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Choosing Between cPanel and Plesk

If you’ve been into web hosting long, you may know of all the different control panels. You know their nuances and differences, as well as the strengths of each:

But the sad truth is, we often forget these things, and wind up using the same control panel out of habit. If that’s you, then take this refresher on the two most popular panels around, cPanel and Plesk. We’ll dive into both, and get right down to the nitty gritty competitive nature of each.

What is cPanel And Plesk, Anyway?

For those more familiar with the business, you’ll already know that cPanel is the most popular platform for managing a server. What you may not know is that cPanel has been around since the mid-1990s and is more or less only compatible with Unix and Linux systems. This means it plays along nicely with Red Hat and CentOS.

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Plesk, on the other hand, is a relative newcomer to the scene, arriving in the early 2000s. The difference with it is—you guessed it—it supports both Unix and Windows. So who’s got a real leg up on who? To answer, we’ll need to take a look at the strengths of each. We’ll start with the heavyweight, cPanel:

cPanel is The Windows Of Server Systems

What we mean by this is, because cPanel is so widely used, if you have a problem you can more than likely find a solution. There’s a very large group of people using the software, and because cPanel enjoys such a large support basis, its been studied to death. It also sports an easier to learn interface than Plesk, meaning it plays nicer with the masses, and makes it easier to get into web hosting. In essence, cPanel web hosting is as Ubuntu is to Linux—Please don’t shoot me Tux nerds: I’m just creating analogies!

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Plesk Is Bi-server-ual

Plesk, on the other hand, handles multiple servers and operating systems like a champ. The interface is a bit more complicated, and has a slightly steeper learning curve, but in return it supports both Unix and Windows. It also handles multiple commands better than cPanel.

At the end of the day, as most quality hosting options give you a choice between both services, your real conundrum is this: Do you want ease of use with a Unix face, or do you want a multi-server Windows machine?

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