01-06-2012, 05:13 PM #1Disabled
- Join Date
- Aug 2010
- Rotterdam, Netherlands
Parallels counters on Plesk critisism
Parallels Craig Bartholomew has made some comments on the critisism on Plesk. I have added the text below.
Shouldn't all licenses run in 3rd party vps's for the cheaper price that Parallels charges? Now it is only the unlimited license.
Many people claim to know Parallels Plesk, but we regularly see postings about Plesk that indicate enough out-of-date knowledge that some people may want to take a fresh look at Plesk. Our release of Plesk 10.4 is a chance to finally put some myths about Plesk to rest.
I came to Parallels from Microsoft in June 2009 to lead the Plesk team, after 21 years there in product development. I found a very talented team here at Parallels that was beginning to invest more heavily in both enhanced testing as well as improved processes to improve quality. For the past two and a half years, my team and I have stayed focused on customer needs, performance, security and, of course, quality. Plesk 10.4 is the 5th release in the Plesk 10 line, and is the culmination of a lot of hard work in quality assurance and innovation.
We hope you’ll take a fresh look at Plesk – not simply believing those who profess deep knowledge of Plesk in Forums – but in reality knew only Plesk 8 or 9. We believe that Plesk will give you the best path forward toward the future of Hosting, as we take more and more steps to future-proof you – such as our industry-leading support of IPv6 and SNI. Our 10.4 online demos are up and running now under the Demos tab on http://www.parallels.com/products/plesk/demos/. Please check them out.
To help you further along the way of understanding where we’re at on 10.4, I’d like to debunk 20 myths about Plesk. Here are the first five:
Myth #1: Plesk does not give me the control I need. Plesk really annoyed me when it would overwrite the changes I made as an Admin.
Reality: Earlier versions of Plesk were a bit like nannies – overwriting the config changes you tried to make. In Plesk 10.4, you have the control over your environment that you have been demanding. Our innovative Custom PHP Settings gives you intuitive control over versions and settings for PHP per VHost or website (depending on the permissions you set). Advanced users can go beyond the simple drop-down selectors in the UI and configure their own advanced settings. Also in Plesk, Hosters can define custom Apache configuration templates for each VHost, and go to the revised Tools & Settings page in Plesk 10.4 to turn on/off Apache modules.
Myth #2: Plesk is not secure. I’ve even seen that in Wikipedia.
Reality: Well, we can’t speak for Wikipedia (which really needs to be updated on this – any volunteers?), but we have put special focus on fixing every known aspect of Security in Plesk 10.x. Version 10 is easily configured to pass PCI scans. In addition, we randomly generate new Admin passwords (replacing insecure default passwords) and have added a password strength indicator. We have addressed cross-site scripting vulnerabilities – including adding a token to pass any input from forms in the UI. If we encounter security problems (typically in 3rd party components), we respond quickly with fixes.
Myth #3: Plesk does not provide good Site Isolation for shared hosting.
Reality: Since the outset, Plesk 10 has offered site isolation. Plesk does this using FastCGI to provide industry-leading shared hosting account density per server. So, we not only give good site isolation, but also good economics on the number of shared hosting accounts per server.
Myth #4: Plesk is too expensive. It is more expensive than other Control Panels.
Reality: Plesk used to be more expensive if you tried to run Plesk on non-Parallels virtualized environments. We are fixing that by making the Plesk Unlimited Domain VPS license available on all virtualized environments. Also, the Plesk Unlimited dedicated license is typically at $39.95/month or lower at most of our hosting partners – which is competitive. But, because Plesk offers you integrated Billing and integrated Site Creation, the combined price of the Plesk family is advantageous to you in both price and simplicity. And if you choose to enable Parallels Partner Storefront in your Plesk Panel, you can partner with Parallels to resell high value SaaS applications from leading application vendors – all with a few mouse clicks. We think of “value” more than price – and we think we offer very, very good value.
Myth #5: The included Billing with Plesk is the old ModernBill, which is quite buggy and outdated, so it really isn’t worth much.
Reality: Plesk’s Customer and Business Manager is several generations advanced from ModernBill and now is available on both Linux and Windows. Initial configuration and the entire UI has been streamlined and updated based on usability testing. It supports international currencies, international tax rules, and a reseller tier now. There is very strong active development and dramatically improved QA on this product. The reasonable price means you should definitely take a second look at this.
Check this blog next week (or better yet, subscribe to it) for the next five Myths about Parallels Plesk Panel.
We encourage you to be myth-busters on Plesk. Check out our website at http://www.parallels.com/products/plesk/ and spread the word. It’s a new Plesk we are talking about now, and you should check it out.
All the best,
VP, Shared Hosting
01-07-2012, 10:13 AM #2
Plesk 10 sucks. You killed Plesk basically. And yes I am a Plesk expert, have 100 production Plesk servers and used Plesk since version 1.
You made it too complicated and the upgrade is horrible and leaves huge security holes (read your own bloody forums). Pffft, "subscriptions", what were you thinking?
01-07-2012, 04:44 PM #3Retired Moderator
- Join Date
- Oct 2003
- Scotland, UK
I guess that's a start. But for me, they require a culture change - not just some product window dressing.Alasdair
01-07-2012, 07:14 PM #4
He's not addressing the real issues with Parallels and Plesk at all. The major problem is that their support sucks bigtime. We have been using Plesk for years, and we have several Plesk 9 and Plesk 10 installations (all Plesk 10 installations run the very latest version). The thing is, when you make software that tends to break every time you try to update it to the latest version (even true for servers installed by Parallels, and then updated by them afterwards - and with nothing else on them, not even a single customer), you at least need to have a support dept that know the way around their own software. Which they've proved time and time again that they really don't.
If you experience any problem with Plesk (that is ANY problem), they will first assign some junior engineers that after some hours will tell you they are looking at it, then you receive an update that they can't find out what's causing the problem and need some more time. And they just keep on giving you those lazy excuses until they (after a couple of days) assign the ticket to the people who actually can help you, who (of course) need you to repeat everything again.
Every time I have been in contact with Plesk support (and again, that is EVERY time), they have concluded with the problem to be us doing something wrong. It's never their fault. And also EVERY time, after a week or so, they admit the problem to be in their end. But they won't admit this unless you spend tens of hours just proving to them why it can't be a problem in your end. I have even had tickets where I told them WHAT the problem was, what part of their software that made the problem, why it happened, and what they need to change in order to fix it - but I had to repeat the same thing five or six times using different words and sentences in order for them to understand it.
I have had some experiences with Parallels that are just to incredible to believe. A year ago one of our customers received an e-mail from Getty Images, claiming he was using copyrighted images on his web site. We quickly established that the image in question was infact a part of Parallels Sitebuilder. We spent days and weeks with support to solve the issue. For the first days, they just kept on yacking about the customer having put the image there himself, and that they weren't at fault. I spent hours writing pages up and down proving how they were wrong. Finally after a lot of anger and me getting really tired of having to repeat the same things over and over again, they DID admit that the image was actually a part of Sitebuilder, and they had even been aware of it for some time!!
Even after admitting this, they did nothing to solve things with Getty. They stalled the ticket for several weeks (!), just telling us time and time again that they were in the process of making an agreement with Getty. Meanwhile, our customer continued to receive letters from Getty, and he got really angry with us too for not solving the matter. In the end, after spending tens of hours, Parallels finally agreed to pay the claim on behalf of our customer. In return, for the tens of hours we put into the case, we received a complimentary Plesk license worth about 1/10 of our costs directly associated with the case.
The one thing Parallels have, is a piece of software that really looks great (ok, Plesk 10 not so much in my opinion, but Plesk 9 looked great). Our customer loves it (again, not so much Plesk 10). From an administrators point of view the software, the company making it, and the support is just abysmal. As far as Parallels' concerned, the customer is NEVER right, no matter how convincing the proof is. To me, it seems that they are just trying their best to make you just give up on their support team and find out that you're just better of solving any problems yourself, even if they realize that they're to blame.
Furthermore, they have a support forum with some really rude and hostile moderators, with the "customer is always wrong" attitude that has become a hallmark of Parallels. At least one of these moderators is also here on WHT, and I guess he'll make some kind comments on my post soon.
And it's about time Parallels decides to lower the licence prices for competing VPS products. Plesk Panel would just not be competitive AT ALL if they didn't.
We are still buying Parallels licences for ourselves and our customers, and until someone makes a product just as good looking for Windows servers, I guess we will continue to do so. Which is why I think it is sad cPanel seem to have abandoned the Enkompass project for now. We do however try to convince our customers to buy our cPanel packages instead.
One of Parallels sales representatives told me some time ago that they were aware of the problems with support, and that they were trying to improve. I've kept my mouth shut for a long time, hoping that they *would* improve, but nothing seems to have happened. Seeing how many have the same experiences with Parallels support that I do, I just thought it was time for me to blow off some steam too. They have a bad reputation in the hosting industry, and unfortunately they deserve it.
I love Parallels for a lot of their products. I don't like their lack of quality assurance. I really, truly hate their "support".
I will report my ticket numbers for verification.
01-07-2012, 10:56 PM #5
In the last two years I've seen a dramatic improvement in the quality of their support. I mean they have actually provided support, lol. But if you are going to need a lot of support Plesk is not for you. Luckily my guys are all Plesk experts and we rarely need Plesk support but when we have asked Parallels for support I've been blown away by their knowledge of the software and we've actually learned a lot. You usually need to getup to their 3rd tier of support before the brains start showing though.
And Plesk 9.5 is simply perfect. If they just add "Add-On Domains", multiple FTP users and the ability to send mail from dedicated IPs it would have the same amount of decent features that cPanel has. They are the only sought after things that are missing IMO.
01-07-2012, 11:10 PM #6
multiple FTP users
and the ability to send mail from dedicated IPs it would have the same amount of decent features that cPanel has
I've been using Plesk since version 7.0.
01-07-2012, 11:17 PM #7
Already available in Plesk 9 for Windows.
Doesn't this depend on the server setup? With MailEnable on Windows 2008, I believe you can use whatever IP you want. It's not really a "Plesk thing" as much as an issue with the underlying mail server. Plesk just ties some of these systems together, it doesn't replace them.
I've been using Plesk since version 7.0.
01-07-2012, 11:52 PM #8
01-08-2012, 12:08 AM #9
Have you really seen an improvement the last two years? In my experience it's quite the opposite. It's seems to take a lot more effort to have them understand the problem and it takes forever until they assign the ticket to someone qualified to deal with it. And on one occation their level one support actually managed to f... things up on our server until they escalated the ticket. Some of their support staff seem to be so incompetent that they really should not be allowed to access customer servers with admin privileges. And yet they are, and Parallels must think this is a good idea, since you are required to let level one have a look until your ticket is handed along to someone who knows their way around a server.
01-08-2012, 12:34 AM #10
01-08-2012, 01:04 AM #11
The IP address you intend to use must already be added to the server.
- Open MailEnable Professional
- Go to Servers -> localhost -> Connectors
- Right-click "SMTP"
- Open the "Outbound" tab
- In the "Address" drop down menu you can select which IP address you want to use for outbound mail.
This address will be used for all outgoing e-mail, including mail sent from web scripts using "localhost" (unless you set some other server in php.ini or something).
We use SMTP gateways for outgoing traffic (it's just easier to monitor and filter mail this way), and by using this feature, we can redirect traffic to another gateway on the fly. We also usually specify a different gateway in php.ini, so that we can monitor the traffic coming from web scripts and the servers seperately.
BTW: You can also change the IP for inbound mail in the same location, only under the "Inbound" tab.
01-08-2012, 01:37 AM #12
Err, this doesn't make mail from each domain send from each domain's unique dedicated IP. On cPanel and Plesk 10 for Linux if I had 100 domains on a server and each domain had a separate IP then mail from those domains would get sent from each domain's unique IP. Protects clients from bad IP reputation from spam being sent over the one server IP.
01-08-2012, 02:07 AM #13
01-08-2012, 05:41 AM #14
Yea, can be done in ME Enterprise apparently but we already run the Pro version on loads of servers.
01-08-2012, 07:31 AM #15Junior Guru Wannabe
- Join Date
- Nov 2010
mod_ruid2 provides running Apache virtual host as domain system user (in Linux) with no additional resource expenses and with more reliability than FastCGI.SEO services: improve search results of your site!
|| Plesk panel: *Password Viewer/editor, *Run PHP as vhost user w/o overhead
-- Helix Development --
01-08-2012, 09:17 AM #16Web Hosting Master
- Join Date
- Mar 2007
- United Kingdom
I don't think any of those myths are what people are really criticising are they? And I think this shows how out of touch Parallels are with they're SME hosting (Plesk) customers.
Notice also, that "Parallels support is atrocious" wasn't a myth worthy commenting on.SOA/SaaS/Cloud & Hosting Technology Evangelist
Note: Any opinions expressed are my own and not of anyone else or my companies.
01-10-2012, 06:39 AM #17Junior Guru
- Join Date
- Oct 2011
actually, problem with support is really exists. The main problem in that we have a huge flow of incoming Plesk tickets and all these tickets are processed by 3 lines of support. Tickets from experienced customers often hang in the front line and long time can not come to experienced engineers from the second line. I know that it's very vexed for customers who have real and complex problems. We should filter incoming tickets flow somehow that complex tickets should be processed by support experts. But Plesk support experts should not spend their time to simple or out of scope tickets because such tickets can be sent by experienced customers too. We are thinking on the optimization of this process and all your advice would be very valuable to us. Let's improve Plesk support together.
BTW, regarding of reproach to me. 2 years ago Plesk forum was half-dead. No discussions, no feedbacks, no suggestions, no cooperation. Now we have guys from Plesk Service Team, Management and Development there. They really want to help you and hear you. The forum has become a lively place for discussion and problem solving. Yeah, maybe I'm not polite and courteous. Perhaps, my competence is not enough, but believe me, that I'm doing so that your opinions and your ideas and reports were considered by responsible people in Parallels. I hope that many people did see positive changes on forum and their consequences in Plesk.
01-10-2012, 07:01 AM #18
IgorG, I've seen you on the Parallels forums since it was the SwSoft forums.
I remember the dead days, and it's definitely picked up in the past couple of years.
Don't think I've ever seen you not be polite/courteous.
01-10-2012, 07:33 AM #19
Igor, please add add-on domains, mail sent via domain's IP and multiple FTP users to Plesk 9.5.
01-10-2012, 08:46 AM #20Disabled
- Join Date
- Aug 2010
- Rotterdam, Netherlands
It is good to hear that Parallels is seriously considering improving the support flow. I think that by default all Parallels partners (silver, gold, platinum) should be able to post tickets in second line, also the easy ones. All other customers should be able to post in 1st line only.
However in both support lines you should have an high level "ticket supervisor" who can assign tickets from 1st to second and from second to 1st line.
I understand the problem especially when the support people are not all in the same country. However the customers should always come first. It takes years to build a reputation and only days to destroy it.
I think in general most people will like Plesk better then all other control panels, but support is a essential part of the offering.
01-10-2012, 09:19 AM #21
I for one truly love Parallels products, and I have for years. It looks way better and our users seems to find it easier to understand than for instance cPanel. If I knew I could trust Parallels to help us out if a serious problem occurs, I would definately use Plesk Panel for all (or at least most) of our shared hosting servers, and Virtuozzo for our VPSes. Also your prices could always be a little more competitive.
One positive thing though. We just updated one of our servers from 10.3 to 10.4. This is the first update EVER on a Parallels product that has not broken something somewhere on the server.
01-10-2012, 12:22 PM #22Disabled
- Join Date
- Aug 2010
- Rotterdam, Netherlands
So to summarise I guess I can say:
1. Plesk is a great product, but be careful when adding stuff like Sitebuilder and Billing. It can bring down the total product. Especially since billing and sitebuilder has never been good products. Also from a productportfolio perspective it is not really clear what billing solution you should use and which not. KISS would be my advise. Control Panel is simple software for a simple purpose, so is billing and so is sitebuilder. Just make sure that customers can integrate if they want to by using API's. Do not try to get everything into one product.
2. Design changes are always perceived as bad but normally just take time to get used to.
3. Taking out features that most people do not use is maybe not so smart because those people might not like to lose options. So if from a security perspective it is not necessary to take out features, keep them in the software!
4. Prices for Plesk inside virtual machines should be the same for all virtual environments. Customers do not like vendor locking. So if you want to use Plesk inside another virtual environment then Virtuozzo the price should be the same.
5. With Plesk 10.4 it seems that upgrade issues are a thing of the past. If that is true that is a huge improvement.
5. The really big thing that customers are hating is bad support. I cannot imagine it is cheaper to let customers leave Parallels for Cpanel just because the support is bad. Support is key to customer experience and should be invested in. Especially now all partners also have to go through first line you will loose bigger customers if the support is not good enough. And when they have left they probably never come back.
Really do something with customer feedback should be the mission for 2012 and beyond. The product is great, now transform into a great company!
01-10-2012, 01:47 PM #23New Member
- Join Date
- Apr 2011
Please go ahead and message me your ticket numbers and an email addy that I can reach out to - or you can email me at social(@)parallels(.)com and I'll assist you from there.
I look forward to hearing from you.
01-10-2012, 05:01 PM #24New Member
- Join Date
- Apr 2011
Parallels Plesk Reality vs. Myths: Part 2
I just wanted to update you all with Part 2 of our 'Parallels Plesk Reality vs. Myths' series is now live! These blog posts were written by Craig Bartholomew, the Vice President of Shared Hosting here at Parallels.
In Part 2, we look at more myths about Plesk Testing, Updating Plesk, Plesk 8.x and 9.x UI, Parallels Support, Reporting Bugs and Parallels Forums … and setting the record straight on those.
01-10-2012, 05:12 PM #25Owner of the net for a day
- Join Date
- Jun 2002
- Waco, TX
I look forward to speaking to Craig again at the Parallels Summit in MCO(Orlando) this year.
He will be there right?
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