(Gawkwire.com) cPanel’s concept of Add-On, Parked and Sub-domains are very confusing for the first time cPanel user. This article will explain each of them and when/why you would use them.

We’ll start out with the easiest concept which is a domain. Before I can explain a domain there needs to be a brief discussion about “Top Level Domains” (TLD). No one really gives TLD’s that much thought. It’s really hard to define what a TLD is, so I’ll simply provide a sample list here:

§ .com
§ .net
§ .org
§ .co.uk
§ .jp

There are 100’s of different TLD’s (as well as country code TLD’s but you get the idea, right?) Domains then are pretty simple. It’s just any name that you pick (that follow domain naming rules) that are just to the left of the TLD. For the rest of our example here we’re just going to work the really simple “sample.com” domain.

So what are sub/add-on/parked domains?

We’ll start out with sub-domains first. You don’t realize it, but you use sub-domains every day. A sub-domain is simply the name just to the left of your domain name. The universally accepted sub-domain for web sites (drum roll please) is “www”. So while everyone “thinks” of their domain as www.sample.com, “www” is really a sub-domain of sample.com. Other popular sub-domains are “mail’ and “ftp”. See, that was pretty simple, wasn’t it?

At this point you’re probably asking yourself “why would I ever need a sub-domain other than www?”. There are a lot of good reasons. Some of them include “blog.domain.com”, “forum.doman.com”, “secure.domain.com” and “devel.domain.com”. Each of these sub-domains could have been created as www.domain.com/forum and www.domain.com/blog but there is one big technical difference. With www.domain.com/forum and www.domain.com/blog they both physically have to be on the same server becuase there is only one DNS record for www.domain.com. With sub-domains like blog.domain.com and forum.domain.com each sub-domain has it’s own DNS record and therefore can be on different servers. The fact that you can put the different sub-domains on different servers is not particularly useful for most cPanel web hosting clients but if you have an very large/active site you many want out put devel.domain.com on a totally different server than www.domain.com

Parked domains are pretty straight forward. When you park a domain in cPanel it simply lets one site respond to multiple names. So again, with our sample.com domain you could park sample.org and sample.net on sample.com and you would see the exact same web site for www.sample.com, www.sample.net and www.sample.org. The real confusion with parked domains is that cPanel uses a different meaning for “parked” vs. the rest of the domain world. When most people think of parked domains they think of a landing page that your domain registrar gives you to “park” your web site before you create a real one. If you simply think of cPanel’s parked domains as domain aliases I think it’s a lot less confusing.

Add-on domains in cPanel are also pretty straight forward. They literally let you “add-on” another domain to your hosting account so you can host multiple domains from a single cPanel account. So how does cPanel do this magic? Most of it has to do with the configuration of the web server and of course, you don’t have to worry about that. The only thing you really need to be concerned with is “where do I put my files?”. With cPanel your web pages will be put in your public_html directory. When you add-on domains (unless you change cPanel’s defaults) they will simply be directories under your public_html directory. Visually they look like this:


So what is this 1+1 and 1+10 nonsense on the Doreo web site?

OK, first off, let’s blame that on the marketing guys, ok? This is simply the best notation we could come up with to explain how many accounts you can host on a single Doreo hosting account. With our SH-A plan you can host one main domain (the one you sign up for) and then you can add one more sub-domain or add-on domain or parked domain. With the SH-B plan you can host one main domain and then up to ten more sub/add-on/parked domains. It does not matter how many of which kind as long as the totally does not exceed ten.

Hopefully this clears up the mystery a bit about sub/add-on and parked domains (and why you’d use them). If things are still not quite clear please feel free to contact Doreo sales (by phone, chat or email) and we’ll do our best to explain it.

Writer’s Bio: Frank Feingold is the President of Doreo Hosting.  Frank’s responsibility at Doreo includes new product development and customer satisfaction.  Frank has been involved in the web hosting industry since 2001.  Prior to his web hosting career Frank had 20+ years of mainframe and mid-range experince working in corporate america.


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