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WEB HOSTING ARTICLES

Fantastico Automates Web Applications
By: Barzan 'Tony' Antal
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    2008-10-15

    Table of Contents:
  • Fantastico Automates Web Applications
  • Brief Overview
  • General Thoughts
  • Final Words

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    Fantastico Automates Web Applications - Brief Overview


    (Page 2 of 4 )

    First of all, we should know that Fantastico's website claims that, with more than 10,000 installations, they are serving more than one million users all over the world. As you would have guessed, I don't have the necessary resources to verify this claim, let alone find out the exact number of Fantastico users, because this would require extensive research done by a professional organization or statistics firm.

    Fantastico is an auto-installer. This means that it handles automatically and "automagically" the installation of numerous popular open source web applications without requiring any interaction on the user end (there are a few exceptions). On a technical level, Fantastico is a script library, meaning that it is a collection of "installation scripts" that manage installation automatically.

    No doubt that this "looks good" in the eyes of people without any experience with web servers, such as installing additional applications on them, and so forth. That's why cPanel has gained so much success and become the world's most popular web server site administration control panel. Fantastico was designed based on cPanel's success. That's why full integration is given with cPanel.

    As you could see from the above screen shot, Fantastico de Luxe appears just like any other cPanel component in your control panel (cPanel front-end), assuming that both are pre-installed and supported by your NOC [Network Operation Center] or web hosting provider.

    Often you can check right before purchasing a plan whether cPanel and Fantastico are supported. They may not explicitly state "Fantastico," but saying something along the lines of "installation scripts" almost always point to the presence of Fantastico. But it's better to know for sure; ask the live support or phone the company.

     

    Fantastico runs only on cPanel-based servers running on Linux or FreeBSD with a working back-end PHP installation. Of course, root access is also required. This is important only if you want to acquire Fantastico for your own web server (if you have lots of clients) for personal use, it's pretty much worthless. At the time of writing this article, Fantastico can be acquired  for the following prices:

    20 Fantastico De Luxe licenses = 480.00 US$

    20 Fantastico De Luxe VPS licenses = 240.00 US$

    50 Fantastico De Luxe VPS licenses = 550.00 US$

    Now let's check some of the open source web applications that Fantastico supports:

    Blogs:

              b2evolution (1.10.2) (website)

              Nucleus (3.32) (website)

              WordPress (2.5) (website)

    Content Management:

              Drupal (6.1) (website)

              Geeklog (1.4.1) (website)

              Joomla 1.5 (1.5.2) (website)

              Joomla (1.0.15) (website)

              Mambo Open Source (4.6.3) (website)

              PHP-Nuke (7.9) (website)

              phpWCMS (1.1-RC4 Rev. A) (website)

              phpWebSite (0.10.2) (website)

              Post-Nuke (0.764) (visit site)

              Siteframe (3.2.3) (website)

              Typo3 (4.1.5) (website)

              Xoops (2.0.18.1) (website)

    Customer Relationship Management:

              Crafty Syntax Live Help (2.14.6) (website)

              Help Center Live (2.1.4) (website)

              osTicket (1.3.1) (website)

              PerlDesk (4.012.2) (Commercial, needs license) (website)

              PHP Support Tickets (1.9) (website)

              Support Logic Helpdesk (1.2) (website)

              Support Services Manager (1.0b) (          OS Commerce (2.2 Release Candidate 2a + buySAFE) (website)

              Zen Cart (1.3.8a) (website)

    F.A.Q.:

              FAQMasterFlex (1.51) (website)

    Hosting Billing:

              AccountLab Plus (2.8 r14) (Commercial, needs license) (website)

              phpCOIN (1.4.1) (website)

    Image Galleries:

              4images Gallery (1.7.6) (website)

              Coppermine Photo Gallery (1.4.16) (website)

              Gallery (2.2.4) (website)

    Mailing Lists:

              PHPlist (2.10.5) (website)

    Polls and Surveys:

              Advanced Poll (2.03) (website)

              phpESP (1.8.2) (website)

              PHPSurveyor (1.0) (website)

    Project Management:

              PHProjekt (5.2.2) (website)

              dotProject (2.1.1) (website)

    Site Builders:

              Soholaunch Pro Edition (4.9.1 r10) (Commercial, needs license) (website)

              Templates Express (website)

    Wiki:

              PhpWiki (1.2.11) (website)

              TikiWiki (1.9.10.1) (website)

    Other Scripts:

              Dew-NewPHPLinks (2.0.1.0b SEF w/Thumbshots) (website)

              Moodle (1.9) (website)

              Noah's Classifieds (1.3 [Patched-1]) (website)

              Open-Realty (2.4.4) (website)

              phpAdsNew (2.0.11-pr1) (website)

              PHPauction (3.2) (website)

              phpFormGenerator (2.09c) (website)

              WebCalendar (1.0.5) (website)

    The above list is quite extensive, right? Now all of those applications can be auto-installed without requiring user interaction. This means that you don't need to create a new database, set up new tables, configure the necessities, chmod the files to the required permissions, and who knows what else may be needed, depending upon the web application. An automatic installation process usually takes a few seconds.

    Last but not the least, Fantastico also offers some of the following features: email notifications regarding installations and removals, display warnings in case of outdated versions or new security patches, and alerts for security issues and tech updates. You can also use the report/fix problem option within the Fantastico panel if one of your installed applications doesn't work properly. The removal process also works quickly and accurately.

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