As we all know, cPanel doesn’t fully support Nginx yet, it will be ready in the future as it is one of the most requested features from their users. However, in the meantime, if you want to have Nginx on cPanel you will have to do it using 3rd party modules.
Nginx is almost 2x fast as Apache while serving requests, it handles static requests in a excellent way, and even dynamic requests while integrated with php-fpm daemon.
cPanel is one of the most widely used control panels in the web hosting industry, and having Nginx installed into cPanel can give you tremendous boost in speed and server performance as it consumes less resources than Apache.
Why should I switch from Apache to Nginx in my cPanel server?
cPanel uses the Apache HTTPD web server since forever. And as we all know, Apache is slow.
When traffic starts rising on your server, websites become popular, or you just have lot of websites inside a cPanel server, then your web performance starts going down. Apache is useful if you have a small number of websites, however when you have hundreds of websites, it is not the ideal http server to be run inside your cPanel box (unless you have lot of money to upgarde your hardware resources).
Nginx comes to help your cPanel server. This doesn’t mean you have to replace your Apache totally, you can even use Nginx as a front end proxy to help Apache handling the static resources of your websites.
This is one of the most classical ways to use Nginx on cPanel, as a proxy. Nginx will serve all the static stuff like js, css, png, gif, jpeg images, and you can still use old Apache for PHP dynamic content.
This kind of setup will drop your RAM and CPU usage a lot, and your sites will run faster, and we all know Google love fast websites 🙂
Best Nginx Modules for cPanel and WHM
Let’s see which ones are the best Nginx modules for cPanel servers, some of this modules are free, while others are commercial, but both let you accomplish your goal: install nginx on cpanel.
Engintron is one of the best free Nginx modules for cPanel and WHM. Allows you to install nginx on cpanel easily without any technical knowledge.
It supports reverse caching proxy, Nginx updates automatically, and a very fancy web dashboard from where you can control your IT services like Nginx, PHP and MySQL.
NginxCP is our second Nginx favourite free module for cPanel, it was one of the first plugins to offer Nginx on cPanel.
NginxCP has a really nice WHM interface, where you can manage your Nginx vhosts, also you can setup php-fpm, as well as proxy cache and php-fpm cache.
cPnginx was one of the first commercial Nginx modules for cPanel. It’s a really solid module taht will help you to setup Nginx on cPanel, with this module you will get the best performance for your cPanel server for sure.
Main features include: Nginx updates automatically, 24×7 tech support, API available for developers and a full WHMCS module to integrate with your billing / support system.
It costs $5/month, a really small amout of money when you think about the huge benefits it can give you.
This is a pretty new Nginx module for cPanel servers.
Xtendweb offers native Nginx setup of web apps, it can be configured to interact with dynamic PHP daemons like HHVM or PHP-FPM, but also Phusion Passenger for languages like Python/NodeJS/RoR.
One interesting thing offered with XtendWeb is the ability to deploy apps across multple servers, don’t know how they do it (due to the fact that even cPanel native software doesn’t support this) but looks like a promising feature required by many Nginx + cPanel based users.
Xtendweb also comes with built in anti-ddos layer7 DDOS mitigation, and users can protect their websites by using WAF rules from ModSecurity or NAXSI.
That’s all for today. Hope you can use one of this Nginx modules to boost your cPanel server performance.
Until cPanel arrives with built in native Nginx support, we will have to rely on 3rd party modules.
And if you alrady run Nginx on cPanel, what’s your experience working with it as proxy? Did you noticed a lower CPU and RAM usage?