Each Panel release introduces new features, and we incorporate some of them, those that address Panel administration, into this guide. This chapter lists the new features since Panel 10.2. The features are grouped by release and are accompanied by short descriptions and links so that you can easily acquaint with them and read more as needed.
Improved web server performance with nginx (Linux hosting)
Administrators can improve the work of the web server which hosts customer websites by installing nginx, a supplementary high-performance web server specifically designed for delivering large amounts of static content. The system will configure this server to work as a reverse proxy - nginx becomes a frontend web server that stands between the Internet and Apache and processes all incoming requests from site visitors.
Such combination of two servers gives the following advantages:
Learn more about the nginx support in the section Improving Web Server Performance with nginx (Linux).
Improved security: The enhanced security mode
In order to improve Panel security, administrators can turn on the enhanced security mode. In this mode, Panel employs multiple security mechanisms to protect the data from unauthorized access. Learn more in the section Turning On the Enhanced Security Mode.
Improved security: Password-protected backups
Administrators can protect backups with a password for additional security. Learn more in the section Backup and Restoration.
Improved security: Forcing users to employ stronger passwords
You can force Panel users to employ only those passwords that meet the minimum strength requirements. There are five password strength levels which will help you to get the right balance between required protection and password complexity. Learn more in the section Setting Up the Minimum Password Strength.
Activating Panel by an activation code
Administrators can activate Panel either by uploading an XML key as they did before or by using the new way - providing an activation key. Learn more in the section Panel Licensing.
Transparent activation of commercial APS apps
It is possible to purchase a Panel license in a bundle with APS app licenses. When administrators activate Panel using such combined keys and then install the corresponding commercial apps, the system transparently activates the apps without any actions from the administrator.
Instant configuration of WebMatrix® (Windows hosting)
If a hosting user decides to use Microsoft WebMatrix® for website development, they can instantly set up web publishing of code from their local environment directly to their customer account. For this, they should just download an XML file with settings and import it to WebMatrix®. Learn more in the section Web Publishing with Web Deploy (Windows).
Simple view for customers
Shared hosting providers can offer customers simpler interface by hiding unnecessary interface elements of Control Panel. Learn more.
Custom view for administrators
VPS and dedicated server providers can offer power users simpler interface by hiding unnecessary elements in the user interface. Alternatively, Panel administrators themselves can switch to Custom view voluntarily and choose only tools they would like to use. The view is activated in Settings > Interface Settings or in the initial configuration wizard. Learn more.
Customers can control user access to subscriptions under their hosting account
Customers can specify that a certain auxiliary user can log in only to a certain subscription in case the customers have multiple subscriptions on the same hosting account. This feature also eases migration from earlier Panel versions. After the migration, administrators have no need to activate former domain administrator accounts as they are already active and limited to a certain subscription. Learn more in the section (Advanced) Managing Auxiliary User Accounts.
Customizable PHP configuration
Since Panel 10.4, PHP settings are exposed to Panel GUI and both administrators and resellers have the ability to adjust them individually for each hosting plan or subscription. Moreover, customers (if allowed) can adjust their PHP settings preset individually for each of their websites and subdomains. Learn more about custom PHP configuration in the section Customize PHP Configuration.
Managing hosting from Server Administration Panel
Panel 10.4 adds new interface option that allows administrators to manage hosting services right in Server Administration Panel. In earlier Panel versions, administrators could manage hosting only from Control Panel opened in a new window. Learn more about Panel GUI options in the section Interface Views.
Access to Panel tools and settings from a single page
It is easier for administrators to locate certain Panel tools or settings as all of them are now available from the single Tools & Settings page. In earlier versions, Panel settings and tools were located on separate pages (Settings and Tools & Utilities) confusing administrators in their effort to find a certain Panel option. Read more about carrying out administrative tasks in Panel Configuration and Panel Administration.
Quick search of Panel tools and objects
Administrators and customers can quickly find any Panel object (say, a subscription, domain or mail account) or navigate to any Panel page (say, to the service plan or spam filter settings and so on) by using the search bar. The search bar is located in the top right corner of Panel. Learn more about the Panel GUI in the section The Panel GUI.
Panel update and upgrade improvements
Panel 10.4 introduces a number of features that make keeping Panel up-to-date even easier:
Learn more in the section Panel Updates and Upgrades.
Backup Manager improvements
We added a number of new features to the Backup Manager tool that make it even handier:
Learn more about saving and restoring Panel data in Backup and Restoration.
Migration tools improvements
Panel meets customers' needs and introduces long-awaited features in migration tools:
Learn more about Panel data migration in Migrating Data from Other Hosting Platforms.
Refined overuse settings
We redesigned the settings to make it clear that there are three options: Do not allow overuse, allow only disk space or traffic overuse, or allow overuse of all resources. For more information about resources overuse, see Resources.
Usability improvements, the Domains page
This release introduces the list of minor yet important improvements to the Domains page (Server Administration Panel). These improvements address the needs of administrators and resellers. The list is as follows:
Learn more about hosting services management in Managing Customers and Subscriptions in Panel.
DNS templates for subdomains
Administrators can create a template of a DNS record for subdomains. This record will be added to all subdomains on a domain. The template is created using the <subdomain>.<domain> wildcard. Learn more about DNS configuration in the section DNS.
It is easier for customers to control disk space occupied by each mailbox as it is shown right on the Mail tab.
Adding files to archive in File Manager
Customers can add files and folders to archive using the new Add to Archive button in the File Manager tool (in Control Panel, the Websites & Domains tab).
APS 1.2 support
Some apps support new exciting capabilities of the APS 1.2 engine:
For more information on managing APS apps, refer to the section Web Applications.
Panel allows you and your webspace users to share files with each other or anyone on the Internet. Learn more in the section Sharing Files and Folders.
Now you can switch between Service Provider and Power User views at any time through the Panel GUI. In earlier Panel versions, this operation was accessible only through the command line. Learn more in The Panel GUI.
Parallels Plesk Panel now supports operation on IPv6 addresses. Administrators and resellers can offer service plans on IPv4 and IPv6, or create dual-stack subscriptions (on one IPv4 + one IPv6 address). To learn more, see the section IP Pool.
Server name indication extension on Linux-based Panel servers
Parallels Plesk Panel for Linux allows authentic SSL certificates to be used for sites hosted on shared IP addresses. This was achieved with the added support for the Server Name Indication (SNI) extension to the Transport Layer Security protocol. To learn more, see the section SSL and Shared IP Addresses (Linux).
Customer accounts without subscriptions
When creating a new customer account, you can now choose whether to create a subscription with a website for that customer. Creating accounts without subscriptions can be useful if you do not need to set up a website for a customer at the moment, and want to transfer a subscription from another customer account, or set up a subscription later.
To learn more, see the section Subscribing Customers to Plans in Panel.
Now it is easier for administrators to create their own hosting accounts with the Panels that also serve hosting customers and resellers. Switching to Power User view that is intended for creating and managing administrator's own hosting accounts no longer means you have to give up hosting reselling anymore. Learn more about this view in the sections Web Hosting Management and The Panel GUI.