NEW IDEAS FOR WEB HOSTING CONTROL PANELS

My web host, Steelpixelwrote that they are looking to develop a new control panel package that is:

based on more current technologies (read: apache 2.2) and something with a much nicer UI.

They asked for feedback on what works and what doesn’t with the current setup, so I thought I would think about what advice I could give in the development of the new control panel.

If I was designing a control panel, the first thing I would do would be to think about which features to include. I looked at the current control panel, which is based on Psoft’sH-Sphere, and compared it to other control panels I have used (cPanel and Media Temple’s). Below is a list of common functions:

Account settings

  • Users: Manage profiles of users with access to the account
  • Billing: view billing statements, upgrade/change the hosting plan used by the account, view/pay account’s current balance
  • Support: file a new support ticket, manage existing support tickets

Server settings

  • Domain management: View the IP address/nameservers of domains; manage DNS zones, subdomains, and aliases; view HTML directory
  • FTP/SSH: Manage FTP/SSH users
  • Mail: Manage email users, email aliases, and anti-virus/anti-spam settings
  • Databases: Add/manage MySQL/PostgreSQL databases
  • PHP Settings: manage the way the server interacts with PHP, change the version of PHP used by each domain
  • Statistics: View reports on bandwidth and disk usage, view reports on webpage statistics
  • SSL Certificates: Add/manage SSL certificates

I think that the next step is examining the current control panel and deciding which features need improvement, and if functions from the old control panel can be incorporated into the new one.