Getting Started in WHM

Valid for versions 82 through the latest version



Last modified: August 9, 2022


When you log in to WHM for the first time on a new cPanel & WHM server, the system will display our legal agreements and some basic configuration steps.

Security warning

You may see a There is a problem with this website's security certificate message when you log in. To resolve this issue, replace the server’s self-signed certificate with a certificate that you purchase from WHM’s Purchase and Install an SSL Certificate interface (WHM » Home » SSL/TLS » Purchase and Install an SSL Certificate).

If your hosting provider allows it, your server will attempt to install a free hostname certificate from cPanel, L.L.C. during the installation process. For more information, read the Free cPanel-signed certificate section of the Purchase and Install an SSL Certificate documentation.


If you have questions about your license agreement, contact cPanel Customer Service.

When you log in to WHM for the first time on a new cPanel & WHM server, the system prompts you to accept our End User License Agreement (EULA). This agreement provides the terms under which you use cPanel, L.L.C.’s software. Read the EULA carefully. You must accept this agreement in order to use cPanel & WHM.

  • If you click Cancel and Exit, a confirmation message will appear.

  • If you click OK for this message, the system will automatically log you out of WHM. The EULA will appear again the next time that you log in to WHM.


To remove acceptance of the EULA on an existing server, delete the appropriate touchfile in the /var/cpanel/activate/ directory. To continue to use cPanel & WHM, you must accept the EULA again the next time that you log in.

Trial License

  • cPanel & WHM requires a valid license. If this is a new installation, you can activate a free 15-day trial license.
  • To activate a new license, you must have a cPanel Store account with a verified email address.

After accepting the EULA, the interface will display a “Get Started with a Free cPanel Trial!” message. For information on activating your license in the cPanel Store, read our How to Sign Up for a Trial License document.

Contact information and nameservers

After you accept the EULA, the system will allow you to specify a contact email address and two nameservers.

You must specify nameservers for the server or you will not be able to create new accounts.

Click Next to proceed to the WHM interface.

  • To view this interface on an existing server, delete the /etc/.whostmgrft file.

  • You also can update your contact email address and nameservers in WHM’s Basic WebHost Manager Setup interface (WHM » Home » Server Configuration » Basic WebHost Manager Setup).


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

Additional Documentation