So you already have DirectAdmin installed, but what can be done next to optimize your setup?

1. Understand the basics

There are 3 major players in maintaining your server:

  1. Admin level - the main account responsible for the global server configuration and who can:
  • create other admins
  • create reseller packages and resellers
  • configure global settings like the hostname, nameservers, change security options and global limits
  • customize HTTPd and PHP configurations, manage IPs, maintain Multi Server Setup
  • perform full backup/restore, monitor server processes, mail queue
  • configure services over plugins
  • manage tickets and system messages
  • perform software update
  1. Reseller level - the middle-range account responsible for end-user management, who can:
  • create end-user packages, create user accounts
  • manage IPs and nameservers to be used by end-users
  • create backups for themselves and their users, customize skins
  • manage tickets over message system
  1. User level - the end-user account responsible for managing their sites and emails:
  • create and edit domains, subdomains, domain pointers, redirects and DNS records
  • manage FTP accounts
  • manage E-mails (accounts, autoresponders, antispam filters)
  • manage databases and db users
  • manage files

The tricky part is that one account can be present on all 3 levels, like the "admin" user. You switch the level using a dropdown box on top of evolution skin Admin <-> Reseller <-> User.

2. Secure your server

Security does matter!

If you did not customize the installation, you are already secured with a firewall as it installs the CSF firewall and activates the Brute Force Manager right after installation.

If not, you should install the CSF firewall.

Secure and harden your server. The guide contains a few more steps, and the most valuable are:

  • Enable disable_functions auto-fill with secure_php
  • Configure auto-update for used software
  • Install mod_security
  • Enforce using difficult passwords by users
  • Enable LetsEncrypt for the hostname, which also enables it for webmails and the DirectAdmin panel

3. Configure your server

  1. Customize a skin - perform branding to make your server your own.

  2. Select your WWW server.

  3. Set up proper nameservers.

  4. Use clients' assigned IPs for their domains to send from when sending mailopen in new window.

  5. Enable backups for both the system and users.

  6. Enable BubbleWrap jail for users (CentOS 7 required).

Consider using CloudLinuxopen in new window for better stability, security, and per-account resource management.

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