSL certificate, domain, backups, website files, its status, CMS version. You can view and change the feature status quickly. For example, “SSL not installed” -- the link “Install’. You can switch to a website or admin panel. Other features can be found in the settings form.
Let’s consider the main operations that practically every user of a hosting service performs. We will create a website on Wordpress, assign a domain, install an SSL certificate, and make a backup copy.
Install a panel and connect the server
If you order a panel with a server your hosting provider will install it and provide you with the URL, login, and password. Users who have bought the panel themselves, need to install it first.
To install cPanel you should have
some much knowledge in server administration. A control panel is installed from a repository and is started through the SSH-protocol: first, you need to install an SSH-client, connect to the server, and start the installation process with the command specified in the cPanel guide.
After you have successfully installed cPanel, create a client and assign him a domain. Next, access the panel and create a website.
The user creation form in the admin panel cPanel WHM
A specific feature of Vepp is that you don’t need to install the control panel. You only need to:
- Sign in at https://my.vepp.com.
- Enter your server IP address and password — you can find them in the instruction from your hosting provider.
Now you can create a website!
The start page in Vepp
Add your website to a domain
Both panels allow creating several websites, configuring domains, and subdomains. But most users have a simple task — they want to buy a domain and create a website on the most popular CMS Wordpress. So, we’ll look into this case.
To assign a domain, you need to log in to the Client area of the domain registrar, find your domain and specify the IP address of your server in its configuration form. The domain will be assigned in a few hours. This operation is not associated with the control panel, that’s why we describe it separately. But you need to perform this task if you want to locate your website on a good domain name.
Install WordPress. In cPanel, you can use Site Publisher. The only thing you need to do is to specify a domain, select a template, and publish your website.
How to select a WordPress template in cPanel
In Vepp, you need to perform similar actions, but in a different order: you first select a template, then specify a domain, and publish your website.
How to select a WordPress template in Vepp
Edit a WordPress website. Both panels will automatically create a Wordpress account when publishing the template. In cPanel, you need to find the login credential on the dashboard and enter them at [your website].com/wp-login.php. Vepp will log in you to WordPress automatically.
The important difference is that Vepp is specially designed for an inexperienced user and walks him through all the steps, one after another. E.g.you cannot specify a domain without selecting a Wordpress template, and you cannot configure mail unless you have your website installed.
In cPanel, a user can see all the available features: mail settings, server configuration, PHP versions, backups, and many others. It’s difficult to understand what you should do first and next. That’s why cPanel is a good choice for advanced users who already know what to do.
cPanel dashboard where all tasks start
Connect a free SSL certificate Let’s Encrypt
Today, an SSL certificate is not fancy, it is a requirement of browsers and search engines. Without an SSL, your website will display a security notification or won’t open at all. Fortunately, Vepp, and cPanel are integrated with Let’s Encrypt, a popular certification authority that issues free SSL for 3 months.
In cPanel, you first need to install the Let’s Encrypt module in the admin area WHM, through the command line in an SSH-client. Next, allow your users to utilize this module, and finally, you can install an SSL on a domain.
cPanel documentation: how to install Let’s Encrypt in WHM
In Vepp, Let’s Encrypt is already installed, and Vepp will inform you that your website should be protected. You will see a notification and the “Install SSL” button on the Dashboard. Enter your domain, and the certificate will get installed.
On the website card in Vepp, you can see an SSL status and install it if needed
Backup copies are very important as they help reduce the risk of data loss. E.g. if you found a virus and had to delete some files, but you don’t have a backup copy to restore your data. We strongly recommend that you think about backups beforehand and we’ll describe how to make in cPanel and Vepp.
cPanel provides flexible backups. There are 2 tools for creating backup copies: a more advanced system for experienced administrators and a simpler one for end users. Both tools offer to create a full or a partial (e.g. only databases) backup of the project. In the admin panel WHM, you can configure automatic backups that will be made on schedule.
«Account backups» in cPanel
Vepp provides a simpler backup system. The website card contains the section «Backup copies» where a user can create a backup copy of his website, save the archive on a server or on Google Drive; restore from a backup or download it to his/her computer.
«Backups» in Vepp
Support and documentation
When users have questions about a control panel, they will contact Technical support or read the documentation. That’s why it’s important to compare these services.
cPanel has a large community where you can easily find forums with like-minded users and ask for help. Or you can contact directly the cPanel support team, but it will cost you 65$ per incident. The documentation is written for experienced system administrators and contains many difficult technical terms.
Vepp community is not so large, as it is rather young. However, you can contact the Vepp support to solve simple questions about basic operations free of charge. The documentation is easy to read as it is written for inexperienced users. The articles contain not only how-to guides, but also describe technical terms.
|cPanel WHM VPS
(up to 5 users)
(up to 5 websites)
(10% discount if you pay for 1 year)
These are the prices for developers. But you can also buy control panels from providers as an add-on to a hosting service — the price will differ depending on their terms, promos and loyalty programs.
Resume: cPanel vs Vepp
If you are an experienced admin and you know a secret how to prepare a great server with blackjack and PHP mode, cPanel will fit you best.
If you only need to create a website — choose Vepp. It is more user-friendly and has a more intuitive web interface, the main settings are configured per default and do not require any corrections. But it doesn’t mean that you cannot modify them. Vepp allows for fine-tuning, but they can be found deeper in the panel.
|Operating system||CentOS, CloudLinux, RHEL.||CentOS 7, Ubuntu 18.|
|Web servers||Apache, Nginx.||Apache, Nginx.|
|Administration||WHM for server management, cPanel for websites.||All settings in one place.|
|Interface||Heavy web interface, the Dashboard contains all the panel functions.||An intuitive and user-friendly web interface, most settings are configured by default and are not displayed on the Dashboard.|
|WordPress||It is installed through Site Publisher.
12 templates in total.
|Should not be installed.
A large number of templates grouped by categories.
|Available PHP versions||From 7.1 to 7.2.||From 5.2 to 7.3.|
|Let’s Encrypt||Can be installed in WHM.||Installed by default.|
|Backups||Full or partial, run by a schedule, support of external storages.||Full copies; server, desktop storage or Google Drive.|
|NAT support/ can be installed in Clouds||Yes.||Yes.|
|System requirements||CPU 1.1 GHz, RAM 1 GB, disk 40 GB, x64.||Freshly installed server with CentOS 7 or Ubuntu 18, x64, RAM 1 GB.|
Also, Vepp has a free trial version that you can use for 14 days.
Still have questions? Simply contact us, tell about your website, server, and your goals. We will be more than happy to help you!