What should I know about Georgia Tech's WebHosting service?

This FAQ was last modified on: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 02:27pm
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Georgia Tech's Webhosting Service

OIT offers upgraded web-hosting resources for Georgia Tech departments, faculty members, and staff. The web-hosting project is modeled after services available from commercial web hosting providers. Georgia Tech Webhosting services run on a redundant cluster of Linux servers, running Apache with PHP 5.6 capability. The servers are backed up on a regular basis for disaster recovery, so your data is always safe and secure. The interface for Webhosting is located at http://hosting.gatech.edu/.


 

The Plesk Control Panel

Modern hosting services use a “control panel” application to hide most web server maintenance tasks behind a user friendly interface. The system manages keeping system resources up to date, resource allocation, and security. The idea is that by hiding the complexity of the underlying system anyone should be capable of managing and deploying basic web applications such as blogs, wikis and content management systems (CMS).

Plesk control

The system's logical architecture is divided into individual Plesk virtual web host servers and the Expand cluster manager. While there is currently only one Plesk server deployed, OIT expects to deploy more in the coming year to balance load and segregate high performance services. The Expand cluster manager handles allocating sites to individual Plesk servers, setting policies, and migrating sites to new servers.

Domains run within standard Apache based virtual hosts. OIT uses remote MySQL databases configured in a highly redundant fail-over capable configuration. Applications that domain-owners create run within this environment and are generally configured using the Plesk control panel (see below).  The Plesk control panel provides standard installs for Drupal, Wordpress, and over 30 other applications.

Getting Started

If you don't already have a webhosting account, the easiest way to get started is to:

  • Visit the Web Hosting Home page @ http://hosting.gatech.edu/
  • Login using your GT credentials. (userID, password)
  • Next, choose the site creation below that best suits your needs.

The Web Hosting Homepage has lots of other pertinent, and beneficial information about the service that is offered. Once your request is approved you will be notified when the site has been provisioned and the credentials assigned to your existing GT account.

After receiving the notification that your domain has been created you should log in to The Plesk Control Panel by clicking on the Log in with your GA Tech account on http://hosting.gatech.edu/. If you are not already authenticated to the CAS single sign-on system you will be redirected to the normal CAS login page. Once you have been authenticated you will be redirected back to hosting.gatech.edu but this time you can see the Plesk Web Admin menu in the gold toolbar. Navigate to this site to view the domains you have access to. These are listed under YOUR PLESK CONTROL PANEL. To login to your Plesk Control Panel simply click on the domain you want to manage.

From the main Plesk page you can browse your directory using the File Manager, Add Domain Alias for your site, create Databases, and Installatron to install web applications such as Wordpress or Drupal. Web pages for your site belong in the 'httpdocs' directory of your site. In Web Hosting Access, set the FTP password (under Account Preferences) to a secure password of your choosing. This is the password you will use for SSH-secured access to your environment. All file-based access must be through SSH based methods such as SCP or SFTP.

If you are transitioning from another site, please be aware that we have not copied your files or databases over or changed the DNS configuration for your domain. The Plesk system does create a default site page. Once you are ready to move files you should remove the default site files from the server.