Changing the cPanel Default Website Page on a VPS

When setting up a new VPS you are likely going to want to make changes to the default set up.

That will likely mean changing the default website page that the new VPS points to.

Out-of-the-box VPS running CentOS will show you a web page similar to the one below (click to enlarge).


Which is pretty pants really.

Changing the Default Website Page

In order to change this cPanel default website page, you’ll need to locate the HTML file that is generating it.

You may have to do a little hunting around on your VPS depending on the operating system you have installed.

The file we need to find is index.html in the Apache htdocs folder.

In our CentOS VPS I found the file in /usr/local/apache/htdocs/ folder.

The file only has 1 line of code in it:

<html><head><META HTTP-EQUIV=”refresh” CONTENT=”0;URL=/cgi-sys/defaultwebpage.cgi”></head><body></body></html>

How can one line generate an entire page of stuff you ask?

One of the tags is META HTTP-EQUIV=”refresh”  which tells the webpage to refresh itself with some new content specified in the CONTENT parameter.

In this case it is pulling /cgi-sys/defaultwebpage.cgi from the cPanel default home structure in /usr/local/cpanel.

You can either change the CONTENT URL parameter to point to your own file or just change the index.html file altogether which is what I did.

Our new VPS now has this grand default website page which I’m sure you’ll agree is 100% more awesome than the default cPanel one.


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Wil is a dad, WordPress consultant, WordPress developer, business coach and mentor. He co-organizes the WordPress Sydney meetup group and has been on the organising committee for WordCamp Sydney since 2014. He speaks at many special events and contributes to the WordPress open source project. His likes are chillies, craft beer and electrogravitics.

2 thoughts on “Changing the cPanel Default Website Page on a VPS”

  1. Well this is grate. Let me try to look around. Do you know why I can’t log in to cpanel but I can log in to whm?

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