May 232012

If you have a Basic Hosting Plan at Cytanium you already have the ability to point unlimited domain names to your initial site. Each of the domains points to the single site though so if you want to host multiple sites (each domain bringing up different content) you either need to write some code to handle this yourself, or you can now upgrade your service to include additional sites at $2/month each. Each additional site gets its own dedicated application pool and shows as an additional item in the control panel so all of the IIS settings can be customized as needed.

Here’s a walk-through of adding the additional site through the control panel.

While logged on to your control panel, select My Ecommerce then My Services:

You’ll then see a list of your existing services, one of which should be your Basic Hosting Plan. Click the Upgrade Service button next to that service listing.

The next screen will show the upgrade options for the Basic Hosting Plan. At the top you’ll notice that a domain name purchase option is listed. If you need to purchase a domain name, be sure to select this option. Otherwise you’ll need to use a domain name you already own or you’ll need to purchase a domain name from another provider – and in either of those two cases you’ll need to manage the name server and/or DNS information yourself.

Lower on the screen you’ll see the option for Additional Website. Select this option then determine what payment cycle term you would like to use.

After submitting payment you should be back at your main control panel homepage. With the site purchased, you now need to do a few more steps to actually set it up. There are two paths to choose from here. If you already have a domain purchased elsewhere that you just need to register on the Cytanium servers, click on Domains:

Then click Add Domain on the next screen:

Then click Domain to create a top-level domain:

On the next page you enter the domain name that you already own and that you want linked to the new site. Notice on this screen that there are a few checkboxes. I suggest you leave each one selected. The first tells the control panel to set up the site in IIS for you at the same time that the DNS is updated. The second confirms for the control panel that the Cytanium name servers will be responsible for managing the domain. The third creates an instant alias which is an alternate way to access your site during development or while waiting for any domain name transfers or updates to take place.

After completing this step, you’ll see the additional domain listed in the Domains list:

Click on the WebSites navigation option also now shows two sites set up and ready for management and use:

Okay. I mentioned there were two options to set up the new site. If you already have an additional domain name set up in the control panel (purchased through us or just set up but not assigned to a site) you would (instead of the above) follow these steps…

Click the Web Sites icon and you’ll see your first default site listed. From there click the Create Web Site button:

The Add Web Site dialog shows and presents a drop-down list of any domain names that are already set up in DNS but that aren’t already linked to an existing site. Choose the domain name you want to use for the new site and click the Create Web Site button.

You are then dropped to the main Web Site Properties view for the newly created web site:

Click the Web Sites link and you’ll now see both sites listed, active, and ready for use or further configuration if needed.

The only other thing you might want to do is enable Web Deploy on the site so that you can publish your content using WebMatrix or the Visual Studio tools which is cover in this other blog post.

May 162012

Cytanium - a newly launched discount shared hosting venture backed by OrcsWeb – has an extremely functional and usable control panel. One of the many features it has is the ability to leverage Microsoft’s Web Application Gallery (WAG) to automatically install dozens of different free applications. Just to show how easy is it, I grabbed some screenshots of me stepping through the process to install Orchard CMS on my Cytanium hosting account…

Cytanium's hosting control panel

The icon to enter the Web Application Gallery is located right in the main interface of the Cytanium hosting control panel. Once in the WAG part of the control panel, all of the available applications are listed alphabetically. You can change the drop-down list to narrow down the selection, or just scroll through the different pages to see all the options.

Cytanium's hosting control panel

Once I found Orchard CMS in the list, I can click on the name of the application or I can click Install right from the result list.

Cytanium's hosting control panel

The first screen before the download and install actually kicks-off just gives a short summary about the application chosen. Click next to begin the download.

Cytanium's hosting control panel

You’ll then get a dialog box showing that the application is being downloaded from the vendor to your hosted site on the server.

Cytanium's hosting control panel

After the download you are prompted for some basic installation parameters. (NOTE: Orchard CMS supports SQL CE but the WAG doesn’t yet, so installation through the WAG requires SQL Server 2008. To use SQL CE I’d recommend downloading to WebMatrix then using Web Deploy to publish up to the server. Not ideal because of the extra steps, but it is fairly easily and works great!)

Cytanium's hosting control panel

Wait a short few moments while it installs.

Cytanium's hosting control panel

And that’s it!

Cytanium's hosting control panel

You can now click on the link to launch Orchard CMS which has its own configuration wizard to finalize its setup.

Happy hosting!

Apr 262012

If you create additional sites on your Cytanium account, or if for some reason you delete your main site and recreate it, then you’ll probably want to set up the Web Deployment (management) services so that you can publish content from WebMatrix or the Visual Studio tools.

[Updated 1/17/12 to match the upgraded control panel interface.]

When you go to view your Web Site properties from the control panel you will see a number of tabs along the top of the interface. The Web Deploy service is set up on the Web Publishing tab.

On the Web Publishing tab it will confirm for you whether the management service is enabled or not. It also has fields to let you customize (if desired) the username for you to publish with, and the associated password.

When you confirm the username and desired password, then click Enable and you’ll see a dialog confirming that the Web Deploy service is being set up:

Enable remote management for your shared hosting site

After just a moment you will see the Management tab screen again but with a green message confirming that the service was successfully configured.

At this point you can now publish your content from any tool that leverages Microsoft’s Web Deploy services.

Apr 202012

What you do need to do is first set up the subdomains in the domain manager (or set up a wildcard entry) and then tell IIS to handle those individual subdomains – because there isn’t a wildcard mapping in IIS.

To set this up:

- Go to the Domains section of your control panel interface.
- Click Add Domain.
- Click Domain Alias.
- Enter the full subdomain URL name.
- It shows “WWW.” which can be confusing, but you can ignore that.
- Check the checkbox next to “Point to existing Web Site”.
- Clear the checkbox next to “Enable DNS” (since DNS is already set up with the wildcard).
- Then Click Add Domain.

After you complete these steps the new subdomain will be mapped as an alias to the existing site and the site will load when the URL is entered in a browser.

Apr 182012

I wrote a blog post already about Managing Your Default Documents with IIS Manager but if you are a Cytanium hosting client you can actually perform this directly through the control panel without the need for the IIS management tools or any IIS knowledge.

From your main control panel screen hover your mouse over Web and select Web Sites:

Shared Hosting Default Document Management Step1

Then click on the name of your site from the list of sites (you may have more than one depending on your services and configuration):

Shared Hosting Default Document Management Step 2

On the next screen, the Web Site Properties, you’ll see a few different management tabs with access to all the settings for your site. On the default tab – “Home Folder” – you can see the list of valid default documents for your site:

Shared Hosting Default Document Management Step 3

That document list is a standard text box so you can cut, copy, paste, or type as desired. In the example above I added YourHomePage.html to the top of the default documents list. If that page exists it will be the first file loaded by default for your site if a visitor doesn’t specifically enter a desired page name. The most common default page names are already in the list as you can see, but you can manage this list to contain whatever files and in whatever order you want – live and in real-time – right there in the control panel.

This is just one more way that Cytanium makes hosting easy and painless.

Apr 172012

Here at Cytanium we love new technologies and we strive to integrate them as fast as reasonably possible. We also like to include our clients when possible so that they (you) can get familiar with the latest and greatest web development options – like ASP.NET 4.5!

Today we are pleased to announce the offer for a FREE ASP.NET 4.5 Beta hosting account for testing purposes. This gives you a risk-free way to test out and play with the latest vNext options from Microsoft - Visual Studio 11, ASP.NET 4.5, Web Pages 2 and MVC 4.

Please note that this is a BETA release and related to that, support is limited. This is a great way to migrate and test your existing code, or start testing new code, against this latest platform. This is not intended for production support though so do not place anything on the free testing account that you cannot afford to lose. This promotion may change or end with very short notice and accounts + data may also be removed at that time, so please retain your own backups and use this only for the intended testing purposes.

Now that we have that disclaimer out of the way, how about getting started? Just click this link to get your FREE ASP.NET 4.5 Beta Test Hosting account. (NOTE: The .NET extension in the control panel will reflect “4.0″ but it is indeed 4.5 – it’s just that the panel doesn’t have 4.5 officially baked-in as an option yet.)

Here are a couple of links you may find useful:

What’s New in ASP.NET 4.5

Application Compatibility

If you haven’t already downloaded Visual Web Developer 11 BetaVisual Studio 11 Ultimate Beta, and/or ASP.NET MVC 4 Beta for Visual Studio 2010 – click the corresponding link to get started with those tools and technologies on your local development machine.

If you want some great production-ready hosting for your live site, check out our Site Hosting and Windows VPS Hosting (starting at only $20!) options.

Happy hosting!

Apr 092012

Scott Forsyth has a couple of good blog posts with pointers on using URL ReWrite to host multiple sites/domains under a single site: