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! 

6 Things to Keep in Mind When Choosing an Ideal Server for Big Data Requirements

Big data refers to a massive volume of data sets that can not be processed by typical software or conventional computing techniques. Along with high volume, the term also indicates the diversity in tools, techniques, and frameworks that make it challenging to tackle and process the data. When stored and processed properly, this massive data can offer deep insights to the businesses. There are a number of ways in which big data can help businesses grow at an accelerated rate.

How Can Businesses Benefit From Big Data?

The businesses can store and process high amounts of data from diverse internal and external sources. Like company databases, social networks, and search engines to get excellent business ideas. It can also allow them to forecast the events that can have a direct impact on business operations and performance. On the marketing front, it can help you increase the conversion rate by offering only relevant schemes, launches, and promo offers to the customers based on their buying behavior. The progressive companies are using big data for new product development, understanding the market conditions, and utilizing the present and upcoming trends for direct business benefits.

The Role of Server in Big Data

For enjoying the optimum business benefits out of big data it’s important to choose the ideal hardware that can proactively assist in big data operations without significantly inflating the costs or complications. There are some challenges to address like determining the processing requirements, high volume data storage at superfast speed, and supporting simultaneous computations of massive levels without compromising with the output. An important part of this strategy is to choose the right type of server. 

The standard servers generally lack the resource volume and technical configuration required for various big data operations. So you would need the premium, purpose-built servers that are specially tailored to accommodate the massive data volume. As well as support the computational, analytical, and processing tasks. However, the final decision should be based on your specific requirements as no two customers are the same. You can find additional information on big data hosting in this previous article

In this blog we are going to present some of the ideal factors to keep in mind while deciding on the ideal server for ensuring optimum big data benefits:

1. Choose Servers with High-Capacity

The ideal properties of a big data server are massive storage, ultra-fast recovery, and high-end analytical capability. So, you need the servers that have the right configuration and capacities to meet all these requirements without any compromise.

  • Volume. As the name suggests, the big data feeds on loads of data that can go up to petabytes. For the uninformed, a single Petabyte is equal to 1,000,000 GB. So, make sure that your server can not only handle this massive amount of data but can also continue working consistently while handling it.
  • Real-Time Analysis. The USP of big data is organizing and structuring a huge volume of diverse and unstructured data and seamlessly adding the latter to the available structured data. So, you would need the servers with very high processing capacities to handle this requirement efficiently without fail.
  • Retrieval capabilities. Big data has big objectives too. For instance, real-time stock trading analysis where even a fraction of seconds matters a lot and can introduce multiple changes. For that, your server should fully support multiple users who are concurrently adding multiple inputs every second.

2. Sufficient Memory

RAM is one of the prime requirements for big data analytics tools and applications. Using RAM instead of storage will significantly accelerate the processing speed and help you to gain more output in relatively less time. It translates to better productivity and quicker time-to-market – the two factors that offer you a competitive edge in the industry. Due to varying requirements in terms of volumes and operations, it is not possible to advise on a typical RAM volume. However, to be on the safer side it is good to go with at least 64GB RAM. The readers are advised to discuss their requirements with the providers to know about the ideal memory requirements for their purpose.

3. Better RoI with NoSQL Databases, MPP and MapReduce

You also need to assist your clients in neatly segregating the analytical and operational requirements. It requires wisely optimizing the server hardware to meet the purpose. It is best to go for the NoSQL databases.

Unlike traditional databases, the NoSQL databases are not limited to a single server but can be widely spread across multiple servers. It helps it in dealing with tremendous computations by multiplying its capabilities manifolds and instantly scale up to the changing requirements in a fraction of seconds.

NoSQL databases can be defined as a mechanism that doesn’t use the tabular methodology for saving the data. Its non-relational data storage technology efficiently helps the businesses overcome the limitations and complexity inherent in traditional relational databases. To the end-users, this mechanism offers high speed scaling at relatively very less cost.

To accelerate the analytical big data capabilities you can rely on MPP databases (massively parallel processing) and MapReduce. These databases can significantly outscale the traditional single severs. You may also look for the NoSQL systems with inbuilt MapReduce functionality that allows it to scale to the cloud or a cluster of servers along with NoSQL.

4. Sufficient Network Capacity

You would need to send massive data volumes to the server. Lack of sufficient network capacity can throttle your operations. Be considerate of the fluctuations as well. You wouldn’t regularly be writing huge data volumes, which means that buying high bandwidth plans isn’t a cost-efficient solution for you. So, opt for the bespoke bandwidth solutions that allow you to select the ideal bandwidth to competently fulfill your data transfer requirements.

You can choose different bandwidth packages starting from 20 TB and going up to 1000 TB per month. To make things easier you may like to inform your provider about your expected data transfer requirements and ask them about the ideal bandwidth volume. Reputed providers can also offer you unmetered bandwidth for more demanding enterprise clients. Depending upon the volume and frequency of data 1Gbps is the least amount of bandwidth you require for your server.

5. Purpose-Specific Storage Capabilities

Along with storing permanent data your server also needs to accommodate huge amounts of intermediate data produced during various analytical processes. So, you would need sufficient data storage, Instead of choosing storage based on their capacity, think about their relevance for your purpose. The reputed vendors would always suggest you check your requirements before buying the storage. For instance, investing huge amounts on expensive SSD storage doesn’t make sense if your data storage requirements are modest and the traditional HDD can solve your purpose at much lower prices. 

6. High-End Processing Capacity

The analytics tools related to big data generally divide the processing operations across different threads. These threads are distributed across different cores of the machine and are executed simultaneously. For a modest, to average load, you need 8-16 cores but may require more than that depending on the load. The rule of thumb is to prefer a higher number of cores rather than a smaller volume of highly powerful cores if you are looking for more competent performance. 

Should You Use Software for Server Optimization to Meet Big Data Requirements?

The big data ecosystem has very specific needs that standard data servers with limited capabilities in terms of multitasking, output, and analytical insights can’t support. It also lacks the ultra-speed needed for real-time analytical data processing. So, you would require bespoke enterprise servers that seamlessly adapt to your particular needs in terms of volume, velocity, and diverse logical operations. For massive big data operations, you may need white box servers.

While technically it’s possible to employ software for optimizing the server environment. It may prove to be an expensive option in the long run by significantly reducing the RoI.

It also exposes your system to various security risks while at the same time increasing the management hassles like license acquisition/maintenance, etc. Moreover, you would have limited opportunities to fully utilize the available resources and infrastructure. 

On the other hand, using a purpose-specific server for the big data requirements offers multiple benefits like:

  • More operations per I/O that translate to better computational power 
  • Higher capabilities for parallel processing 
  • Improved virtualization power
  • Better scalability
  • Modular design benefits
  • Higher memory
  • Better utilization of the processor

Additionally, specially tailored servers can smartly work in collaboration. To assure the best possible utilization, virtualization, and parallel processing requirements. Due to their specific architecture, it’s easier to scale and manage them.

Conclusion

Big data can help your business grow at a very high rate. However, in order to get the best benefits out of your big data strategy, you need to build a purpose-specific ecosystem that also includes ideal hardware.

So, we mentioned some major factors to keep in mind while choosing the ideal server for your big data requirements. And now it’s time for you to let us know in the comments section below how do you think you can benefit from it. We want to hear from you!