Web Hosting Tools, Scripts and Software
There are many factors to consider when searching for a web hosting provider or even starting your own web hosting business, for example: billing, customer support, payment processing, control panels, server monitoring, backups, Operating System, security and much more. The following is a collection of web hosting tools, software, scripts, control panels and other useful applications commonly used in the web hosting industry arranged in alphabetical order. You should familiarize yourself with each of these tools before making any decisions about web hosting or related services.
Automated Software Installers
- Fantastico Deluxe - Commercial auto-install script repository used in conjunction with a control panel such as cPanel. Provides an automatic install of various scripts, including Content Management Systems and community forums, within seconds.
- Installatron - Multi-platform automatic script installer compatible with the Linux, BSD and Windows Operating Systems and cPanel, DiectAdmin, InterWorx, Kloko and Plesk control panels.
- Softaculous - Leading software auto-installer compatible with cPanel, Plesk, DirectAdmin, InterWorx and H-Sphere. Softaculous currently features a still growing collection of 269 scripts and 1,000 PHP classes that can be easily and automatically installed with one click of the mouse through the supported control panels.
Backups and Data Protection
- CDP Standard and Enterprise Edition - Developed by Idera, CDP Standard (freeware) and Enterprise Edition (paid) are server backup tools that can create a copy of your data in minutes, backup to any secondary storage device, and give you the capability to restore/manage files remotely using a web-based GUI.
- R1Soft CDP Backups - Disk to disk backup solution for Windows and Linux Servers. R1Soft offers very affordable Continuous Data Protection (CDP).
- SiteVault - Professional website and MySQL database backup software. Create and restore backups and your entire website and databases.
- WHMEasyBackup - Automatic backup application designed to simplify scheduled backup of your entire WHM reseller account and all domains hosted in that reseller account to any desired destination.
Client Management, Billing and Customer Support
- BoxBilling - Completely free application for billing, customer support and client management.
- ClientExec - Client management and support system that integrates with most of the popular hosting control panels and domain registrars, which allows hosting accounts to be created automatically.
- HostBill - HostBill incorporates billing, customer support and hosting account automation in one package.
- Kayako Help Desk Software - Customer service software application with live chat support. Consists of three featured products: Kayako Fusion (multi-channel helpdesk), Kayako Engage (live customer support with chat) and Kayako Resolve (helpdesk ticket system).
- osTicket - Open source ticket system that can be used for customer support of web hosting clients. osTicket organizes submissions sent via phone, email and online forms into a single simple web interface.
- WHMCS - Completely automated system to manage clients, from billing to customer support. Gives full control of all facets of customer management from the point of signup to cancellation.
Content Delivery Networks
- CloudFlare - CloudFlare provides free and commercial, cloud based services such as a CDN (Content Delivery Network) and optimizer that can be used to strengthen security and improve the performance of websites.
- CloudFront CDN - CloudFront is Amazon's content delivery service that offers low latency through a large network of edge servers across the world. CloudFront has no minimum fee structure. You only pay for the bandwidth your website consumes (per gigabyte).
- MaxCDN - Very popular CDN used by the likes of Stack Overflow, WP Engine and Yoast.com. As of 8/27/2012 MaxCDN is offering the first terabyte of data transfer for free.
- OnApp CDN - Feature rich Content Delivery Network framework that enables hosting service providers to setup a global CDN without having to deal with expensive infrastructure costs. OnApp CDN gives you access to 91 POPs (Points of Presence) in 34 countries.
- cPanel and WHM - cPanel is a very popular control panel used in the administration of web hosting accounts to quickly and easily navigate the various web hosting aspects of a website with the use of a GUI (Graphical User Interface) and automated tools. It's the Swiss Army Knife of web hosting. WHM (WebHost Manager) is a companion control panel to cPanel that provides the ability to manage multiple hosting accounts on a dedicated server by either the server owner or hosting resellers.
- DirectAdmin - Web hosting control panel built upon ease of use, speedy performance and stability for an affordable price.
- Plesk - Plesk is a web-based control panel used to automate the routine tasks associated with running a web hosting business and daily server management.
- MySQL - Widely used open source database platform that is extremely reliable, easy to implement and performs very efficiently.
- phpMyAdmin - Free tool developed in PHP used in the management of MySQL. phpMyAdmin supports many operations through a user interface and includes the capability to execute all SQL statements.
- CentOS - Free, enterprise-class distribution of Linux used on the servers of many web hosting providers.
- CloudLinux - Operating System specifically optimized for a shared hosting environment to provide better performance and greater stability. With CloudLinux, each shared hosting client is allocated their own resource limits in a similar fashion to virtualization technology. This means one abusive user on a server doesn't affect other clients.
Scripting Languages and Web Frameworks
- Perl - Perl is a dynamic programming language with more than 24 years of research and expansion.
- PHP - PHP is a vital tool in the web hosting industry. PHP is a very popular, well supported and highly documented scripting language used by the vast majority of web developers that can be embedded in HTML files. PHP is available free of charge.
- Ruby On Rails - Open source web framework optimized for programmer happiness and sustainable productivity.
- BulletProof Security Plugin - Security plugin for Wordpress installs that offers .htaccess protection from hacking attempts using SQL injection, Base64, XSS, CRLF, CSRF, RFI and more types of code injection. BulletProof Security can alert you to unsecure files with improper chmod permissions and secure your wp-config.php, php.ini, php5.ini and wp-admin Wordpress files and directories from hacking attempts.
- Chap Secure Login - This Wordpress plugin encrypts your password when logging in using the SHA-256 hash algorithm and Chap protocol.
- ezeelogin - Server management application that behaves as a SSH gateway and provides secure storage of root passwords using 4096-bit RSA encryption.
- KVM - KVM, short for Kernel-based Virtual Machine, is a virtualization framework for Linux running on x86 hardware.
- OpenVZ - Linux software solution that provides container-based virtualization. Enables the creation of multiple Virtual Private Servers on a physical machine that give users root access and independent rebooting.
- SolusVM - Software used to manage VPS clusters with an easy to navigate GUI (Graphical User Interface). Compatible with OpenVZ, KVM, and Xen virtualization technologies.
- Xen Hypervisor - The leading open source software for virtualization. Xen is fast, secure, and has very little overhead. It is compatible with a large portion of operating systems, such as: Linux, Solaris, Windows and many flavors of BSD.
If you know of any useful web hosting tools, scripts, software applications or other resources related to web hosting that have been omitted from the list, please let me know.