Do you know about EasyApache 4 (EA4) that’s included in cPanel/WHM? If not, then you’re in for a treat.
What’s EasyApache 4? It’s the new version of EasyApache that makes compiling Apache (the web server) easy instead of complicated command lines. It also allows you to run multiple versions of PHP on your server that you can easily specify site by site. Let’s say you have 20 websites running, but one can only use PHP 5.5. In EasyApache 3 you could only have one version of PHP running, which meant you were stuck at the lowest compatible version of PHP since you could only have one version running.
With EasyApache 4 you can configure individual modules and settings for each version of PHP you enable. This is exactly what I needed a few years ago due to some older PHP scripts that I don’t want to stop using.
Currently I have PHP 5.5, 5.6, and 7.0 configured on my server, but only using 7.0 for testing right now. Before EasyApache 4 there was no supported PHP 7.0 implementation, so this is a huge development.
The new version of EasyApache is also RPM based, which means updates are handled automatically. In the past you had to run EasyApache and build it to get any updates to the core or modules.
I was actually a little scared when I clicked the “Migrate” button to move from EA3 to EA4, but in the end I was extremely glad that I did it. Since then I’ve been able to change modules, set versions of PHP per site or in bulk, and couldn’t dream of using EA3 again.
Earlier this year I migrated servers at my same host so that I could get CentOS 7 because cPanel/WHM was going to drop support for CentOS 5. The move was well worth it on many levels because I wound up with better hardware, more memory, the same monthly price, AND many other features only supported by later CentOS kernels.
If your current VPS or Dedicated server doesn’t have EasyApache 4 or your account doesn’t allow you to select a PHP version, then you might want to get a new web host.
Here’s a video I found that outlines EasyApache 4