What is cPanel? A Beginner’s Guide to Getting Started with cPanel

cPanel is a graphical user interface that helps you manage your website.

There are many web hosts that come with cPanel installed on their hosting platform. Additionally, there are some web hosts like Hostinger that use their own control panel.

In this post, you will learn what cPanel hosting is, its key benefits, advantages, disadvantages and more.

So, without much ado, let’s move on to the details.

What Is cPanel? The Most Used Control Panel Explained for Beginners

what is cpanel

What is cPanel?

cPanel (popularly known as Control Panel) is designed to manage your web hosting easily. cPanel hosting service is basically a Linux web hosting with cPanel installed.

cPanel is one of the world’s most popular web hosting control panels, used to manage domains and website files, create email accounts, databases, and more.

cPanel is usually included with most web hosting plans and can be easily accessed by logging into your web hosting account and clicking on the cPanel icon.

Here’s an example of what cPanel looks like (Bluehost);

cpanel interface

If you are looking for affordable hosting options then you can read more about what is shared hosting.

How to Access cPanel?

First of all, you need web hosting that uses cPanel. Once you purchase web hosting, you can find your cPanel username and password in the welcome email you receive from your web hosting provider (like Bluehost).

To log in to cPanel, you can follow these steps:

  1. Open a web browser and enter your website address, followed by a colon and the number 2083. For example, if your website address is example.com, you would enter
  2. Then, press Enter, and you will be taken to the cPanel login page
  3. Now, simply enter your cPanel username and password and click the login button. 
  4. That’s it, you will be redirected to your website control panel, where you can manage everything related to your website

If you have a new website and DNS records have not yet been generated on the server, you can use your website’s IP address instead of the domain name in Step 1.

If you forget your cPanel password, you can reset it from the cPanel login page.

3 Helpful Things You Can Do With cPanel

cPanel will make it easy to manage many things from your hosting account. Here are three useful things you can do with cPanel.

1. File Management 

cPanel makes it easy to manage all your website files.

It offers an easy graphical interface, making it easy to upload, download, edit and delete your website files.

cpanel file manager

You can manage your website files from the File Manager section of cPanel, which looks like this;

cPanel also gives you FTP access, which helps you zip and unzip files on your web hosting server. This can be extremely useful for compressing and decompressing large website files.

Here are some things you can do with the file manager;

  • Uploading and Editing Files
  • Creating New Files and New Folders
  • Renaming Files
  • Copying Files 
  • Moving Files
  • Deleting Files
  • Restoring Files and more

You can also use the built-in text editor to edit your website files directly from your cPanel hosting account.

2. Website Backups

Backups are essential for any website. In case of data loss, you can easily restore your files if you have backed up your site.

Luckily, cPanel makes it easy to take a full backup (or partial backup) of your website.

Here’s what it looks like;

cpanel backups

As you can see above, you can generate a full backup, choose your backup destination and have it send a notification to your email address once the backup is complete.

Here are some of the ways cPanel makes it easy to manage your website backups.

  • Full Backups: cPanel allows you to create full backups of your website, which includes all of your website files, databases, and email accounts.
  • Partial Backups: You can also create partial backups of your website, which include specific files, databases, or email accounts.
  • Scheduled Backups: If you want to schedule regular backups of your website, you can do that as well.
  • Remote Backups: cPanel allows you to store your website backups on a remote server, such as an FTP server or cloud storage provider (Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.).

3. Database Management

Databases are extremely important as they are required to run many applications including WordPress scripts, shopping carts, bulletin boards, etc.

cPanel gives you all the features you need to make it easy to create, manage, and maintain your database.

You can do many things, such as importing and exporting data, running SQL queries, and creating and managing database users.

This is how it looks on cPanel;

cpanel database

cPanel also allows you to manage your MySQL databases, including changing their names, passwords, and permissions. Be sure to back up your database regularly so you can restore if things go wrong.

Pros and Cons of cPanel Hosting

So, what are the pros and cons of cPanel? Let’s find out.


  • User-friendly interface: Emphasize the intuitive design and how it simplifies web management for beginners.
  • Feature-rich: Highlight specific features like file management, databases, email management, etc., instead of just mentioning a broad range.
  • Application installation: Specify popular CMS scripts supported by cPanel (e.g., WordPress, Joomla, Drupal) for better clarity.
  • Wide availability: Mention cPanel’s prevalence across various web hosting providers, making it easier for users to find compatible services.
  • Ease of use: Break down specific tasks like email creation, domain/subdomain addition, and file management to showcase user-friendliness.
  • Backups and security: Emphasize the importance and ease of backups, as well as cPanel’s built-in security features like SSL certificates and password protection.
  • Affordability: While mentioning affordability, consider providing a potential price range or highlighting its competitiveness compared to other options.
  • Multi-language and customization: Briefly mention the availability of multiple languages and customization options as additional benefits.


  • Security concerns: While security is a valid concern, avoid generalizations. Instead, mention specific vulnerabilities exploited in the past and how responsible web hosts address them (e.g., regular updates, security patches).
  • Performance: Acknowledge potential slowness with traditional servers, but also mention improved performance with SSDs or NVMe storage. Consider using “hardware limitations” instead of blaming cPanel itself.
  • Alternatives: Briefly mention alternative control panels like Plesk for broader context.

What are the Types of cPanel Hosting?

Types of Hosting with cPanel:

While cPanel is not a hosting service itself, it’s a popular control panel used on various types of hosting. Here are some common options:

Shared Hosting:

  • Best for: Beginners, low-traffic websites
  • Pricing: Starts at $2-$5/month
  • Features: Affordable, easy to manage, shared resources
  • Drawbacks: Limited performance, scalability

WordPress Hosting:

  • Best for: Optimized for WordPress websites
  • Pricing: Starts at $5-$35/month
  • Features: Pre-configured for WordPress, improved security, automatic updates
  • Drawbacks: Higher cost than shared hosting, less flexibility

VPS Hosting:

  • Best for: Growing websites, agencies
  • Pricing: Starts at $20-$50+/month
  • Features: Dedicated resources, improved performance and scalability, root access (optional)
  • Drawbacks: More complex to manage than shared hosting, higher cost

Dedicated Hosting:

  • Best for: High-traffic websites, demanding applications
  • Pricing: Starts at $50-$200+/month
  • Features: Entire server for your exclusive use, maximum performance and control
  • Drawbacks: Most expensive option, requires server administration knowledge

Other Options:

  • Reseller Hosting: Manage and sell cPanel accounts to others
  • Cloud Hosting: Scalable resources based on your needs

Alternative Control Panels:

  • Plesk: Another popular control panel with similar features

By incorporating these suggestions, you can provide a more accurate, clear, and comprehensive overview of the types of hosting available with cPanel.

FAQs | What is cPanel Hosting?

What is cPanel?

cPanel is a popular web hosting control panel that lets you manage your website easily. It provides a graphical interface to handle files, emails, databases, backups, and more.

What are the benefits of using cPanel?

  • Easy to use: cPanel’s intuitive interface makes it accessible for beginners and experienced users alike.
  • Wide range of features: Manage files, create email accounts, install applications like WordPress, and much more.
  • Automated tasks: Schedule backups, update software, and manage website security with ease.
  • Security features: Secure your website with features like password protection and two-factor authentication.

Is cPanel free?

cPanel itself is not free. However, many web hosting providers offer cPanel access as part of their hosting plans. The cost of cPanel hosting depends on the web host and the plan you choose.

Who should use cPanel?

cPanel is a good choice for website owners of all levels, including:

  • Beginners with no technical knowledge
  • Website owners managing their own sites
  • Bloggers and small businesses
  • Freelance web developers and agencies
  • Anyone looking for an easy and powerful way to manage their website

By incorporating these suggestions, you can create more accurate, clear, and concise FAQs that effectively inform your readers about cPanel hosting.

Final thoughts on what is cPanel used for

With cPanel, you can easily manage your websites without knowing many technical details.

If you are a newbie and looking for an affordable, easy-to-use control panel, you can go with a web host that uses cPanel.

What are your thoughts on cPanel dashboard? have any questions? Tell us in the comments.

My name is Megha, A computer science student with a passion for digital marketing and SEO, enjoys helping beginners build impressive WordPress websites.

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