IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS – cloud service models compared

IaaS vs PaaS vs Saas – various cloud service models compared

Do you know the difference between your cloud service models? Can you tell your IaaS from your PaaS and SaaS? The list of cloud-based services is long, and continually growing. But, if you want to know which solution is right for your business. First you need to understand the various configurations. Each different solution is like a remote Lego model. And each brick is like a piece of the infrastructure. Or an application that your business needs.

So, here’s an introduction and useful comparison to some of the -aaS services out there. Let us help you understand. So in the future you don’t get your SaaS confused with your PaaS.

IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS – how do they differ?

IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS – how do they differ? - plesk

Trying to understand the concepts behind cloud services can sometimes feel like you’re grasping at…well clouds really. It’s tricky to think of IaaS vs PaaS, PaaS vs SaaS, or IaaS vs SaaS if you have no idea what they mean.

Infrastructure-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service, and Software-as-a-Service may have you scratching your head. But they subtly describe the different tasks and responsibilities service providers offer.

1. IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service) offers environments that are scalable, controllable and automated.

2. PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service) provides a framework that lets you create and release applications quickly. It also automates and manages the provision of infrastructure.

3. SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) allows programs to run remotely and is accessible through the Internet. So you don’t need to run a program from a certain device.

Defining cloud computing services – IaaS, PaaS, SaaS

Defining cloud computing services - IaaS, PaaS, SaaS - plesk

So, the concept of as-a-Service seems clear. Whatever the first letter stands for, that’s what’s available to anyone, anywhere with an Internet connection.

The advantage of Cloud services is that you can increase or decrease the amount of remote resources you need. You pay for what you use – paying more when you need it, and less when you don’t. Moving data and business processes to the cloud gives unmatched flexibility. Now businesses no longer have to deal with the logistical and financial headaches of old-style IT.

IaaS stands for “Infrastructure-as-a-Service”

IaaS stands for “Infrastructure-as-a-Service”

Investing in servers and hardware probably aren’t top of your Christmas list. You have to manage them. Then they take up space. Plus they depreciate. Investing in IaaS is probably the gift you really want. IaaS allows you to create and manage virtual, pre-configured machines. You can also deploy computing power in less time – without the complexity.

Amazon Web Services’ IaaS is called the Elastic Compute Cloud, or EC2. IaaS packages like this look after storage and networking, as well as servers and virtualization components. All you need to do is simply install it. Then maintain the operating system, databases, security components, and applications.

PaaS stands for “Platform-as-a-Service” plesk

PaaS stands for “Platform-as-a-Service”

PaaS lets you write and test code. All without worrying about managing the system you’re working on. Developers particularly like PaaS for this reason. It just lets them get on with developing. PaaS products also include APIs and other tools for developers to add features. Tools such as traffic splitting, monitoring, and version control systems.

Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform are popular PaaS examples. You’ll find out more about them in the in-depth examples section.

SaaS means “Software-as-a-Service” plesk

SaaS means “Software-as-a-Service”

Gmail, Dropbox, Salesforce, and Netflix are all well-known examples of SaaS applications. All of the storage and computational heavy lifting happens in the cloud. You then access the fruits of these labors over the Internet via a browser-based interface.

SaaS apps allow you to make use of tools. And you don’t have to worry about fixing or maintaining them. Moreover, data is backed up and happens automatically. It’s all off-site, so you don’t have to worry about how it all works. What you do have to worry about is that it can still break. This is crucial as a SaaS provider is the custodian of all your most important stuff. You need to trust they’ve got robust security. And that their service won’t go down when you need it most.

Cloud service models for IaaS, PaaS and SaaS

Cloud service models for IaaS, PaaS and SaaS- plesk

The cloud industry is continually growing. Research company Forrester thinks the cloud market will grow from $146 billion in 2017 to $236 billion in 2020. Their report suggests providers will increase the number of available services and computing models. They’ve seen an upsurge in new cloud adopters, all benefiting from the cloud’s efficiency. Forrester also thinks regional and industry-specific services will be offered – coming from new and more diverse cloud providers.

With Office 365, Azure, and virtual machines, Microsoft covers the cloud-model trifecta.

Amazon Web Services was on the crest of the first cloud computing wave when it started in 2006, according to CIO. This pegs the company’s current revenue at around $11 billion a year. Microsoft Azure currently sits in second place as a cloud provider. Furthermore, it recently reported a 100% increase in quarterly growth over the previous year. Microsoft offers 600+ services in just its Azure suite alone. It also covers all three cloud computing models.

PaaS vs. IaaS with Microsoft Azure plesk

PaaS vs. IaaS with Microsoft Azure

Azure offers a slew of fast and convenient virtual servers. Each server is available in the blink of an eye. Fitted with the language, workload, and operating system of the superuser. Azure supports pre-configured server images to make deployment simple. But users can also dive in and create their own bespoke configurations.

PaaS-wise, Azure Cloud Services provides developers with plenty of language and framework options. And thankfully none of the headaches of infrastructure management. Azure integrates with the Azure SDK and Visual Studio to further ease the development journey.

Azure Emulator mimics cloud functionality on a user’s local machine. So cloud apps can be tested off-line before deployment. Once deployed, Cloud Services takes care of automatic operating system and application patching. Along with integrated health, monitoring, and load-balancing tools.

Microsoft Office SaaS

Microsoft Office SaaS

Some Azure components might drift into SaaS functionality. But Office 365 is a straightforward example of SaaS. Office 365 offers online versions of old favorites. With apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneDrive, and Outlook. Subscription plans vary for home, business, and enterprise users. The apps are also available for web browsers and mobile.

Understanding the cloud computing stack (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS)

New York-based cloud provider Apprenda compares cloud computing platforms to the power grid. Lightbulb users don’t need to know how power is generated. They just “see the light.” Similarly, cloud users don’t need to know how the cloud works.

The WebSpecia blog explains IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS using a transportation analogy. Thus IaaS is like a lease car arrangement, while PaaS is like getting a cab. Meanwhile, SaaS is more like using a bus or the subway.

Think of IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS cloud computing models in whatever way makes sense to you. Hopefully this guide to cloud service models has helped un-muddy some of your thoughts. And given you a clearer idea about on-demand services. Once you’re familiar with the three main configurations, you can begin your journey through the myriad of other options.

Which do you think is best for your business? Let us know in the comments below.

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WordPress Migration to a New Web Hosting

WordPress migration to a new web hosting

WordPress migration can be a challenge. You may want to change web hosting providers for various reasons, for example, increasing costs or poor service provision. Hosting frustrations can build up over time. Maybe due to hosting costs or a gap in service delivery, like constant downtime.

Either way, the reason is simple: moving hosts is a daunting prospect. So many website owners simply put off this decision, worried that moving hosts will make their existing problems even worse. But by properly understanding WordPress hosting migration, you can go through the process of changing hosting providers quite smoothly.

Expert or DIY WordPress migration?

expert or DIY WordPress migration? plesk

One thing you can do to manage WordPress Migration better is get expert help. Experts can help you find a new, suitable host. In fact, some hosts can even help you make the transition. But it’s still entirely feasible to transfer a WordPress site on your own. You just need to be aware of some of the following basic principles.

The key lies in preparation. If you follow the right preparatory steps, moving your website is simple. If you approach it in the right way, WordPress hosting migration is simple. The right steps also help you reverse migration without adverse consequences. So that you can go back if you realize you’ve made a mistake.

Want to try migrating your WordPress site on your own? Then here are the five steps you need to follow.

1. Backup and export before WordPress migration

Backup and export before WordPress migration plesk

When you migrate a website, you want to know that you can always go back to your starting point – should something go wrong. This is why backing up is, without a doubt, your first step. A backup is a requirement when shifting a WordPress installation across to another server. You will also need to export your WordPress database.

Backing up a WordPress instance to transfer WordPress site

You can backup your WordPress site files ( plugins, themes, core files and uploaded content ) by:

  1. using any backup plugins
  2. accessing your host via ssh, archiving everything using tar/zip and passing it to another host via scp connection
  3. archiving and downloading the files by utilizing the file managing functionalities of hosting platforms like Plesk Obsidian or cPanel
  4. using dedicated WordPress management solutions like Plesk WordPress Toolkit ( if your current host is using Plesk Obsidian )
  5. using an FTP app ( such as Filezilla, WinSCP or CuteFTP ) to connect to your web host and download all the files on your host’s machine to your desktop PC. Note that some important files are hidden, including .htaccess, but you can view these if you set the right options inside your FTP client. Also note that downloading these files can take a long time depending on how expansive your WordPress instance is, and how many media files you use in your website.

Copy your WordPress database

Next, make a copy of your WordPress database. You can do this while you’re downloading the site files with FTP. You can copy your database in many ways. Let’s focus on the one which utilizes the power of the PhpMyAdmin tool.

WordPress database export is straightforward. But you have to consider a couple of things. First, you need to log into your web server’s hosting control panel (example, Plesk Obsidian or cPanel ) and open the phpMyAdmin web interface. This shows a list of databases on the left. You need to select the database that matches your WordPress installation here. Next, click on the Export tab to access the Export page.

Thankfully phpMyAdmin offers a default setting, called “Quick”. Tap Quick and then Go to start the database export process. The file then downloads to your PC.

2. Configure database on new WordPress hosting server

Configure database on new WordPress hosting server plesk

Before you upload your WordPress site files. First you need to set up the WordPress database on your new server. To do this, you need to log in to the control panel on your new host. Since MySQL is the most commonly used database, we’ll use it in this example. But your host may be using a different database app. If that’s the case, you need to contact their support team to find out how to create a new database.

Let’s focus on two situations, when your host has Plesk Obsidian or cPanel.

a) Plesk: choose “Databases” and click “Add new database”. Add the name of the databases leaving unchanged name’s prefix, select the website your new database will be related to, add user and its password and submit this data.

b) cPanel: first, open MySQL Databases and create a new database with a name that is appropriate for your website. Next, add a MySQL user and include a secure password too. Finally, make sure this account has the right privileges by granting it “All Privileges” rights.

Copy down the database password, and the database name. You’ll need these for the WordPress configuration file.

3. Change WP config file for WordPress migration

Every WordPress instance has a configuration file. This file contains the details for WordPress to connect to the site’s database. Find this file in the content you’ve previously backed up. It should be in the root folder in the location where you stored the files. It’s called wp-config.php.

Back up this file in another folder on your computer. So that you can restore the changes you made in case something goes wrong later. Now, open the original version with a text editor and make the following modifications:

Edit the database name

Find the line that says

define('DB_NAME', 'database_name');

and change ‘database_name into the name of the new WordPress database that you just created. Currently ‘database_name’ will be the name of your existing database’s name.

Add the new database username and password

Changing the database credentials is just as easy. For the username, find the line

define('DB_USER', 'database_user');

Here you need to update ‘database_user’ so that it contains the username for your new database.

Next, find the line that says:

define('DB_PASSWORD', 'database_password');

Likewise, simply change ‘database_password’ to be your new database password. Once you’re done save the wp-config.php file and close it.

4. Upload WordPress database and files

Change WP config file for WordPress migration plesk

You can now start to import your WordPress site, firing it up with your new hosting provider.

Importing the database

First launch phpMyAdmin from your control panel and select the new database from the options on the left. Next, open the Import tab from the nav bar.

You now need to import the actual database file. Select Choose File in the section that says File to Import and open the file that you previously exported to your desktop PC. Make sure that Partial Import is not selected. And ensure that you’ve set the database type to SQL. That’s it, now click Go.

Note that some larger databases can take a very long time to import successfully. But you’ll get a confirmation message telling you when the database import is complete.

Upload your site files

After you prep the database and have your wp-config.php ready, you can then upload the files on your site. You now need to connect your FTP program with your new web host. Once ready, you simply locate your files on your PC. You need to select the right remote directory: this may be the root public_html folder, or it may be another folder. Check with your host.

Once you pick the right remote directory, you can start to upload the files. These will include the wp-config.php file that you modified to reflect the login details for the database at your new host. Depending on your connection, uploading can take longer than downloading. You may need to leave some time for this to complete before moving on with your WordPress migration.

Transfer your domain and link to the new URL

WordPress migration also often involves moving to a new domain. If that’s the case, you need to read this step. If, however, you’re keeping your domain, you can skip this step. Changing your domain can cause various issues, unless you try to mitigate them.

First, you can struggle moving a site to a new domain when you add a lot of links to internal site posts using a full URL. Likewise, if you refer to images on your site using a full URL, you’ll break the image link once you change the domain that’s included at the start of every URL.

However, you can automatically search for these links and replace them. You can do this by using Search Replace DB, which is a script that you can download from GitHub. Once you’re done with this tool, make sure you delete it. It presents a security risk if it stays around without being used. Also note that you shouldn’t install this tool in the root of your domain. Instead, create a temporary folder with a completely random name that’s not likely to be guessed.

Changing your WordPress site’s address

Your site URL is also altered during the search and replace process. In other words, your home URL and site URL values are up-to-date so they represent the new domain. This means that when you try and log in to your new site, you immediately go to the right location. And not the old one.

5. Finish up your WordPress migration

Finish up your WordPress migration plesk

You’re nearly done with your WordPress migration. But you have a few more steps that you need to complete first. You may have to wait a few days between these steps too.

Your website’s domain will still be pointing to your old host. So you need to redirect your DNS (domain name server) settings to ensure requests direct to your new hosting provider. The process varies depending on where your domain is registered and hosted.

It’s not possible to give full instructions here as the number of different routes are simply too varied. However, your domain registrar can assist you. Note that it can take some time before a change in domain details is fully effective, up to 48 hours. This process is known as domain propagation and is, unfortunately, unavoidable.

Importantly, you shouldn’t make any changes to your site during this period. You may end up changing the site on your original website host, and not your new site instance. After 48 hours you should be fine to make changes, and to delete the contents of your old site at your old hosting provider. Always keep your backup files on your local PC. And keep your old wp-config.php file just in case you need to refer to it.

The process of WordPress site migration isn’t complicated. But you should be careful every step of the way. Always ensure you store your original site on your PC. So that you can go back if there’s any problem.

Help – My Plesk server was hacked!

Secure Plesk Server

Servers are the core for business operations as they store data, manage mail and contacts, apps, files and more. They are important – but not impenetrable, and hence, can fall victim to hackers. This means it is no longer under your control, and this spells trouble on so many levels. But what to do if your Plesk server is hacked? Follow this guide and find out.

Consequences of Server Hacking

consequences of server hacking plesk

This results in a server that is partially controlled by someone else with the intent of using it for their own purposes. They may send out spam to the contacts you have saved on your server. Or they can launch attacks against other servers and attempt to gain access to highly sensitive information.

The ramifications of a hacked server can be quite disastrous for businesses. Because they can easily lose access to their company and client data, disrupting operations. Moreover, a hacked server might lead to lack of trust and confidence coming from clients and investors. The good news is that, while your Plesk server can potentially be hacking victim, there are steps you can take in the event of this scenario.

Identifying the way your server was hacked

Identifying the way your server was hacked

Migrating to a new server is an important first step, but users also need to be aware of how the first attack happened. So that they can mitigate future attacks. Third-party solutions that search for rootkits or malware provides the scanning based on known malware. But they can sometimes miss the predators that they were never able to detect before. As a result, the report will become inaccurate.

The first thing is to not make any changes on the server before an investigation starts. This is because it will help you to avoid losing traces and evidence. Hence, we recommend you contact a security company which specializes in cases of server hacking. They can lend their expertise on the matter and help you solve the situation faster.

What to do if your server has been hacked

What to do if your server has been hacked plesk

In case of hacking, we always recommend migrating all the contents of your existing server to a new one. The main reason for this is because the attacker would have raised their privileges within your server to the root level. This they can do using malicious software, which grants them access to basically anything they want.

You may even hire someone to find some rootkits or malware during the investigation and subsequently clean up. However, there’s no guarantee that there will be absolutely no others left behind. Malware can load onto RAM, or maybe some backdoors become enabled. Cronjobs can have a task to download a malicious software.

Some users may argue that you can actually restore the server to a time before the attack. But we think that this doesn’t really guarantee a clean server, since it was compromised to begin with. Because this means the malware uploaded to the server, or is somewhere dormant, ready to become active. Therefore, a clean slate is the best possible course of action in order to eliminate any doubts about future attacks.

Preventing future attacks

Secure Plesk Server

If you do contact a security company, they can give you a comprehensive list of things you can do to prevent future attacks. And hence, ensure that you have a secure Plesk server.

One of the most common solutions is using stronger passwords. These obviously give better protection for your administration accounts. If you’re unsure about how to create strong passwords, you can find several free online tools that measure password strength.

Also, we recommend that you change the passwords for key access points every specific period. Like three three months, for example, in order to add an extra layer of security.

Another key step is to employ secure protocols, such as using secure connections. These include SSL for email and using SFTP instead of the more common FTP protocol.

Maintaining regular backups of your data on a scheduled basis is another important step. If a domain becomes compromised, it can go unnoticed for some time. So backing up data allows you to restore your service from a clean backup.

Finally, we advise you to strengthen your PHP settings, because this will greatly increase the security of your service.

Businesses heavily depend on computers to maintain their operations. And yet, most of these companies never fully prepare for when something affects their servers. So, these are just a few simple changes you can make in order to reduce the possibility of an attack from a malicious third party. Start preventing possible damage to your business, profits and reputation.

Why Smart Updates Has Jumped in Value

How Smart Updates makes you money and saves time - Plesk

Our development team put lots of effort into the new features of WordPress Toolkit 4.3, which mostly benefit our Smart Updates users. Thanks to our new algorithm, we can reduce the time all updates take. Moreover, new checks and a more transparent process have improved your user experience and stopped the Smart Updates blackboxing! But more importantly, Smart Updates is essential to:

  • Prevent WordPress hacking
  • Save you time
  • Earn you money

Since Smart Updates is so important, now more than ever, we’re giving new users a special offer “first month free” offer to try it out.

New Smart Updates for WordPress Toolkit

Keeping your WordPress up-to-date is the most efficient way to protect it against automated hacking. A hacking attack usually exploits known security breaches in older versions of WordPress and plugins. So that’s why it’s crucial to keep your WordPress, themes and plugins always updated. The top benefit you get with Smart Updates is the Automated updates by AI.

New Smart Updates for WordPress Toolkit - October 2019

Not only does it perform updates on your behalf, but also ensures your updates do not break the live site. How? By using an algorithm that you set. If it is not met, the site does not update until you accept manually. Don’t worry there is also an option to update manually if you wish to retain control.

Find out more about how AI handles Smart Updates right here. 

Plus, we’ve also enhanced the reliability and performance of Smart Updates for the WordPress core, plugins and themes. When we launched Smart Updates for WordPress in March 2018, we whitelabeled the API from Perfect Dashboard, which we now deprecated. What this means is that we can now offer you a free month of auto-updates & AI-powered regression testing tools! Click below to get yours.

Make Money & Save Time with Smart Updates

Save Time and Make Money - Smart Updates - Infographic 2019

Statistically, there can be up to four WordPress updates a month on average. That means that keeping one website updated with the proper procedure takes 8 hours per month. This is super time-consuming, not to mention boring. Manual updating and testing websites will eventually take a toll, if it hasn’t already. But not with Smart Updates, this then just takes minutes.

You can earn 160% more, working 90% less

Assuming the hourly rate is €20 per hour, the cost of keeping the website up-to-date would add up to €160 monthly. Consequently, in order to generate a reasonable margin, the total cost for updating a simple WordPress website properly is €250 for the customer.

With Smart Updates, keeping one website updated via automation takes 40 minutes a month (versus 8 hours). That means that you can provide the service of the same, or even better, quality while working 90% less. Because now, based on the same hourly rate, your website updates are maintained for just €13.33 a month. Therefore, a web professional can still charge €250 per month and boost their margin by almost 160%.

The second opportunity here is of course, keeping the same margin, but offering the same service at a much more affordable price. This in turn makes you more competitive in your market and opens up many more prospects. Those who previously couldn’t afford manual updates, but can now afford automated ones.

How to Activate Smart Updates for WordPress Sites

Go to WordPress Overview and activate the Smart Updates switch. That’s it! It’s all you need to do because everything is now in that single switch on the main card of each WP Instance.

We plan to introduce more Smart Updates enhancements further down the line. Even more importantly, one of the changes should dramatically change your Smart Update experience and make it more transparent. So try Smart Updates for WordPress while offer still lasts.

How do you think Smart Updates would benefit you? Let us know in the comments below.

Announcing: Plesk Obsidian Professional and University Certification Upgrades

Announcing: Plesk Obsidian Professional and University Certification Upgrades

Plesk is glad to announce that the Plesk Obsidian Professional course and exam are now available for you to take. We’re also working hard on updating our other courses and exams to completely align with Plesk Obsidian as well. Then, the plan is to complete the full line-up: Associate, Professional, and Expert, by the end of the year.

Getting your certification and digital badge

To earn a brand-new Plesk Obsidian Professional certificate and digital badge, simply:

  1. Go to Plesk University and log in
  2. Complete the Plesk Obsidian Professional course
  3. Take the Plesk Obsidian Professional Certification exam online.

However, we understand that some of our students have already earned their certificates recently. So it may be a bit unfair to ask you to re-do a course in this case. Especially if you’ve already spent time earning or renewing your certification just months before the new Plesk Obsidian course was released.

So what’s the point of having a brand new certificate for the previous version of the product, Plesk Onyx? Do you have to do it all over again? And how do you do it, if only one new exam is available at the moment? Don’t worry, we’ve got your back!

Plesk University Certification Upgrades

Completed the Plesk Obsidian: What’s new? course and passed the Plesk Certification Upgrade to Obsidian exam? Then, all your Plesk Onyx certifications earned between June 1, 2019 and October 16, 2019 will be upgraded to Plesk Obsidian.

For example, maybe you earned your certificates for Plesk Onyx Associate in May, Plesk Onyx Professional in June, and Plesk Onyx for Linux Expert in September. If you pass the Plesk Obsidian Certification Upgrade exam, you’ll earn the Plesk Obsidian Professional and Plesk Obsidian for Linux Expert certificates right away.

The certification upgrade program will be active until the end of 2019, when the full line-up of Plesk Obsidian courses becomes available.

 

Learn more about Free Plesk University Certifications here.

The Challenges Our ANZ and Americas Hosting Partners Are Facing

The Challenges Our ANZ and Americas Hosting Partners Are Facing - Plesk

My work travels recently took me to the land down under where I was able to meet great people, experience fabulous cuisine and the best coffee I’ve ever tasted (Sorry Starbucks!) Never visited Australia or New Zealand? Then, here are some fun facts that will make you add them to your bucket list today.

  1. Australians are Ozzies, New Zealanders are Kiwis.
    As a Canadian, I completely understand as most times I’m called American from my European counter parts and I’m quick to correct someone with the difference. So, make sure you get that right if you meet one.
  2. Aboriginals and Maoris.
    The indigenous tribes in Australia are referred to as aboriginal while the native population of New Zealand is labeled as Maori.
  3. New Zealand is the Sheep Country.
    New Zealand’s climate and pastures make sheep farming the country’s biggest industry. Did you know they have about 30 million sheep?
  4. ANZ Managed Infrastructure is fast-rising.
    The ANZ managed infrastructure market size grew to $1,129M in 2017, and it appears to be reaching almost double that amount ($2,109M) by 2022.

Managed Infrastructure Growth in ANZ and Americas

Managed Infrastructure Growth in ANZ and Americas - Plesk

In a recent report from Structured Research, the ANZ managed infrastructure market size has been growing at a fast rate. In 2017, it generated $1,129M* and we expect it to grow even more up to $2,109M by the time 2022 rolls by. That’s almost double.

So, it’s no wonder hosting companies in the ANZ region are looking for new marketing strategies. Because they obviously want to grab some of that market share over the new few years.

What marketing challenges do ANZ & Americas Partners have?

So, the purpose of my trip was to meet some of our partners and understand how they drive customer awareness. What did their marketing strategies look like for the year? I wasn’t surprised to hear the same challenges I had been hearing from my American partners. Ranking lack of resources and time constraints among the top offenders.

As partner marketing manager, our partners rely on me to provide help with driving more revenue. Particularly using new marketing incentives and ideas. So here I thought I would share just some of my top partner marketing tips with you. Particularly if your business operates in these regions.

Marketing Tips for ANZ & Americas Hosting Businesses

 

social media
  1. You don’t need a large marketing budget.

    Social media is still the best marketing option because that’s where you’ll surely find most of your customers. Get them to start following you and it will be easy to spread the word when it comes to your business. Latest promotions, contests and evenm events your company may be attending.

2. Re-Purpose your old content.

Did you know that by creating a piece of content it can be shared up to 5x on different methods? You can always revisit content you previously created, like infographics, short videos and lead nurturing programs. Then give it a new face and re-distribute.

content
community

3. Get involved in your community.

The WordPress market share is 34%, based on the latest results from W3Techs. If you have a WordPress offer, this is the community you want to showcase it to. Sponsor an event or maybe even consider hosting one.

4. Video marketing can boost conversions and sales.

You don’t need a large budget or a video production agency to create videos for you, as long as you keep it relevant. And did you know Google loves videos too? So, you can use videos to rank your business higher in searches.

video marketing

Looking for more marketing ideas and insights in order to drive more revenue? Reach out to me, your account manager, or anyone from Partner Success at [email protected] – we’re always happy to help.

Good Day Mate!

 

*Structured Research – Market Share Report Series – Managed Infrastructure 2017 – 2022 – September 2018 edition

Not a partner yet? Check out if you qualify by contacting our dedicated Partner Success Team below.

Top 5 Installations for a New Plesk Server – Voted by YOU

Top 5 Installations for a New Plesk Server – Voted by YOU - Plesk

Plesk comes with a bunch of apps preinstalled and ready to go. However, to customize the UI and configure the settings to exactly how you want them, it takes some time and know how. Luckily, we have a buzzing Facebook community who regularly share valuable insider info. Such as the top installations for a new Plesk server – which one member asked in one recent poll.

Top 5 Installations for a New Plesk Server question

The Plesk online community is a great resource that can save new users tons of time and effort.  There are nearly two thousand members offer each other advice, give and get feedback, and generally connect with other Plesk users. Safe to say, many of the members who’ve long been Plesk users had clear and practical thoughts on the matter.

Top 5 Installations for a New Plesk Server – suggestions

Some chimed in to support the original poster’s question. Whilst others offered answers that attempted to reduce the top five installations for a new Plesk server down to one. In this post, we’re going to round up some of most Liked answers of the poll. And so, without further ado, we’re presenting the top five things you should set up on a new Plesk server. According to your peers.

1) Configure the Server Hostname

As the label you will use to identify and distinguish your device (host) on a network, the hostname is undoubtedly one of the first things you should set up on your Plesk server.

You should make sure your server hostname is a fully qualified domain name (FQDN). A FQDN consists of two parts: the hostname and the domain name. For example, a mail server might be mymail.mywebsite.edu. Here, the hostname is mymail, and the host is located within the domain mywebsite.edu.

You specify your server’s host name during your very first login to Plesk. Specifying an invalid host name will result in unpredictable behavior. If this happens, or you need to change the hostname for any reason, don’t worry, you can do so once inside Plesk.

To change your server’s host name, follow these instructions:

  1. Log in to Server Administration Panel
  2. Go to Tools & SettingsServer Settings
  3. Enter the new host name in the Full Hostname As mentioned, this should be a fully qualified host name (FQDN), but without an ending dot (for example, host.example.com).
  4. Click

2) Reset SSH keys

Most Linux users will be used to connecting to their servers using SSH keys. SSH (Secure Shell) keys are access credentials used in the SSH protocol — a secure and widely used way to login from one system into another.

The strong encryption of the SSH protocol makes it ideal for remotely managing network infrastructure and issuing remote commands. But that’s not to say it’s bulletproof, and so resetting the SSH keys is another first step to setting up Plesk.

Since Plesk 12.0, you can use SSH Keys Manager to upload the public part of an SSH key pair to a Plesk server. Using this extension, you can easily manage SSH keys from the Plesk UI.

For every individual subscription, you can add or remove an SSH key which the subscription owner can then use to access the server.

To enable SSH access:

  1. Open a subscription
  2. Go to Web Hosting AccessAccess to the server over SSH
  3. Select /bin/sh
  4. Click OK

To reset your SSH keys for Plesk on Linux:

  1. Connect to the server via SSH
  2. Create the RSA Key Pair
  3. The public key is now located in /root/.ssh/id_rsa.pub
  4. The private key (identification) is now located in /root/.ssh/id_rsa file
  5. Copy the public key to another server using the ssh-copy-id command: where user and IP address should be replaced with second server’s credentials
  6. Alternatively, copy the content of /root/.ssh/id_rsa.pubto /root/.ssh/authorized_keys on the second server

3) Manage Firewall Rules

The Plesk firewall configuration consists of two parameters: policies and rules. Policies are broad in scope and affect all connected to the server. Rules are narrower and govern incoming connections to individual Plesk services, such as SMTP or MySQL.

You can manipulate the policies and rules to either tighten up or relax your firewall’s security. For example, you can set a policy to deny access to all connections and set rules to allow a few IP addresses or ports. This will improve security but will mean some applications may not be able to work due to the network restrictions.

Top 5 Installations for a New Plesk Server – 3

By enabling Plesk’s firewall, you’ll enable all predefined Plesk rules required for it to function. In Plesk for Windows, Plesk Firewall comes pre-installed. To install the firewall for Linux, you need to install the Plesk Firewall as an extension.

To manage and modify firewall rules via the Plesk interface:

  1. Go to Tools & SettingsFirewall
  2. Click Enable Firewall Rules Management
  3. Click Enable
  4. To enable/disable/modify firewall rules, click Modify Plesk Firewall Rules

4) Update hosts.allow

By default, remote access to Plesk databases is allowed from any computer. For security reasons, you may want to change this by allowing access from a specific IP address or prohibiting remote access altogether.

Linux has different types of parameters to restrict and control network access. TCP wrappers provide basic traffic filtering of incoming network traffic, relying on two configuration files as the basis for access control: /etc/hosts.allow and /etc/hosts.deny.

When a client attempts to connect to a network service remotely, these files are used to determine whether access is allowed or denied. You can therefore use /etc/hosts.allow and /etc/hosts.deny to define rules that selectively allow or deny clients access to server daemons on a local system.

The access control settings are specified individually for Plesk database users. Therefore, to make your settings work, the application must use the right database user’s credentials and access the database.

To allow client access, add the client host name or IP address in /etc/hosts.allow. Alternatively, to deny client access, add their name or IP address in /etc/hosts.deny. One thing to note is that access rules in hosts.allow apply first, and so they take precedence over rules specified in hosts.deny.

5) Setup Postfix

In setting up a mail service on Plesk, you have the choice of Postfix and Qmail. The question then is: which one should you use?

It depends on your needs. But Postfix is often ranked higher than Qmail as a Linux mail transfer agent. One of the main reasons for this is its modular framework, which means each module can be used, ignored, or switched with another depending on your needs.

You can check which mail transfer agent is currently enabled on the following page:

Server Administration Panel > Tools & Settings > Services Management

By default, Plesk for Linux uses the Postfix for sending and receiving mail through the SMTP and SMTPS protocols. You can switch to Qmail by running the following command:

# /usr/local/psa/admin/sbin/autoinstaller –select-release-current –install-component qmail

To switch to Postfix run the following command:

# /usr/local/psa/admin/sbin/autoinstaller –select-release-current –ins

There you have it: our top five installations for a new Plesk server. Of course, we couldn’t include all the Plesk community’s suggestions in this post, so leave a comment below if you feel we’ve overlooked any other important must-haves in order to set up a new Plesk server!

How Plesk Brought Order to My Agency – Rise.co

How Plesk Brought Order to My Agency - Rise.co and Plesk

The success story of how Plesk helped Rise.co get aligned and serve their clients better than ever, as told by Kahl Orr.

One of the most challenging realities of scaling your business is being able to organize everything well. With more success comes more complexity I discovered – as the founder of web design and development startup, Rise.

I’m a web developer and entrepreneur, who developed a passion for coding and building websites when I was only in middle school. I’ve since turned that early love of web development into a thriving, digital startup that’s growing fast.

Rise.co is on track to breaking the half-million-dollar annual revenue mark this year alone. A true milestone that’s built on the back of designing and developing high-quality websites for a veritable army of very satisfied customers.

One thing is clear: I wouldn’t be where I am today without the capabilities of Plesk.

When Everything Was All Over the Place

When Everything was all over the place at Rise.co

As Rise.co expanded, it went from a solo operation, run just by me, to a team of 10 that I manage. Accounting for this growth was client work that became more demanding, with some clients owning dozens and dozens of websites. Due to this explosion of work, we outgrew our usual way of doing things.

We were hosting websites for our clients all over the place, under different hosting platforms. Managing them was difficult, and our processes weren’t able to be streamlined. When we needed to host about 100 websites for one client, we knew we needed a way to better organize things. That’s when we found Plesk.

A big reason for this disarray was our hosting solutions couldn’t support the magnitude of work we were taking on. I had that Aha! moment when I considered the hosting solutions we were providing clients with multiple websites. They were letting us down in terms of management, efficiency and ease of use.

That’s when I knew that we couldn’t support our breakneck growth if we stayed with our old website management habits. And so the search for a new and better hosting solution was underway. Luckily, I spoke to our team at Rackspace, who provides our IT support. They immediately recommended moving all our sites to a Plesk environment.

How Plesk Became a Game-Changer for Rise.co

Plesk Obsidian

With any new platform, there’s always a learning curve, but I found that Plesk’s platform allowed us to learn it without any friction. That’s really saying something when you consider how feature-rich Plesk is.

We were not used to being able to manage all websites in one place or being able to quickly and easily set up and manage WordPress installs. Once we learned the platform, however, we were able to build efficient processes for our team to manage, update and maintain bulk sites from one Plesk environment.

Rise.co moved to Plesk to help better serve our larger clients with numerous websites. Now, we can set a Plesk install for all our larger clients with many websites. We can easily set up WordPress, update and maintain sites, manage databases and PHP versions at per-site level. All within one Plesk account.

It’s made our web administration and development teams’ lives so much easier. After only working in this more efficient environment for a short time, I was already able to see the difference. Here’s what our results were:

  • More productivity from ease of use
  • Better site management
  • Increased efficiency and processes
  • The ability for our IT support (Rackspace) to easily step in and help when needed

Needless to say, because of these positive results, I envision a long-term partnership with Plesk.

How We Use Plesk Today

Using Plesk Obsidian today

Currently, things are running like clockwork on Plesk. I really appreciate how the platform enables us to showcase our design and development savvy to our clients without missing a beat. Plesk’s platform is our go-to solution in order to manage bulk websites for a single client.

We work with several franchise corporations that have more than 100 locations and websites. Plesk allows us to offer them our services for bulk websites with confidence. All the headaches of a disunited hosting setup are now a thing of the past.

If I had to narrow down all the benefits the platform has given us to just a few bullet points, they would be:

  • The capacity to manage bulk websites in one place
  • The ability to easily manage single databases and server settings at the per-site level
  • The reality that Rackspace supports your platform, which means we didn’t need to switch support teams (always a plus!)

Of course, the benefits of Plesk aren’t just contained to its platform. In other words, I’ve seen measurable gains in my business that correlate to when I started using Plesk.

What Rise.co Has Done Since Switching to Plesk

Rise.co since switching to Plesk

One of the best ways that I can think of to illustrate how a platform like Plesk empowers my agency is in the numbers and how it’s positively affected how I run it.

Year over year, my agency has already more than doubled its revenue. Such staggering growthcoming in such a short period of time—would not be possible without the streamlining of our hosting that Plesk has enabled.

The other side of the equation is what my life now looks like now. All thanks to the security of having such a better platform to serve our clients. These days, I can confidently transition into actually running my company as opposed to just working on our projects, like:

  • Growing my agency further by netting more clients
  • Delighting my existing client base
  • Leading my team to provide first-rate service to our customers

Plesk has been such a good fit with Rise that I really wish I’d discovered it sooner. The only thing I will advise anyone interested in using Plesk is to work with someone already experienced with Plesk. So that they can help get you up and running much quicker!

Rise Agency

Rise is a fast-growing web development agency, building high-end, custom websites and web and mobile apps for national brands.

Get Your Plesk Obsidian Quiz Score | 5 Minutes

Get Your Plesk Obsidian Score - Plesk

You might have heard what’s been going on at Plesk. The new Obsidian release has taken us all by storm with a world of new features, extensions and updates. But how much do you really know about Plesk Obsidian and its enhanced security, usability and productivity features? Get your score from the official Plesk Obsidian Quiz below and find out.

The New Plesk Obsidian Quiz

Do you accept this challenge? Then here are the easy steps to follow in order to complete the Plesk Obsidian Quiz.

  1. Choose the best answer/s in each of the following 11 questions. It will take you less than 5 minutes, and remember – no cheating!
  2. After the final question, click “Get Score” in order to get your instant Plesk Obsidian Quiz score and see how you did.
  3. Share your score and this quiz with your peers by using the social media buttons at the end of this post.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Improving your Plesk Obsidian Quiz Score & Know-how

Finally let us know how you did in the comments below or on Twitter or Facebook. Think you can do better? Fortunately, to address your questions and help you navigate Plesk Obsidian better, we have educational courses inside Plesk University.

If you’re not registered yet, click the button below and take a minute to sign up. Then click on “Get this Course” and complete it for your very own Plesk Obsidian certificate.

* For more info on how to register, where to find courses and how to pass exams, you can consult the Plesk University guide for Pleskians. And if you didn’t find what you were looking for, you can always drop us a line in our idea box.