Webinar About the New Client Area and Site Tools

Last week we featured our new Client area and Site Tools in a webinar. We share the recording in this post together with the answers of all questions to which we could not reply during the live show.

 

A lot of users’ questions were answered by Nikolay and I during the live webinar. However, there were some that we couldn’t get to and we’ve added them below along with the answers.

Questions about addon domains:

Q: [Bruce Gandy:] What about existing Addon Domains?
A:
Existing add-on domains will become separate independent sites in the new User Area. Each site will have its own sets of Site Tools. Once you log in to Site Tools with your username and password, you will be able to change between your sites from the Site dropdown in the header.

Q: How do I manage addon domains?
A:
Existing add-on domains will become separate independent sites in the new User Area and each will have its own sets of Site Tools. You will not be able to create new addons, instead, you can easily create new sites in your hosting plan (Websites > New site).

Q: I have MANY 'Addon Domain'.s. what will happen to them?
A:
All your addons will be converted to sites. The advantage of having them independent from each other is the enhanced security and isolation.

 

Questions regarding the File Manager:

Q: [Sune:] Can we copy files from one website to another website as in old filemanager root?
A:
As each site has its own set of Site Tools, including separate File Managers, copying files from one site to another within the File Manager is not possible at this point. You can use SSH or FTP client if you need to transfer files between sites.

Q: [Terri Z:] Also, will I still be able to see all account (multiple sites) files in ONE place, as I can in File Manager?
A:
As each site is independent from the rest, you can only see the content of the site you’re currently managing in the File Manager.

Q: [Art B.:] Will we still be able to upload plugins using file manager?
A:
Sure. You can upload plugins directly in the File Manager by dragging the plugin files and dropping them in the relevant folder of your installation in the File Manager.

Q: [Kieran:] With the new Collaborator/Client tools, will we be able to limit access to certain Site Tools like File Manager or Databases?
A:
The default collaborator and client roles do not allow you to define access to specific tools, but we are working on offering the option to create your own custom roles and customize the access you grant. That option will be available together with the tools replacing the WHM.

Q: [Patrick:] Isolation Question: If a client of ours requires admin access and then installs a "File Manager plugin"… While in the past, most File Manager plugins allow full GoGeek account directory access to our "entire GoGeek Account". Does the new isolation structures provide less concern for other client domain files? Or would some file manager plugins still be able to access the entire specific GoGeek acct?
A:
With our new site-centric setup each site has its own set of Site Tools, including a File Manager, completely isolated from the rest of the sites. While you can easily switch between all of the sites you have access to, technically each of these sites is their own entity. If you give access to a particular site to your client, they will only have access to this one site with no risk of accessing files or sites they are not supposed to.

Q: [Loni:] Do we still get access to wordpress toolkit and file manager
A:
Yes! You can find the File Manager in section “Site” and the tools currently located in the WordPress toolkit are found in section “WordPress > Install&Manage” (check the action menu next to the installation).

Q: [Random:] I often used File Manager to clean .staging Backup or Removed files so my Node usage would lower sooner than later.. How will I do this now that File Manager only shows public?
A:
You can still remove files from the /home folder using SSH. However, note that inside the /home folder are generally saved system files that are needed for your website to operate normally.

Q: [Random:] Hi, you answered my .staging cleaning question… but it sounded like you didn't understand the reason for needing to do this… It is because my storage often is close to max and I do many staging design tests, when I delete the staging copy the .staging Backup & Removed folder doesn't clear for days and so I get Node max warnings.. so I manually clear those files.
A:
Ok, in that case you have to do it via SSH.

 

Questions regarding backups:

Q: [Terri Z:] What is Missing? I'm specifically concerned about manual backup that can be downloaded (cPanel backup) and database tools, particularly phpMyAdmin
A:
We offer backups (automatic daily backups and the option to create instant ones with a friendly restore tool), but we do not offer the cPanel backup. PhpMyAdmin is available in section Site > MySQL > PhpMyAdmin tab.

Q: [Mark M.:] Is it easy to find and download a backup?
A:
You can find your backups in Site Tools > Security > Backups. Restoring a backup is even easier than before. Just select the backup you wish to restore from and select the item you wish to restore from the Action menu next to it. Downloading a backup is not possible at the moment.

Q: [Ingrid B.:] How long is this webinar? I need to know how much time to allow for it as I have potential diary conflicts to sort out! Also, is the backup facility negatively affected by this new development? It's one of the things I paid for!
A:
The webinar took roughly 1.5 hours and you can watch it here at a time when it’s convenient for you. We continue to offer the same backup service - automatic daily backups and option to create instant ones manually. Easy restore tool is also available. You can manage backups and restores from Security > Backups.

 

Questions regarding our Reseller program:

Q: [Sandra:] How will these changes affect reseller accounts?
A:
We are migrating the existing reseller functionality and setups on the new platform with two changes - 1) we remove cPanel and replace it with our own Site Tools; 2) the removal of the credit system - this change is not related to the new interfaces' business logic, but coincides in timing with the switch. Resellers won’t be able to purchase new credits after they get switched to the new interfaces. Yet, existing resellers will be able to use their outstanding credits same way as until now - for purchases of StartUp plans and renewals of those. Once these credits are over, you will get fixed discounts on purchases and renewals of StartUp plans.

Q: [Vincent P.:] Will this affect the Reseller administration panel from which we could instantly login into cPanel or WHM?
A:
Instead of logging into cPanel (and WHM) you will now be logging into our Site Tools via a single login from your Client area. As an added convenience you will be able to switch between your sites from the Site Tools themselves.

Q: [Kyle:] Will the discounted rates for resellers for startup accounts remain discounted at $3.95/month when they renew or will the price increase?
A:
Yes, resellers will be able to buy and renew StartUp plans at a discounted price (3.95/mo in USD prepaid annually). The renewal price is the same as the initial price for resellers.

Q: [Emily:] Having just moved a bunch of our client websites to SiteGround and priced according to the credit structure we're really worried about the price going up. It's a massive issue for a small business like ours. Would you consider keeping the credit pricing structure?
A:
We decided to remove the credit system because we have seen that our “typical” reseller is not managing a large number of accounts and is not really taking advantage of the growing discount in the credit price. That combined with the fact that we have not made changes in the reseller pricing for the last 10 years (unlike what we did for standard clients) made us want to simplify the terms and unify prices as much as possible. The new reseller prices equal the initial (discounted) price for standard clients.

 

Questions regarding Joomla!:

Q: [Jen:] I use Joomla. Are all the changes mainly for WordPress users?
A:
Joomla users will also be switched to the new interfaces. Features like Joomla installation and Joomla auto-updates will be available (you cannot see them in the demo as we were still working on them at the time when we launched the demo). The main change for Joomla users is that we plan on discontinuing the current Joomla staging tool due to low usage, however, we are working on an alternative solution that could accommodate most of the use cases.

Q: [Kathy A.:] Is Joomla still supported? I understand for demo he used WP. But I'm too old and unpaid volunteer to spend another 10 years learning a new OS at this time. Will I get any benefits from this rework on my Joomla sites?
A:
Yes, we continue to fully support Joomla. However, we use the switch moment to discontinue tools that are not largely used such as the Joomla staging. We are working on a more generic solution as an alternative to it.

Q: [Becky R.:] Do we have to use Auto-Update tool for Joomla? Can we opt out?
A:
Yes, you can opt-out from the autoupdates. Currently, you can do that from the Joomla Autoupdate manager in cPanel.

Q: [Mitch:] where are the Joomla Tools tab? How do we load a Joomla platform without Softaculous?
A:
You can install a new Joomla from Site > App manager (select Joomla from the application drop down). Your active Joomla installations will be listed in the same section and you will be able to access the available Joomla tools from the action menu next to the installation.

Q: [Gwallter R.:] Wordpess is upfront - what about Joomla?
A:
We continue to fully support Joomla.

 

Questions related to the switch of the interfaces:

Q: [Terri Z:] I'm on a roll lol. Will there be any account/site downtime?
A:
We expect roughly 2 minutes of downtime upon switching the interfaces, but there will be no DNS and IP change so it will feel like a glitch. However, we ask you to avoid updating your sites during the migration period in order to facilitate the process.

Q: [Adriel B.:] Will IP addresses change with the migration?
A:
No, there will be no IP change or DNS propagation.

Q: [Loni:] When does this go live for us?
A:
We start with a small batch of clients shortly, but it will take a few months to switch all of the existing clients. You will get an email with a 7-day notice once any of your accounts get scheduled for a switch.

Q: [Jozef S.:] When do you plan to make a switch to this new interface?
A:
New clients are already being activated on the new interfaces. We plan to start switching existing clients in the second half of September slowly.

Q: [John M.:] Are we going to receive a target date for the conversion to the new Client Area & Site Tools?
A:
Yes, once any of your accounts get scheduled for the switch, we will send you an email 7 days before the actual change date.

Q: [Jonathan:] The migration starts in September - When do you expect to be finished with all migration?
A:
We think it will take us a few months to switch all clients, but we will know how many exactly after we actually start migrating and do a few runs.

Q: [Tim:] Will my cloud account automatically transfer without any downtime to sites or email?
A:
We will convert cloud accounts automatically and we do not expect downtime more than 2 minutes. As there will be no DNS and IP change it will feel more like a glitch.

Q: [Carolyn:] what if i sign up as a new customer now to build out a separate site with the new interface while waiting for my existing accounts migrate later this month. can they be merged later?
A:
Of course, you can now sign up for a new hosting plan as a new client (you need to use a new email address), which will be created in the new Client area. Just one small detail - your existing accounts may not get scheduled for the switch this month. But, we’ll keep you posted when the switch option becomes available on demand so you can request it upfront if you wish.

Q: [Jackie T.:] Does the migration affect our mail box?
A:
We will migrate automatically your emails and keep usernames and passwords, so your mail service should not be affected. The only difference will be that if you have email accounts on addon domains, you will see them listed in the Site Tools > Email section of the addon site, hence not all mail accounts will be listed in the same place as you may be used to.

 

Miscellaneous questions:

Q: [Irving B.:] Can we now store unlimited number of credit cards (one for each website / client) ?
A:
You can store up to 3 credit cards as you like, but you cannot specify which card to be used for which website. Cards are still associated with the user and not with the specific plan or site and in case of automatic renewal of service, the primary card on file will be charged (if valid).

Q: [Jozef S.:] I have some issues with my website. Could it be because of you were making changes and transition to this new interface?
A:
The switch to the new interfaces has not yet started so it has no impact on the status of your site. If you’re experiencing issues with your account, please log in to your User Area and contact our Technical Support.

Q: [Marge K.:] I see you have many requests for this webinar to be done again or at a different time. I also would like to attend at a different time as I have an appt. for more than 3 months scheduled at that time. Thank you. Marge
A:
You can watch the webinar here or on Youtube at a time convenient for you. We want to make more webinars about the new interfaces, but they will probably be zooming on a smaller set of items and functionalities.

Q: [Mitch:] where did the softaculous function go?
A:
We now offer an “App manager”, which is powered by Softaculous Remote and allows you to install new applications easily. You can find it in section Site>App Manager.

Q: [Matt:] Since you are not using cpanel anymore is there going to be a way to transfer (copy the etc & mail folder) clients emails from another cpanel to this new platform and keep users/passwords and all mail?
A:
For cPanel accounts hosted on our platform we will automatically switch the emails and keep the users and passwords as set. For accounts migrating from other cPanel hosts - not yet, but we are working on a tool that will allow that.

Q: [Rubin B.:] I was interested to know if when I transfer ownership of a site, the Invoices, Support Tickets etc. linked to that site will be deleted from my account and moved to my client's account?
A:
No, you will still see in your Account the invoices and tickets associated with the website that were generated before the transfer. They will neither be deleted nor transferred to the new owner.

Q: [James:] Will we need separate ssh for each site?
A:
Each site is created and managed separately and has its own SSH and FTP credentials.

Q: [Sabina M.:] I haven't used it yet (was just about to…), but the staging of sites, will that still be available? And as easy to use as it is promised?
A:
Creating a staging copy of your WordPress site is a one-click process, and deploying a staging copy to production is just as easy. You can test it yourself in WordPress -> Staging. If you are a Joomla user you will not be seeing the staging tool for now as we are discontinuing the current tool and working on a more generic alternative.

Q: [Terri Z:] About the collaborator role. Love it - 2FA available to both of us when we don't both need to use the same login to access their account. But am I correct in understanding that I (developer) can only be added as a collaborator by a client who has a GrowBig account? Lots of my clients have only one site (Startup) and are not techie - which is why they have me, and why it makes sense to me that they could also add me as a collaborator.
A:
Indeed, collaborators can be added to websites hosted on GrowBig or higher plans. We consider the StartUp plan a service for DIY sites.

Q: [Mika:] Sounds like for new people is there a behind the sites area so we can manage multiple settings like pho versions etc in mass?
A:
We aim to offer a bulk management of sites some time next year, although centralized PHP version control for all sites is still debatable. In this first launch phase of the new interfaces we aimed at offering the tools that were already available with some sweet, but basic additions, which will be upgraded to more powerful tools in the upcoming months.

Q: [Susan:] I am a bit new to all of this. My website isn't showing up in search engines even though I have put tags on pages. Is this something through my website or something through the SiteGround services or something else?
A:
Whether your site gets crawled by search engines and gets listed in searches is not related to the host server itself. You may want to submit it manually if you haven’t done that yet.

Q: [Mary:] Do you have instructions for updating content on WordPress? For example, rotating pictures or menu titles. Thanks!
A:
We have a tutorial that may be helpful: https://www.siteground.com/tutorials/wordpress/

Q: [Mark:] Can you still clone a website like in Softaculous?
A:
It’s work in progress, but we want to make this service available.

Q: [Eric H.:] Will the Move wordpress, move my site from my staging.xxxx site to my xxxx site for me, and take care of everything?
A:
The Move functionality will move your WordPress site and will make the appropriate changes in the WordPress configuration, so you don’t have to do anything else yourself. However, if you want to deploy a staging site, we recommend that you use the Staging tool where you can safely create and deploy staging copies. Every time you deploy a Staging copy from the Staging tool, you also have a backup automatically created for you, so you can easily revert to the previous version of your website if something goes wrong.

Q: [Corinne:] how can I install a wordpress on a subdomain?
A:
You can go to Site Tools > WordPress > Install & Manage. Select WordPress or WordPress with Woo, and select the domain or subdomain you wish to install WordPress to from the Domain dropdown. There you will find all existing domains and subdomains in your site. If you want to create a new subdomain first, go to Subdomains.

Q: [Tim:] Will traffic be exportable as a PDF? maybe add our own logo too?
A:
This feature is not available at the moment.

Q: [Heidi:] Is there a way to download stats and have them on a pdf file or something ?
A:
Unfortunately, not at the moment.

Q: [Jon:] when will we have the server details for email accounts?
A:
You can find the email configuration details Site Tools > Email > Accounts. You can find it in the create form, as well as in the Actions menu next to each email account. The Autoconfig files are also available in the Actions menu.

Q: [Michael S.:] How do I migrate email account(s) from another host?
A:
Here’s some detailed information on how you can transfer your email accounts and content over to us - https://my.siteground.com/support/kb/transfer-emails-imap-between-servers

Q: [Susanna:] If we create a site and then transfer it to a new owner, will we automatically receive the affiliate credit for that new owner's site?
A:
At the moment you need to contact Affiliate support for that, but we are working on automating that.

Q: [Katy:] If my websites is broken will siteground fix it back to the original prior to migration
A:
We don’t expect any site issues as a result of the migration. After the switch sites will be verified manually to make sure the scripts have properly converted the data such as addons to sites and related services.

Q: [Sean H.:] How can I move both a website AND all its email accounts with the new interface? Will it be easier than with cPanel?
A:
If you mean moving from another host, migration process will be different if you do it yourself. But you can always rely on our support team to do it for you and if you are transferring a WordPress site you can use our Migrator plugin.

Q: [Kieran:] We have a GoGeek account with Add On domains, currently the SiteScanner tool scanned the main domain associated with the GoGeek account. Will the Site Scanner now scan each website under the GoGeek account individually?
A:
The Site Scanner will continue to be associated with your main domain and will not scan all sites under the account.

Q: [Steven W:] One of the features I have loved about Siteground is the transfer of cPanel accounts from a client's existing web host to Siteground, that includes email accounts and email messages. Apparently with the UI that won't be possible. Is there a plan to provide for moving email accounts and messages from cPanel to the new UI?
A:
We are working on scripts that will allow you to migrate cPanel accounts from other hosts easily, but I don't have a solid ETA for that.

Q: [Jim:] What about Moodle and other plug-ins. We that have an automatic install?
A:
You can install new Moodle installations and manage your existing ones from Site Tools > Site > App Manager.

Q: [Don M.:] Will you be able to use program like InfiniteWP to control website from one location
A:
Yes, there is no change in this aspect.

Q: [Greg:] As for quarterly billling methods, did you add Paypal and American Express?
A:
We do accept American Express for some regions and PayPal payments, but you may need to contact Customer service for assistance if you wish to pay with PayPal.

Q: [Stacey:] Will websites be faster now that cpanel is removed?
A:
Replacing cPanel with our Site Tools will definitely make our platform lighter and vacate server resources that will also make it faster, which we also expect to have a positive impact on the speed of our clients sites.

Q: [James S.:] What is this new interface called - cpanel was easy to state … 🙂
A:
We don’t really have a name other than ‘Site Tools' 🙂

Q: [Christophe C.:] On the new interface, I saw when installing Let's Encrypt SSL certificate, that the free version was for 3 month… Is that a new condition ? For the moment we don't have any end date for those certificates…
A:
Let’s Encrypt certificates have always been issued for 3 months as per the issuer's protocols and automatically renewed at least a couple of weeks prior to their expiration date to ensure an uninterrupted encryption. This hasn’t changed, we’re just showing more information in the new interface.

Q: [Ben H.:] How is the domain folder isolation done on the backend? Vhosts?
A:
Site isolation is done using the chroot technology, where every process runs within an isolated environment.

Q: [Stacey:] Will there ever be a promo/sale where we can upgrade our current hosting plan and extend it another 3 years without paying the higher price?
A:
I am not sure to which price you refer, but we have a promotion ending today that might be interesting. Next one will most likely be the Black Friday promo, which we have not planned yet so I cannot say if it will affect upgrades.

Q: [John M.:] Will MySQL user accounts still have very short names?
A:
MySQL users and databases are both created with random automatically-generated names, but you can label them any way you like afterwards.

Q: [RJ:] Will the new platform provide an equivalent to Softaculous for installing other applications besides WP/Joomla?
A:
You can use the App Manager in Site Tools to install the latest version of the most popular and stable applications.

Q: [James:] separate ssh for each site?
A:
Each site is created and managed separately and has its own SSH and FTP credentials.

Q: [Sueli:] What about AFFILIATE programs? I don't see the SWITCH TO AFFILIATE AREA in the new Client Demo.
A:
Affiliates will also take advantage of the new interfaces. There will be a menu item “Affiliates” with subsections for reports, banners, and more. For the sake of simplicity, we did not feature them in the demo.

Q: [Markz:] Any plans for a staging option for Magento?
A:
We are working on a concept for a basic CMS-agnostic staging tool, which should cover Magento as well. No ETA for that yet.

Q: [Sune:] Can we have the websites listed as a list with few lines per website? With MANY websites the overview can be difficult…
A:
Yes, point taken, we will work on that. Thank you for the feedback 🙂

Q: [Anyilloyd:] Can i install python Django in my Gogeek account? if yes, how do i do it.
A:
No, you cannot do that on GoGeek plan.

Q: [Ben H.:] What if we need to send test emails as a client to test things like email security (SPF/DKIM/DMARC)?
A:
If you mean if you can test this during the Client Area and Site Tools beta, I am afraid this is not possible. Still the SPF and DKIM setups haven’t undergone any major changes so both work as expected. As to the DMARC, this isn’t supported with our current platform, but it is in the Site Tools roadmap.

Q: [Becky R.:] Can we test a separate version of PHP in a staging area? We used to control this by adjusting the PHP version per folder, which we can't do anymore.
A:
Yes, you can still do this. The difference is that with the new Site Tools you do not choose a folder, but a domain or subdomain. You should choose the subdomain that represents the staging copy you want to change the PHP version for.

Q: [James:] This question may already have been asked but have you got a local client tool that can connect to the the website? Or is everything done in the cloud?
A:
We do not have such tooling, yet. Everything you do should be done either via Site Tools or SSH.

Q: [Eric O.:] I'm used to changing PHP settings for my sites in a Plesk control panel, with 25 or so options that I could just enter new specifications like memory and time settings. cPanel forced us to actually enter the PHP command and the new variable. Does the new tool panel address this?
A:
I am afraid, currently not, but we will consider the suggestion. The new interface provides you a list and values for all PHP variables and you have to find the one you indent to change. Search functionality is a work in progress.

Q: [Helen B.:] I use Sucuri.net to protect my websites. Because I have several add-on websites I just need one sucuri account to protect all my websites. Now that add-ons are isolated, will they all still be protected by the single sucuri account?
A:
I need some more clarifications on this one. How do you setup your sites with Sucuri.net, so that they are monitored by a single Sucuri account?

Q: [Angela B.:] With blocked IPs, I have been confused. Should I wipe out all the past blocked IPs and start over? I'm afraid I've blocked people that shouldn't be blocked from the old system.
A:
The blocked IPs that you already have will be preserved after the migration, but won’t be listed the Site Tools interface. The way cPanel use to block IPs is to add “deny from” rules inside the .htaccess file. With Site Tools we do it a bit differently, by adding it to the Nginx configuration directly. You can still use the .htaccess file to block IPs, but you should do it by manually editing it and records added to it won’t be listed on the Blocked IPs page in Site Tools.

Q: [Ben H.:] How will the port of our current sites to isolated directories work?
A:
The isolation of the websites is done via the chroot Unix technology. The difference compared to the old platform is that, before your main site + addon site were isolated in the same virtual environment, because they were running under the same linux user, while with the Site Tools - every single website is isolated in its own environment.

Q: [Eric O.:] Is this system different from a virtual private server?
A:
Yes, it is different. As you may know, for a long time we have stopped using standard virtual servers with hypervisors. Since then we have been using our own implementation of Linux Containers. Every server that hosts your websites is a linux container. But if you ask for the site itself - every site's process runs within its own isolated environment, which is powered by a minimal operating system (based on the chroot Unix technology ). This minimal operating system is isolated from the host OS.

Q: [Stacey:] I'm wondering where to find the FTP Sessions in the new control panel? Often I get the error "too many connections" on FTP and have to manually clear the sessions, but this feature I cannot find anywhere.
A:
Unfortunately, this is one of the tools with a really low usage that we decided to drop.

Q: [Paul s.:] i joined siteground and cloudflare 2 days ago, is the security good enough that i can do away with wordfence on my wordpress..
A:
It's always good to have another security layer on top of all the things we do. Wordfence has a lot of nice features and tracks a lot of WordPress-specific processes so we believe it's good to have it. Yet, if you cannot afford to pay for it, the essential server and application security is covered by us so you do not have to worry, as long as you manage carefully your login credentials and the access to your account.

Q: [Susanna:] I don't see how this can possibly be an improvement for people who manage multiple sites. Is there any way to keep cpanel?
A:
We plan on discontinuing the usage of cPanel after we switch all existing clients to the new interfaces. The main source of improvement comes from the added new features that allow better access control to each site in your account. The changes will also allow us to add more conveniences and tools for bulk management faster.

Q: [Sean H.:] How can we move both website AND email between to GoGeek accounts? Will it be easier than with cPanel. I have 2 GoGeeks and would like to move all sites and email into one. Shall I wait until the upgrade?
A:
There is no new shortcut for this use case.

 

WordPress Initiatives Manager

Enthusiastic about all Open Source applications you can think of, but mostly about WordPress. Add a pinch of love for web design, new technologies, search engine optimisation and you are pretty much there!

55 Comments

  1. Reply September 11, 2019 / 04:11 WayneSiteGround Team

    How will the new system work with WP Multisite.
    How will the transfer work? I have multiple mapped domains to subdomains in Multisite on a cloud server.

    • Reply September 11, 2019 / 08:24 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Hello Wayne,

      We do not expect changes in the way WP multisite work on our platform. Every addon domain or subdomain that is configured to load the content of your main domain will be configured as a parked domain, which technically will not change the way the domains work.

  2. Reply September 12, 2019 / 07:04 Robert HarringtonSiteGround Team

    Thanks for putting all this information together. I have to admit, I am very skeptical about the new 'custom' interface and software. We've worked with many other hosts and we have yet to find a custom-designed interface that works as well as CPanel. We've been a reseller for you for years, I hope that can continue.

    • Reply September 13, 2019 / 06:03 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      cPanel is quite powerful and omnipresent and surely, it will be hard to build a replacement. Our aim is not to do that, but to offer the tools that our clients use on our platform in a more efficient way and to open the door for easier and faster service additions. I hope you will enjoy working with the new interfaces and continue to use our services 🙂

  3. Reply September 12, 2019 / 07:06 MattSiteGround Team

    I realize that you will be removing the Joomla staging tools which is unfortunate, but for clients who have current Joomla staging sites - where will those staging instances go? Will each staging Joomla site become a new site instance? We are in the midst of several Joomla projects where the staging is being used so we can't lose these staging sites upon the switch.

    • Reply September 13, 2019 / 00:47 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      You should not worry about the already created staging instances. They will not become separate sites, but will be listed as separate installations in the Site Tools of the main site, section Sites > App Manager > Manage installations.

  4. Reply September 12, 2019 / 09:44 TainaSiteGround Team

    The webinar is 1,5 hours, which is quite long. Is there some summary list of key points of the change and what users should be aware of? Thanks!

    • Reply September 13, 2019 / 00:57 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Indeed, the webinar walks you through almost all the tools we now offer. You can read the shorter business overview in this post. The most essential difference with the old interfaces is the fact that we will not have "addon sites" but each site (including the current addons) will be independent from the rest and will have its own set of Site Tools.

  5. Reply September 12, 2019 / 10:15 JakeSiteGround Team

    I'm currently a reseller and give each of my clients a "Disaster Plan" (like if I get hit by a bus) upon launch of their new site. This includes access to their cPanel. With cPanel going away... will it be possible for my clients to log into what they need and not have access to my other clients' sites?

    • Reply September 13, 2019 / 00:52 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Absolutely! Instead of logging into cPanel your client will be logging in our (white-label) Site Tools for their site and will not have access to the rest of the sites you manage. For your existing clients we will redirect everything automatically so they can log into Site Tools with the same credentials they already have. For your new clients, once you create their site, you need to create a user (type Client) and assign it to that site. Managing the user access to the sites will be much easier.

      • September 14, 2019 / 11:48 TainaSiteGround Team

        Thank you Reneta!

      • September 19, 2019 / 16:50 AbbySiteGround Team

        I was relieved when I saw this, however the Demo says the "Client" user is for the HIGHEST TIER, GoGeek plan ONLY, NOT for Reseller Accounts (now referred to as a discounted StartUp Plan).
        So what you just told Jake is ONLY TRUE IF he starts paying $34.95/mo ($420/year) per plan, NOT if he continues putting clients on a $45/year Reseller Account, right?

        Did you assume that's what customers like Jake and I are going to start doing? Putting all of our clients on your highest tier, non-discounted plan? Without mentioning that it's going to cost us an additional $375 per client, each year, to give our clients the same services & access we/you/Siteground currently offers?

        PRAYING the demo has a typo or that that's no longer true.

      • September 20, 2019 / 03:04 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

        What I told Jake is valid for all existing and new StartUp plans of our existing resellers. You don't have to buy GoGeeks in order to be able to add users to the sites. This is the difference between Reseller’s StartUp and the regular StartUp plan. There is a change in StartUp pricing though - we fix your initial and renewal price to 3.95USD/mo (47.40 USD/year), which makes your hosting a bit more expensive if you were used to purchasing credits in bulk.

      • September 23, 2019 / 12:26 AbbySiteGround Team

        Thank you so much Reneta! To say that I'm relieved is an understatement.

      • September 24, 2019 / 08:49 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

        Happy to hear that 🙂

  6. Reply September 12, 2019 / 11:05 Lisa MissendaSiteGround Team

    Hi is there access to edit the php.ini file like in cpanel?

    • Reply September 13, 2019 / 00:53 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      The recommended way to manage the PHP variables settings is from Site Tools -> Dev -> PHP Manager. However, you can still create a php.ini file via the File Manager and apply whatever settings you like in it. Please have in mind that some variables are overwritten by the server defaults, such as the memory_limit, max_execution_time, etc.

  7. Reply September 13, 2019 / 04:02 Preston WynnSiteGround Team

    I have three add-on domains that point to one website. The names are slightly different, but the content is the same. Having to change content on four websites instead of one will be extremely inconvenient, and should this be the case, I will have to consider an alternative host come renewal time.

    • Reply September 13, 2019 / 05:30 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Hello, Preston. What exactly is the configuration you currently have? If all 3 domains are pointed to the same folder, after the switch of the interfaces they will be re-created as parked domains. If they are pointed to 3 different folders then they will become 3 separate sites, but when you are editing one of them from the new File Manager, all you need to do is switch to the other from the site drop down in Site Tools header and again you will be editing 3 different folders.

  8. Reply September 13, 2019 / 10:09 SuneSiteGround Team

    regard:
    "Q: [Sean H.:] How can we move both website AND email between to GoGeek accounts? Will it be easier than with cPanel. I have 2 GoGeeks and would like to move all sites and email into one. Shall I wait until the upgrade?
    A: There is no new shortcut for this use case."

    I'm quite sure the the webinar did show us how easy it will be to transfer a website to another account?
    Or was it a complete account...
    I got the understanding, that if I develope i website for a customer, I can - in Site Tools / new server - very easily transfer the website to a new, or existing, another account, for example for the user (and they contunie website management form their own account, own invoices, etc.

    Your answer on the question tell the opposite - or did I miss something?

    • Reply September 16, 2019 / 00:44 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      You can easily transfer a site (and email accounts) between 2 different clients - if the site is built in your own GoGeek account and you want to transfer it to another user's GoGeek account, then it all happens automatically via the Transfer Ownership tool. But, if you wish to transfer a site from one of your GoGeek accounts to another GoGeek of yours (both accounts owned by you), there is no automated way for that.

  9. Reply September 17, 2019 / 05:30 TrainerSiteGround Team

    I must say your session time is too low for a developer trying to keep up with support tickets. keeps logging me out every 5 mins?
    And getting to the email/chat support requires 3 tabs, so very bad navigation practices for sure.
    overall we are missing some of the very good features offered by cPanel such as raw stats, aws stats too. I think this is a downgrade from the capability offered by siteground, only they added a stupid new look, but the services are worst!

    • Reply September 17, 2019 / 07:14 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Hello, the default session time for our interfaces is 24 hours. Thanks for reporting the bug, we found the issue!

      Awstats is still powering the site stats, which you can find it in Site Tools > Statistics > Traffic. You can find the access logs (showing 300 lines) in the same section of Site Tools. If you need more of the access logs they can be downloaded with SSH or FTP.

  10. Reply September 17, 2019 / 21:00 JasonSiteGround Team

    Hi there, I am really looking forward to the change.
    My question is around statistics.
    From time to time I have resource spikes, finding out what the cause is (bad bot etc) is essential for me so I can make the required adjustments quickly, so my other client sites suffer minimal impact.
    My Cloud VPS has around 70 sites, so I was wondering what you might offer in this space, now, & potentially in the future. While AWStats has a LOT of info, it is often difficult to find for this very reason, & it's downright ugly to look at (which doesn't help).
    Something like https://goaccess.io/ would be nice 🙂
    I do have auto-scale enabled, but sometimes traffic spikes come out of the blue & slows my server to a crawl.
    Any troubleshooting tools in the works at all - for this sort of thing?
    Thanks,

    • Reply September 17, 2019 / 21:03 JasonSiteGround Team

      I should add, there's so little log info in the demo, I have no idea what to expect.

      • September 18, 2019 / 09:22 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

        The more interesting things for cloud users happen in the Client area where you can see the server stats, manage packages and more. I cannot show demo at this point, but will keep you posted.

    • Reply September 18, 2019 / 09:20 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Hello Jason,

      The good news is that thanks to the new site-centric approach it will be easier to identify the site that causes problems and fix it.
      The stats that all users will get (regardless of the plan) is still powered by Awstats but with a prettier interface. In Site Tools > Statistics > Traffic you can see that data. For cloud servers we will also add more stats about server resource consumption.

      • September 28, 2019 / 14:01 EdwardSiteGround Team

        Hi Renata:

        Are the historical Awstats (from pre-changeover) going to be retained, or will they be lost?

      • September 30, 2019 / 08:20 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

        Hello Edward, although we are still using AW Stats, cPanel used to split SSL from non-encrypted version of the stats, which made them pretty difficult to read and in some cases unusable. That’s why we’ve decided not to migrate historical data to the new system where we show all the traffic information per domain name.

  11. Reply September 17, 2019 / 21:33 JasonSiteGround Team

    Ok, so I've thought of another question, the brief outage expected during the transition, 2mins I think was mentioned - is this per server, or per site?
    E.g. my Cloud VPS has around 70 sites on it, obviously if it was 2mins per site, that would be a bit of a nightmare for me, as it would also affect the other 69 sites - correct?
    I'm pretty sure this won't be the case, but it would be nice to know 🙂
    Is there any possibility of specifying a time window for the transition?
    I'm in New Zealand, so you're likely asleep when I'm awake, although my server is in Singapore - a transition outside of normal business hours (NZ time) would be great...

    • Reply September 18, 2019 / 09:28 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      The 2 minutes is per cPanel account and refers to the shared hosting accounts. We haven't run test migrations on cloud servers yet, so I cannot say if the time needed will be calculated the same way. Normally, we try to schedule migrations during the server night time and unless there is a reason to make an exception, you would not be awake during the switch 🙂

  12. Reply September 18, 2019 / 07:37 AlexSiteGround Team

    I commented yesterday on WHMCS usage for those using WHM on cloud to resell. (Not seeing a response so perhaps didn't submit properly) ... Is there any plan to account for this? Currently i use it for auto-provisioning, suspensions, terminations as well as the fact that in my portal the client has a dashboard with stats and quick links.. majority of my clients log into cpanel using the single sign-on facility in WHMCS.. from what support have told me this will all go..

    Also, i use infiniteWP to manage a number of client sites, some are quite complex.. i really don't want the auto-update to WP core and plugins available to them.. will we be able to control what the user has access to as we currently do in cPanel through the feature control?

    I'm told the WHM 'equivalent' is still under development.. do we know roughly when this will be available to view in demo mode? Do we know roughly when this is expected to be rolled out to the cloud servers.

    I've spoken to several hosting companies in the past 2 days and they tell me they have had dozens of enquiries due to similar concerns around WHMCS integration.. it's a big thing for me and i can't find any info relating to it in any of the blog posts, videos, demos i've seen to date.

    thanks.

    • Reply September 18, 2019 / 09:06 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      We are thinking about possible integration with WHMCS. I cannot confirm yet when it will be done, but we will not start to migrate cloud servers without having a solution for you, or giving you a proper notice of our plans regarding WHMCS.

      Our solution that will replace the WHM has two main components - customizable user roles and option to create hosting packages. I think the custom roles is what you ask for - you will be able to create user roles and for each role to define to which tools from the full Site Tools list these users get access. You may exclude the autoupdate tool or any other you decide.

      We do not plan on migrating any cloud servers in the next two months (maybe more) and having the WHM alternative is a prerequisite to start the switch process, so I roughly expect it to be available some time in November.

  13. Reply September 19, 2019 / 08:28 concerned_a_fSiteGround Team

    I've been trying to learn as much as possible over the past several weeks before freaking out too bad. I'm still freaking out pretty bad. This is my livelihood. I'm a web designer and offer hosting & maintenance to my clients and have MANY Reseller accounts. I have a 4 year old kid. My clients' websites are my sole source of income, so please understand my concern here.
    Currently, under Accounts, you have "Information & Settings" and include the "Welcome Email" which says:
    "You may send this mail with important account info to the account user, if other than you."
    so I have... to dozens of clients over the past 2 years. ALL of my clients, are accustomed to being able to go in and add email accounts, delete email account, etc, through their cPanel.

    And now you're saying they can't have access to anything? That NOW you consider the Reseller accounts DIY accounts!? That makes no sense. "We consider the StartUp plan a service for DIY sites".
    Is this really happening? They can't be collaborators and there isn't a separate URL (like theirsite.com/cpanel) where they can log in to access email accounts, Spam Experts, etc?

    And if I'm taking on a client that's moving from cPanel hosting, as of now, their email accounts CANNOT be transferred in?

    And we are getting a 7 day notice, for sure? Promise?

    • Reply September 20, 2019 / 01:50 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Abby, for all of you, the existing resellers, your StartUp accounts (already active and those which you activate after the switch) will have the option to add users (role Client) to them. This means that there will be no change for you and your clients in terms of workflow – you will still send them a URL with login and they will enter the white-label Site Tools from where they could create/delete emails, access SpamExperts and everything else as until now. We will automatically recreate all users on all your active Startups and make their cPanel logins authenticate on Site Tools. We actually sent all resellers an email a few weeks ago where we explain all these details. If you have not received it, I will make sure we forward it again to you.
      Before we switch your interfaces, we will send you a 7-day notice – I confirm that. This week we sent out the first very small batch of emails to clients, which we will switch next week.
      The transfer of emails for users coming from cPanel accounts will indeed not be done automatically as it has been until we automate the process.

  14. Reply September 23, 2019 / 23:05 R. MooreSiteGround Team

    I have several sites yet to set up that I was about to start working on when the announcement came out about the new tools, so rather than having to switch gears mid-stream I have chosen to delay their setup but I am on on a deadline and can't wait much longer.

    How soon will the new tools be live? There has to be a roll out date I presume....

    • Reply September 25, 2019 / 02:01 Reneta TsankovaSiteGround Team

      Hello, the schedule for the switch is still in the making, but it seems that your host server is planned for this month. Unless we need to make changes in the schedule, you should receive an email next week with the exact switch date.

  15. Reply September 24, 2019 / 17:15 RamonaSiteGround Team

    I manage multiple sites within Multiple GoGeek Plans for my Boss. Currently, we can access each Plan separately with one FTP account and Password, and thus the Websites that exist in that plan. How will the Passwords now be determined for each new FTP account? We are talking about 33 sites currently. It could grow to as many as 67.

    • Reply September 30, 2019 / 23:50 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      We will migrate existing FTP accounts and link them to the website they are related based on their root folder. From now on, FTP users must be created for each site separately since each website gets their own Site Tools instance.

  16. Reply October 9, 2019 / 17:34 Kent C.SiteGround Team

    We have a dedicated server. Will your new Site Tools replace cPanel for us as well? Will we still have WHM access to our dedicated server? If not, what will be the WHM replacement and will it have server management features such as Server Status and a Process Log?

    • Reply October 10, 2019 / 08:33 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      Yes, the plan is to switch ded servers to new interfaces as well. but it will take at least 3 months before we initiate any action in that direction. WHM will be replaced with alternative set of tools.

  17. Reply October 13, 2019 / 07:12 JenSiteGround Team

    Very disappointed that StartUp plans can't assign collaborators. I have a small team of developers and we manage several client websites with StartUp plans. So now I have to give developers FULL access to the clients' hosting accounts. I consider that a security leak. Good thing I trust my developers!

    I'm not sure why the StartUp accounts would be considered DIY when they're clearly the best option for a small business with one website. There's no way I would recommend they upgrade their accounts. It's a bummer. I've been referring clients to purchase accounts that will no longer serve them well.

    • Reply October 14, 2019 / 04:55 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      I understand that you may have price-sensetive customers but I would totally recommend to all small business sites to upgrade to GrowBig. The collaboration is just one of the multiple benefits you get. Add the dynamic caching, free backup restores, etc.

  18. Reply October 17, 2019 / 04:11 David MorrisSiteGround Team

    When are the new tools going to be available? I know there is a demo, but when is it going to be available for production use? I have just signed up for a 3 year plan today assuming that the tools would now be active given the webinar was more than a month ago?

    • Reply October 20, 2019 / 02:49 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      All completely new shared accounts are started on the Site Tools platform. I believe that you've used an existing username to spin up a new account. Please, contact our support team via the Help Desk in your Client Area and my colleagues will assist you gurther.

  19. Reply October 19, 2019 / 17:25 Matk SteinSiteGround Team

    The new site tools are mostly fine. But two very annoying frustrations:

    a) Way TOO MANY CLICKS to get to phpMyAdmin. With cpanel, we could go to domain.com/cpanel and were 1 click away from launching phpMyAdmin. With the new Site Tools, it takes lots of clicks to eventually work your way down to be able to start using phpMyAdmin. Given how commonly used this tool is, this is an annoying step backwards.

    b) The login timeout is way too fast. I sometimes work for hours, coding, testing, looking at phpMyAdmin, repeat... And if I'm coding for more than about 10 - 15 minutes, my login in Site Tools times out and I have to start the annoying process over again, including re-launching phpMyAdmin, re-sorting the tables again, etc. Very annoying.

    Both of these are a big step backwards compared to what we had been enjoying with SiteGround cpanel. Please address these.

    Thanks.

    • Reply October 20, 2019 / 02:51 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      Thanks for the feedback! Now that we're using our own system it will be much easier to modify and improve it until we iron out all such inconveniences. We will discuss your feedback with our team on our next meeting and see what can be done to improve the experience 🙂

      • October 28, 2019 / 04:37 Mark SteinSiteGround Team

        Any update on the fixing the way-too-quick session timeouts? As one who spends a lot of hours coding and testing, this constant battle of re-logging in and re-sorting tables, etc. gets old in a hurry. SiteGround needs to find a middle ground between "acceptable" security without totally ignoring the user experience of its paying customers. I suspect the decision to adopt this very fast timeout was not made by someone who spends any time actually doing development as a SiteGround user. (note that the prior cpanel had essentially no timeouts, so that's the UX we are all used to. Code and test all day long without having to ever log back in and and redo all the browser tabs of phpMyAdmin)
        Thanks.

      • November 4, 2019 / 02:14 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

        The session timeout is 24 hours so it's not that what's logging you out. PhpMyAdmin being a third party service has its own expiration time which we've kept the same during the migration though. Please, shoot me an email at hristo.p [at] siteground.com with your user so I can check if there is any issue with it in particular.

  20. Reply October 22, 2019 / 05:24 Mark SteinSiteGround Team

    Another request:
    The display of cron jobs needs improving. Cpanel would display the entire name, on multiple lines as is typically needed. But the new Site Tools displays only a single line within a given character limit, followed by '...'.

    This isn't helpful given that all our cron jobs look the same within that limited set of characters, and the actual php script name is hidden. So if I'm looking at 5 cron jobs in the list, they all show identical names. I have to edit each one to see which one is which.

    (Recall that PHP cron jobs start with '/usr/local/bin/php -q' and then give the full path name of the script. So that's a lot of characters before ever getting to the file name of interest. That's why the relevant file name is always hidden.)

    Thanks.

    • Reply October 23, 2019 / 00:59 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      Thanks again! We will discuss improving this interface too.

  21. Reply October 22, 2019 / 05:25 DarrenSiteGround Team

    In regards to the Site Tools white label, is it possible to use our own logo and replace the brown interface with custom colors?

    • Reply October 23, 2019 / 00:57 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      Not right now but I will discuss this with the project managers so we can add it to the roadmap.

  22. Reply November 9, 2019 / 00:58 AmitSiteGround Team

    Good job on the new dashboard and everything, esp the separation of site dashboards. Cpanel looked like its still stuck in the age when dinos roamed the earth, so loving the refreshed UI and UX.

    But: A number of times SG staff have insisted that "With the new interfaces and tools we're not limiting but providing even more flexibility and functionality. I don't think there will be something you will be missing!" (here https://www.siteground.com/blog/new-client-area-and-site-tools/). Then upon being probed on this statement by customer, staff have admitted that things are missing, or unplanned, or still in development etc etc.

    Why not be honest with the community and say that like all large migrations, things will fall through the cracks, and features may not be provided, things may not work as expected etc. Much better to set expectations up front, or?

    I've just realized that a super useful feature - cloning a WP installation - is no longer available. I'd say this is really an essential feature and should not have been missed, esp since your new dashboard has been under dev for a long time. There should have been all efforts made to do a 1-1 mapping of cpanel and softaculous features.

    I'm stuck at the moment needing to clone a site quickly at another URL, with no easy way to do so. Rather frustrating.

    • Reply November 13, 2019 / 02:29 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      As mentioned in the webinar, we’re not redesigning cPanel interfaces but we’ve developed a completely new hosting management system. This said, straight forward functionality porting is impossible. In the case of the clone tool, we will add this functionality, but as it is not widely used by the majority of the users it did not get in the first release, but got scheduled for later.

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