Frequently Asked Questions

Our most common questions and answers can be browsed through below. If you still have questions you can find our support team ready to help at: http://www.primarytech.com/support/

Advanced

What is a sub domain?

A subdomain is a subsection of a main domain, in this format:

  • subdomain.maindomain.com

Sub domains allow clients to create completely separate websites with human-readable names without having to register multiple domain names.

For instance, a main website may be called yourdomain.com, but a subdomain may be forums.yourdomain.com.

How do I create a parked domain?

  1. Login to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on the “Web” icon.
  3. Click on “Add Web Domain”
  4. Type in your domain. eg. mydomain.com
  5. Uncheck “Mail Support”
  6. Scroll all the way down and click on “Add”

Note: This will only work if the parked domain’s DNS servers are set to the same as the master domain’s.

How do I create a sub domain?

  1. Login to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on the “Web” icon.
  3. Click on “Add Web Domain”
  4. Type in your domain. eg. yoursubdomain.mydomain.com
  5. Uncheck “Mail Support”
  6. Scroll all the way down and click on “Add”

How long do domains take to propagate?

Domains usually take anywhere from 15 minutes to 3 hours to propagate, although this process may take up to 24 hours.

What happens when a domain expires?

After a domain expires, it will be available for registration by anybody. It is recommended to renew your domain as early as 90 days in advance in order to prevent a disruption is service and possible loss of your domain name.

In the rare event that you do forget to renew your domain name and someone else renews it, there is very little you can do to recover it. In some cases, the new registrant may be willing to sell the domain.

Alternatives to buying back a domain are to register the same under with a different TLD (www.yourDomain.net instead of www.yourDomain.com)

What is a domain?

A domain is a human-readable name assigned to an IP address to make accessing websites much easier. Domains are combined with a TLD to produce what is known as a domain name. Domains themselves can be anything you choose (bobsflowers, ratloverforum, etc), and then choose a TLD to go with it. Common TLDs include:

  • .com
  • .net
  • .org
  • .info
  • .ca

Your domain, combined with a TLD, will procude the final domain name (bobsflowers.com).

Domain names must be unique, and can only be registered to one person at a time.

What is a redirect?

A domain redirect is an instance where a visitor is redirected to a different page when they try to access a different page. This can be useful if a page has permanently moved and it is known that a large number of users may have bookmarked that page.

An example of a redirect would be if you have a file named page1.htm and move that file to page2.htm. You could create a redirect such that all visitors trying to access the page1.htm page would be automatically redirected to the page2.htm page.

FTP

How do I configure a Cron Job?

1. Login to VestaCP.
2. Locate and click on the “Cron”
3. Click on “Add Cron Job”

Fill in the required information.

  • Minute – The minute setting for the cron job.
  • Hour – The hour setting for the cron job.
  • Day – The day setting for the cron job.
  • Month – The month setting for the cron job.
  • Weekday – The weekday setting for the cron job.

Command – The cron job command to execute. If you wanted to execute a script, the command would look similar to this:

php -q /home/YOURUSERNAME/web/YOURDOMAIN.com/public_html/script_in_my_root_directory.php

What are cron jobs?

Cron jobs are routines that execute a script on any given interval. For instance, you may have a script that cleans files from a directory or updates a certain database and need to run that script every few hours. This would be accomplished with a cron job, because the cron job would execute the same script however often you tell it to run.

What are error pages?

Error pages are the pages displayed when a user tries to access a location on your site and encountered an error. There are many different types of errors, the most common ones are:

  • 301 – The page has been moved Permanently
  • 401 – The user does not have permission to view the file/directory.
  • 404 – The page could not be found (bad URL).
  • 500 – One of your scripts is not functioning properly, and is returning an Internal Server Error.

Error pages can be modified from the server default by adding custom error handling in your .htaccess file.

Domains

Which directory do my files go in?

By default, logging into FTP will open the root directory of your account. In order for files to be publicly accessible, you will need to place them in the public_html folder. The public_html folder is the directory opened when someone accesses your domain.

How to create an FTP account?

  1. Login to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on the “Web” icon.
  3. Locate the domain you wanted to edit and click “edit
  4. Scroll down to “Additional FTP” and check it off.
  5. Type in your own “username” and “password”
  6. Skip other options and click on “save”

What is an FTP account?

An FTP account is used to login to an FTP server and transfer files to and from the server. FTP accounts may have complete access to all the files on the server, or they can be restricted to a specific directory or directories.

FTP accounts can be created within VestaCP.

Most Frequently Asked Questions

What is FTP?

FTP (File Transfer Protocol) is a method used to transfer files between your computer and the web server. FTP is usually performed via a FTP Client, which connects to the FTP server and allows you to either upload or download files to/from the server.

What is SSH?

SSH (Secure Shell) is a secure method for logging into a server remotely and giving the server commands or transferring files. SSH makes it extremely easy to manage a server without having to be at the physical server itself. However, access to SSH is closely guarded and is never available on a shared and most reseller servers. SSH is most commonly available with dedicated servers, in the realm of web hosting.

Transfers

How do I transfer my website?

If you’ve grown tired of your old host and decided to make the switch to us, the first step is to signup for a web hosting package and mark your domain as a transfer during the checkout process.

After your order is complete and you would like us to transfer your website for you, simply send a support ticket to the technical department with the following information:

  • Old host’s control panel URL
  • Old host’s account name
  • Old host’s account password

The next step is to update your domain’s DNS servers. Technical support will provide you with all the information you need to do this, or we can do it for you with some additional information.

Your data should take no more than 24 hours to fully migrate to our servers, and your DNS servers should update within 24 hours.

After your website has been transferred and you have verified that all your data is intact  and as it should be, it is safe to terminate your payment agreement with your old host, should you choose to do so.

How do I update my DNS servers?

If you’re transferring your hosting account to us, you’ll need to update your domain’s DNS servers so that your domain will know to point to our web servers. Depending on which host you’re coming from, there are different procedures to update your DNS servers for your domain. However, this can usually be done by logging in to your old host’s client area and going to the domain management section.

Please contact technical support for the DNS server names and specifics on how to update them.

Alternately, you can have your domain completely transferred to our registrar, in which case we can update the DNS servers for you.

How long does it take to transfer an account?

Depending on the size of your account, it may take anywhere from an hour to 24 hours to successfully transfer all of your data from your old host to us.

Billing

How do I recover my client area password?

Client area passwords can be recovered by using the “Recover Password” link found at the bottom of every login page. A new password will be generated for you and sent to the email address associated with your billing account. If you are unsure what your email address is or otherwise no longer have access to your email account, please contact our sales team and we would be more than happy to assist you in recovering your account after you answer a few questions about your information.

Once your password has been reset, it can be changed to something more memorable from the client area.

How do I updated my billing information?

  1. Login to the client area.
  2. Locate the link labeled “Update your details”.
  3. Under the “My Details” tab, update your billing/contact information.
  4. Click the “Save Changes” button.

How long does it take to activate my account?

Most products are activated immediately after we receive confirmation of payment.

If your order included a domain registration, it may take up to 24 hours for the domain to propagate, although this process generally only takes a couple hours.

Some products may require additional time to setup and configure, but the vast majority of orders are activated immediately upon payment.

What forms of payment do you accept?

From our American, Australian, Canadian, and European businesses we accept Visa, MasterCard, and American Express.

Addtionally, we also accept gift and prepaid cards that are one of the above types.

Paypal is our other online payment option.

For offline payments we still have corporate clients who do pay us with a cheque. Please contact us prior to ordering if you are planning to pay with a cheque.

*** Bitcoin payments are currently being tested.

Why has my account been suspended?

If you are recieving an “Account Suspended” page when trying to access your site, it could be there for a number of reasons including but not limited to:

  • Lack of payment
  • CPU limit exceeded
  • Bandwidth limit exceeded
  • Violation of our Terms of Service

To determine why your account was suspended, please contact our billing department from your client area to find the issue and the resolution. Most accounts can be unsuspended almost immediately, depending on what caused the account to become suspended in the first place.

Email

How do I access my webmail?

Webmail can be accessed by using the following URL:

  • http://yourdomain.com/webmail

Note: yourdomain.com is your actual domain name.

Once webmail has loaded, it will prompt the user for a username and password.

  • Username – The full email address account name (user@yourdomain.com)
  • Password – The password for the email address

Once logged in, choose a webmail client and you will be redirected to that client.

How do I change my email password?

If you know your email password:

  1. Login to webmail.
  2. On the top right hand side you will see “settings”, click on it.
  3. You will see “password” (last option on your right hand side). Click on it.
  4. Type in your new password and confirm it.
  5. Click “save” once complete.

How do I create an email forwarder?

  1. Login to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on the “Mail”
  3. a. If your domain is not listed, click on “Add Mail Domain”. eg. yourdomain.com. Your domain should now be listed
    b. If your domain is listed skip (a)
  4. Click on “add account”
  5. Type in your account name. ie. if you want info@yourdomain.com, then you would type in “info”.
  6. Type in your password
  7. Click on “Advanced Options”
  8. Under “Forward To”, type in where you want your info@yourdomain.com to be forwarded to: ie. myemail@hotmail.com
  9. Optional: You can keep storing the emails that are forwarded or have them completely deleted by checking off the box “do not store forwarded email”
  10. Type “ADD”

How do I setup my email in Microsoft Outlook 2010/2013

  1. Open Outlook 2010/2013.
  2. Go to File -> Info -> Add Account.
  3. Select the “Manually configure server settings or additional server types” radio button and click “Next”
  4. Select the “Internet E-mail” radio button and click “Next”.

Enter the required information:

  • Your Name – The name you want to appear on outgoing email.
  • E-mail address – Your email address.
  • Account Type – Select “IMAP”
  • Incoming mail server – This will be mail.yourdomain.com, where yourdomain.com is the domain of your email account.
  • Outgoing mail server (SMTP) – This will also be mail.yourdomain.com, where yourdomain.com is the domain of your email account.
  • User Name – This will be your full email address.
  • Password – Password for your email account.
  • Click “Next”.

Click “Finish”.

How do I setup my email on an Android device?

  1. On your Android device, open the “Email” application.
  2. Press the “Menu” button, select “More…“, and then select “New account“.
  3. Select the “Other (POP3/IMAP)” option.
  4. Select the “Manual setup” option.
  5. Fill in the required information:
    • Protocol – Select either POP or IMAP. If you’re unsure which to choose, you probably want IMAP.
    • Email address – Your email address.
    • Username – This will be the same as your email address.
    • Password – The password for your email address.
    • POP/IMAP Server – This will be mail.yourdomain.com, where yourdomain.com is the domain of your email account.
    • Security Type– Most servers only support “None” here. Contact our technical support to see if your account’s server supports otherwise.
    • Server Port – Leave this as default.
  6. Select the “Next” button.
  7. After your incoming information is validated, enter your outgoing server settings. Most of the settings will already be set for you from the previous screen:
    • Login Required – Leave this as default.
    • Username – Leave this as default.
    • Password – This this as default.
    • POP/IMAP Server – This will be mail.yourdomain.com, where yourdomain.com is the domain of your email account.
    • Security Type– Most servers only support “None” here. Contact our technical support to see if your account’s server supports otherwise.
    • Server Port – Leave this as default.
  8. After your outgoing server information is verified, give the email account a name and enter your name.
  9. You can select to make the email account your default, if you so desire.
  10. Press the “Finish setup” button to complete the setup.

How do I setup my email on an iPad/iPhone

    1. On your iPad/iPhone device, open the “Settings” application from the home screen
    2. Press the “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” option, and then select “Add Account“.
    3. Select the “Other” option.
    4. Select the “Add Mail Account” option.
    5. Fill in the required information:
      • Name – Your name.
      • Email – Your email address.
      • Password – The password for your email address.
      • Description – Add a description to identify the account (not required)
    6. Select the “Next” button.
      Enter the remaining information:

      • POP / IMAP Selection – We would normally recommend using IMAP from a mobility device such as an iPad/iPhone.
      • Incoming Mail Server
        • Host name – mail.)
        • User Name – This is your email address
        • Password – This is your password for the email account, it should already be pre-filled.
      • Outgoing Mail Server
        • Host name – mail.  (e.g. mail.primarytech.com, just put your domain in place of ours)
        • User Name – This is your email address
        • Password – This is your password for the email account, it should already be pre-filled.
    7. Click the “Next” button at the top right of the screen
    8. You will receive a warning about not being able to verify the server identity, this will happen unless you have an SSL certificate installed so click Continue
    9. You will receive the same warning again, click Continue
    10. Click Save 

That’s it!  Your email account should now be working from your iPad.

How to create an email account?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “Mail
    3. a. If your domain is not listed, click on “Add Mail Domain”. eg. yourdomain.com. Your domain should now be listed
      b. If your domain is listed skip (a)
    4. Click on “add account”
    5. Type in your account name. ie. if you want info@yourdomain.com, then you would type in “info”.
    6. Type in your password
    7. Type “ADD”

Hosting

How much hosting do I need?

If you are starting your first website, chances are you are not familiar with common hosting terms such as disk space and bandwidth.

If you are unsure which hosting package to choose, simply contact our sales department with a fairly detailed description of what you’re wanting to use your website for and we would be more than happy to assist you in picking the hosting packge that’s right for you.

What is bandwidth?

Bandwidth is the amount of data that is allowed to be transferred in and out of an account during any given period (usually 1 month). For instance, if a client has a 1MB picture stored on their server and that picture is accessed 4 times, then 4MB of bandwidth has been used.

Bandwidth can be calculated many different ways, but the majority of the time it is simple HTTP requests (accessing your website in the browser) that use up most of your bandwidth.

What is disk space?

Disk space is the amount of data allocated the a specific client. For instance, if a client is allocated 2GB (2,000MB) of disk space, then he or she could store up to 2,000 1MB pictures on that server.

When calculating disk space usage, it is usually the combination of all the files saved on the server, plus databases and email space.

If a client exceeds their disk space limit, the server will not allow them to upload any additional files.

What is website hosting?

Web hosting is a service where a client rents disk space space on a server. Some advantages to renting web space as opposed to setting up your own are as follows:

  • Less overhead (no need to purchase servers, firewalls, etc)
  • Less maintenance
  • Faster deployment
Web hosting services are generally offered for incremental amounts of time (monthly, yearly) and are usually pretty flexible in the sense that a client can upgrade his or her account at any time, allowing their website to grow (or shrink) with their needs.
There are different types of hosting:
  • Shared – Hosting where hundreds of clients may share the same server, but their accounts are completely separate. Shared hosting is by far the most affordable option as hosting providers are able to fit many clients onto one server, this reducing the amount of profit that must be generated by each client.
  • Reseller – A service in which a client rents a bulk amount of web space with reseller privileges. Reseller privileges enable the client to resell hosting services to other clients, thus enabling them to create their own web hosting company for very little overhead.
  • VPS – A virtualized server, meaning that there will be multiple clients on the server but they will all be sharing the server’s resources.
  • Dedicated – A service which provides a fully dedicated web server for use by the client. No other clients will be using this server.

Preferences

How do I change my language in VestaCP?

  1. Log in to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on your username (top right hand corner).
  3. Under “Language” simply select the language of your choice.
  4. Once complete click on “Save”.

How do I change my VestaCP Password?

  1. Log in to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on your username (top right hand corner).
  3. Under “password” simply change it to your liking
  4. Once complete click on “Save”.

How do I update my contact information?

  1. Log in to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on your username (top right hand corner).
  3. Make changes to your contact information.
  4. Once complete click on “Save”.

Troubleshooting

Cannot connect to database

This error will occur within a web application when any of the following conditions are met:

  • The database username is incorrect;
  • The database password is incorrect;
  • The database name is incorrect;
  • The database location is incorrect (the correct setting is localhost for most of our services); or
  • The database server is unavailable
Ensure that your database information is correct, and then try again. If the problem persists, contact our technical support and we would be more than happy to assist you.

Files fail FTP Transfer

When uploading many files at once (a CMS, for example), it is not uncommon for a few of the files to fail the FTP transfer. This will often happen if there are many FTP connections going to your server. If a transfer fails, simply restart the transfer for those files and they should complete the upload process.

I can’t login to Vesta

Ensure that caps lock is off, and that you are completely sure what your VestaCP password is. If too many failed login attempts are made, you will be locked out of the system for 10 minutes. If you try to login during the 10 minute lockout period, the lockout will be extended.

If you cannot remember your VestaCP password, it can be reset from the client area or by contacting technical or sales support.

I’m receiving a blank page

If your website or web application is displaying nothing but a blank, white page, then chances are your software requires a plugin that is not currently installed on your server. The best way to do this is to check your error log, which can be accessed via the control panel. The error log will contain the time and page the error occurred on, which will make it easy to contact the software vendor’s support for help, and then eventually contact us if it is a server configuration issue.

My FTP client says too many connections

The server will often reject a new FTP connection if too many are open for any given account. If you’ve been uploading a large number of files and now receive this error, try closing the FTP application and restarting it. This should do a hard reset on your FTP connections and enable you to re-initiate the connection.

My webpage is displaying ads

If your website is not pulling up and is instead showing advertisements, the most likely cause is that your domain name expired and the registrar has placed the ads there. If the domain recently expired, it can probably be recovered by talking to our sales department, who will in turn contact the registrar.

My website is running slow

If you are using a forum or content management system, make sure that caching is enabled. Caching will greatly reduce the number of requests your account has to make to the server, therefore greatly increasing its speed. You can also increase page loading times by optimizing your website using an optimizer tool – we recommend Page Speed from Google which is available for Chrome and Firefox.

Page is diplaying 404 page not found error

The 404 Page Not Found error means that the user requested a page on the server that does not exist. This is commonly caused by mistyped URLs, but can also be the result of a file being moved or permanently deleted from the server. If the error occurs as a result of a redirect, make sure that the software doing the redirect has the server’s root directory configured correctly. If you need any help with this, feel free to contact our support department.

Page says function not found, but the page exists

If your web application uses a function found in a particular file, but the application says that the function does not exist, then the file was probably corrupted during the upload process, or during the download process from the software vendor’s website. The best way to correct this is to redownload the software package from the vendor’s website, and then reupload the corrupt file.

PHP failed to include file: file not found

The PHP include() File Not Found error will occur when a .php file attempts to include another file that either does not exist, or was incorrectly referenced from within the PHP include statement. Ensure that the file exists and that the file path is correct, and that will resolve the issue.

Databases

How do I create a mysql database?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “DB” icon
    3. Click on “Add Database”
    4. Name the database, name a user, and create a password.
    5. Once complete click on “Add”

How do I delete a mysql database?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “DB” icon
    3. Find the database you want to delete, and simply click DELETE

How do I export a mysql database?

  1. Login to VestaCP.
  2. Locate and click on the “DB” icon
  3. Under the database you want to edit click on “open phpMyAdmin”
  4. Once phpMyAdmin loads, select a database from the left that you wish to export from the list on the left.
    1. Click on the “Export” tab and select an export option:
      • Quick – Export the entire database using the default options.
      • Custom – Select specific tables within the database to export, or change the individual export options.
    2. Click on the “Go” button and the database export will begin.

How do I import a mysql database?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “DB” icon
    3. Under the database you want to edit click on “open phpMyAdmin
    4. After phpMyAdmin loads, click on the “Import” tab.
    5. Click on the “Choose File” button and select your .SQL file.
    6. Click on the “Go” button and your MySQL database will import.

My application is asking for database information - Where do I get it?

Nearly all web applications have a database back-end that require a MySQL database. During the application’s installation, you will be asked for these database details:

  • MySQL Host – This is always “localhost”
  • Username – The user assigned to the database with adequate permissions to manipulate it. (YOURUSERNAME_thenameyougaveit)
  • Password – The password for the user assigned to the database.
  • Database Name – The name of the database you want the application to use. (YOURUSERNAME_thenameyougaveit)

What is phpmyadmin?

phpMyAdmin is a graphical user interface (GUI) used for managing data within a MySQL database.

To access phpMyAdmin:

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “DB” icon
    3. Under the database you want to edit click on “open phpMyAdmin

Files

How do I backup my VestaCP account?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “Backup” icon.
    3. Click on the “Backup” button.

How do I restore my VestaCP account?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate the backup you want to restore from
    3. Click on the “configure restore setting” icon.
    4. Select what you want to restore
    5. Click on the “Restore” button.

How do I see how much disk space I am using?

  1. Login to VestaCP.
  2. Under your user account you will see the % of space and the actual amount of space that you are using.

What’s the fastest way to transfer files?

The File Manager is good if you need to upload just a couple of files quickly, but if you are uploading hundreds or even thousands of files at once, FTP is a much faster solution.

There are many FTP clients readily available for free, and most can be installed and setup in less than 15 minutes.

If you are on a dedicated server you do have the option of using SSH, which could be considered the fastest option especially if you are transferring from one server to another via SSH.

Logs

How do I interpret VestaCP Access Logs?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “Log” icon.

This will provide you with a complete log of what has occured under your web hosting control panel.

How do I interpret VestaCP statistics?

    1. Login to VestaCP.
    2. Locate and click on the “Statistics” icon.

This will give you an overview for each month of how much space and bandwidth had been used.

SEO

Common SEO Trips and Tricks

  • Include a title tag on all of your pages.
  • Include a meta description tag on your homepage
  • Include a meta keywords tag on your homepage
  • Use analyzer tools to optimize your website and make it load faster
  • Combine smaller images (icons) into a single image and load them individually using CSS (sprites).
  • Combine CSS files into a single, larger file.
  • Put JavaScript not needed during page load at the bottom of your page.

What tools are available to optimize my website?

There are many free tools available to help you optimize your website:

Why is SEO important?

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) enables your website to be more accessible by the search engines, who in turn will rank your website higher in their rankings.

Higher rankings mean more customers, more customers mean more profit.

VestaCP

How do I access VestaCP?

VestaCP can be accessed by using either of the URLs below:

www.yourdomain.com:8083