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Plesk vs cPanel - the Best Web Hosting Control Panel

Plesk vs cPanel – the Best Web Hosting Control Panel

cPanel and Plesk are 2 popular control panels that come with powerful functionality, such as handling email accounts, managing databases & applications, dealing with website files and many more. The 2 powerful software make it easy for you to manage your website and web applications.

When it comes to selecting a proper web hosting control panel, you may feel confused about whether Plesk or cPanel is the better choice. Thus, we have come out this comparison to compare Plesk and cPanel, hoping to offer you a detailed introduction about the 2 control panels and help you to choose the best web hosting control panel for your own need. We intend to make a comparison from price, add-on applications, useability, installation and requirements of the 2 software.


To better present the details that we are going to discuss, let’s have an overview of the 2 popular control panels first.

overall introduction

  • Plesk, or Parallels Plesk Panel, started to operate in the year of 2000. Since then, it has been developed into one of the most popular control panels for webmasters to do their utmost to handle the websites. It supports both Windows and Linux operating systems but does a better job on Windows platform.
  • cPanel is a powerful control panel that allows users to manage their websites and hosting accounts effortlessly. Actually, it is now adopted by most of the famous web hosting providers. cPanel provides powerful and easy to use interface and automation tools for web hosts and the website owners, making cPanel the most popular graphical web-based control panel. cPanel supports Linux operating system.

Below is a table we have made to compare the price, ease of use, platform they support, functionality and popularity of the 2 control panels at overall.

Overall cPanel Plesk
Price 5 of 5 4 of 5
Useability 5 of 5 4 of 5
Functionality 4.5 of 5 4 of 5
Popularity 5 of 5 3 of 5
Platform Linux Windows, Linux

Price – cPanel Wins

Price can always be a top concern whenever we purchasing a product.

For Parallels Plesk Panel version 11 or later, the price is $39.99/mon or $479.88/year and this plan covers all the free features included in the dedicated server. The similar plan for cPanel is going to cost $425 annually, which is $54.88 cheaper than that of Plesk every year. If you want to purchase cPanel from an authorized distributor, then the price may vary from distributor to distributor.

cPanel also has plans for VPS users and the cost is $200 per year if you choose to purchase it from cPanel directly. To buy it from a distributor, the price ranges from $15 to $20 per month, namely $180 – $240 every year.

Actually, there is no need for you to pay much attention to the prices because most of the web hosts have bought the licenses of Plesk and cPanel for their customers. That is to say, you are free to use the 2 control panels in most occasions.

Add-on Applications – cPanel Wins

Add-on applicationPlesk and cPanel both offer a number of useful add-on applications for you to extend the functionalities. For example, by utilizing these functions, you have the opportunity to gain a control over spams and get to know the website statistics.

Compared with Plesk, cPanel is integrated with more extensions, such as RV Skins, CSF firewall and Fantastico 1-click installer, and all these powerful applications are inaccessible in a Plesk environment.

Useability – cPanel Wins

Plesk is an effective and reliable control panel, allowing you to have full control over your website, email, applications, files you want to share and more. The user interface is simple and intuitive, for it places the menu bar on the left side and the detailed description on the right side. This design largely reduces the complicity and you can find the functionality you need in a short time.

cPanel is an excellent Linux based control panel for web servers and websites. With cPanel, you can easily manage your website files, create databases, and set up email accounts as well as auto responders. cPanel offers you extremely user-friendly interface to fulfill your need no matter how many websites or servers you are managing.

To be honest, in terms of ease of use, cPanel has received more fans.

Installation – Plesk Wins

installationSpeaking of installation, both Plesk and cPanel are easy to set up; but by comparison, we should say that Plesk wins the battle.

With Plesk, all you need to do during the installation process is to click the NEXT buttons repeatedly. It is necessary to point out that you can log into the account with sever administrators through a single process.

To install cPanel, however, you may take a longer time even though the process only contains a few steps. More importantly, you may feel confused about whether it is you or the server administrators who should log into cPanel firstly, because this control panel asks for separate logging processes for you and server administrators.

The requirements – Plesk Wins

Plesk and cPanel both have their special requirements, so it is necessary for you to make sure that your server meets these demands.

For operating systems, Plesk is a little more flexible. It supports a wide range of Linux based systems, such as CentOS, CloudLinux, Debian, openSUSE, Redhat Enterprise Linux and Ubuntu Server LTS. Plesk is also available for Windows platforms. However, cPanel only runs on Linux systems currently, including CentOS, CloudLinux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux and SmartOS.

For hardware requirements, Plesk for Linux and cPanel & WHM are exactly the same, namely 10GB disk space and 512MB of RAM.

Here is a table in the following to give you an intuitive understanding of the requirements of Plesk and cPanel.

Overall Plesk for Linux Plesk for Windows cPanel
Supported OS CentOS, Debian,openSUSE, Redhat Enterprise Linux, Ubuntu Server LTS, CloudLinux Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1/ 2008 SP2/2012 CentOS, CloudLinux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, SmartOS
Disk Space 10 GB 32 GB 10 GB
RAM 512 MB 1 GB 512 MB


To sum up, both Plesk and cPanel are powerful and great control panels that have gained great popularity. They have similar features and functionalities but with slight differences in price, add-on applications, ease of use, installation and requirements. If your server is Windows based operating system, we suggest Plesk. However, if you operate a Linux environment, then cPanel is the best choice.

However, you may wonder how about another popular control panel – vDeck. In this case, you can get to know the details through the comparison between vDeck and cPanel.

Speaking of web hosting companies who have utilized cPanel as their control panel, our editors suggest BlueHost, HostGator, and Arvixe. The details about the 3 hosting providers are as follows.