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SolusVM: Integrated Platform Management Tools for VPS Hosting

Web Hosting Companies Increasingly License SolusVM Software for VPS Platform Management

SolusVM is becoming increasingly popular in the web hosting industry for small, independent start-up companies who need a reliable means of managing VPS plans for customer support. SolusVM can be used with WHMCS, cPanel, CentOS, & a billing system like ClientExec to give resellers a full suite of web hosting service products on a single dedicated server. Just as WHMCS provides a complete solution for shared hosting business operations on Linux servers, SolusVM can be used to manage VPS partitions that are re-sold to clients under retail hosting account plans. Independent web hosting companies can lease dedicated hardware in a cloud data center or colocation facility to use SolusVM, WHMCS, cPanel, CentOS, & CloudLinux to scale from shared reseller plans to full operation of branded web hosting services as VPS providers by licensing the software from OnApp for use on a specific number of servers.


Web Hosting Companies Increasingly License SolusVM Software for VPS Platform Management

SolusVM - VPS Platform Management Tools for OpenVZ, Xen, & KVM Frameworks

The main advantage of SolusVM is providing a GUI for navigating the administration of VPS settings, configuration of web server resources, and live web traffic monitoring for each partitioned VM in a public, private, or hybrid cloud network. SolusVM offers three main options for virtualization based either on OpenVZ, Xen, or the KVM frameworks. After deciding on the virtualization architecture, systems administrators can create VPS instances and either install them with custom server stack software for resale or offer them as unmanaged VPS plans with unique entry passwords for client provisioning. PaaS/SaaS start-up companies can use SolusVM to manage VPS partitions installed with proprietary software applications for managed cloud services like WordPress hosting, or integrate with Docker & Kubernetes for scaling all client domains across multiple web servers with load balancing.

  • OpenVZ - a stand-alone virtualization platform for Linux that also integrates with Virtuozzo
  • Xen - a hypervisor based on Linux microkernels with isolated bare-metal security
  • KVM - Kernel-based Virtual Machines compatible with both Linux & Windows OS

The OpenVZ integration allows SolusVM to function as a low cost competitor to Virtuozzo for full VPS platform management. This enables small web hosting companies to enter the market in an affordable manner and offer the same VPS plans at competitive prices on leased cloud hardware from data center surplus around the world as the major web hosting companies provide to their clients. By purchasing bulk hardware at the lowest prices from cloud data centers and colocation companies (as through the OpenStack marketplace), small web hosting companies can scale to a larger customer base by offering cheap VPS plans and managing the client partitions with SolusVM across multiple network servers.


Introductory Video - SolusVM: The VPS Web Panel

ZenSix Hosting - "SolusVM 2 is distributed via yum for RedHat based Enterprise Linux. All packages in these repositories are GPG signed, except for the release installation RPMS." Learn More About SolusVM


SolusVM - Resources for Reseller Hosting Companies & Web Professionals

Web hosting resellers are able to manage unlimited domains across many different clients using the combination of WHMCS, cPanel, & CentOS which has become industry standard. While this package can also be installed and used on VPS partitions for managing a web server & LAMP stack, it does not include the virtualization platform software required to create and manage VPS plans. By buying dedicated hardware and pre-partitioning the VPS instances using Xen, OpenVZ, KVM, etc., small web hosting companies and web professionals using reseller accounts can expand their business service offerings.

Container virtualization can be used for horizontal portability between public cloud providers, for example, in transferring an entire hosting infrastructure between Rackspace, Google Cloud, & AWS, as WPengine and other managed cloud hosting specialist companies have done. In automating web hosting ecommerce fulfillment with VPS plans, SolusVM can help developers build complete solutions that integrate with WHMCS, cPanel, & CentOS in reseller-based business models. However, in order to grow to higher levels of client business, reseller web hosting businesses need to scale hybrid cloud architecture across multiple servers to support thousands of simultaneous VM instances.


SolusVM - VPS Platform Management Tools for OpenVZ, Xen, & KVM Frameworks
Single VPS Management with SolusVM - The monthly SolusVM license fee for single VPS management is only $2.50, making it a good cPanel upgrade for many power users. Learn More about SolusVM.


SolusVM - Hybrid Cloud Orchestration Strategies for Better Reseller Hosting Deployment

Because reseller hosting companies need to scale beyond a single web server and manage a wide range of different client accounts under a single data center network, VPS client account management inevitably requires hybrid cloud orchestration strategies that allow system administrators to architect the network resources along with regular stack software management and platform security upgrades. In this manner, SolusVM operates in an object-oriented manner as part of a larger proprietary custom Linux stack of client hosting accounts, database installations, domain scripts, and data center network management utilities. Some of the other platform software that is currently in development that provides for a wider cloud orchestration and management of VPS partitions in a web hosting environment are:

  • OpenStack - cloud data center management platform tools
  • CloudStack - public, private, community, & hybrid cloud orchestration
  • Mesosphere - the Apache container-based cloud OS for data centers
  • Rancher OS - a cloud operating system for Docker containers
  • Photon OS - the VMware operating system for containers
  • Core OS - alternative Apache Linux OS for containers
  • OnApp CMP - complete public, private, & hybrid cloud orchestration
  • Cloud Foundry - open source, API-driven cross-platform cloud architecture

All of these data center management platform software projects seek to provide unified network tools that include web traffic request load balancing across multiple web servers, elastic scaling of server processing resources to domain accounts, live VPS allocation of RAM & CPU cores via real-time monitoring, and web page optimization services like advanced page caching for "big data" requirements in public, private, and hybrid cloud deployments. Web hosting companies, SaaS start-ups, and enterprise IT departments all use a combination of these tools to create custom network solutions and many software companies compete in this sector for business. SolusVM offers a simple alternative for reseller hosting providers scaling from shared hosting on a single server to offering VPS plans on Linux to clients.

SolusVM can integrate into the wider hybrid cloud platform deployments like OpenStack or CloudStack as a cheap but powerful tool for managing VPS plans in a web hosting business, just as it integrates with WHMCS, cPanel, & CentOS, but the software is not powerful enough on its own to act as a complete hybrid cloud orchestration framework for an entire data center. OnApp's Cloud Management System is a more expensive software license but does provide the complete network tools required for building cloud data center architecture with integrated load balancing, network monitoring, & database synchronization at elastic scale across multiple web server hardware instances (1000+ nodes). Both of these software packages are becoming popular in the web hosting industry for use with WHMCS, cPanel, & CentOS in reseller hosting business operations. OnApp's CMP & SolusVM also work together seamlessly for web hosting business network architecture and enterprise data center management.


Tutorial Video - Login to the SolusVM Administration Panel

Solus Virtual Manager (SolusVM) - "...a powerful GUI based VPS management system with full OpenVZ, Linux KVM, Xen Paravirtualization and Xen HVM support. SolusVM allows you and your clients to manage a VPS cluster with security & ease."  Learn more about SolusVM.


Data Center Management - Horizontal Portability vs. Public Cloud Service Providers

Scaling a web hosting start-up company in an established market is not easy, and many companies have different business models based in custom stack development that are intended to distinguish their particular brand of Linux or Windows cloud hosting from other software platforms. Web hosting companies have the choice of building their own data centers, leasing or installing servers in a colocation center, or developing their data center operations on public cloud hardware like AWS, Google Cloud, Rackspace, etc. Because it can also be common for prices and business management strategies to change quickly in IT, it can be important to consider data portability of reseller web hosting service architecture across public cloud providers. This can insure there is no vendor lock-in and that wholesale hardware in the cloud (with fiber optic backbone connections) can always be procured for the hosting business as a wholesale bulk resource. Even web hosting companies with their own hardware and data centers need to continually consider these costs on every web server hardware upgrade cycle.

Best practice currently in the industry is to use containers like Docker for horizontal portability but there are many other methods which include version control, database clones, virtualization of stack snapshots, integrated elastic scaling, etc. Reseller web hosting companies building on this model need to develop their own hybrid cloud solutions with cross-vendor hardware support, multiple backups of client data, load balancing on network traffic, and continual seamless security upgrades to be successful.


SolusVM - VPS Platform Management Tools for OpenVZ, Xen, & KVM Frameworks

Integrated VPS Resource Monitoring & Web Traffic Analytics - "Solus Virtual Manager (SolusVM) is a powerful GUI-based VPS management system which allows you to monitor your VPS status and change basic settings." Learn more about SolusVM.


Alternatives to SolusVM - Virtuozzo, Promox, & Virtualizor

SolusVM competes favorably with Virtuozzo in VPS platform management, where Virtuozzo is much more costly for web hosting service providers to procure. OnApp has priced their Cloud Management Platform competitively with Virtuozzo for data center management and SolusVM is priced in a middle range between cPanel and Plesk or vDesk in the web hosting marketplace ($10 per month). As such, the software is marketed primarily at the reseller and independent hosting provider as a valuable tool for VPS platform management. The two biggest competitors currently to SolusVM are:

  • Proxmox - complete virtualization solutions including VPS platform management
  • Virtualizor - VPS management tools from the software developers of Softaculous

The main difference between Proxmox and SolusVM is that Proxmox includes its own proprietary virtualization software broadly equivalent to Microsoft's Hyper-V, VMware's VSphere, OpenVZ, or Citrix Xen, but costs much less than the proprietary licenses for enterprise use of those platforms. SolusVM, like Virtualizor, makes use of third party virtualization frameworks such as KVM, OpenVZ, and Xen for creating VPS instances. Virtualizor is priced around $1 cheaper per month than SolusVM for unlimited licensing and at only $1 per month for the single VPS license compared to $2.50 p/mo for SolusVM.


Video Seminar - Node to Node Migration of a KVM Virtual Server

SolusVM v1.14 - "Moving a KVM virtual server from one node to another. The virtual server is only 1GB in size for the purpose of this video and both servers are in the same data center."  Learn more about SolusVM.