Linux Based Hosting - cPanel

Overview of

Linux based website hosting is available, at no additional charge,  to all College of Engineering students, faculty, staff and research groups on the system named  This system runs the popular cPanel web hosting platform and supports PHP, MySQL databases, CGI scripts and other web technologies. It is best suited for general web hosting.


Get started by creating your account

Creating a personal web hosting account

Your personal web hosting account is created automatically the first time you login to  As long as you have an active EWS account, you will have an active web hosting account as well.  If your EWS account is deactivated because you are no longer registered for College of Engineering courses or you are no longer a member of the College of Engineering, your web hosting account will be deactivated too.  Only you can login and access your personal account. Your URL will be 

Creating a group web hosting account

A group web hosting account will allow a group of people to share and have edit access to a website .  You can create your group web hosting account by going to and filling out the form. The account will automatically be created within 15 minutes of submitting the form. You will need the following information:

  • The name you would like the group web address to be as in: The "yourGroupName" part must be 9-14 characters long.
  • The NetIDs of the people in the group who should have access to the group web hosting account.

Any group members without an existing personal web hosting account will have one automatically created for them at the time the group account is created. The personal account is necessary in order to login to the group account.

How to login to your web hosting account

Logging into your personal or group web hosting accounts using a graphical interface

Go to and authenticate using your NetID and your NetID password.  After you successfully login, you will see a list of the web hosting accounts you have access to.  Your personal account is associated with your NetID, but you may have access to other group web hosting accounts you share.  Click on the account you want to login to, and the dashboard graphical interface will appear giving you access to your html files, databases etc.

Logging into your personal web hosting account using SSH

Using an SSH client, login to the system named using your NetID and NetID password.  Your home directory is /home/NetID and your web files should go in /home/NetID/public_html.

Logging into your group web hosting account using SSH

With an SSH client, login to the system named using your NetID and NetID password .  Enter the command: sudo -i -u yourgroupName.  When asked for a password, enter your NetID password again. You will then have access to the files in the home directory of your group account. These are in /home/groupName.

Your website address

Your personal web hosting account web address is

Your group web hosting account web addresses are

Connecting to your database

The MySQL database is located on the same server as your account, Use "localhost" as the host in scripts or configuration files. You can't connect to the database from remote hosts.

Getting Help

There are cPanel specific tutorials available when you login through the graphical interface.  There is also cPanel specific udrt documentation available at You may not have access to all the features listed in the cPanel documentation.

Please see the cPanel FAQ for additional information about more advanced topics such as Shibboleth, SSL Certs, python scripting etc.

Get Help

Questions about this topic? Don't see what you're looking for?

Email engrit-help [at] illinois [dot] edu, call the Help Desk at 217-333-1313, or contact your primary IT support professional.