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 112012
 

Thanks to the Microsoft Web Platform Installer (WebPI) setting up WordPress and MySQL on your Cytanium Windows VPS hosting solution is a breeze. Maintaining the MySQL database can be a challenge without a decent toolset, but thanks to phpMyAdmin, it is very easy. Best of all phpMyAdmin is free!

To install phpMyadmin on your Cytanium VPS just follow these simple steps:

  • Setup a new web site in IIS
  • Download the latest version of phpMyAdmin to your server
  • Unzip the contents to the root folder of the new site you created
  • Browse the new site and you’ll see the phpMyAdmin login
  • Enter root username and password of your MySQL instance

After logging in you’ll be able to be able to do a wide variety of admin tasks such as add new databases, export and retore databases, run queries.

phpmyadmin

Using phpMyAdmin to manage the MySQL on your Windows VPS makes life a lot easier, and saves a ton of time from having to mess with the MySQL command-line. If you don’t already have it installed, you should really consider checking it out. If you don’t have a Windows VPS solution yet, check out Cytanium’s aggressively low-priced Windows VPS hosting options.

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:

http://weblogs.asp.net/owscott/archive/2010/01/26/iis-url-rewrite-hosting-multiple-domains-under-one-site.aspx
http://weblogs.asp.net/owscott/archive/2010/05/26/url-rewrite-multiple-domains-under-one-site-part-ii.aspx

Apr 022012
 

At Cytanium, our discount Windows shared hosting (featuring ASP.NET, PHP, SQL Server, and MySQL hosting) has a very user-friendly control panel giving users quite a lot of control to make changes themselves when needed. A common change that clients need to make, especially when first setting up and launching a site, is adjustment of the ASP.NET version to make sure it matches the version the application was built upon. Here are the steps to make that change on a Cytanium Windows hosting account:

From your main control panel homepage, click on Web then Web Sites:

Once on the Web Sites page you’ll see a list of web sites linked to your account. In my example I have just one site listed, kingsleyblog.com.

Click on the name of the web site that you want to manage to access the Web Site Properties interface:

From this Web Site Properties interface click on the Extensions tab. Then you’ll see a drop-down list for the ASP.NET version options for your site. Select the version that you want your site switched to, click the Update button, and the control panel will update the server settings for you.

Happy hosting!

Mar 292012
 

Some web applications – like Orchard CMS – require special write permissions to a hosted website so that the code itself (rather than users) can create, delete, or modify files and folders. For example, when you install a new theme through Orchard’s built-in theme installation option it requires write access to the web folders or it will generate an error.

Here at Cytanium Hosting you can do this easily through the control panel. Click on your site name to view the site properties, then just check the box next to “Enable Write Permissions” and click Update.

Enable Write Permissions on your Windows Hosting account

Not a client yet? Check out our Windows Site Hosting options or for more power, flexibility and control, check out our Windows VPS Hosting options.

Mar 232012
 

After seeing a tweet from someone recently, it occurred to me that I haven’t personally tested out the FTP Publishing experience of WebMatrix yet. So, I did. I cranked up WebMatrix and my Orchard CMS build then adjusted the Publish settings to use the FTP information of my Cytanium Windows hosting testing account. It was actually just as smooth as possible – smoother than I expected actually.

One potential “gotcha” is to be sure the Site Path is set correctly. At Cytanium it is possible to define an FTP user’s home folder when managing FTP accounts. If the home folder is set to your site root (\<website>wwwroot) then the Site Path should be left blank since it will write exactly where the FTP account lands after logon. But, if the FTP home folder is just set to <website>, and that isn’t the web root, the Path needs to be adjusted. In this example, on my Cytanium account, with the FTP root going to <website> I would set the Site Path in WebMatrix to wwwroot.

Something else I noticed while watching the publish is that WebMatrix has a publishing log. To view the log just click the “log” link near the bottom of the IDE while the Publish operation is running.

That brings up this nice detailed log file that updates live while the Publish is taking place.

When it’s done, it tells you so. :)

Pretty cool.

If you don’t already have a hosting account that supports Microsoft’s WebMatrix, check it out – Cytanium supports ASP.NET, Razor, PHP, MVC, SQL CE, and MUCH more!

Happy hosting!