Setting up a cPanel server without a website account

So, I get a brand spanking new server in my server cluster, lets say it’s gamma.gnomedia.com and I want to have the same reseller name as I’ve got on the other servers. But, I can’t add the gnomedia.com domain as an account and I don’t want to. I just want a system user…

The cPanel docs have an article on the subject but there is a gotcha. To follow these instructions you need to be able to SSH in as root, and the server will have Root Login disabled for the SSH server.

Here is what to do:

  • Create a dummy website account: gnomedia.museum will do
  • Add this user to the wheel group (Manage Wheel Group Users)
  • SSH in as this user
  • Switch to root (su -) and edit the /etc/ssh/sshd_conf file to allow root logins and restart the ssh server
  • Exit ssh
  • Check that you can now login as root
  • Terminate the gnomedia.museum account
  • Follow the instructions in cPanel docs to create a system user with reseller privileges.