A comparison between cPanel and Direct Admin

What is the best web control panel for me?
At Big Wet Fish we used to recommend cPanel exclusively as our hosting control panel partner of choice. cPanel was acquired by a venture capitalist company back in 2019 and raised their prices significantly. We still love cPanel as a product and if you can afford it we absolutely recommend it but the price of the product makes it out of reach for some clients. We offer Direct Admin as a cheaper alternative control panel that has a lot of features and works really well for many clients. About 50% of our client base still use cPanel and about 50% have moved to Direct Admin.

What is a web hosting control panel?
cPanel and DirectAdmin are two popular web hosting control panels that allow website owners to manage their hosting accounts and websites. Here are some key similarities and differences between cPanel and DirectAdmin:

 Both cPanel and DirectAdmin offer a graphical user interface (GUI) that makes it easy to manage web hosting accounts.
 Both control panels provide a range of features including email management, file management, database management, DNS management, and security settings.
 Both cPanel and DirectAdmin work perfectly on our web hosting platform

 User Interface: cPanel has a more modern, user-friendly interface with more graphical elements, while DirectAdmin has a simpler, text-based interface that some users may find easier to navigate. There will be a bit of a learning curve to move to Direct Admin
 Pricing: cPanel is generally more expensive than DirectAdmin, which may make it less accessible for smaller businesses or individuals on a budget. cPanel now charge on a per account basis making it expensive for agencies with many websites whereas Direct Admin allow unlimited websites to be hosted on a large server for the flat monthly fee.
 Features: While both control panels offer a wide range of features, cPanel is known for having more advanced features such as integrated website builders, support for Ruby and Python, and a more extensive selection of third-party integrations. Many clients who remain with cPanel do so because of the WordPress Toolkit Pro that comes with the license to help them manage development and staging sites as they work to develop website for their clients.
 Resource Usage: DirectAdmin is known for being lightweight and using fewer resources than cPanel, which may be advantageous for those with limited server resources.
 Security: cPanel is known for its robust security features, including support for two-factor authentication and automatic updates, while DirectAdmin is relatively less advanced in this regard.
 A small subset of clients have reported that Direct Admin when installed on a server operates more slowly and the same subset have seen a boost in performance when they move back to cPanel. This is not true for all clients and we have no real evidence aside from client contact about this.

Overall, the choice between cPanel and DirectAdmin will depend on individual needs and preferences. While cPanel is generally more feature-rich and user-friendly, it may be too expensive or resource-intensive for some users. DirectAdmin, on the other hand, is a more affordable and lightweight alternative, but may not offer as many advanced features or robust security measures as cPanel.

The good news is our team are experts at what we do so if you do rent a server with Direct Admin and then decide to move to cPanel (or vice versa) we can help move you and also ensure you keep your IP address. Migrating a server may sound like a daunting process but our team are here to assist with this and make it as painless an experience as possible.

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