Author Archives: AndrewT

cPanel 102: Jupiter WHM Theme & cPanel Icons

Nearly four months after its initial edge release, cPanel 102 has reached the stable release tier and we’ve been slowly deploying it across our servers. The biggest and most immediate change that you’ll notice is the new Jupiter WHM theme which has replaced the old X3 theme. After receiving several updates in earlier releases, the new theme is now functionally similar to that of the old one, just with a fresh look that matches the Jupiter cPanel theme. Here’s a quick comparison look:

Overall, we think this is a nice improvement and know that the cPanel developers are still working towards improving it further. The Jupiter cPanel theme has also been updated with icons for each item:

If you have any questions or run into any issues with the new WHM theme please let us know and we’ll be happy to lend a hand or report any issues to cPanel directly.

WordPress LiteSpeed Cache Plugin

For more than twelve years, our hosting servers have exclusively used the performance focused LiteSpeed Web Server (LSWS). One of the most powerful features of LSWS is LSCache, a caching solution built directly into the web server. Over the years, LiteSpeed has created several free plugins to assist with configuring popular scripts to use LSCache.

Currently, there are eleven of these plugins available and we wanted to quickly highlight the WordPress plugin, which is by far the most popular. It compares very favorably to the many other WP caching plugins out there.

LiteSpeed Cache for WordPress (LSCWP) can be quickly and easily installed from within any WordPress instance. You can simply search for the “LiteSpeed Cache” plugin within your WP, then install and active it to get started. If you’re just wanting basic caching functionality that is intended to work with most WP instances, you won’t need to do anything further though they do have a very helpful Beginner’s Guide.

For those wanting to dig a little deeper, you can adjust settings to better suit your needs and even take advantage of the optimization features offered through LiteSpeed’s QUIC.cloud. To help you get started, all domains hosted on our servers receive free QUIC.cloud credits each month, allowing you to use their image / site optimization and a small amount of CDN bandwidth.

We encourage you to give LiteSpeed Cache for WordPress a try to see how it can improve your website!

PHP 8.1 Now Available

We’re pleased to announce that PHP 8.1 (8.1.2) is now available on all of our servers. You can easily change the PHP version per cPanel account via the “Select PHP Version” option in cPanel.

PHP 8.1 comes with numerous improvements and new features such as:

Additional information concerning the version 8.1 release can be found on PHP’s website here and the migration guide is also available. Please consult these for a detailed list of new features and backward incompatible changes. For third party applications, it’s best to confirm that they support PHP 8.1 before making the switch. However, if you run into any issues you can quickly and easily revert back to your prior version.

Please note that only a limited number of extensions are currently available for PHP 8.1. We will continue to make new ones available as soon as they are offered. We now offer secure versions of PHP 5.4 through 8.1 which are all easily selectable from within cPanel. Version 8.0 is now the default for all new cPanel accounts while existing accounts will continue to retain their prior settings.

Critical WP Plugin Vulnerabilities – All in One SEO

With more than three million active installs, All in One SEO is a very popular WordPress plugin. Two critical vulnerabilities, one privilege escalation and one SQL injection, were recently discovered in all versions of this plugin from 4.0.0 through 4.1.5.2. We have already seen exploitation of these vulnerabilities on client websites. If you are using this plugin, please urgently make sure that you have updated it to the latest version (4.1.5.3) which addresses these vulnerabilities.

Warning: cPanel Phishing Emails

Please be advised that we’ve been seeing an increase in the number of cPanel phishing emails being reported to us. Phishing emails are those that look like legitimate emails but they often contain malicious links disguised as legitimate ones in an attempt to obtain login information from the recipient.

As an example, below is a redacted copy of an email that one of our clients received just a few days ago.

These emails will include your actual domain name and at first glance, will look like a legitimate cPanel disk quota notification. The anchor text of the links even correctly points to cPanel URLs on your domain. However, if you hover over those links, you can see in the bottom left corner that their target is a third party phishing website on an unrelated domain. If you were to enter your cPanel login information at that URL, attackers would then have your login information and use it for malicious purposes.

The best way to avoid getting phished is to not click on links in emails. Instead, visit cPanel or whatever service you need to by directly entering the address into your browser. Once you login, you may find that the details in the email (disk usage in this case) don’t align with reality which can be a good indicator that this was a phishing attempt. In this particular case, though, the client’s domain was actually quite full so that alone wasn’t helpful in distinguishing a difference.

If you ever have concerns about the legitimacy of any such email notifications just submit a ticket with the full headers and source of the message and we would be happy to take a look for you. It’s always best, though, to just assume the worst and not click on any of these links. Instead, just enter your desired destination directly in your browser.

Clientexec 6.4: Redesigned Client Area & New Order Forms

A few months ago, we posted about the big changes coming in Clientexec 7. While version 7 has been pushed back, the product roadmap has changed along with it. Instead of releasing all of those big changes at once, they have opted to stagger their release across a few releases.

This lengthened release process started last month with the release of version 6.4, which included the redesigned client area and new order forms. The new client area, shown below, is a tremendous improvement and fully responsive.

Three new order forms were also added, two of which are shown below. The third is a new domain order form.

To add to these, Clientexec’s new affiliate system will be launched soon in version 6.5. The redesigned admin interface and all new reporting can be expected in version 7.

Existing Clientexec users can upgrade their instance to take advantage of these new interfaces if they haven’t already. If you’re interested in giving Clientexec a try or are looking for a cheaper alternative to WHMCS, submit a ticket and we’ll happily set you up with a free trial.

New cPanel Theme: Jupiter

cPanel’s latest theme, Jupiter, is now available on all of our servers. It is the default for all newly created packages and you can edit your existing packages to use it if so desired.

Although their development path isn’t particularly clear, you’ll notice this theme closely resembles the Glass style that was recently released for the Paper Lantern theme. They are instead moving forward with this new theme, Jupiter, and will be removing Paper Lantern entirely in Spring of 2022.

While this new theme is functional, there are a couple of things you should be aware of.

  • Customization is limited. Additional capabilities will be added in future releases.
  • The CloudLinux Resource Usage section is not currently present. This should start showing up within the next few weeks as updated stable builds of their lvemanager package are published.

In addition to this cPanel theme, they are reportedly working on a version of Jupiter for WHM as well, slated for release in cPanel version 100. Below is a low resolution teaser image that they sent out showing this.

A new look to WHM would certainly be welcome but we’ll have to wait and see for sure what their plans are. In the meantime, check out the cPanel theme and let us know what you think!

cPanel 96: New Glass Style & Updated DNS Zone Manager

With cPanel version 96 now installed on all of our servers, we wanted to take a quick moment and highlight a couple of the included changes.

New Glass Style for Paper Lantern

A new style, named Glass, has been added to the Paper Lantern theme. This is basically just a more lightweight, minimalistic version of the existing Basic style. Upon first look you might even wonder why none of the icons loaded but rest assured that is intentional.

While cPanel has tried to force this as the default for all new cPanel accounts, we’ve instead reverted back to the Basic style to avoid any confusion. You can easily change styles at any time via the “Change Style” link in cPanel. If you would like to set a default style at the WHM reseller level you can do that as well via Customization -> Customize Style in WHM.

DNS Zone Manager

A couple of very important improvements were made to WHM’s recent addition, the DNS Zone Manager. It now has the ability to manage multiple records at the same time and the ability to change a record’s type. The lack of these two capabilities had really limited the usefulness of this functionality up until now.

With the DNS Zone Manager now being more functional, the legacy “Edit DNS Zone” functionality has been removed entirely in cPanel 96. The Edit MX Entry interface has also been removed and replaced with an Email Routing Configuration page that replicates the same Email Routing functionality that is available within cPanel.

While not groundbreaking by any means, these changes may alter your workflow a little bit. If you have any questions about the new interfaces or require any other assistance please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

Clientexec 7 & WHMCS Price Increases

WHMCS is a popular web hosting billing platform and like cPanel, is a WebPros brand. Earlier this month, WHMCS sent out notifications concerning upcoming price increases effective July 1st. Instead of a flat fee, WHMCS license pricing is now based on the number of active clients and starts at $18.95 per month for up to 250 clients, $29.95 for up to 500 clients and $44.95 for up to 1,000 clients.

For those familiar with WebPros, this was not a surprise. Since 2017, WebPros has been adding web hosting related brands to their portfolio and altering their pricing structures to be considerably more costly to their user base. This includes changing cPanel license pricing from a flat fee to per cPanel account, which has increased our own cPanel licenses costs by 900%.

Given that cPanel pricing has increased significantly each of the past two years, it would not be unexpected to see further WHMCS price increases in the future. Growing frustration industry wide has led to many abandoning WebPros brands entirely. It’s difficult to trust a business with this pattern of behavior.

Fortunately for WHMCS users, there are alternatives available. One of these is Clientexec, which we have offered for $4.00 per month for the past 15 years. With Clientexec 7 coming this quarter, now is a great opportunity to take advantage of this very attractive discounted pricing.

Clientexec 7 will feature a completely refreshed admin area, client area and order forms utilizing Bootstrap for a fully responsive experience. It will also include a new, fully fledged affiliate system. Further details concerning the upcoming improvements can be found on their coming soon page here. For those looking to migrate their WHMCS data over to ClientExec, documentation concerning this process is available here.

If you would like to add a Clientexec license to your account or need any assistance getting it setup please submit a ticket via our portal and we’ll be happy to help.