What is Grafana? A look at its most important features for effective monitoring

What is Grafana, and what is Grafana monitoring? When Torkel Ödegaard took the decision in 2013 to fork Kibana, it heralded the beginning of the Grafana project, turning its forebear into a graph-focused and time-series dashboard tool. Ödegaard’s intention and guiding principle in creating it was to realize a dashboard that was dedicated to clarifying data by removing distractions and being a user-friendly and elegant solution. He seems to have succeeded in achieving his aims because half a million active installations don’t lie. These days you can find Grafana dashboards everywhere. Even if you’re unfamiliar with them, you may have seen one recently if you’re a fan of watching SpaceX launches!

Grafana Features

Grafana monitoring is achieved using panels. The basic building block for visualization in Grafana is the panel, and that panel can contain a graph, a Singlestat, a table, a heatmap, and freetext, and it can also integrate with both proprietary and community-created plugins too (like a clock or world map, for instance). Users are free to customize the style and format of each panel, and they can drag, drop, and resize them as they wish to create the ultimate visualization to suit their needs.

So, a Dashboard is a collection of panels, each of which holds a set of variables (things like sensor name, application, and server). These panels are arranged in a grid on the Grafana dashboard, and the user can change the data being scrutinized by switching variables, and that could be data from two different servers, for instance. Although the flexibility to customize views is one of the strongest Grafana features, users can just as easily pick up one of many ready-made dashboards to handle different data types and sources. Grafana’s large community of users and contributors has already created lots of them.

Grafana monitoring can include annotations to show particular events across the panels. Adding an annotation is achieved by putting in a custom request to Elasticsearch. Doing so makes this show up on the graph as a vertical red line. Hovering over an annotation then gives you an event description and tags (for instance) so you can track when the server returns a 5xx error code or when there’s a system restart, for instance. This makes it particularly easy to investigate system behavior and to track particular events and their consequences in an application.

Grafana Dashboard and Custom Web Apps

Grafana Dashboard and Graylog

Graylog can be used for the storage and management of web app logs and the monitoring of their performance, not just in production but also during the development stage. Grafana monitoring expresses these logs visually, to make analyzing the system more straightforward. You could legitimately describe Grafana as a web application load and performance user interface as well as a visitor flow tool. Graylog and Grafana work well together but there was no special effort made to integrate them. Graylog stores all log data in Elasticsearch, one of Grafana’s data sources, so it was easy enough to use one of the Elasticsearch indexes to connect Grafana to Graylog.

Visualizing Web Application Metrics in Grafana Dashboard

Grafana isn’t interested in error notifications or pure text logs because its main job is visualizing the data in tables, charts, and graphs. The developers created a custom Django module to track data on each web/worker request and processed response, not just reporting whether it succeeded or failed, but also providing a set of general and project-specific structured fields, including:

  • app version
  • ID for each unique request
  • response time and status
  • error code (if applicable)
  • IP address the request was sent from
  • user details (username for registered user’s email address, role, permissions)
  • device details

Django pushes these custom-structured analytical records into Graylog, which stores them in a different stream. Although Graylog dashboards can visualize this kind of data natively, they aren’t as adept at examining Grafana’s, so Grafana was adapted to visualize this analytical data. It can track application performance and load in real-time as well as retrospectively.

Top Features of Grafana

Grafana Labs is the name of the company that was created to push for the adoption of Grafana and to turn the project into a viable business. Whether you’re new to the Grafana dashboard or not, there’s a chance you may not be aware of the features that have been added to it both by Grafana Labs and its enthusiastic community.

Let’s take a look at some of the best ones:

Dashboard templating

This is one Grafana feature that’s really useful. It allows users to create a dashboard setup to suit their every need. And these templates don’t come with hardcoded values, which means that if you have a test server and a production server, the same dashboard will work with both. Templating lets you examine data at every level from the macro to the micro, so you can start with a whole country, for example, then drill down to a particular region, and keep going as far as granularity allows. These dashboards are then shareable with everyone from teams throughout your organization to the whole community.

Provisioning

It may be easy enough to set up a single dashboard with some clicking, dragging, and dropping, but some users need even more simplicity in a way that scales. So, Grafana features provisioning so you can automate setup using a script. Anything can be scripted in Grafana. For instance, when you want to create a new Kubernetes cluster, you can have Grafana automatically help with a script that already has the right server, IP address, and data sources set up and locked. This is also a way to control lots of dashboards.

Annotations

This Grafana feature lets you mark graphs, which is particularly helpful if you need to correlate data when something misbehaves. You can control-click and type on a graph to create your annotations manually, or data can be fetched from any source to populate them. (You can see an example of this in the way that Wikimedia uses annotations on its public Grafana dashboard.) A good use case would be automatically creating annotations at the time of releases. If you were to start seeing errors a little while after a new release, you could go back to your annotations and check if the errors correlate. This kind of automation is possible with the Grafana HTTP API. Lots of Grafana’s biggest customers use it for a wide range of tasks, with a common one being to set up databases and add users. This is an alternative to provisioning for automation, and there’s more you can do with it. For instance, DigitalOcean’s team used the API to include a snapshot feature that helps them to review dashboards.

Kiosk mode and playlists

Playlists are great for ‘rolling coverage’. You select which Grafana dashboards you would like to display on a monitor or TV, and it can cycle through them throughout the day. Kiosk mode lets you only show the user interface elements that you need in view-only mode. Useful tip: The Grafana Kiosk utility handles logins, switching to kiosk mode, and opening a playlist, so if a TV you want to use has no keyboard you can still set it up without hassle.

Custom plugins

You can extend Grafana’s functionality with plugins that offer extra tools, visualizations, and more. Popular examples include Worldmap Panel (which superimposes data on a map), Zabbix (which integrates with Zabbix metrics), and Influx Admin Panel (which enables database creation or lets you add users). These are just a couple of examples and there are many others besides them. Write a little code and Grafana can visualize anything that produces a timestamp. Also, Grafana Enterprise customers can access additional plugins that facilitate integrations with Datadog, New Relic, Splunk, and others.

Alerting and alert hooks

Grafana alerts can be sent through several different notifiers, including email, PagerDuty,  or Slack or texts. If these don’t work for you, it’s easy enough to code alert hooks that create different notifiers.

Teams and permissions

Where an organization has one instance of Grafana and several teams, they usually like to have the option to enforce some dashboard segregation. It used to be the case that this wasn’t possible because Grafana automatically made everyone’s dashboards accessible to everyone else. The later edition of multi-tenant mode meant that users could switch organizations but couldn’t share dashboards. Some judicious hacks could enable both, so Grafana created an easier route to achieving this. It’s now possible to create a team of users and then assign permissions on folders,  Grafana dashboards, and so on, right down to the data source level for Grafana Enterprise users.

SQL data sources

Grafana natively supports SQL, which helps you to graph any kind of data that might be held in an SQL database. High-end users are doing lots of interesting things with SQL data sources, including building business dashboards that “make sense to your boss’s boss,” (as one team put it).

Monitoring your monitoring

If you take your monitoring seriously enough to want to monitor your monitoring, Grafana features its own Prometheus HTTP endpoint that can be scraped by Prometheus, making it fairly easy to get statistics and dashboards. Once the enterprise version is up and running you’ll be able to get Google Analytics-style data access, so you can find out just how much CPU your Grafana is chewing through or how much time alerting takes.

Authentication

Grafana supports LDAP and OA and other authentication styles, and lets you map users to organizations. With Grafana Enterprise, it’s also possible to map users to teams: so if your organization uses its own authentication system, Grafana lets you map teams in your in-house systems to teams in Grafana, which automatically gives team members access to their own designated Grafana dashboards.

Grafana on Plesk

Plesk provides Grafana integration using Grafana Extension, the premier open-source software for time-series analytics. Grafana can turn all kinds of data into all kinds of visually appealing graphs and dashboards that can be customized in endless ways.

You can use Grafana to:

  • visualize data pulled from default sources, which the Plesk team can integrate for you. The default source at present is the Advanced Monitoring extension, which gathers metrics on server health.

as a more experienced Grafana user, you can pull data from any source that will integrate with Grafana. If you’d like to do this, just give the appropriate permission to the Grafana administrator.

Hosting Control Panels of 2020 – The Definitive Guide

If you’re involved in managing servers for web hosting then you’ll appreciate the importance of having a simple, yet highly effective method of monitoring and looking after your hosting infrastructure. The most effective way of managing all the processes related to routine tasks of hosting infrastructure is to use a web hosting control panel.

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Setting up Your Ideal Web Development Environment With Plesk Essentials

Morning beverage ready. Mail and calendar checked. Daily meeting with the team done – It’s time to start your engines and crack on with your project. If you’re familiar with this sequence, it’s because you’re also immersed in the web developer’s everyday routine.

Carrying out your daily tasks might be an easy-peasy chore. But when it comes to beginning a new project from scratch. And setting up your web development environment, you might need to add on a few more steps. Before starting cooking up a new project, you must have all the ingredients sorted. That is, for example, prepare all the data and tools you’ll need along the way.

And indeed, there’s a significant amount of web development tools out there. But what tools are suited to web developers? How do you decide which ones to have in your toolbox? In this article, we’ll bring you some prime extensions and toolkits that will make your web development experience even better. Let’s get ready to know some of Plesk’s essentials for web development, DNS, security, SEO, server, and backup.

Organizing Your Toolbox

At Plesk, our goal is to make web development simple and easy. And its integrated platform with full development and deployment capabilities allows you to build, secure, and run servers and websites. But if what you want to know is how to level up your skills with great tools, here are some excellent examples. Let’s dig deeper:

DNS, Security, and Web Plesk Extensions for Web Developers

Plesk DNSSEC

The DNSSEC acronym stands for Domain Name System Security Extensions. It’s a set of DNS protocol extensions that sign DNS data to secure the domain name resolving process.

The Plesk DNSSEC extension helps make the Internet safer. Let’s see what it allows you to do:

  • Configure the settings used for key generation and rollover.
  • Sign and unsign domain zones according to the DNSSEC specifications.
  • Receive notifications related to DNSSEC records and keys.
  • View and copy DS resource records and DNSKEY resource record sets.

Docker

Docker is a handy software technology that provides containers. That means an extra layer of abstraction and automation of operating-system-level virtualization. As a flexible Plesk tool, Docker can help you perform a wide variety of tasks. But that’s not everything. Docker also removes the obstacles to adapt to new technologies digitally as it uses existing technologies. This way, it acts as an assistant between different operating systems and developers.

The extension also frees applications from system infrastructure. Allowing expansion in capacity through collaboration. Here’s more of what you can achieve with Docker for Plesk:

  • On-demand access to a vast range of modern technologies.
  • Upload a custom image or choose one from a catalog.
  • Deploy and manage Docker containers straight from the Plesk interface.
  • Install Docker containers locally or to a remote node registered in Plesk.

Web Presence Builder

If you’re a beginner in web development, Web Presence Builder is the right tool for you. It doesn’t require great HTML knowledge or graphic design skills. This tool helps you create professional-looking websites not bad, huh?

Web Presence Builder also provides a simple visual editor and a broad set of templates for different websites. Pick a page design that you like and your content template. And then add your text to the pages and publish the website. Here’s what you can do with this tool:

  • Create web pages.
  • Add a wide variety of content (text, images, video, scripts, and more).
  • Edit website settings (website name, keywords, icons, and so on).

Joomla! Toolkit

Up next it’s the Joomla! Toolkit. A complete toolkit to power Joomla! websites. With this toolkit, you can mass-manage, secure, and automate all your instances, extensions, and templates running on a server managed by Plesk. All from one single entry point. Here’s more:

  • One single dashboard to control, maintain and monitor all your instances.
  • One-click installer to download, initialize, and configure Joomla! from start to finish.
  • It hardens your site against all types of cyberattacks with its robust security scanner.

Plesk WordPress Toolkit

As a developer, you’re probably craving lots of features and intelligent tools that make your daily workload easier to digest. Well, we’re proud to say that our beloved Plesk WordPress Toolkit is definitely one of them. With this toolkit, you can focus on core tasks and automate the mundane ones. And substantially increase productivity, security, and efficiency too.  

The Plesk WordPress Toolkit is by far the most complete tool for WordPress admins seeking pre-configured solutions for the best possible performance. As well as an intelligent tool that helps to always keep their WordPress sites secure and up-to-date without breaking a live site. In case you’re not falling yet, here’s why using this tool is not only a smart idea but also a rewarding experience: 

  • Manage all WordPress sites on the server simplifying admin tasks.
  • Install, activate, update, and remove plugins and themes from one single dashboard.
  • Keep the highest level of security selectively securing websites.
  • Clone and stage websites to simulate changes before going live. 
  • Synchronize the changes between files and databases of different sites.
  • Optimize SEO for higher traffic and manage WordPress search engine indexing.

Smart Updates

A great addition to the Plesk WordPress Toolkit is the Smart Updates feature. This power-tool combo automatically updates WordPress core, plugins, and themes using AI. Here’s more:

  • Smart Updates clones and simulates your WordPress updates before performing them.
  • It mitigates the risk of hacked sites by running updates in a secure staging environment without affecting production. 
  • You can activate Smart Updates in WordPress Toolkit with a switch, as well as automate update analysis email notifications.

SEO, Backup, Cloud, and Server Plesk Extensions for Web Developers

SEO Toolkit

Along with the performance, a thought-out SEO strategy is fundamental to improve your search engine rankings. And with better rankings, more visibility, traffic, and conversions. 

Organic search can become your primary source of clicks, traffic, and revenue for your business. With the SEO Toolkit, you get all the tools you need to give your customers a chance to find you online. And help them pick your website over those of your competitors. We’re listing some reasons why you should use SEO Toolkit for your website:

  • Track SEO KPIs and check your website’s Visibility Score to measure your success.
  • Site Audit analyzes your site and gives you tips on how to enhance optimization.
  • SEO Advisor provides you a to-do list to improve your performance based on your Site Audit and Visibility Score.
  • Log File Analyzer will crawl your site and pages to help search engines rank and index them accordingly.
  • Check each of your keyword’s performance and compare it directly to your competitors’.

Google PageSpeed Insights

As explained above, one of the main worries for web developers is site performance. Because after all the work you’ve put into your web development, you just want it to work smoothly and without any issues. But don’t panic – Here’s what you need to know to achieve good visibility in search engines. 

First of all, you need to create websites that are fast, useful to your visitors, optimized for all traffic, and most importantly, mobile-friendly. And secondly, you should monitor your sites with tools like Google PageSpeed Insights. It will help you analyze your website’s content and its performance to suggest specific improvements. Here’s how the PageSpeed Insights extension works:

  • Analyzes the performance of websites hosted on your Plesk server.
  • Assigns every website a desktop and mobile score depending on its performance.
  • Generates a report based on the results of the analysis and displays suggestions to optimize your websites’ performance.
  • Provides links in the extension UI to the suggested tools aimed at improving websites’ performance (for example, the mod_pagespeed Apache module).
  • Gives already compressed files to reduce the size of static files (free API key required).
  • Installs the mod_pagespeed Apache module and lets you configure it for your needs.

Plesk Cgroups Manager

Often, web developers suffer what’s known as the ‘noisy neighbor’ problem. For those who aren’t familiar with this concept, this issue occurs when a website on a shared hosting consumes all system resources and disrupts the performance of other websites.

To avoid this common problem, we recommend using the Plesk Cgroups Manager extension. This solution helps you deliver reliable and continuous availability. The Cgroups Manager lets you control the amount of CPU, RAM, and disk read/write bandwidth resources each subscriber or tier of subscribers gets. You can use Plesk Cgroups to:

  • Prevent consuming of resources of your server by some of the subscriptions on your shared environment.
  • Automatically set a limit of resource consumption, monitor it, and send email notifications when it exceeds a certain level.
  • Set limits at two levels – subscriber service plan level or subscriber level.

Backup to Cloud Pro

Last but not least, we find the Backup to Cloud Pro extension. This solution is for all web professionals that want to set up different backup schedules to the cloud effortlessly. What’s more, it allows you to focus on more exciting and innovative tasks as it automates your backup management. It’s easy to set up and you can secure your domains with Google Drive, Amazon S3, DropBox, DigitalOcean Spaces, and Microsoft OneDrive:

  • Back up the entire server, individual user accounts with websites or individual subscriptions.
  • Schedule backups.
  • Restore data from backup archives.

CyberDeals Sale – 50% Off Selected Plesk Extensions and Toolkits

Thank you for reading up to this point – As a reward, we want to share with you a sneak peek of what’s coming soon this November. From Friday 27th until Monday 30th, we’re giving 50% off all the extensions listed in the article as part of our CyberDeals sale. So if you don’t want to miss out on these unbeatable offers, stay on the lookout for new updates. And catch them before they fly! 

Why Do You Need PHP FastCGI Process Manager?

PHP-FPM (an acronym of FastCGI Process Manager) is a hugely-popular alternative PHP (Hypertext Processor) FastCGI implementation.

As you may or may not know, PHP is one of the biggest open-source software programming languages utilized online. It features heavily in web development across such well-known platforms as Drupal, Magento, and WordPress, and was originally devised to preprocess plain text in UTF-8.

When PHP was invented by Rasmus Lerdorf in the mid-’90s, it was one of the first languages capable of featuring within HTML coding with no need to call external files.

Lerdorf’s scripting language has continued to evolve over the decades since, and it’s now supported by any web platform or operating system. However, as PHP’s publication is under the PHP licence, it’s incompatible with GNU General Public License because of restrictions related to the PHP term.

PHP-FPM Key Features

PHP-FPM includes numerous features that can prove beneficial for websites receiving traffic in large volumes frequently. These are:

  • Ability to start workers using various uid/gid/chroot/environment and php.ini, which replaces the safe mode users may expect
  • In-depth management for simple stop/start processing
  • Logging of stdout and stderr
  • Emergency restart available, in the event of an opcode cache being destroyed accidentally
  • Support for uploads is faster
  • Based on php.ini configuration files
  • Slowlog variable configuration for detecting functions that take longer than usual to execute
  • FastCGI improvements, with a special function for stopping and downloading data while completing long processes (e.g. processing statistics)
  • Basic stats are available, similar to the mod-status module in Apache

PHP-FPM and Nginx

Nginx is the ideal combination with PHP-FPM. Why? Because it’s a stable web server recognized for its impressive performance and low resource-consumption.

It features an asynchronous structure that’s highly-scalable, according to events. On top of this, memory consumption performance is significantly better when using Nginx and PHP-FPM together.

PHP runs as an isolated service when you use PHP-FPM. Employing this PHP version as the language interpreter means requests will be processed via a TCP/IP socket, and the Nginx server handles HTTP requests only, while PHP-FPM interprets the PHP code. Taking advantage of two separate services is vital to become more efficient.

PHP-FPM and HHVM

Nobody uses HHVM (HipHop Virtual Machine) anymore, as it’s unavailable. This was an open-source virtual machine, based on the Just-in-Time (JIT) compiler, serving as a PHP and Hack execution engine.

HHVM executes PHP or Hack code in intermediate Bytecode HipHop code, through the use of the Just-in-Time compiler principle. This code is converted into machine code at a later point, before being optimized natively and, eventually, executed.

This is a stark contrast to the standard PHP interpreted execution: the Zend Engine converts PHP code into opcode, via the Zend Engine virtual CPU.

PHP’s last version, along with FPM, means the language’s performance is now the same — or even better — without needing to use HHVM. It’s compatible with the majority of PHP 7 functions.

Before PHP 7 arrived, the PHP HHVM processor (created by Facebook, available on GitHub with Zend and PHP licenses) was typically used.

PHP-FPM and WordPress

An Nginx server with PHP-FPM support is crucial if you operate an online newspaper, content platform, or WordPress site receiving a huge number of visits daily. This set up enables you to facilitate the execution of your WordPress CMS’s PHP code to a higher standard.

PHP-FPM and Magento

Magento, a popular ecommerce platform, integrates with Nginx and PHP-FPM well. If you want to achieve your online store’s top performance, you’ll need to use this web server along with PHP-FPM support. Balancer and caches are essential, too.

PHP-FPM is a very challenging topic for newcomers, but we hope this guide has shed light on it. You should feel more comfortable with PHP-FPM, its features, and everything else covered above now that you’ve read our expert insights!

PHP-FPM and Plesk

To insure high performance and low memory consumption for highly loaded web apps PHP-FPM handler is available under Plesk. You need to make sure that PHP-FPM is installed and the option “Process PHP by nginx” is on under Websites & Domains > YourDomain > Web Server Settings.

Conclusion

PHP-FPM is an efficient method on how to minimize the memory consumption and rise the performance for the websites with heavy traffic. It is significantly faster than traditional CGI-based methods in multi-user PHP environments. If your primary goal for hosting your web application is to achieve optimal performance and security, then PHP-FPM is the way forward.

Comprehensive Guide On Plesk Mail Server Administration

Plesk is a powerful hosting platform which works in cooperation with a mail server and enables you to run the mail services on the same machine on which you host websites. But do you know if your Plesk mail server is configured correctly for you? Well, let us help. We’re here to show you how you can configure Plesk mail settings. So that they can best suit your business needs.

Reliable email infrastructure is a must for any business industry. You need an email server to send and receive emails. In many cases, Web and mail servers are combined into one machine. Plesk also supports mail server software in this way, except you don’t need to set it up before you get started. Because we’ve already done that for you.

But it’s worth taking a look at your settings to make sure that Plesk mail server is configured in a way that will best suit your needs. So, follow these step-by-step instructions, and get your email configuration working exactly how you want it.

Plesk Mail Server-Wide Configuration Settings

Plesk server configuration mail settings

To do this: Go to Tools & Settings > Mail Server Settings (in the Mail group).

Steps:

  1. Look at the Enable mail management functions in the Plesk checkbox. If it’s already ticked, then don’t touch it. Since this lets users create email accounts and use services while in the Customer Panel. But if you want to use an external mail server, make sure the box remains unticked.
  2. Easily change the Installed mail server and Installed IMAP/POP3 server by clicking the appropriate links to take you to the Plesk Installer GUI page.
  3. The Maximum message size box does what you expect. You can specify sizes or leave it empty.
  4. If using Plesk mail for Linux. Set how many simultaneous connections mail users can make to the server. Because this is handy if you require more connections.
  5. You can also vary the total number of connections from the same IP address. Setting a lower max. affects any users behind a firewall who connect via multiple computers. Moreover, it also affects others who have multiple mail accounts.

Offering the right resources isn’t just about how many connections are available at the same time. It’s also about how much CPU power and disk space you should make available.

You can calculate total connections by adding up all the ones which share the same protocol (IMAP, POP3, IMAP over SSL/TLS, or POP3 over SSL/TLS). A single limit may work for any of these.

Plesk mail server settings for Courier IMAP users

If you’re a Courier IMAP user, you can set these limits in your Plesk mail server settings:

    • Maximum number of connections (IMAP, POP3, IMAP over SSL/TLS, or POP3 over SSL/TLS). This shows the total IMAP or POP3 processes you can start on the server.
    • Maximum number of connections per IP address.
      Here you can see the max. possible connections using identical protocols, which the server accepts from any given IP address.

These settings directly relate to the Courier IMAP configuration parameters MAXDAEMONS and MAXPERIP.

Plesk mail server settings for Dovecot users

If you use Dovecot, you can use these limits:

    • Maximum number of connections (IMAP, POP3, IMAP over SSL/TLS, or POP3 over SSL/TLS).
      This is the max amount of mail users that can log in simultaneously.
    • Maximum number of connections for a user per IP address.
      This is the max. number of connections using the same protocol that a mail user can establish from a single IP address.

These settings relate to the Dovecot configuration parameters process_limit and mail_max_user ip_connections.

  1. (Optional) To email using port 587 ( read more about Plesk ports ).Choose the “Enable SMTP service on port 587 on all IP addresses” tickbox (Plesk for Linux) or“Switch on message submission on all IP addresses” (Plesk for Windows) and permit connections for port 587 in your firewall settings.

You can also select Port 587 for outward-bound SMTP connections from your email program settings.

Changing IP on Postfix server (Plesk for Linux)

In Plesk for Linux on a Postfix mail server, you can alter the mail IP address. And if your server sends mail from domain IP addresses, you can decide which name you prefer to be used as the host name in SMTP greetings.

Select one of these three options:

    • Send from domain IP addresses.
      Mail from each domain is sent from the domain’s IP address by default. The host name in the SMTP greeting is the Plesk server host name. You can see this in Tools and Settings > Server Settings. Note – if you choose this option, mail from some or all domains may go into spam. This happens if the Plesk server host name doesn’t resolve correctly. Or if the domain’s IP is different from the one the Plesk server host name resolves.

This option is most effective if you have one IP address on the Plesk server.

    • Send from domain IP addresses and use domain names in SMTP greeting.
      If you select this, Plesk alters the mail server configuration. So that the SMTP greeting contains the name of the domain from which the email message is sent.

Warning: If you select this option then mail sent from some or all domains may be marked as spam. This happens if the destination mail server uses cbl, and more than one domain on the Plesk server uses the same IP address.

If you select this option on Plesk servers hosting 100 domains or more, you’ll probably create a much greater server load.

This option is most effective if every domain hosted on the Plesk server has a dedicated IP address. And if the server only hosts a small number of domains:

  • Send from the specified IP address.
    You may want to use particular IPv4 and IPv6 addresses for all outgoing mail. It can be useful to send every email from the specified address. Like when you add the mail server’s IP address to a public black list, such as the OpenBL or Spamhaus lists. If you choose to select None, outgoing mail won’t be sent.

Plesk mail settings – relay options

Choose mail relay mode. If you’re in closed relay mode, your mail server can only support messages addressed to users with mailboxes on the server. It’s best to leave mail relay open. Otherwise customers won’t be able to send mail using your outgoing SMTP server.

If you select relay after authorization, you’ll only see customer emails through your mail server. We advise you to leave the authorization is required option unchanged. Then choose your authentication methods:

  • POP3 lock time:Once you succeed in authenticating the POP server using POP3 authorization. You may exchange emails through the mail server for the permitted amount of time.
  • SMTP: SMTP authorization requires all externally-bound emails to be authorized.

Note – It can be dangerous to open mail relay without authorization. Because it means that spammers can send unsolicited mail through your server. You can do this if you want to. But, the option is hidden by default. So you’ll have to go out of your way to do it.

To set the open relay
Log in to the server’s file system.
Find the file root.controls.lock in your Plesk installation directory:

(PRODUCT_ROOT_D/var/root.controls.lock on Linux and PRODUCT_DATA_D/var/root.controls.lock on Windows platforms)

Then take this line -/server/mail.php3:relay_open from this file. You should now see the open relay option control panel.

Plesk relay options for Windows users

Follow these instructions if you’re using Plesk for Windows. And you don’t want to use relay restrictions for trusted networks.

  1. Specify the network IP.
  2. Mask in the Use no relay restrictions for the following networks field (for example, 123.123.123.123/16)
  3. Click the icon that indicates the network you’d like to remove

Any relay hosts on the list of networks are there because they’re not thought to be run by spammers, open relays, or open proxies. A trusted host can potentially relay spam, but won’t originate it, or forge header data. DNS blacklist checks won’t ever query for hosts on these networks.

SmarterMail mail server

A SmarterMail mail server lets you switch on the Require SMTP Authentication option on the domain level. You can only turn this option on when you select open relay on the server level in Plesk.

With other relay modes, Plesk turns this option off. To turn this option on, allow open relay in Plesk – as described above – then go to SmarterMail > Settings > Defaults > Domain Defaults.

Plesk Mail Server Configuration To Limit Outgoing Email Messages

Plesk mail server configuration to limit outgoing email messages

Turn on limitations on outgoing email messages. This option stops spam being sent from the Plesk server. See Protection from Outbound Spam for details.

Note: Limits in server-wide mail settings are default values from service plans and subscriptions. You can set your own limits. More info on this is available in How Limits Work.

Besides limits, you can also alter these settings:

  • Send an email notification every (choose how often).
    The administrator gets an email notification whenever the limit is exceeded.
  • Allow scripts and users to use Sendmail (Linux only).
    This lets scripts and subscription system users to send emails using Sendmail – even if the limits for a mailbox and domain are exceeded. You can determine the highest allowed number of sent messages by setting the limit for a corresponding entire subscription. You can send messages on behalf of the subscription’s system user.
  • Show reports based on statistics for the last (specify time period).
    If someone attempts to exceed the limits on outgoing mail during that time. You receive an alert on the Plesk Homepage. Plesk also creates default reports based on the statistics for this period.

If you turn on limitations on outgoing email messages, a new link, Outgoing Mail Control link (in the Mail group of Tools & Settings) appears. You can use this link to view detailed statistics on outgoing email messages for all Plesk objects.

Note for Windows hosting administrators:

In Plesk for Windows, you can use limitations on outgoing email messages if you think you need to. Before you configure the limitations on outgoing mail on Windows hosting, do the following:

  1. Close the open relay and remove all addresses from the relay’s list of trusted networks and IP addresses.
  2. In Tools & Settings > External SMTP Server – check that the option Allow Plesk to send email notifications through this SMTP server is turned on.

Names for POP3/IMAP mail accounts

Names for POP3/IMAP mail accounts

When using the Qmail mail server, you can choose this mail account format.

If you select the Use of short and full names is allowed option. Users can log in to their mail accounts using just the left part of their email address. This is the bit before the @ sign (for example, username). Or by using the whole email address (for example, [email protected]).

To avoid difficulties for email users who are in different domains, but share identical usernames and passwords. Think smart and use the Only use of full mail account names is allowed option.

Once you set your mail server to only support full mail account names, you won’t be able to switch back to supporting short account names. At least, not until you’ve ensured there aren’t any encrypted passwords for mailboxes and user accounts with the same usernames and passwords residing in different domains.

Utilizing Plesk Without Using the Mail Server

When you use Plesk, you can choose to take advantage of the mail server or not. It’s totally up to you.

Plesk designed for Linux enables you to deactivate the mail service for each and every domain your server is hosting. When using Windows to host, you’re unable to turn the default mail server off — but you can adjust its setup to prevent outgoing emails being sent.

You also have the option to activate the mail server’s exclusion from those components installed during the installation of Plesk.

But let’s be clear: when the mail server is either uninstalled or stopped from sending emails, there’s a slight issue you need to keep in mind.

  • Plesk is still required to distribute notifications, and customer scripts might be required to distribute mail too. However, Plesk can overcome this by sending any outgoing mail via an arbitrary external SMTP server instead.
  • On the level of your websites you will be forced to use third party smtp service if there is need in transaction messaging. Providers scope here is really wide – from Gmail, Office365 to Sendgrid and Sendinblue.

Utilizing an External SMTP Server for Your Outgoing Mail with Linux

Plesk is designed to leverage the in-built SMTP client to distribute emails via the external SMTP server specified when the mail server managed by Plesk has not been installed.

The client is not installed by default, while the External SMTP Server link cannot be found in the expected Mail group area of the Tools & Settings section. That’s because Plesk lets you install the client rather than the mail server managed by Plesk.

Follow these steps to utilize the external SMTP server:

Step One: After uninstalling Plesk’s mail server, you should complete installation of the SMTP client via this process. Head to the Tools & Settings area, click Updates, followed by the Add/Remove Components option. Next, click on Mail hosting features. Once there, choose MSMTP (replay only) instead of the mail server which has been selected already. Once you’ve finished installation of Plesk’s mail server, bear in mind that customers are unable to utilize mail services. For more information, take a look at the section on the Functionality of the Customer Panel Without Using the Mail Server below.

Step Two: Select the SMTP server in the External SMTP Server part of the Tools & Settings (which can be found within the Mail area). Make sure to pick one or more of the following options:

  • Allow Plesk to send mail notifications through this SMTP server
  • Allow users’ scripts to send mail through this SMTP server

You can configure the external SMTP server settings in a number of alternative ways:

  • Use the command line utility mailserver (the — update-smtp-settings command)
  • Via XML API requests with the server operator (set. prefs operation)

Step Three: Should the SMTP server need to be authenticated, you must make site owners aware of the specific details (Password and Username) they should utilize in their scripts, to allow the scripts to send mail. Plesk will distribute script-generated notifications and mail via the external SMTP server you choose. However, if you don’t specify the external SMTP server settings, you’ll be unable to use any mail services. Once you’ve installed the client, just a single link (External SMTP Server) can be utilized in the Mail group area of the Tools & Settings section.

Utilizing an External SMTP Server for Outgoing Mail on Windows

Plesk designed for the Windows OS features an in-built SMTP client, which distributes outgoing mail to specific SMTP servers named in the External SMTP Server (the Mail group) area of the Tools & Settings.

You’ll find the following option is switched on by default: use the mail server installed with Plesk and the default mail account created by Plesk. As a result, the mail server which is installed with Plesk is utilized as an external SMTP server.

This enables Plesk to send all outgoing mail via Plesk’s mail server. Plesk generates an account for mail automatically, including administrator’s rights to access the mail server installed locally. However, this account’s password isn’t displayed on this specific page.

If you choose to stop outgoing mail being sent via the Plesk mail server, you have the option to configure a different SMTP server to allow notifications to be sent by Plesk. Email messages will also be created by hosted scripts. Take these steps:

Step One: Select another SMTP server and user account in the External SMTP Server (in the Mail group) area of the Tools & Settings section. To view the SMTP server settings, make sure you clear the following option: use the mail server installed with Plesk and the default mail account created by Plesk.

Step Two: Choose the following option: Allow Plesk to send email notifications via this SMTP server. When you do this, Plesk will send notifications via the external SMTP server specified.

Step Three: If you want to activate hosted scripts to send mail, notify site owners that their scripts should utilize the updated SMTP server settings.

No outgoing mail services will be provided if you choose not to set the external SMTP server.

Anti-Spam Tools with Plesk

The following Plesk Anti-Spam Tools can prevent inboxes being bombarded by spam:

SpamAssassin

This anti-spam tool is designed to identify messages that may be spam, filtering emails distributed to mailboxes that your Plesk server hosts.

How to Switch SpamAssassin On

To activate SpamAssassin:

Step One: Navigate to the Spam Filter part (in the Mail group) of the Tools & Settings area.

Step Two: Choose the following option: Switch on server-wide SpamAssassin spam filtering

Step Three: If you want your users to be able to set their spam filtering preferences in a per-mailbox structure, choose to Apply individual settings to spam filtering.

Step Four: This applies to Plesk for Linux. You can specify the amount of resources that SpamAssassin is able to utilize in the field for Maximum number of worker spam processes to run. Keep in mind: the more resources you allow it to use, the more quickly SpamAssassin is capable of processing mail. But if you assign too much to this, different services could all be affected, so keep this in mind in case you notice lagging. That’s why we generally suggest you utilize the default value, for your convenience.

Step Five: Go to the following field — the score that a message must receive to qualify as spam — and adjust the sensitivity of the filter. You can do this by entering the value you want to specify into said field. The spam filter’s default sensitivity is configured that any messages scoring seven or higher will be marked as spam. If users continue to be sent spam once the standard sensitivity is in place, it’s best to adjust it by assigning a lower value. But SpamAssassin may get rid of non-spam messages and prevent users receiving genuine mail. If this is the case, input a greater value to reduce the filter’s sensitivity.

Step Six: Allocate messages’ maximum size for SpamAssassin to process by:

  • Choosing the do not filter if mail size exceeds specified size setting and input the value you have in mind (this is for Plesk for Windows)
  • Adjusting the /etc/psa/psa.conf file (for Plesk for Linux)

Step Seven: Next, it’s crucial that you specify how messages should be marked as spam. You should do this in the following field: add the following text to the beginning of subject of each message recognized as spam. If you would rather the spam filter didn’t change the subject of a message, make sure you keep this box blank. However, if you want the subject line to feature messages’ score in points, enter the following into the box instead: _SCORE_.

Step Eight: For Plesk for Windows, you can specify any languages which you trust with the Trusted languages list. You can specify any locales you’re happy with, too, using the Trusted locales list. Next, click the OK option to complete the process.

Configuring SpamAssassin

You may or may not know that SpamAssassin allows you to implement the right degree of spam protection for you by providing a variety of SpamAssassin settings. These include:

Sensitivity

SpamAssassin is designed to run numerous tests on a message’s subject line and body content to identify which emails are spam. This is why every message is allocated a specific points value, and for higher numbers, it’s likely that the connected message is spam.

So, for instance, if you were to receive a message with a subject line carrying something spammy — “LOSE WEIGHT WITH CHEAP PILLS NOW” — it’s likely the score will be around eight or so. The spam filter’s sensitivity is implemented so that any messages allocated a rating of seven or above is labelled spam.

When spam is still received with the default filter sensitivity in place, users should increase its power by inputting a lower value. If the filter keeps marking valid mail as spam, input a higher value to reduce the sensitivity.

Spam marks

You’re unable to set the server’s spam filer to delete messages marked as spam automatically. Instead, you have to do this on a mailbox-by-mailbox basis.

With the server-wide policy in mind, you can opt to label messages as spam with the X-Spam-Flag: YES and X-Spam-Status: Yes headed will be added to a message’s source as standard. Alternatively, you can set the spam filter to also carry a specific string of text. This appears at the start of the message’s subject line, and the default string is *****SPAM*****.

While you’re unable to set up SpamAssassin to undertake comprehensive deletion of all messages considered spam, you can notify mailbox owners to take responsibility for defending against spam themselves.

For instance, they may set up their spam filters to delete messages marked as spam by SpamAssassin automatically. They may set up their own black and white lists too.

Maximum message size checks

Your server can be put under significant strain when they’re required to analyze a large amount of emails. That’s why you should configure the maximum message size that the filter will test for spam.

SpamAssassin process amount

If you want to limit SpamAssassin’s server loading, you can specify the maximum number of processes (Linux) or threads (Windows) that are processed at the same time on the respective server.

With Plesk for Linux, for example, the max amount of processes able to be configured through the Plesk GUI is 32. But if you need a higher number of processes to be undertaken at the same time, make sure to add these lines to the panel.ini file:

[mail]

spamAssassin.maxChildrenLimit = 80

Here, the number denotes the maximum amount of processes that may be set up in the Plesk GUI.

Trusted languages and locales in Plesk for Windows

You can specify the language characteristics of mail which should pass the filter by utilizing the trusted locales and languages options. You can ensure any messages composed in the relevant languages and defined character sets are never labeled as spam.

Black and white lists

With SpamAssassin, you can also add specific message senders into the black and white lists. Let’s take a closer look:

  • When you want messages from certain domains or senders to be marked as spam when they arrive, you can include said senders on the SpamAssassin’s black list. When you do this, it will place USER_IN_BLACKLIST in the message’s header. This makes sure the specified messages are marked as spam so you won’t have to see it in your inbox. It will be deleted or relocated to your spam folder, according to the settings in place on SpamAssassin for entire servers or certain mailboxes.
  • When you want to make sure neither you nor users are in danger of missing important messages, you can place whole domains or email addresses into the white list. It’s a pretty simple process.

Assigning Maximum Size of Messages in SpamAssassin

If you want to reduce the load that SpamAssassin places on your server, take advantage of the option to place a limit on the maximum size of the messages that SpamAssassin needs to evaluate. Any mail with a size exceeding this limit will go to the recipient directly, without being analyzed by SpamAssassin.

Follow these steps to specify the maximum message size:

Step One: Open this configuration file for editing: /etc/psa/psa.conf

Step Two: Define the appropriate bytes value with SA_MAX_MAIL_SIZE

The default size for emails is 256000 bytes, but we suggest you change it to 150 – 250KB instead. This is a standard size for mail presented in a HTML format, containing images. Message size is regarded as critical for filter and mail server overload when it goes above 500KB (usual for mail featuring attachments).

How to Set Up Black and White Lists

When you’re ready to add new entries to the black and/or white list, follow these steps:

Step One: Navigate to the Black List or White List tab in the Spam Filter section of the Tools & Settings area.

Step Two: Simply click on the Add Addresses option.

Step Three: Submit all the entries you wish to put onto the list. This is a fairly simple process, but we’ll help you get it right. Make sure you keep addresses separated with a colon, a white space, or a comma. Asterisks (*) can be utilized to fill in for multiple letters, while question marks (?) do the same for just one letter.

As an example, you might see addresses such as user*@hellospam.com. If you were to specify *@hellospam.com, all mail from this domain would be blocked, so it’s an efficient way to minimize junk in inboxes. For Windows servers, make sure you define what action should be taken with emails received from addresses specified.

Step Four: Click on the OK button to end it. If you want to take entries off the black and white list, just choose the relevant entries on the right tab. Next, hit Remove to take them off instantly.

DKIM, SPF, DMARC

Plesk is designed to offer reliable support for various anti-spam services for the validation of messages’ identity. These include:

DKIM:

DomainKeys Identified Mail is utilized to connect a domain name identity to a specific outgoing message. This will validate a domain name identity linked to incoming mail via cutting-edge cryptographic authentication.

SPF:

Sender Policy Framework is intended to reduce the risk of people leveraging fake sender addresses. The mail server can verify that incoming messages come through a host which has been authorized by the specific domain’s administrator. Furthermore, Plesk takes advantage of Sender Rewriting Scheme (SRS) to ensure messages that have been forwarded are able to pass SPF checking effectively.

DMARC:

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance can expand on both DKIM and SPF. Its policy specifies how receivers need to handle messages based on the DKIM and SPF checking results.

Activating or Deactivating DKIM on Servers

By default, DKIM is always enabled in Plesk, but if you wish to turn it off, you can follow these steps:

Step One: Head to the Mail Server Settings area of Tools & Settings.

Step Two: Move down the page to the DKIM spam protection area, and clear one or both of these checkboxes:

  • Allow signing outgoing mail: With this option, customers have the flexibility to activate DKIM signing on outgoing messages with a domain-by-domain basis. This won’t allow signing of all outgoing mail automatically. Users must activate DKIM for individual domains, if you want to take advantage of it.
  • Verify incoming mail: This is available on Plesk for Linux. If you choose this option, you’ll turn DKIM checking on, applying to all incoming messages. All mail will be analyzed, and any messages that fail will be assigned a specific header to alert users.

However, please keep this in mind: you can’t turn DKIM checking off for incoming messages if you have DMARC already enabled.

Activating DKIM Email Signing for One or More Domains

When DKIM signing has been activated on a server (as detailed above), users will be able to sign outgoing messages for their domains. If you want to enable it for a single domain, follow these simple steps:

Step One: Open the relevant subscription to be managed.

Step Two: Navigate to the Mail Settings area in the Mail tab.

Step Three: Pick the relevant domain and hit Activate/Deactivate Services.

Step Four: Pick Enable for DKIM spam protection system to sign outgoing email messages, and then hit OK to get started. The DNS service has to be enabled on a domain. Once you have completed activation of DKIM for an individual domain, Plesk adds two records to the domain’s DNS zone:

  • _domainkey.<example.com> – this carries the generated key’s public part
  • _ domainkey.<example.com> – this carries the DKIM policy

Activating SPF for outgoing messages

Plesk allows you to configure a unique SPF policy for all outgoing messages, by defining relevant rules in DNS records. SPF is also designed to analyze incoming emails by default with Plesk for Linux.

With SPF for incoming messages activated, the mail server will run a DNS lookup on the sender’s host. The aim is to find an SPF-related DNS record. These rules may be specified:

  • Local rules: These rules will be utilized by the spam filter ahead of the SPF check being completed by the server.
  • Guess rules: These are the rules that will be applied to domains not publishing SPF records.

Head to the DNS Template area of Tools & Settings. Here, you should edit the TXT DNS record linked to SPF (this DNS record will always be included in the server-wide DNS template).

Here’s a simple example of an SPF record that has been developed by Plesk:

  • com. TXT v=spf1 +a +mx +a:test.plesk.com -all
  • The individual components of this record have the following translations:

v=spf1: SPF of the version 1 is used by the domain.

+a: This means every host from the “A” records has the authorization to send emails.

+mx: Here, all hosts from the “MX” records have the authorization to send messages.

+a:test.plesk.com: The domain test.plesk.com has authorization to send messages.

-all: All other domains do not have the authorization to send mail.

Activating SPF for incoming messages

Step One: First, navigate to the Mail Server Settings (found under “Mail”) area of Tools & Settings. Move down the page to the “SPF spam protection” part.

Step Two: Next, pick one of the options from the SPF checking mode box. This is to define how email should be dealt with when SPF runs local and guess rules:

  • Only create Received SPF-headers, never block: This accepts all incoming mail, no matter what the results of the SPF check were.
  • Use temporary error notices when you have DNS lookup problems: All incoming mail will be accepted no matter the results from the SPF check, even if DNS lookup problems caused failure of the SPF check.
  • Reject mail if SPF resolves to “fail” (deny): This rejects mail from senders who have not been authorized to utilize the relevant domain.
  • Reject mail if SPF resolves to “softfail”: Mail from senders who the SPF system is unable to recognize as authorized or not authorized will be rejected, as no SPF records have been published by the domain.
  • Reject mail if SPF resolves to “neutral”: When senders can’t be identified by the SPF system as authorized or unauthorized due to the domain’s lack of published SPF records, mail will be rejected.
  • Reject mail if SPF does not resolve to “pass”: Here, messages which fault to pass the SPF check (regardless of the reason) are rejected. One scenario may be a sender’s domain not implementing SPF, and SPF checking returns a status of “unknown”.

Step Three: To define local rules, enter those rules in the SPF local rules space. This may be something along the lines of include:spf.trusted-forwarder.org.

Step Four: You should also define the guess rules, entering relevant details in the SPF guess rules space. One good example is v=spf1 +a/24 +mx/24 +ptr ?all

Step Five: To define an arbitrary error notice to be returned to the SMTP sender after a message’s rejection, enter it into the SPF explanation text space. Where no value is entered, notifications will incorporate the default text.

Step Six: Hit OK to bring the setup process to a close.

Deactivating SPF

Step One: Head to the Mail Server Settings (under “Mail”) area of Tools & Settings.

Step Two: Go to the “DMARC” section and click the following checkbox if it’s already been selected: “Enable DMARC to check incoming mail”.

Step Three: Navigate to the “SPF spam protection” area and clear this checkbox: “Enable SPF spam protection to check incoming mail”. Next, hit OK.

Activating DMARC

Make your way to the DNS Template area of Tools & Settings. Once there, make changes to the DMARC records that relate to the DMARC policy. These records are always available in the server-side DNS template, while those records related to DKIM will be added to individual domains’ DNS zones once you enable DKIM on the domain.

So, as an example, the default Plesk DMARC policy is defined in this record:

_dmarc.<domain>. TXT v=DMARC1; p=none

In this policy, it’s recommended that the receiving server doesn’t delete any messages, even when they fail the check. You may define a more stringent policy if required, but be aware: the receiving server can implement its own policy for incoming messages. Policies for individual domains can be edited by hosting customers, too.

To deactivate DMARC checking incoming messages, follow these two steps:

Step One: Navigate to the Mail Server Settings (under “Mail”) area of Tools & Settings.

Step Two: Move to the DMARC section and clear this checkbox: “Enable DMARC to check incoming mail”. Next, click OK.

DNS Blackhole Lists

With your server, you can leverage paid and free subscription blackhole lists. How do you activate DNSBL-based protection against spam?

It’s easy:

Step One: Go to Mail Server Settings (under “Mail”) in Tools & Settings.

Step Two: Choose the checkbox for Switch on spam protection based on DNS blackhole lists.

Step Three: Look for the DNS zones for DNSBL service box. Define the host name you want the mail server to query, such as sbl.spamhaus.org.

Step Four: Hit the OK button.

Once this is complete, messages sent from addresses known for spam will be rejected with a 550 error code (which applies to a refused connection).

Black and White Lists (Server-wide)

Here, we show you how to turn down connections from specific servers:

Step One: Find the Mail Server Settings (under “Mail”) in Tools & Settings.

Step Two: Click on the tab marked Black List.

Step Three: Click on the Add Domain option.

Step Four: Define the domain you no longer wish to receive messages from, such as badspamhouse.com.

Step Five: Hit the OK button.

Step Six: Perform steps three to five again for all relevant domains.

 

What if you want to ensure you receive messages from certain networks or servers? Try this:

Step One: Head to the Mail Server Settings (in the Mail area) part of Tools & Settings.

Step Two: Click on the tab labeled White List.

Step Three: Click on the Add Network button.

Step Four: Name the IP address or list of IP addresses from which messages should always be accepted.

Step Five: Hit OK.

Step Six: Do steps three to five again for all of the relevant addresses.

Greylisting

Greylisting protection will be activated for all domains automatically when greylisting support components have been installed on the relevant server. As a result, no further steps need to be taken. You can turn the greylisting protection off if you decide not to use it.

Defending Against Interception of Messages

Sadly, unscrupulous Plesk users may create domains with identical names to popular websites, whether these are retailers, information hubs, or any other type of site (such as Gmail, Amazon, etc.). These individuals could receive mail from your customers to these domains, as the server provides local delivery.

Plesk provides a pre-filled name list featuring various popular domains which have been registered and are already owned by companies. When you activate the checking process for domain names which have been prohibited, users will have no way to set up domains with any name from the list.

You can set this up by going to the Prohibited Domain Names area of Tools & Settings. Follow these steps:

  • If you wish to activate the protection, hit the Enable button presented on the toolbar, and Plesk users will be prevented from creating domains with any of the listed names.
  • If you wish to add a domain to the prohibited list, click on the Add Domain Name option to define the domain name you want to target.
  • For editing a domain name listed, choose the relevant one in the Domain Name list column.
  • For removing one or more of the listed domain names, choose all that apply and hit Remove.

Defending Against Outbound Spam

Here are some key factors to keep in mind for defending against outbound spam:

  • When mail services are included in hosting offerings, remember that your server may be utilized for malicious intents (e.g. distributing spam). This can lead to servers becoming bombarded and straining under heavier loads than usual, and recipients will likely complain. Crucially, your server IP addresses may be placed on public black lists including OpenBL or Spamhaus.
  • To stop spam being distributed via your server, you can take advantage of one of Plesk’s many tools — this one dedicated to controlling email messages. This is designed to accumulate stats about your outgoing messages and stop emails getting sent when specified limits have been crossed. You can define these limits at five levels: service plan; mail server; domain; mailbox; and subscription.
  • Admins may stop outgoing spam by imposing limits on the volume of outgoing emails released each hour. Furthermore, administrators can identify the source of potential spam accurately and easily, thanks to notifications and reports.

The Mail Queue

Some key points to think about in relation to Mail Queue:

  • Messages sent from and to your server will pass through the mail queue, though some may become fixed for various reasons. When a high enough volume of emails become stuck in the queue, the server might start to function in an irregular way. With Plesk for Linux, you can monitor the mail queue and take out any messages one by one or together.
  • If you want to view messages in the mail queue at present, go to the Mail Server Settings area of Tools & Settings. Open the Mail Queue tab, and if you need to search for certain messages, just click on the icon to open the search toolbar. Once you’ve found any emails you wish to take out of the mail queue, select their checkboxes. Next, click on the Remove

Alternatively, when you hit Clear you’ll take all messages out of the queue: this option should only be used carefully, as you could remove genuine mail along with spam.

  • This functionality can prove helpful when customers file complaints about mail failing to reach the right recipients after being sent, or significant delays. In either case, this could be an indicator of spam originating from your mail server, which clogs the queue.

Take a look at the Deferred queue to identify suspicious mail, and if you find any spam messages here, it’s best to utilize the Outbound Spam filter. Alternatively, if you find no spam in the Deferred queue yet see a number of messages which have not been sent, the mail server could have problems that need to be addressed. The Plesk repair tool can resolve potential mail server issues automatically.

Notifications for Mailbox Quota Limit Approaching

Mail servers are supposed to receive an email notification when 95 percent of their mailbox disk space has been used. For Horde and Roundcube webmail customers, mail users may also view details related to storage disk space, limits, and more. Notifications related to mailbox quota have been enabled by default, but to switch them off, make sure you add these lines to the panel.ini file:

[mail]

enableMailboxQuotaWarning = off

If you wish, you can adjust the text in these quota notification messages. You can do this by taking these actions:

Step One: Navigate to the Mail Server Settings (in the “Mail” area) of Tools & Settings. Click the “Customize default mailbox quota warning” beside the “Enable mailbox quota warning” option.

Step Two: Adjust the text and/or subject of the notification message. You can’t utilize HTML tags for this, as the message will only be in plain text.

Step Three: When you’re happy with the text or subject you’ve edited, hit the OK button.

Generate Plesk Mail Accounts

You can create mail accounts in Plesk by following these key steps:

Step One: Head to the Mail section.

Step Two: Click on the Create Email Address option.

Step Three: Enter the left part of the relevant email address (everything in front of the @). If your account is linked to numerous domain names, choose the one the address will be generated under.

Step Four: Pick an external mail address, which will be used in case you want to reset your password.

Step Five: Keep the Mailbox checkbox selected — there’s no reason to clear it unless you wish to utilize this address for forwarding mail. That would bring all incoming messages to a different address.

Step Six: Choose the mailbox size. Alternatively, you can use the default size specified by your service plan or the provider’s official policy.

Step Seven: Pick a password featuring at least five Latin characters.

Step Eight: Finally, just click OK.

Setting Up Accounts On Email Clients

With Plesk, you can get numerous email clients set up automatically, such as Mozilla Thunderbird, Microsoft Office Outlook, and more. This is a feature known as “mail autodiscover”, which configures the required settings automatically. These include mail servers, mail protocols, ports, etc.

There’s no need to specify them through a manual process, but please be aware that mail autodiscover isn’t supported by every domain configuration.

If you find your domain is unable to support mail autodiscover or you feel you would prefer to utilize mail clients beyond Mozilla Thunderbird or Microsoft Office Outlook, you can choose to get an email client set up manually instead. However, you’ll usually be required to specify these:

  • Username: Provide your full email address ([email protected])
  • Password: This is typically the password to access your mail account
  • Mail server protocol: This relates to whether you wish to retain copies of emails on your server or not. If you do want to keep them, choose the IMAP option, but go for the POP3 if you don’t. Opting for the IMAP setting enables you to target SpamAssassin on messages if this filter is permitted on the server.
  • Incoming mail server (POP3/IMAP): Enter your domain name. The POP3 port is 110 and the IMAP port is 143.
  • Outgoing mail server (SMTP): Enter your domain name. The SMTP port is 25, and authentication is required by the server.

To view the required settings for getting an email client set up, visit the Websites & Domains section and look for the domain connected to the mail you want to access. Next, click on Mail Accounts followed by the icon. If default mail settings presented in the “Manual Setup” area are a poor match for your customers, you can alter the section’s text.

If you want in-depth directions for setting up popular mail clients for your mailbox, you can find them in this section’s subsections.

Adjusting Settings for Email Client Setup

If you want to assist your customers in setting up email clients through a manual process, you’ll find all the information you need regarding the relevant settings in the “Manual Setup” section. You can reach this by navigating to the Websites & Domains area, choosing the relevant domain, clicking on Mail Accounts, followed by the icon. You’re free to alter this information when you edit the panel.ini file. This can be helpful in these cases:

  • Your mail server has been secured with an SSL/TLS certificate (assigned to server.com, for example) and you would rather your customers weren’t subjected to an “Untrusted certificate” issue when viewing their emails through your email client. To do this, you have to alter the incoming and outgoing servers presented in “Manual Setup” to server.com. After this, customers will have the option to name server.com in their mail client settings as opposed to their domain names.
  • You wish to name the ports customers are required to use in their mail client settings clearly.
  • You would prefer your customers to utilize secure protocols only, such as POP3, IMAP, and SMTP over SSL/TLS).
  • You have different mail settings to those default ones in the “Manual Setup” area.

If you’re looking to make edits to email client setup settings, you can take these steps:

  • Change the values of the clientConfig* settings (found in the [mail] section of the panel.ini file).
  • To adjust the clientConfig.userName, clientConfig.incomingServer, and clientConfig.outgoingServer settings, use these placeholders: <domain>, <user>, <hostname>.
  • If you want to adjust clientConfig.incomingProtocols and clientConfig.outgoingProtocols, utilize plain text.

Let’s say you would prefer customers to leverage the server hostname as the mail server, to utilize secure protocols only, and don’t want them to be presented with the “Untrusted certificate” error in the section on “Manual Setup”. You can do this by adding these lines to the panel.ini file:

[mail]

clientConfig.incomingServer="<hostname>"

clientConfig.outgoingServer="<hostname>"

clientConfig.incomingProtocols="POP3 over SSL/TLS, IMAP over SSL/TLS"

clientConfig.outgoingProtocols="SMTP over SSL/TLS"

Common Issues and Limitations with Mail Autodiscover

Mail autodiscover is known to not function for the following:

  • Domains that have no web hosting.

Mail autodiscover may also fail to work with domains that have SSL (HTTPS) enabled:

  • Domains unsecured by in-date SSL/TLS certifications, such as ones which are self-signed. To activate mail autodiscover through HTTPS, make sure you keep your domain secure and protect the mail server with a paid-for SSL/TLS certificate. This should come from a reputable authority, or be a free one with Let’s Encrypt. For securing your mail server, head to Websites & Domains, go to your domain, click Mail, and click on the “Mail Settings” tab. Next, go to the “SSL/TLS certificate for mail” option, pick the valid SSL/TLS certificate, and finish by hitting OK.
  • Domains include wildcard subdomains in the DNS settings. These are denoted by an asterisk prefix. You can enable mail autodiscover through HTTPS for said domains, set up a wildcard subdomain in Plesk, receive a wildcard SSL/TLS certificate, and secure these with the certificate: the mail server, the domain, and the wildcard subdomain.

For securing the wildcard subdomain, navigate to its Hosting Settings and select the wildcard certificate with the * prefix. Pick the wildcard certificate for the wildcard subdomain, or the self-signed Plesk SSL/TLS certificate will be utilized by default instead, even if a wildcard certificate has been issued to it. If you prefer to not choose the wildcard certificate for the wildcard subdomain, a warning message will be displayed during mail autodiscover.

That brings this guide to a close. We hope this has provided you with some in-depth insights that help you understand everything you need to know about Plesk mail server administration.

Accessing Mailboxes

If you want to send and receive emails then you’ll need to get into your mailbox, which you can do:

  • with a webmail account in your web browser.
  • with an email client like Microsoft Outlook.

To open your webmail mailbox, do one of these things:

  • In a Web browser, enter the URL webmail.forinstance.com; ‘forinstance’ being a stand-in here for your actual website address. When it asks you, type in your email address for the username (it might look something like, [email protected]), and set a password for it.
  • Once you login to Plesk, go to Mail and choose your email address from the list.

You can use the mail auto-discover feature in Microsoft Outlook or just go through the process manually instead.

For automatic setup in Outlook 2019:

  1. Open Outlook. If you don’t have an Outlook account go to step 3. If you want to set up a new account then go to step 2.
  2. Go to File > Add Account.
  3. Type in your email address.
  4. Set a password for the email address and click on Connect.
  5. A message will appear if the domain name in the SSL/TLS certificate that secures the Plesk mail server is different from the one in Microsoft Outlook’s connection settings.

You can address this problem before you carry on:

  • By securing your domain with a free SSL/TLS certificate from Let’s Encrypt or another provider.
  • Click View Certificate to find out which domain name the SSL/TLS certificate has been assigned to. If it’s the right one and it matches your Plesk mail server, try setting up Outlook manually. Look at your email account settings and change the incoming and outgoing mail servers so they match the mail server in the SSL/TLS certificate.

If you don’t see a message go on to the next step.

  1. Outlook will take a little while to finish that. Click OK once it’s done.

When it’s ready, Outlook will send you a test email.

To manually set up MS Outlook:

  1. Open it, or if you haven’t got an Outlook account, go to step 3. If you’ve got an account but want to set up another one, go to the next step.
  2. Go to File > Add Account.
  3. Choose an email address.
  4. Click the icon next to “Advanced Options”, choose the “Let me set up my account manually” checkbox, followed by Connect.
  5. Choose IMAP if you want to keep copies of your messages on the server (and train the SpamAssassin spam filter on them) or POP if you don’t.
  6. Outlook detects the email address settings automatically. Change the setting (if you need to) and click Next.
  7. Type the email address password and click Connect.
  8. You’ll see this message if the domain name in the SSL/TLS certificate that secures the Plesk mail server is different from the one in Outlook’s connection settings.

It’s best to fix this issue before you continue:

  • Secure your domain with a free SSL/TLS certificate from Let’s Encrypt or from another certificate authority.
  • Click View Certificate to see the name of the website that the SSL/TLS certificate has been assigned to. If it matches the one for your Plesk mail server, go back to the last step. Change the incoming and outgoing mail servers so they are the same as the mail server in the SSL/TLS certificate.
  1. Outlook will take a moment to finish. Click OK when it’s done.

Outlook will send a test email to your new account.

You can set up Outlook using the auto-discover feature or you can go through the steps yourself.

For automatic setup:

  1. Open Outlook 2016
  2. Go to File > Add Account.
  3. Type in your name, email address, and password in the appropriate fields then click Next.

Wait for setup to complete.

Note: while it’s setting up you might see various notifications and warnings. If you haven’t secured your domain with a valid SSL/TLS certificate, you’ll get this message:

If the mail server hasn’t been secured with the same SSL/TLS certificate that secures the domain, you’ll see this one:

In both instances, to carry on with setup via HTTP, click Yes.

Here’s how to turn on mail auto-discover via HTTPS in the “Known Issues and Limitations of Mail Autodiscover” section.

  1. Once setup has finished, click Finish to exit. To review your new settings, choose the “Change account settings” checkbox and click Finish.

Outlook will send you a test email as soon as it’s done setting up.

For manual setup of Outlook 2016:

  1. Open Outlook
  2. Go to File > Add Account.
  3. Choose “Manual setup or additional server types” and click Next.
  4. choose “POP or IMAP” click Next.
  5. Enter:
    • Your name.
    • Your email address.
    • Account type. IMAP keeps copies of messages on the server (and you can train SpamAssassin on the emails that you receive) and POP3 doesn’t, so just choose the one that suits your needs.
    • Incoming mail server. Enter your domain name, for instance: forinstance.com.
    • Outgoing mail server (SMTP). Enter your domain name, for instance: forinstance.com.
    • User Name. Type in your email address.
    • Password. This will most likely be identical to your Plesk login.
    • Require logon using Secure Password Authentication (SPA). Leave this option blank.
  6. Click More Settings, click the “Outgoing Server” tab and choose the “My outgoing server (SMTP) requires authentication” checkbox.
  7. Click Next.
  8. Click Finish.

Once setup is finished, you’ll get a test email from Outlook.

These instructions work with Microsoft Outlook Express 6, so they might not work for other versions.

To set up Outlook Express:

  1. Open Outlook Express.
  2. Go to Tools > Accounts.
  3. Click the Add button and choose the Mail
  4. Type in your name, as you want it to look in the messages you’ll be sending, and click Next.
  5. Type in your email address and click Next.
  6. Choose:
    • Your incoming mail server protocol. Go for IMAP if you want to preserve copies of messages on the server (and also have the option to train SpamAssassin on incoming messages), and POP3 if you don’t.
    • Mail server for incoming mail. Enter your site’s web address.
    • Outgoing mail server. Type in your website’s address.
  7. Click Next.
  8. Type in this information:
    • Your account name. Type in your email address in the Account name
    • Now your password. In all likelihood, it will be the same as your Plesk password.
    • For the Remember password checkbox, if you leave this selected then it stops you getting prompted to enter your password every single time your email program connects to the mail server to check for updates. Click Next.
  9. Click Finish to conclude setup.

You can use the mail auto-discover feature to automatically set up Microsoft Outlook on Android, or you can do it manually. These instructions work with Android 6.0.1.

To automatically configure Outlook for Android:

  1. Open Outlook, tap GET STARTED, then tap SKIP to go to the Google configuration screen.
  2. Type in your email address and tap CONTINUE.
  3. Tap to select the type of account. Choose IMAP to keep copies of emails on the server and POP3 if you don’t.
  4. Type in your email account password, the display name, and then tap the top right corner.
  5. Server settings will be fetched automatically and you will be logged into the account that you entered. After your email account has been set up you’ll be able to see that it was added.
  6. Tap SKIP to exit setup when you’re done.

Your email account will now be ready to go in Outlook.

To set up Microsoft Outlook on Android yourself:

  1. Open Outlook, tap GET STARTED followed by SKIP to go to the Google setup screen.
  2. Type in your email address and hit CONTINUE.
  3. Tap to select the type of account. Choose IMAP if you want to keep copies of your messages on the server or go with POP3 if you don’t.
  4. Activate “ADVANCED SETTINGS”.
  5. Type in the settings for incoming and outgoing servers, along with these port numbers:
    • 110 for POP3
    • 143 for IMAP
    • 25 for SMTP
  6. Tap in the top right corner. If you use the correct settings, your account will be added.

Tap SKIP to exit setup when you’re done.

This guidance has been confirmed to work with Mozilla Thunderbird 31.4.0. Other versions might not be supported.

For setting up Thunderbird:

  1. Open Thunderbird.
  2. Look under the Create a new account heading and click Email.
  3. Click on the Skip this and use my existing email button.
  4. Type in this information:

o Your name, as you’d like it to look in any messages you send.

o Your email address and password.

  1. Click Continue.
  2. If Thunderbird doesn’t automatically find the settings, try Manual config, then enter:
    • Account type. Choose IMAP if you want to keep copies of your messages on the server (and have the option to train SpamAssassin on your messages), and POP3 if you don’t.
  3. Click Done.

If you prefer to set up a mail account yourself, here are some common combinations for authentication and security. If they don’t work, get in touch with your hosting provider who should be able to tell you what will work.

On Linux, SMTP, IMAP, POP3:

  • SSL/TLS: STARTTLS
  • Authentication: Encrypted password

On Windows, IMAP:

  • SSL/TLS: None
  • Authentication: Encrypted password

On Windows, SMTP, POP3:

  • SSL/TLS: None
  • Authentication: Normal password

Some other variables you might need for manual account configuration:

  • POP3 port: 110
  • IMAP port: 143
  • SMTP port: 25
  • Username. Your email address. For example: [email protected].
  • Incoming server address (POP3/IMAP). enter your website’s Internet address. Example: com

Outgoing server address. enter your website’s Internet address. Example: forinstance.com

The instructions work for Apple Mail 13.4.

An Apple Mail account can be set up manually or automatically. The automatic method is quickest and means you won’t have to enter any information. Plesk creates a link and Apple Mail uses it to pull up your mail profile and all the appropriate settings.

For the manual method:

  1. Open Apple Mail, choose the “Other Mail Account” option and click Continue.
  2. Type in:
    • the name that you want to have associated with your emails
    • your email address
    • your email account password
    • click Sign In
  3. Choose the type of account you want, IMAP if you want a copy of every email message to stay on the server and POP if you don’t.
  4. Type in the incoming and outgoing mail server domain names and click Sign In.
  5. Once your settings have been confirmed, choose which apps you want to use with the mail account and then click Done.

For automated setup of Apple Mail:

  1. Log in to Plesk.
  2. Go to Mail and click the icon by your email address.
  3. Open the link it gives you on your device to set up your mail account.

Go through the rest of the steps in Apple Mail.

  1. Click Continue so that your device retrieves the profile for your mail account.
  2. Type in your mail account password and click Install to set up the profile for your mail account.

These instructions work for iOS 13.5.

You can set up your mail account manually or automatically. The automated method is quickest and means you won’t have to enter any information. Plesk creates a QR code link and uses it to get your mail profile and all the appropriate settings.

To set email manually:

  1. Go to Settings > Password & Accounts.
  2. Tap Add Account.
  3. In the list of email providers shown, choose Other.
  4. Tap Add Mail Account.
  5. On the New Account screen, enter the following information (and tap Next afterwards):
    • the name you want to be displayed in your emails.
    • your email address, for example, [email protected].
    • the password for your email.
    • an optional account description.
  6. Tap IMAP at the top of the screen if you want to keep copies of your emails on the server, or tap POP if you don’t. Type in the info for incoming and outgoing mail servers:
    • your domain name in the “Host Name” field, for instance, forcom.
    • your email account name in the “Username” field, for example, [email protected].
    • the password for your account.
    • tap Next
  7. When you’re done tap Save and you’ll receive confirmation that you’re connected to the server.
  8. As soon as you’ve got confirmation of the connection, choose what info you want to sync with your phone and tap Save.
  9. The iPhone will confirm your account info and take you to the “Mail” screen. You’ll be able to see the account listed in the Accounts

Note: If you have any trouble with message syncing, you can configure this manually. Just select your new account and go into the Advanced section. You can choose a mailbox here (Drafts, Sent, Deleted, Archive) and a matching folder on the server, so your folders will be synced regardless of how or from where you access your email.

To use automated mail account set up on your iPhone:

  1. Log in to Plesk.
  2. Go to Mail and then click the icon next to your email address.
  3. Choose iOS Mail on iPhone or iPad.
  4. Create your mail account using either of the two ways:
    • Scan the QR code with your phone’s camera.
    • Open the link it gives you on the device on which you want to set up your mail account.

You perform all the further steps on your iPhone.

  1. Tap Allow and your phone will download your mail account profile.
  2. Go to Settings and then tap Profile Downloaded.
  3. Tapping Install will install the downloaded profile.
  4. Type in the phone passcode and then tap Install.
  5. Enter the incoming mail server password and then tap Next.
  6. As soon as the profile is installed, tap Done.

You’ll now see the “Mail” screen. Look in the Accounts section to see your account.

You can use automated Gmail setup on Android (using the mail auto-discover feature) or take the manual route. These instructions work for Android 6.0.1.

For automatic setup of Gmail on Android:

  1. Open Gmail.
  2. In the top right corner, tap your profile picture followed by Add another account.
  3. Choose “Other”.
  4. Type in your email address and tap Next.
  5. Select your preferred account type and tap Next. Go for IMAP if you want to keep copies of your emails on the server, or POP3 if you don’t.
  6. Type in your email account password and hit Next.
  7. Your incoming server settings will be retrieved. Choose whether you want messages that you delete from your Inbox to also be deleted from your Plesk server or not and tap Next.

Note: you might get a “Certificate not valid” warning if the mail server or domain hasn’t been secured with a valid SSL/TLS certificate. To continue using HTTP, tap Advanced and then tap PROCEED ANYWAY.

  1. Your outgoing server settings will be retrieved. Tap Next.

Note: you might see the “Certificate not valid” warning again. To carry on using HTTP, tap Advanced and then tap PROCEED ANYWAY.

  1. Continue with the default Gmail sync settings or change them and tap Next.
  2. (Optional) Change the account name and/or enter the name to be shown on sent messages.
  3. Tap Next to exit the setup.

Setup is complete. Your new account will be on the list in Gmail.

To set up a Gmail on Android manually:

  1. Open Gmail.
  2. In the top right corner, tap your profile picture and tap Add another account.
  3. Choose “Other”.
  4. Enter your email address and tap Manual Setup.
  5. Select your preferred account type and tap Next. Go for IMAP if you want to keep copies of your emails on the server and POP3 if you don’t.
  6. Type in your email account password and tap Next.
  7. On the following screen, you will see the incoming server settings. Type in the port number: 110 for POP3 or 143 if you want IMAP and tap Next.
  8. The screen after that shows settings for the outgoing servers. Type in 25 for the port number and tap Next.

Once you’ve entered everything, your Android device will check the server connection and set up your mail account. Open the Gmail app and you will see it in the list.

Plesk vs cPanel – two hosting control panels compared

Plesk vs cPanel - Battle of the hosting control panels

When it comes to web hosting control panels, Plesk vs cPanel comparison is something you may think about. Apart of DirectAdmin, ISPConfig and Webmin, both cPanel and Plesk has long history on the market of server management tools.

About Plesk and cPanel

Plesk has helped system administrators for over 10 years. Because of its user-friendly interface and wide set of features, admins can manage their servers more efficiently. The latest Plesk is available in Windows and Linux and is designed to work unobtrusively, manage performance and gatekeep in the shadows.

 

Plesk Onyx

cPanel first appeared in 1996. As its a pioneer in this market, cPanel still has a dedicated fanbase for its obsolete products. Even though its current offering is called cPanel 68. Newer iterations of this popular solution are a kind of welding together of cPanel. This facilitates customer account management and Web Host Manager (WHM) which tackles server administration.

 

cPanel

Plesk vs cPanel – Usability

CLI (command line interface) is an option for each of these interfaces. But most users will no doubt want to unlock their goodies via the GUI (graphical user interface).

Most users favour Plesk over cPanel for its tidier GUI, which makes it simpler to understand and more intuitive to use. Its approach is to group tools on the left of the screen – as that’s the side people start reading from. And you can find more options buried under each tool.

cPanel’s approach comes from the ‘garden shed’ approach to GUI design. Because the designers seem to have just thrown everything in there and shut the door. The redeeming feature that helps it claw back some points in the Plesk vs cPanel contest is that you can modify the interface to suit your own preferences.

Security – Plesk or cPanel?

Both solutions boast a variety of features designed to make servers bulletproof. Or at least, safe from incursions by nefarious bots and their human handlers.

But Plesk offers features such as fail2ban – which prevents intrusions, active directory integration, and spam defence for email. Meanwhile, cPanel offers automatic installation of SSL certificates, directories with password protection and IP address denials.

Best Features – cPanel or cPanel alternative, Plesk

So, Plesk or cPanel in terms of variety of features? Plesk and cPanel give clients identical features to manage accounts and servers. Users can configure DNS settings ( read about name servers setup ), manage email accounts and databases. And they also get FTP (File Transfer Protocol) facilities. The cPanel experience can be bolstered with extra apps. But Plesk hits the ground running with straight-out-of-the-box access to more helpful apps and extensions.

Plesk, as cPanel alternative, supports Docker for Linux, putting the 200,000 image Docker catalogue at their users’ fingertips through the web hosting control panel. And Gitman extension makes Git use a feature too. In contrast, cPanel users can only enjoy the same experience via complicated workarounds. Which may not really be ideal.

Plesk vs cPanel: Distros

As we said before, Plesk runs on both Linux and Windows Server, while cPanel is a Linux-only deal. True, you can achieve Windows-server-compatibility, but only via certain tweaking and fiddling.

CentOS, CloudLinux and RedHat Enterprise Linux are the only OS incarnations supported by cPanel. In contrast, Plesk works with 14 Linux distros that include Debian, CentOS, and Ubuntu. This in addition to being compatible with Windows servers.

Solutions Plesk Onyx cPanel/WHM
OS compatibility Both Linux and Windows operating systems are supported.
  • Windows family: Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2012)
  • Linux family: Debian, CentOS, Ubuntu, Cloudlinux 6-7, Virtuozzo, Red Hat Enterprise 6-7
cPanel is Linux control panel. Supported distributives: CentOS, Cloud Linux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux.
Web servers Apache, NGINX with caching Apache with Nginx caching
Administration Unified authorization procedure for users and administrators. cPanel basically consists of cPanel and WHM – WHM is accessible only for server-related administrational tasks. cPanel access gives control only over website.
Interface Modern UX/UI based on React.Js. Built-in ready to code environment with support of Javascript, PHP, Perl, Ruby On Rails, Python, Java and .NET. User-friendly interface with full control over majority of cPanel/WHM features. Availability of command line and API-based access as the way to automate administrational tasks.
Security A lot of security features are provided from the box e.g. Plesk Firewall, Revisium Antivirus, Fail2ban AutoSSL, cPHulk, built-in support of CSF/LFD and some other useful features
WordPress support WordPress Toolkit provides full list of automation & management features vital for the scalable WordPress infrastructure support. cPanel’s WordPress Manager is far away from perfection.
Extensions/Add-ons Plesk comes with ecosystem of various extensions, covering all possible needs of any server administrator. Among these extensions are Security Advisor, WordPress Toolkit, Joomla! Toolkit, Let’s Encrypt SSL support, SEO Toolkit etc. Extra apps are available via auto-installers.
DBMS MySQL / MariaDB / MSSQL Server databases can be managed via web browser. MySQL/MariaDB databases management via web interface
SSL Let’s Encrypt + Symantec AutoSSL with Let’s Encrypt
Mobile accessibility
Backups Ready to use solutions based on Dropbox, Acronis, Google Drive Compatibility issues can be spotted between various cPanel backup versions.
Technologies Support of Docker, Git, Node.js, WordPress Toolkit Docker, Node.Js & Git can be still supported by cPanel, however workaround here is sophisticated

Plesk vs cPanel – what’s your decision?

After reading this far, it’s obvious that your ideal web hosting control panel will be largely dictated by your server’s OS. But as a human who has to use an interface every day, you want to choose the one that makes your life easier. With 100+ extensions and a more intuitive interface, Plesk seems like the current winner. Though both solutions are feature-rich, the Plesk vs cPanel face-off must be won by the new kid on the block.

Git Commands Cheat Sheet

No Git command cheat sheet would be complete without a section on the Git vocabulary, so we’ve included one to help you get to grips with how Git works and how the commands are run on various entities. In fact, let’s begin there:

Git Commands Cheat Sheet – Vocabulary

#

Git Command

What it Does

1 Bare Repository Repository that doesn’t have a working directory.
2 Branch An active area of development in Git. The newest commit displays the end of the branch.
3 Blame Refers to the most recent alteration to every line in the file. Shows Author, Revision, and Time.
4 Checkout This is talking about the process whereby a particular commit is chosen from the repository and the condition of the file associated with it and the directory tree are reproduced in the working directory.
5 Commit Record of a moment in Git history containing details of a changeset.
6 Diff The difference in changes between saved changes or two Commits.
7 Detached Head The state in which a specific commit is checked out rather than a branch.
8 Fetch Retrieves the most recent changes in the branch and the local or remote repositories.
9 Fork When you Fork the repository, you can add Commits and add Pull Requests.
10 Hash A unique SHA1 code for each Commit
11 Head The name of the Commit at the end of a Branch
12 Index A group of files that hold state information.
13 Merge Includes changes from named commits (from when their histories split from the current branch) into the current branch.
14 Master Git’s default development Branch
15 Origin This is the default Upstream Repository
16 Pull Request Suggests changes into the Master Branch
17 Push Pushes new changes once they’ve been committed
18 Repository A group of Commits, Branches and Tags to identify Commits.
19 Working Tree The directory of files that you are currently working on

Git Commands Cheat Sheet – Configuration

#

Git Command

Description

1 git config –global user.name Sets the username to be used for every action
2 git config –global user.email Sets the email to be used for every action.
3 git config –global alias. Generates a shortcut for the Git command.
4 git config –system core.editor Sets the text editor for all command actions.
5 git config –global –edit Opens global configuration file in the text editor to enable manual editing.
6 git config –global color.ui auto Turns on colour for command line outputs as a visual aid.

Git Cheat Sheet – Set Up a Git Repository

#

Git Command

Description

1 git init Initializes an empty Git repository in the current project.
2 git clone (Repo URL) Clones the repository from GitHub to the project folder.
3 git clone (Repo URL) (Folder) Clones the repository to a specific folder.
4 git remote add origin

https://github.com/username/(repo_name).git

Creates a remote repository that points to your current GitHub repository.
5 git remote Displays the name of remote repositories.
6 git remote -v Displays the name and URL of remote repositories.
7 git remote rm (remote repo name) Gets rid of a remote repository.
8 git remote set-url origin (git URL) Changes a repository URL.
9 git fetch Obtains the most recent changes from the origin but doesn’t merge them.
10 git pull Obtains the most recent changes from the origin and merges them.

Git Cheat Sheet – Local File Changes

#

Git Command

Description

1 git add (file name) Adds current file changes to staging.
2 git add . Adds changes for the whole directory to staging but without deleting files.
3 git add -A Adds every new, modified, and deleted file to staging.
4 git rm (file_name) Stops tracking a file and gets rid it.
5 git rm –cached (file_name) Stops tracking the current file.
6 git mv (file_name) (new_file_name) Alters the filename and gets it ready for Commit.
7 git checkout <deleted file name> Undeletes a file and gets it ready for Commit
8 git status Displays the status of modified files.
9 git ls-files –other –ignored –exclude-standard Displays a list of each ignored file.
10 git diff Displays staged changes in the working directory and index.
11 git diff –staged Displays differences in files between the most recent version and staging.
12 git diff (file_name) Displays changes between a single file and the most recent Commit.

Git Commands Cheat Sheet – Declare Commits

#

Git Command

Description

1 git commit -m “(message)” Saves changes along with a custom message.
2 git commit -am “(message)” Adds all changes to staging and saves them with a custom message.
3 git checkout Switches to the provided Commit.
4 git show Outputs content changes and metadata for a particular Commit.
5 git reset –hard Rolls back all history and changes for a specific Commit.
6 git reset –hard Head Rolls back all local changes in the working directory.
7 git log Displays change history.
8 git log -p Displays the full page for each Commit.
9 git log -oneline Displays a list of Commits and a simple message.
10 git log –follow (file_name) Shows the history of the present file.
11 git blame (file_name) Displays all changes and the user’s name.
12 git stash Does an Interim save of all tracked files that have been modified.
13 git stash pop Restores files that were stashed most recently.
14 git stash list Displays all stash changesets.
15 git stash apply Applies the most recent stashed contents.
16 git stash drop Gets rid of the most recently stashed files
17 git stash apply (stash id) Re-applies content of a particular stash by ID.
18 git stash drop (stash_id) Drops particular stash content by ID.
19 git push Pushes changes to the Origin.
16 git push origin (branch_name) Pushes branch to the Origin.
17 Git push -f origin (branch_name) Force pushes the changes to the Origin.
18 git tag (tag_name) Specifies a tag for a version.
19 git push Pushes changes to the Origin.

Git Commands Cheat Sheet – Branching

#

Git Command

Description

1 git branch Displays a list of every branch.
2 git branch Makes a new branch.
3 git branch -m Changes the name of a branch.
4 git branch -a Lists both local and remote branches.
5 git checkout -b Creates a branch and switches to it.
6 git checkout Changes to a particular branch.
7 git checkout -b origin/ Puts a remote branch from the origin in the local directory.
8 git branch -d Deletes the specified branch.
9 git merge Merges the current branch with the master (first checkout to master)
10 git rebase Integrates changes from one branch into another by rewriting the commit history to produce a linear succession of commits.
11 git rebase Rebases the current branch onto the base, which can be a Commit ID or a branch name.
12 git fetch remote Fetches the specified branch from the repository.
13 git diff .. Shows the differences between two branches.
14 git pull –rebase Fetches the remote copy of the current branch and rebases it into the local copy.
15 git push –all Pushes all the local branches to the specified remote repository.

Plesk and Git Support

Plesk lets you integrate with Git, because for most web developers it’s their go-to code management system. Git makes it easy to handle initial publishing and subsequent updates by deploying your website from repositories to a public directory.

Here’s how to get started with Git:

  1. Install the Git extension in Plesk.
  2. Create a domain in Plesk with a service plan that lets you give management permission to Git.

There are two types of repositories that you can add in Plesk, and you’ll choose the one that best fits your use case:

  1. Keep it local with a repository on your own machine. In this scenario, you send the changes to Plesk from your local repository, and then Plesk deploys the changes to your website.
  2. Use Git hosting remotely. You might want to do it this way if you’re already using a remote repository in BitBucket (bitbucket.org) or GitHub (github.com). You forward your changes to the remote repository, then Plesk gets them from it and deploys them to your website.

When you’ve got Git repositories enabled in your domain, you’ll be able to see a list of the ones that have been created on its page. For each one you’ll see the name, the current branch and the deployment path. The Deploy button (look it for it near the repository name) lets you deploy the files from a repository (if it’s been set up for manual deployment) and the Pull Updates button lets you get the changes from the remote repository.

Conclusion

It’s much easier to work on a complex project when you have a list of Git commands in front of you, so we hope that this Git command cheat sheet proves to be useful.

Guide on Website Management

Effective website management doesn’t demand a comprehensive understanding of web development. The two areas are very different.

A website is like a car: even the best models created by leading designers can’t run without a little maintenance here and there. Great websites may look sleek, polished, and perform to the highest standards — but only because of the experts working hard behind the scenes. And websites can break down or crash without regular maintenance to keep them in good condition, too.

However, the management of a website isn’t always as simple as it should be. Instead, it can be a complex process with many rungs on the ladder to success. In this post, we’ll explore effective web management in detail and cover the tools you need for the best results

1. Backup your site’s data

Do you back up your data from your computer’s hard drive on a regular basis? You need to do the same with your website.

The primary reason is because of potential issues such as cybersecurity breaches, network glitches, or hardware failures. You’ll be able to access your backup and get your site running again with minimal disruption.

Here are the main benefits of backing up your site and data for good web management:

Eliminate data loss

If website data is deleted by accident, either by yourself or a colleague, you could lose lots of hard work and face the risk of downtime. But with a backup, accidents won’t lead to such severe fallout.

Reduce revenue loss

When your website generates revenue through sales, every second of downtime can impact your profits. But regular backups can keep costly downtime to a bare minimum.

Cut lost time during a website renovation

You’ll have a lot of stored data if your website has been live for a number of years, such as images, product pages, content, and more. All this should be backed up when you’re renovating or even rebuilding your site.

Otherwise, years of hard work can go to waste and you’ll need to start building the website again from scratch.

You can take advantage of many website backup solutions, though you’ll need to research your options before you choose. Don’t worry, though — we’ve provided a few suggestions to help you save time:

Backing up your data with Plesk

With Plesk hosting platform you already have built-in backup solution which is capable to back up the entire server or/and individual websites, schedule these backups, perform them in full and incremental way and store backups locally and remotely.

For those who are addicted to WordPress, Plesk offers WordPress Toolkit – a single management interface that lets you simplify all management routines. With WordPress Toolkit you can clone a WordPress site, including all website files, database and settings, without the need for any third-party plugins

2. Stay on top of landing page performance

Landing pages are crucial if you utilize paid ads (e.g. PPC). These are the first pages visitors will reach when they click on an ad on a search engine results page or social media network, and they have to perform at their best to make a positive first impression.

However, landing pages can be affected by a number of common issues:

  • Heavy traffic may cause slowdown
  • Newcomers might struggle to understand what you’re actually offering
  • Your web server could be experiencing a glitch
  • You may be trying to sell products which are out of stock

Regardless of the problem, you’ll be able to spot it sooner rather than later if you check your landing pages regularly. Some of the best landing page tools include:

  • VWO Landing Page Analyzer: This creates a comprehensive report covering key parameters including focusing on the goal, relevance, persuasiveness, and more
  • UnBounce: This provides you with a free report on strategies with the potential to optimize your landing page conversions

3. Preparing for downtime and managing it right

Downtime refers to the length of time that your website is unavailable to visitors. Around half of all downtime is caused by equipment malfunctions, such as overheating processors or a power cut. While reliable hardware offers good protection, your website could still become inaccessible because of equipment malfunctions.

Common risks include:

Hosting issues

All websites are hosted on servers belonging to ISPs. The price these businesses charge can be high, but it’s a valuable investment to keep your site online 24/7.

A lot of ISPs claim to deliver uptime of 99.99 percent. This may seem amazing, but a couple of brief sums suggest otherwise. 0.01 percent of 24 hours is 8.64 seconds, and if you multiply this by seven, you get 60.48.

Across one month, this amounts to just over four minutes, and in a year, it’s around 52 minutes. That’s not a huge amount, but it could still cost you a few sales, especially if you experience significant downtime during a busy period.

We’re not trying to tell you that your website will be down for that period of time every day — you may not experience any downtime at all in any given month. But even if it’s down for a couple of hours one day and operating fine the rest of the year, you could still lose out due to hosting issues.

Keep that in mind when considering your website management strategy.

Attacks from cyber criminals

Cyber attacks are a common threat in the digital age, and two particular types pose a real risk:

DDoS attacks: During a Distributed Denial of Service attack, a hacker will keep your server flooded with requests. A server only has the ability to respond to a set number of requests, and if the incoming amount goes beyond this, your website server may crash.

Dangerous bots: Many hackers create bots with the ability to pick up on weaknesses in networks and vulnerable websites. They exploit any flaws they spot and bring websites down with ruthless efficiency.

So, we know a few reasons why downtime may occur. But how can you prepare for it?

Determine if your site IS down

Your website might appear to be down, but that may not be the case. You can use isitdownrightnow.com and similar sites to check.

Get in touch with your hosting service

You can reach out to your hosting provider to find out if they have a problem causing your website issues. But take a look at your email first, as the provider may let you know if they plan to put the server out of action temporarily ahead of time.

Identify if the issue is on your end

Any employees in your business who take responsibility for your website maintenance and/or development might be to blame for issues. For example, they could have taken an element out, made a problematic update on a plugin, or done any number of other things that disrupt your website performance.

Explore activities in the site’s backend to spot any adjustments that came before the issues, and once you know the reason, try to understand why it led to such a negative outcome. This will help you stop it happening again.

Finding a prevention is better than working on a cure after the fact in good management of a website. Take these steps to save your website from experiencing downtime.

Hire separate businesses to host your website and domain name

The domain name is your website address, such as facebook.com. It’s recommended to host your website files with one company and your domain name with another. Why? Because if your website goes down for any reason, the other host should have it up regardless.

Consider a hosting company offering monthly plans

Numerous hosting companies provide customers with competitive yearly plans, but a monthly deal should be available too. This is ideal to try the service and see how it measures up.

Make sure you assess your site’s hosting performance through tools such as Pingdom. If it’s all working well for you, you might want to change to the annual plan to make a long-term saving.

Back up your website on a regular basis

Your most recent website backup should be hosted by another company, to make sure your prospective and existing customers can access your site even when the main version is unavailable. This applies to all websites you may have, as part of responsible multiple website management.

4. Optimizing your database

Your website will have a database if it’s a subscription-based domain (such as a blog) or a store where products are updated regularly. This database features all the information you add to your site.

For good website management, you need to remember that each database brings responsibilities — including good database optimization.

Here are the benefits of optimized databases:

  • Take up less space
  • Encourage your site to load more quickly
  • Boost the security protecting your website data

You can approach this in various ways, but the quickest and simplest is to optimize your database with specialized solutions. You may want to consider:

5. Evaluate load times

Page load times are critical to effective web management. You need every page to load as quickly as possible to satisfy users. But over time, your website will have more and more content and a heavier database. This causes your site to send more requests to the server, and can increase the loading times.

Plenty of factors can lead your site to slow down, including:

Excessive plugins

Having an excessive number of plugins will lead to excessive lines of code in your site’s back-end, putting extra strain on your website’s server. That causes page load times to increase.

Image-heavy visuals

Most ecommerce websites are packed with images, resulting in extra HTTP requests for your server and longer load times.

Performance of your site server

Shared servers can be particularly problematic, as they host multiple sites and manage HTTP requests to various pathways. Servers that perform poorly will be unable to keep traffic to all of the sites running as smoothly as users expect. Load times will slow down as a result.

Heavy traffic

As a business-owner, you invest considerable funds in marketing to bring traffic to your site, but as your traffic volume increases, your server needs to process an incredible amount of requests.

As slow page loading can boost your site’s bounce rates, your traffic and conversion rates can suffer down the line. But checking on your page load speeds will help you stay up to date on potential issues. Try PageSpeed Insights or GTMetrix to run tests on your site’s speed.

Once you’ve done this, scour the test report generated by your chosen tool carefully to pinpoint issues increasing your load times. This will give you the insights you need to tackle the problem yourself or hire an expert.

6. Assessing website forms for potential risks

You may have subscription forms on your website, along with checkout forms and search bars. Hackers can leverage these via a technique known as SQL injection, which provides them with unwelcome access to your database. You should check the forms on your site regularly to ensure your visitors’ data remains safe from hackers.

You can use various tools to assess your site’s forms for vulnerabilities, including ScanMyServer and Acunetix.

7. Taking out elements that can be considered redundant

Websites generally don’t need all of the elements loaded with them, and some can actually cause it to slow down unnecessarily. These may include changes to content and spam comments.

Such redundant elements load along with critical ones when users visit your website. That’s why you need to practice good management of your website and clean it regularly — take advantage of such tools as WP Optimize or Autoptimize.

8. Evaluate the performance of your website on different devices and browsers

Your website’s device and browser compatibility was likely tested after it was developed. However, various updates may have changed its performance since — plugins you’ve installed, content you’ve uploaded, new lines of code you’ve input, etc. can all make a difference.

If one or more of these adjustments fails to sync with certain devices or browsers, your website may not function as it should. That can lead to a poor visitor experience, rob you of conversions, and disrupt revenue generation.

If you test your website’s compatibility across all devices and internet browsers regularly, you can continue to deliver a quality experience for your visitors. Choose from various tools designed to assess browser compatibility, including Lambda Test, TestComplete, and CrossBrowserTesting.

Want to evaluate your site’s compatibility with devices? Try BrowserStack and Katalon.

9. Paying attention to analytics

Your website’s analytics area carries key details about your visitors’ locations, the number of clicks, traffic channels, traffic volume, search volume, and more. Take the time to check this area frequently to understand how your website performs and gather insights you can use to optimize it. This can enable you to recognize potential performance issues with your landing pages.

While Google Analytics offers comprehensive details on your users’ behavior, this information can be considered number-intensive. Visualization can make data easy to understand, so have your site’s analytics visualized through Domo, Zoho Reports or Infogram for a simpler approach.

10. Effective management of situations related to customer experience

You have to take good care of your customers. Without them, how can you expect to generate the revenue you need?

Your customers keep you in business and deserve a quality website for purchasing products or services. That’s why it’s worth putting time into resolving customer-related issues as cleanly, quickly, and efficiently as you can.

Here’s how:

Create professional responses to reviews

Customer reviews can influence people’s decision to buy from your website. Opinions may start to differ as you make changes to your site, even if they’re intended to improve the experience visitors have. They might write a review to share their frustration and put others off using your site at all.

Alternatively, customers could be so impressed they’re compelled to recommend your site to fellow buyers via positive reviews.

In any case, it’s crucial to respond to reviews regularly. This makes the writer feel recognized and valued, and it can actually help to improve your search engine ranking too. Show customers that you pay attention to their feedback and engage them in a professional manner, even if their review enrages you.

Make maintenance pages on your website unique

Sometimes, it’s hard or even impossible to avoid downtime. Your website will need to be taken offline briefly to make crucial changes.

During your site’s downtime, visitors will be greeted with a dedicated page to inform them the website is under maintenance. But don’t go for a generic design — boost your customer engagement with a creative, valuable maintenance page instead.

For example, keep the text in line with your established brand voice. If your website has a quirky style, your maintenance page should too.

Don’t be afraid to embrace humor, such as a cute graphic that helps to combat the frustration people may feel when they find they can’t actually use your site when they want to. Include links to resources on other websites that customers could find helpful when your site is inaccessible.

One terrific “placeholder” page can be found in Google Chrome: when your internet connection fails, you’ll be presented with a pixelated dinosaur on a gray screen. This is actually a game you can play, and it’s a lot of fun!

11. Proper web management for key site elements

When we talk about “website elements”, we’re referring to everything included on the front end of your site and behind the scenes. Video, images, plugins, text, and all the other crucial components responsible to keep your website performing as it should.

But how do you manage your website elements? You can try the following techniques:

Keep content updated regularly

If you’re satisfied with your website’s performance and feel there’s no real need to adjust your content, you could actually be inhibiting your site’s growth without realizing.

As trends in online content continue to fluctuate frequently, your website can be improved by assessing how well your existing content aligns with said trends. Effective management of a website demands updating content as and when required, to cater to the latest visitor expectations.

That means putting time into research, but that’ll pay off when you drive more traffic, attract new customers, and boost conversions. Still, don’t rush into it: run A/B (or “split”) testing to determine if your new content actually performs better than the material it’s due to replace.

Update plugins to their latest versions

When you have a number of plugins installed on your website, you need to be aware of the latest updates and the changes they make. Plugins are essential for backing up site data, compressing images uploaded, and more.

Updates are released frequently, so stay on top of your plugins to ensure they’re the latest version. They tend to perform more strongly than previous releases, so you can expect your site to function to a higher standard too. Your security will stay up to date, as well, which is vital to defend against cyber attacks.

But updates may cause issues, such as glitches, due to incompatibility problems. If this is the case, another update should be released fairly quickly to minimize the damage.

12. Managing high traffic and related issues

When you run an ecommerce site, there’s a high chance your traffic will spike during busy periods. For example, Black Friday and the run up to Christmas can lead to major increases in traffic volume. But when this happens, you could exceed your server’s capacity limit — causing it to crash.

That could cost you much-needed traffic and eventual conversions. To avoid this problem, try to find a hosting company offering scalable services to ensure you can accommodate more visitors than usual.

Another important component of website management is running high-traffic tests to find out how strongly it can perform in challenging conditions. By checking reports from high-traffic tests, you can identify issues in the structure of the code or your plugins.

You can use these tests with Pingdom and LoadNinja

13. Efficient management of website security

Good security is fundamental for any website today. Hackers have more sophisticated tools at their disposal, enabling them to attack networks of any size, disrupting businesses, hospitals, government operations, and almost anything else.

One of the best ways to safeguard your site is to bring in an expert to review it, identify potential gaps, and recommend preventative actions. Individuals qualified to do this typically have years of experience and outstanding technical skills.

However, even if you choose to follow this recommendation, you can take other steps to boost your website’s security further. Try these:

Password management

A major element of good website management is implementing quality passwords to minimize the risk of security breaches. Even if you set up complex passwords for accessing your website’s backend, these may still be stolen. Hackers continue to find new ways to crack defenses, so effective password management is vital to ensure solid security.

Consider the following:

  • Implement a tool designed to generate passwords, such as LastPass or RoboForm, which can create complex passwords and keep them stored safely for you
  • Don’t use one password for more than one website or application — if it’s stolen, every account it’s connected to could be at risk
  • Alternate your passwords regularly, ideally at least once per week, to ensure any stolen passwords won’t be valid for too long
  • Employ two-factor authentication on your website as an extra security layer

Further steps to improve your website security

To ensure your site’s security further, try these:

  • Renew your site’s SSL certificate as and when required, to prevent your website from being spoofed
  • Contact your hosting company on a regular basis to keep up to date on their current security measures and request recommendations; change to a dedicated server if that’s possible
  • Keep access to your website’s backend out of the hands of people who don’t genuinely need it or have left your business
  • Work with a security expert and ask them to install quality software designed to trace attackers’ IP address, so you can block them to prevent further issues
  • Undertake security testing on your site on a regular basis, such as IndusFace or NetSparker, or you could hire website management services to handle this on your behalf

Security Management under Plesk

Plesk hosting platform has enhanced level of security right from the box. Recently, Plesk launched Advisor, which unifies the best possible security practices and performance tune-up of the server and hosted websites.
Read more about best Plesk Security practices

Summary

We’ve covered a wealth of best practices for effective web management in this guide. To help with future reference or when you’re consulting with providers of website management services, we’ll run through them again below:

Standard maintenance

  1. Backup of your site and its data
  2. Optimize your database for best performance
  3. Check your landing pages
  4. Prepare for downtime and know how to manage it
  5. Check the load times of your website
  6. Take redundant elements out of the site
  7. Check for signs of vulnerabilities in forms on your site
  8. Review your analytics to find valuable insights
  9. Check the performance of your website across all devices and browsers (e.g. Google Chrome)

Effective management of situations related to customer experience

  1. Be responsive to user comments and reviews
  2. Make sure to keep “under maintenance” pages on your site distinctive and engaging

Proper web management for key site elements

  1. Keep your content updated
  2. Keep individual plugins updated regularly

Efficient management of website security

  1. Manage your passwords effectively
  2. Take all further steps required to boost your site’s security

Managing high traffic and related issues

  1. Run tests on your site to assess its ability to cope with high traffic volume

So, by now, you should have gained some valuable insights into website management. While this can take more time than you have to spare, your website will perform at its best in the long run. However, there’s a simple way to get around this: hire a specialist in process automation. They will know how to create codes to complete key processes when required.

This does incur a little more expense, but you’ll have more time to focus on your business and what actually goes onto your website.

Conclusion

For effective website management, you’ll need to keep embracing the latest procedures as you add more and more innovative elements to your site. As a result, the individual(s) responsible for managing your website have to evolve along with it.

Remember: your website is critical for interacting with your customer base, engaging your audience, generating leads, and processing sales. If you can keep your website maintained to a high standard, it will provide the results you need for longer and prevent you from experiencing major disruptions.

 

You may find working with a provider of website management services brings you the best results, particularly if you’re worried about handling multiple website management yourself.