8 Best Free and Open Source Web Hosting Control Panels

A Web hosting control panel is a web-based interface that enables users to manage hosted services in a single location. Control panels can manage email account configuration, databases, FTP users’ accounts, monitor web space and bandwidth consumed, provide file management functionality, create backups, create subdomains and much more.

Web hosting control panels offer an attractive solution to developers and designers that host multiple web sites on virtual private servers and dedicated servers. This type of server management software simplifies the process of managing servers. By offering an easy to user interface, the control panels avoid the need to have expert knowledge of server administration.

Two of the most popular control panels are Plesk and cPanel. These are web-based graphical control panels that allow you to easily and intuitively administer websites, DNS, e-mail accounts, SSL certificates and databases. However, they are both proprietary software. Hosting providers will charge a monthly fee for these control panels to be installed on a server. Fortunately, there is a wide range of open source software available to download at no cost that offers a real alternative to these proprietary solutions.

To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 8 high quality web hosting control panels tools that let users take full control of a web hosting account. The ratings chart below captures our recommendations.

Ratings chart for best free and open source web hosting control panels

Let’s explore the 8 web hosting control panels at hand. Click the links in the table below to learn more about each control panel.

Web Hosting Control Panels
ISPConfigBSD-licensed, hosting control panel supporting many Linux distributions
WebminWeb-based interface for system administration
VirtualminPowerful and flexible web hosting control panel based on Webmin
AjentiModular server admin panel
aaPanelSimple but powerful control panel
froxlorServer management panel to manage your hosting platform
CockpitSysadmin login session in a web browser
Hestia CPLightweight and powerful control panel

This article has been revamped in line with our recent announcement.

Best Free and Open Source SoftwareRead our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.

There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.
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4 months ago

Webmin seems very popular with VPS providers.

4 months ago


Could you please review OpenPanel ?

Eilidih Parris
4 months ago
Reply to  Stefan

We’re a small group of open source enthusiasts. In line with our monthly updates, we are expanding our series of reviews. But this takes time and is dependent on the donations received.

All donations are gratefully received and help us to update and improve the site. Make a donation.