How to get started with Plesk web hosting
Plesk is an advanced web hosting and WordPress management platform. It empowers you to build and manage multiple sites from a single dashboard. With Plesk, you can handle updates, monitor performance and onboard new prospects all from the one place.
Power up your web hosting platform by plugging in your favourite tools. Plesk comes complete with a secure and versatile toolkit for running WordPress. Deploying a new website is easier than ever before!
Plesk offers a pre-installed software stack in a dedicated public template on UpCloud which makes getting started quick and easy. Follow along with this tutorial to deploy your Plesk server.
First things first, if you have not yet registered on UpCloud, begin by getting signed up. Follow the link here to register for a free trial to get started!
Deploying Plesk server
Once registered, log into your UpCloud Control Panel and get cracking!
The next thing you’ll need to do is deploy your Plesk cloud server.
Deploying a new server on UpCloud is an easy and straightforward process. To get started, select to Deploy a server under the Servers section at your UpCloud Control Panel.
The deployment page shows a number of options for customising your Plesk server.
- Choose the location where you want to deploy your server
- Pick a configuration, the $20 per month plan offers great performance to host multiple sites
- Select the Plesk server image from the public templates
- Add any SSH keys you might want to use if any
- Give your server a hostname and description
You can find more detailed instructions on server deployment at our newcomer’s tutorials.
Once deployed, you’ll receive the root password for your new server by your chosen delivery method, email by default. You can also see the password at the notification area at your UpCloud control panel. Make note of your root password as well as your server IP address since you will need them to log in using SSH.
You should also configure a domain name record to point to the public IP address of your Plesk server. This will allow you to get a head start on setting up your first website. This can generally be done at your domain registrars service. Read more about DNS and how to configure DNS records.
Initialising Plesk server
Once your cloud server has finished deploying, log in via SSH using the root user and password. When logging in, you will be notified about the Plesk running on the server and how to get started.
This server is powered by Plesk. Run the 'plesk login' command and log in by browsing either of the links received in the output. Use the 'plesk' command to manage the server. Run 'plesk help' for more info.
Run the following command as suggested to generate a login link to your Plesk control panel.
Then open one of the two links pointing to your Plesk control panel in your web browser.
Use your root user and password to sign in the first time.
Once you’ve logged in, Plesk will ask you to create an account for the control panel.
- Select a username or use the default “admin” user
- Enter an email address for communications and password recovery
- Then create a password or generate one at random by clicking the Generate button
- If you already have a license, you can add it at this point, otherwise, select the trial license
- Lastly, read through the end-user license agreement and select the tick box to accept
When all set, click the Enter Plesk button to continue.
Plesk will then initialise the control panel which might take a moment. Afterwards, you’ll be directed to the login page.
Sign in using the username and password you created in the previous step.
You’ll then be welcomed by the Plesk dashboard.
Plesk is then ready to start installing websites but could still use a little attention to detail. Continue with the next section on how to optimise your Plesk server for performance and security.
Optimising for performance and security
The default Plesk installation comes with everything necessary out of the box. However, it can also benefit from a few additional extensions and optimisations. Luckily, making the recommended configurations is easy thanks to the user-friendly Plesk Advisor.
Go to the Advisor view under the Extensions menu.
The Advisor divides the recommendations between security, performance, search-engine-optimisations, updates and backups. You can browse each of the sections to see the available quick actions to install or enable useful extensions and features.
However, instead of making enabling each option manually, you can use the multi-action automation. Click the Apply Multiple Recommendations button on the Recommendations tab. Then choose which of the recommendations you want to apply and click the Apply button at the bottom.
Plesk will then apply each selected recommendation automatically without any further actions necessary. Afterwards, you should get a confirmation of the installed and applied recommendations and see the server rating go up to green levels.
Note that the backup section is still reporting a low score due to having only the basic schedule set. For the best effect, we recommend enabling a backup plan at the cloud server level.
To do this, go to your UpCloud Control Panel and the Backups tab under the server settings.
Then select either the Week, Month or Year plan depending on how long you wish to keep backups and click the Save button to apply the changes.
You are now all set to start adding websites. However, some of the enabled settings could still use looking after for the best effect. For example, you should enable two-factor-authentication using the installed Google Authenticator extension.
Looking for inspiration on how to make the most of your Plesk server? You can find interesting stories and insights by joining the Plesk community.
For any Plesk related questions and issues, don’t hesitate to contact the Plesk expert support.
Furthermore, UpCloud support is always happy to help with any cloud infrastructure inquiries.