How to Install cPanel & WHM on DigitalOcean®

Last modified: March 18, 2021


This document explains how to create a DigitalOcean® Droplet™ running the cPanel & WHM drive image.

  • cPanel & WHM requires a valid license. If this is a new installation, you can activate a free 15-day trial license.

  • In order to activate a new license, you must have a cPanel Store account with a verified email address.

  • Due to networking requirements, you cannot run an IPv6-only cPanel & WHM server. You must have at least one IPv4 address.

Create a Droplet

Navigate to the DigitalOcean website.

Then, click Log In in the top right corner. The Project page will appear.

Go to Marketplace

In the left sidebar, click Marketplace.

The Marketplace page will appear.

Choose the cPanel image

The Marketplace page lists all available solutions available for DigitalOcean Droplets.

  1. Search for cPanel on Centos 7.6 and click Details. The cPanel & WHM Droplet page will appear.

  2. Click Configure cPanel & WHM Droplet. The Project page will appear.

Choose a Droplet size

The Choose a plan section lists the available Droplet sizes with the number of CPUs, disk size, bandwidth quota, and pricing.

Select a Droplet plan from the list.


Even though cPanel & WHM requires a minimum of 1GB of RAM and 20GB of disk space, we recommend at least 2GB of RAM and 40GB of dsk space.

For more information about hardware requirements, read our Installation Guide - System Requirements documentation.

Add backups and block storage

The Add backups and Add block storage sections allow you to configure automatic backups and transfer spaces for your server.

We recommend that you perform these steps after you configure your cPanel & WHM server.

Choose a datacenter region

The Choose a datacenter section allows you to select the region in which your server will reside.

Select the datacenter region that provides the fastest access for you and your customers.

Select additional options

The Select additional section allows you to add the following options:

  • Private networking

  • IPv6

  • User data

  • Monitoring

Select the services that you need for your Droplet.

Add your SSH keys

The Add your SSH keys section allows you to use SSH keys to securely access your server.


We strongly recommend that you use SSH keys to access your server.

If you do not use an SSH key, DigitalOcean will send you a root password via email, which poses a security risk.

To add an SSH key, perform the following steps:

  1. Click New SSH Key. The New SSH key window will appear.

  2. On your workstation, open a Terminal session.

  3. Run the cat ~/.ssh/ command.

    • If the file does not exist, perform the following steps:

    • Run the cd ~/.ssh/ command to change to your .ssh directory.

    • Run the ssh-keygen command.

    • Confirm id_rsa as the new file name.

    • Enter a passphrase, and then confirm it.

    • Run the cat ~/.ssh/ command again.

  4. Copy the results and paste them into the SSH key content text box in the New SSH key window.

  5. Enter a name for the key in the Name text box.

  6. Click Add SSH Key.

A success message will appear.

Select final options

The Finalize and create section allows you to duplicate your Droplet instance, set your hostname, add reference tags, and select a project.

Enter a fully-qualified domain name (FQDN) as the hostname for your server and click Create.

  • If your server does not use a resolvable fully-qualified domain name as the hostname, it will automatically receive one from cPanel, L.L.C. For more information, read our Automatically-Issued Hostnames documentation.

  • Do not select a hostname that begins with www or a number, or a hostname that ends with a hyphen (-).

  • You must use a fully-qualified domain name (FQDN) that uniquely identifies the server (for example, or

  • Do not choose a hostname that a cPanel account on your server will use.

  • Do not choose a potential service subdomain as a hostname (for example, or

  • Do not select a socially-unacceptable hostname. The hostname will appear in mail headers.

  • Only use lowercase, Latin-script letters in hostnames.

DigitalOcean will provision your server and its profile page will appear.

Your server’s IP address appears in the ipv4 area of the profile page. You will use this address to log in to your server in the next step.

This IP address is also the IP address for which you will purchase a cPanel & WHM license.

Log in via SSH

To log in to the server via SSH, run the following command, where IPADDRESS represents the server’s IP address.

ssh root@IPADDRESS

The server will respond with a Message of the Day that contains helpful links.

Change the root password

To change the root user’s password, perform the following steps:

  1. Enter the passwd command.
  2. Enter a new password.
  3. Enter the new password again.

The system will update the root password.

Log in to WHM

To log in to WHM, perform the following steps:

  1. In your preferred browser, navigate to the https://IPADDRESS:2087 URL, where IPADDRESS represents your server’s IP address. A new interface will appear.

  2. Agree to the software license. A new interface will appear.

    • If you do not have a valid license, you will be directed to purchase a license.
    • If this is a new installation, you can activate a free 15-day trial license.
  3. Enter the your contact information and nameserver information. The WHM Home interface will appear.

cPanel & WHM requires a valid license. If this is a new installation, you can activate a free 15-day trial license.

Configure WHM

After you agree to our software license, you’re ready to configure cPanel & WHM.

For more information about WHM and how to configure your server, read our WebHost Manager documentation.

For more information on how to quickly build a website on a newly-installed cPanel & WHM server, read our From WHM to Website documentation.

cPanel & WHM requires a valid license. If this is a new installation, you can activate a free 15-day trial license.

Additional Documentation