Issue Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates with the control panel

Posted in Control panel by

Screenshot of WebFaction control panel Let's Encrypt section

Starting next week, our in-house developed ACME client will go live and you’ll be able to issue and install a free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate for the majority of your WebFaction hosted websites.

We will enable this feature in two waves. On Monday, the 17th of September, 2018, at 13:00 UTC for all websites on cloud servers and, baring any major issues, for websites on shared servers a week later, on Monday, the 24th of September, 2018, at 13:00 UTC.

In order for our Let’s Encrypt certificate tool to work, the website you want to generate the certificate for should be resolving to the IP address of our server, either by having it’s NS records pointing to our nameservers or have it’s A records pointing to the web server’s IP address.

We’ve already updated our control panel documentation to include instructions on how to secure your websites, but if you have any questions feel free to raise a ticket and our support team will gladly answer any questions you might have.

Please note that there are currently three limitations on our custom ACME client:

  • there is no support for wildcard domains
  • it is not possible to enable or disable a Let’s Encrypt certificate using our API
  • no certificates for subdomains. If you have one in your https websites, you will need to remove it before issuing a certificate

All are in our road-map to work out in a future version.

Also note that Let’s Encrypt has set some rate limits, which you can review here. Our control panel will show an error if you try to hit them.

UPDATE: Our ACME client is now enabled on all sites hosted on cloud servers.

UPDATE: We’ve postponed the deployment of our ACME client to the shared servers for tomorrow, the 25th of September, 2018, at 13:00 UTC.

UPDATE: Our ACME client is now enabled everywhere.


New one click installer: Gitea

Posted in Git by

We have just released a new installer for the lightweight code hosting Gitea application for the Git version control system.

Gitea is similar to well known services for modern software development like GitHub, Bitbucket, and Gitlab, aiming to provide an easy, fast, and painless way of setting up a self-hosted Git service. It joins our pack of project management applications, along side Redmine and Trac, providing a new, fresh approach.

With Gitea you can have both public and private repositories hosted under the same roof. With a wealth of tools available for collaboration, you can manage pull requests, merges and branches directly from its UI, grant and fine-tune permissions for fellow developers working on your projects. As well as the ability to enable a wiki and an issue tracker for each repository where everyone can contribute.

You can create a Gitea app using our control panel, by selecting Gitea in the App Type dropdown menu of our Add new application page:

Screenshot of WebFaction control panel gitea app picker

Check out the WebFaction specific docs here or the official Gitea docs here.

This is our first installer that uses the Go programming language. Go has been on the rise in the last couple of years because it makes it easy to build simple, reliable, and efficient software. The language was created at Google and it is perfect for creating APIs and services due to its portability across different architectures. It can be compiled for all major operating systems, such as Windows, Mac OS or Linux, and run on a plethora of CPU processors.

A “Hello, World!” code looks like this:

package main

import "fmt"

func main() {
fmt.Println("Hello, World!")

If it you want to test Go, you can give Revel or Echo a try or even the Macaron web framework, that Gogs and Gitea are built upon.


PHP 7.2 general availability

Posted in PHP by

PHP 7.2, which is the latest second feature update to the PHP 7 series, is now available as a one-click install in our control panel!

While it has been installed on our CentOS 7 servers for a few weeks now, you should now be able to create new apps using our control panel by selecting the Static/CGI/PHP-7.2 option in the App Type dropdown menu.

Screenshot of WebFaction control panel php version picker

If you want to run a php script from the command line, like composer or drush, you can invoke the php 7.2 interpreter as php72.

[iliasr@web624 ~]$ php72 -v
PHP 7.2.1 (cli) (built: Jan  5 2018 04:43:31) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) 1997-2017 The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.2.0, Copyright (c) 1998-2017 Zend Technologies

Eager users (and there were a few judging from the support tickets about it) were able to use PHP 7.2 by manually putting this in their site’s .htaccess file:

<FilesMatch .php$>
    SetHandler php72-cgi

If you want to switch an existing PHP app to PHP 7.2 you will need to do the same. While there are only a few backward incompatible changes with this release, it would be wise to review the official migration guide before doing so.

PHP 7.2 brings a lot of impromvements and new features such as the ability to convert numeric keys in object/array casts, the migration of the Hash extension from Resource to Object and the introduction of libsodium as a core extension. You can review the full list of changes in the official ChangeLog.

Please note that PHP 7.2 is not available on our CentOS 6 servers (any machine lower than Web500). Users on CentOS 6 who wish to install and use PHP 7.2 apps must migrate to a CentOS 7 server.