cPanel is the most popular browser-based web hosting control panel in the world, and with good reason. Every day, people use cPanel hosting to control their shared hosting accounts, virtual private servers (VPS hosting services), and dedicated servers remotely. cPanel makes it easy to create mailboxes, upload files, and work with domains from a user-interface that is elegant, understandable, and effortless.
But although these flagship features of cPanel are very popular, they are only the beginning of what cPanel hosting services can really do. Because cPanel has so many features, some very useful tools are often overlooked. Webmasters who take the time to investigate these ignored features of cPanel often find that they have excellent functionality waiting to be used.
In this article, written by leading cPanel hosting provider JaguarPC, we offer an overview of three commonly ignored features of cPanel: Image Manager, Cron Jobs, and the Error Log. Read on to learn what each of these features can do and – most importantly – why you should be using them. By taking advantage of these features, available with every cPanel hosting plan, you can unlock the full potential of your hosting plan and your website.
Use Image Manager to work with images from your website
Possibly the most useful and underused feature of cPanel is Image Manager. With no training or additional skills required, Image Manager allows you to work with pictures in a wide array of formats, streamlining the repetitive tasks that are involved in image manipulation.
Image Manager includes three main functions:
Thumbnailer – Whether you are creating a gallery of images visitors can click on or adding small thumbnails to your blog posts, Thumbnailer can take an entire batch of images and resize them to your preferred size.
Image Scaler – For more exact resizing, Image Scaler accepts a percentage or pixel input to make your current image bigger or smaller. You can even retain a copy of your original image or have cPanel delete it for you.
Image Format – For use with specific applications or to improve performance, Image Format can convert entire directories of images into a given file type, such as .png, .jpg, or .gif.
Most cPanel hosting customers work with complex desktop software to manipulate images and prepare them for online publication. By using Image Manager, you can save time and let cPanel process your graphics server-side.
Automate your website administration with Cron Jobs
Some customers use cPanel hosting without noticing the Cron Jobs tool, while those who do successfully discover Cron Jobs are often intimidated by its complexity. However, Cron Jobs is an easy-to-use tool that can automate some important, time-consuming tasks.
Essentially, Cron is a task scheduler that can be configured to run specific processes at specific times. Using the Cron Jobs menu in cPanel, you can create annual, monthly, weekly, daily, or hourly tasks. Alternatively, you can schedule one-off processes for a given date and time.
When you configure your Cron Job, you will be asked to write the section of code that will be executed. This code can be a command-line instruction, or, for less-experienced webmasters, a script.
One particularly useful application of Cron Jobs is backing up your data. There are many Perl and PHP scripts available online that will automatically copy data from your server, or send specific data to you via email. Using Cron Jobs, you can schedule this type of script to activate on a regular basis.
From backing up data, to deleting temporary files, to renaming directories, Cron Jobs is a useful way to automate repetitive tasks and a feature every cPanel user should explore.
Monitor your website with the Error Log
There are few things more frustrating than finding errors in your website that have been there for a long period of time. A missing page that leads to a 404 error can significantly damage your professionalism and prevent customers from getting the information they need. In addition, an error in a script can stop customers from requesting more details or placing their orders.
Many webmasters use custom error pages and hope their customers will inform them of broken links and errors. Of course, most webmasters try to find the errors themselves by checking their website manually. Unfortunately, these methods rarely yield satisfactory results.
To effectively root out any errors on your website, cPanel comes with an Error Log that sits under the Logs menu, along with information on the Latest Visitors and Resource Usage. The Error Log shows the last 300 errors that were encountered on your website in plain-text format.
Each Error Log line includes major error types, including 404 Page Not Found errors and 500 Internal Server Errors that are usually the result of misconfigured scripts.
By checking your error log on a regular basis, you will quickly identify patterns that indicate a significant problem with your website. Armed with this information, you can quickly fix the problem and restore quality service to your customers.
Professional cPanel hosting services and customer support from JaguarPC
In the future, we will offer even more details on the three most commonly ignored cPanel features. Check back to learn more about using each feature to make full use of your cPanel hosting plan.
JaguarPC is a web hosting provider with a commitment to great hosting and exceptional customer support. Customers can currently select from a wide range of hosting services, including shared web hosting, virtual private server (VPS hosting), and dedicated server solutions – all of which include cPanel.
Whichever type of hosting you need, cPanel makes it easier to configure, maintain, and monitor your website. From working with files and folders, to managing email and domains, cPanel hosting services allow you to work on your website from any computer that is connected to the Internet.
cPanel hosting from JaguarPC also includes 24/7/365 technical support and access to a detailed web hosting support section to help you understand what you can do with your plan.