$6000 per mo, why I'm dumping cPanel for Virtualmin in 2021


Feb 7, 2021
United States
cPanel Access Level
Root Administrator
I received an email today from cPanel asking me if I would recommend it to a friend. I have used cPanel for decades. And, as much as I love it, I had to answer honestly that, "No, I would not recommend it." Here is why:

First, your customer service is top notch. I can't say enough about your thoroughness when responding to tickets and involvement in the forums. I never had an issue I couldn't resolve within a reasonable amount of time.

Outside of that, You've just become too expensive. Your pricing is out of touch with modern business models. Said differently, your pricing model is COMPLETELY broken. Here is what I mean.

I used to offer shared hosting. All of the issues that come with shared hosting were eating up my costs (resource allocation, shared security problems, viruses that propagate through an entire system affecting everyone, etc). I now only offer dedicated microservers to clients. At Linode, a 25GB droplet costs me $5. I prefer a separate server for each client because it's much more secure. It eliminates 100% of the issues involved with shared hosting.

I would LOVE to offer cPanel as a part of that package so that clients could have a dependable, reputable GUI to manage their sites, email, etc.

But at $15 bucks for a single user license, it's insanely expensive. Instead, I have had to switch to Virtualmin.

Here is the one single biggest flaw in your pricing. You have tiered pricing but IT ONLY APPLIES TO ONE SERVER!!! In bulk, licenses can get down to .40 cents a pop (last time I checked). If you allowed the tiered licensing to apply across all the users on all servers, I could easily meet the bulk criteria. At that point, I would be more than thrilled to have you on every server I deployed. I don't even mind paying $500 or $1000 min per month for, dunno, 500 or 1000 licenses I can use across my infrastructure.

Let's do quick math. I have about 400 clients. 400 x $0.40 = $160.00

For my droplets: 400 x $15 = $6000.00

It's a no brainer that I have to switch to something else to protect my bottom line. And, cPanel, you have lost your mind if you think that you are going to profit more from my clients than I actually do.

Your model and pricing around it is flawed because shared hosting is now like dial-up internet. It actually cost more per client to have them on a shared server than it does to give them their own dedicated resources. And with technology like docker and kubernetes, it's easier and faster to spin up a dedicated resource than it is to use your api to create a new account for a user.

I can understand paying for great customer service. But the fallacy continues in that none of these clients are ever going to use your customer service - they are going to use me, so effectively you're forcing us to pay for something that will never be taken advantage of.

If cPanel adapts to modern times and takes scenarios like the above into consideration, I'd be happy to remain a client. But currently, the more trends shift away from shared hosting, the more irrelevant the entire cPanel model becomes.