Managed Dedicated Server Quick Start Guide

Congratulations and thank you for purchasing a managed dedicated server from A2 Hosting! This Quick Start Guide is designed to help you get up and running with your new Managed Dedicated Server.

Please note that the Unmanaged Dedicated Server Quick Start guide can be found here.

Your A2 Hosting Customer Portal

After you purchase a managed dedicated server from A2 Hosting, you receive a welcome e-mail message that provides information about how to access your account on the A2 Hosting Customer Portal. Within the Customer Portal, you can contact our support team, submit a migration requisition, pay your bills, and view your account information. The Customer Portal enables you to view your account's product information, including:

  • The domain name and IP address
  • cPanel and WebHost manager URLs and login information
  • FTP server and login information
  • E-mail server and login information
  • DNS name server information
  • SSH account information
  • If you requested root-level access, your WHM and SSH root login information can also be found here

To find this information, please first log in to the A2 Hosting Customer Portal. It can be found at:

https://my.a2hosting.com/

Your new managed dedicated server space is located under the orange Your Active Products/Services section as shown in the screenshot below:

Managed Bare Metal Dedicated Servers Active Product within Customer Portal

Click anywhere on your managed dedicated server package. This will take you to the Manage page. The Additional Information tab within the Manage page contains all the technical information you need for your account, like the FTP, SSH, and cPanel login information:

Managed Dedicated Server additional info within Customer Portal

If you requested root-level access, your WHM and SSH root login information can also be found in your Customer Portal.

For security reasons, we always recommend changing all initial passwords. Our How To Create A Strong Password article covers everything you need to know about creating a strong password(s) to protect your account. 

For more information about how to use the Customer Portal, please see these articles.

Dedicated IP Addresses

Did you know that one of the perks of having a managed dedicated server hosting account with A2 Hosting is that you can add additional dedicated IP addresses in addition to the two dedicated IP addresses that come with your account? If you would like to purchase an additional dedicated IP address, please follow our guide How to order a dedicated IP address. This page in the Customer Portal will take you right to the spot where you can order a dedicated IP address.

Managing Your Account with cPanel and WHM 

You can use cPanel and WebHost Manager (WHM) to manage your account and your customers' accounts.

If you require multiple cPanel accounts and/or WHM (Multi-cPanel account) access, please submit a support request to enable access.
WebHost Manager

WebHost Manager allows you to run your business exactly as you see fit and offers unique customization to cater to the unique needs of your clients with the ability to create custom packages. With WHM, there are endless possibilities that you can use to deliver the best experience for your clients. WHM gives you control over the packages and features you’d like to sell and enables you to manage your customers' accounts. The knowledgebase article How to manage WebHost Manager packages walks you through the process of creating packages so you can best serve your clients’ needs.

Once you have your customers set with packages that will best suit what their sites need, you will want to create accounts for your clients. Our How to manage web hosting accounts with WHM article walks you through creating, modifying, and deleting accounts within WHM. Delivering to clients a customized experience is one of the best WHM features. Our WHM branding guide walks you through how to deliver a personalized experience for your clients.

A2 Hosting provides a wide variety of knowledge base articles about WHM that cover everything from password management to how to use skeleton files to provide default content for customer accounts. Our Guru crew is there to help you deliver the best possible service to your clients and support your business as it grows.

cPanel

cPanel is the primary administration interface for individual accounts. For more information about how to use cPanel, please see these articles.

Billing Interfaces

The WHMCS and Blesta billing interfaces are comprehensive billing, support, and automation solutions that can help you streamline how you run your business from your managed dedicated server plan.

To order, install, and configure a WHMCS license, please consult these knowledgebase articles:

To order, install, and configure a Blesta license, please consult these knowledgebase articles:

Migrating Sites

If you’re coming from another hosting provider and need to have your accounts transferred over, our Migration Team will be happy to assist you. Our Migrating an account from another web host article explains how to request a migration. The Site Migration Request page can be found in the Customer Portal. Most migrations take between 24-48 hours to complete (however, more complex migrations might take longer.)

Domains and DNS

Domains

Domains are crucial to a site’s success. If you’re just starting, our Introduction to Domains article will walk you through all of the basics when it comes to domains. If you would like to do an even deeper dive into the variety of domains offered, please refer to our article What are subdomains, addon domains and parked domains?

Transferring Domains

If you already own a domain that you purchased from a different registrar or hosting company, you can transfer the entire domain to A2 Hosting. All aspects of the domain, including billing and domain administration, are transferred from the registrar to A2 Hosting. For information about how to do this, please see How to transfer a domain to A2 Hosting

Default Name servers

If you would like to use the default name servers for your account, our article Basic domain management using the Customer Portal shows you how to do so. This article also covers a wide variety of other topics, such as viewing domain information and setting the registrar lock for a domain. 

Custom Name Servers

Custom name servers are yet another way that you can customize your experience with A2 Hosting’s managed dedicated server plan. For example, you can use name servers such as  ns1.example.com and ns2.example.com, where example.com represents your domain name.

You must register the custom name servers with the domain’s registrar. After completing these steps, you will need to reach out to our Support Team, who will add the new custom name servers to the A2 Hosting DNS cluster. The process is detailed in our How to configure custom name servers article.

DNS Propagation

After you’ve updated your domain settings, DNS propagation will take 24-48 hours to complete. You may not be able to access your site using your domain during this time. However, our article How to access your web site before DNS propagation is complete shows you several methods for being able to access your site while you wait for DNS propagation to be completed.

Setting Name Servers

If you already own a domain that you purchased from a different registrar or hosting company, you can change the domain's name server (DNS) settings to point to A2 Hosting's servers. Unlike a transferred domain, billing and domain administration remain with the domain's current registrar. For information about how to do this, please see How to set the name servers for a domain to point to A2 Hosting.

FTP/SFTP

Secure Shell File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) is available on all managed dedicated server hosting accounts. This method is more secure than traditional FTP, as it utilizes SSH protocol to encrypt file transfers. Most FTP clients support SFTP. Our article Using FTP (File Transfer Protocol) covers FTP basics, while our article How to use FTP with Linux hosting accounts demonstrates how to use an FTP client and connect to your account.

SSH

Secure Shell (SSH) is a protocol that provides secure command-line access to your A2 Hosting account. SSH is a powerful tool that allows you to automate many processes for yourself and your clients. By using SSH, you can remotely log in to your A2 Hosting account and run commands as if you were sitting right at the server, and allows you to perform tasks that you cannot do with your account's included hosting control panel. Our How to use SSH article covers the basics of how to get started with using SSH, and our How to access your account using SSH keys article covers how you can deploy a variety of automated processes, such as two-factor authentication and allowing multiple users to transfer files securely using SFTP. 

Please note that for added security, we use non-standard SSH port 7822 by default.

E-mail

E-mail is an important part of running a website, and cPanel makes it easy to set up and manage accounts. For more information about how to set up e-mail accounts for your domain, please see our article Configuring and accessing your e-mail. The article How to manage e-mail accounts in cPanel shows you how to add, modify, and delete e-mail accounts. Furthermore, our article How to access webmail through cPanel walks you through accessing webmail directly through cPanel. These articles will help you and your clients get your sites up and running in no time. 

Free SSL Certificates

Free DV SSL certificates are provisioned automatically through a server-side program called AutoSSL. SSL Certificates renew automatically to ensure continuous coverage. There are a few issues that might prevent AutoSSL from working as intended. Our KB Article How To Setup AutoSSL On Your Domain will help you troubleshoot any problems that arise. 

Customizations

The ways to customize your dedicated server are limitless. If you’re wondering whether or not A2 supports particular customization for your dedicated server, please see this article.

Need help getting off the ground?

Do you have any questions about your account? We are here 24/7 to help! We have a support page where you can search the A2 Hosting Knowledgebase, submit a Support ticket, give us a call, or chat live with one of our Guru Crew team members. Visit our Support page now if you need assistance:

https://my.a2hosting.com

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