VPS to Host Your Website

How to Setup a VPS to Host Your Website

Most of us start with a Shared hosting for our websites but as they start to grow, a mere Shared hosting does not do much justice to them. You start to see slow server response times and realize that your hosting cannot keep up with the increasing traffic. That’s when you plan to go for a VPS. Now, there are two types of VPS available in the market:

  • Fully Managed
  • Semi-Managed

The fully managed ones tend to come with Control Panels and all the support you may need to setup your website but Semi-Managed lack those fancy features. Not everyone wishes to shell out extra money every month for a Fully Managed VPS. This guide will help you Setup your Semi-Managed VPS to host your website.


  • VPS with Ubuntu or CentOS Installed
  • PuTTY on your PC
  • WinSCP on your PC

Setting up VPS:

  • After purchase VPS, you will be given an IP address (to access it), its username and password. At this stage, you can setup your domain name to access your server. All you need to do is point the A Records of your Domain (Through your registrar) to the IP address of your server (VPS).

Installing a Control Panel:

After you have the access to your VPS, you will need to install a Control Panel on it to manage your website. We will go with ZPanel, mainly because it’s a free alternative to cPanel. To get started with that – you will need an SSH client, so Launch PuTTY on your PC and you will get a screen such as this:

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VPS configuration

Just type in your Hostname (Domain) or IP Address and make sure that post is ‘22’ and connection type is ‘SSH’.

Now, Press OK.

After you press OK, it will give you a security alert and it will ask if you want to continue. Just click ‘Yes’.

Now it will ask you to Login, just Login with the Username and Password of your VPS provided by your host

To install ZPanel, you will have to run the following command on the Terminal:
For CentOS:
bash <(curl -Ss https://raw.github.com/zpanel/installers/master/install/CentOS-6_4/10_1_1.sh)
For Ubuntu LTS:
bash <(curl -Ss https://raw.github.com/zpanel/installers/master/install/Ubuntu-12_04/10_1_1.sh)

This will take you through the installation process of ZPanel asking your server IP address. And in the end you will be given a username (Which is zadmin by Default) and a randomly generated Password.


To access ZPanel, access your server’s IP address using a browser and you will get a login screen such as this:

zpanel login

In case you still don’t know your password, you can get the passwords by launching WinSCP and starting a session with following settings:

vps passwords

File Protocol: SCP
Host Name: Your Server’s IP Address
Port: 22
Username: Username provided by your Host
Password: The password provided by your host

And press ‘Yes’ if a popup comes. Then your session will be initiated.

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Now, you will be greeted by such a screen:

zpanel home

Open passwords.txt to get your ZPanel password.

After you have logged in to your ZPanel, you will get to page like this in your Browser:

Change your password to something else.

Now you can go to ‘Domains’ under ‘Domain Management’ and setup a Domain in the ZPanel in order to host your website, such as ‘www.your-domain.com’. After your status go ‘Live’ from ‘Pending’ (This usually takes around 10 minutes, sometimes up to 1 hour) you are good to go.

After all this is done, you can create a MySQL Database, Database user and an FTP user to migrate/create your website. You may use a client such as FileZilla to transfer your files via FTP (Using user you just created) or install a CMS such as WordPress, the process will be same as what you would normally do on a Shared Hosting.

I hope this guide was helpful, if you want me to write more guides or write more about setting up a VPS for various purposes such as: Setting up a VPS to host your favorite game (Like: Call of Duty or Counter Strike) then you may request that in the comment section below.

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