What Are Hosting Control Panels?
A web hosting control panel is the dashboard that is used by website owners to perform many functions relating to the management of their website hosting. A good control panel will allow for the simple and intuitive management of domain names and email accounts, it will offer statistics and data on visitors and website activity, and it will allow the user to be able to upload, remove, and amend the files that make up their website.
Ease Of Use:
It is important that your hosting control panel is intuitive and easy to grasp. If you spend your time having to watch tutorial videos, contacting support, or making mistakes and undoing your work, then you aren’t getting the most from your hosting account. Those with little experience of web hosting will typically be better served with a control panel that offers a graphical user interface, while more advanced users may prefer greater access and a wider range of administrative features.
Domain Management Features:
Some hosting accounts enable you to add multiple domains and subdomains, and it is your hosting panel that will give you access to do this, without having to contact your hosting provider. You will be able to set up new domains, manage exactly what is installed on each domain, and even manage the amount of server space and bandwidth that each is allowed to access.
Emails are another important facet of your hosting account, and different accounts will provide a different number of email addresses. You should be able to add and remove emails, and you should also be able to access webmail for each of your accounts. If you have auto-responders and email forwarding options, these will be controlled from your administrative panel too.
Data and Statistics:
There are many statistics concerning your website that you will want access to. Server logs, error reports, and details of how much of your disk space and monthly bandwidth allowance can be used to ensure optimal performance of your website, and alert you if you need to upgrade to a more comprehensive hosting package. Analytics provide specific data relating to the people that visit your page, the pages they visit, and even how they found your website.
File and Website Management:
You will also be able to access FTP details, or manually upload files to your server using your hosting control panel. Some control panels provide one touch installation of Content Management Systems and blog platforms, and this can prove especially useful if you are inexperienced at installing software directly on to the server or are unaware of how to use FTP software. You can also control any other web applications, software, and server software that you install directly from your main dashboard.
What Is A Control Panel To You?
Different control panels offer different features, but all should provide basic access to the above features. There are those that include additional features, such as one-click installation of software to your server, but if you don’t need these features, then you don’t need to choose a hosting account that offers them. It is important that you are comfortable with the control panel software that you intend to use.