Westhost Introduction

Tips, Tricks and Subtleties of working with a Westhost server.

See bottom of page for site Changelog.


Westhost is a web hosting provider. This site was hosted there from May 1999 until recently (now with TekTonic ). Over the years they have provided consistently good service and excellent reliability.
One of the services they provide is the Westhost forums, where other site owners and resellers hang out and exchange information, post questions and (we hope) answers. Many of the tips here are taken from ideas put forward on the forums, where possible I’ve attributed them.

Special thanks to Shawn (www.wildjokerdesign.com) and Fayez (impenetrable.org).

A WARNING: Westhost provide an excellent Site Manager to configure the site. The tips and tricks in these pages mostly involve working through an SSH connection and allow you to do things which are not possible through the Site Manager. Even more importantly, they allow you to do things that can completely mess up your site and even stop it working.

You Have Been Warned!

Make sure you understand what you are doing, make sure you back up any files that you change, make sure that you thoroughly test any changes that you make. I will not be held responsible for any FUBAR’s that you make in implementing these tips and tricks.
None of the following have been endorsed by Westhost. Nor am I employed by them in any capacity.

And A HINT: a lot of the following instructions involve logging on to the site through SSH and working with Unix commands. If you are from the world of Windows (and I assume that many of you reading this are) then you have some learning to do. The best way is install the Cygwin environment on your Windows computer. This is a full featured Unix environment with all the commands that you will be using on Westhost, and will give you plenty of opportunity to experiment. As an added bonus, you will get the man pages installed, which they aren’t on Westhost. Pick up Cygwin at RedHat Software.

And A NOTE: Most of the following applies to Westhost2 installations. Some of it may be applicable to Westhost1 installations. There are two kinds of Westhost2 installations, new installations and upgraded installations, where I’ve noted a difference I mark them as ‘WH1’, ‘WH2u’ and ‘WH2’.

Oct 2004 – moved the whole shebang into WordPress!
Jun 2004 – small changes site wide
05/04/04 – rewrote the SpamAssassin upgrade section (see Perl section).
25/03/04 – added new AWStats package (V6.0)
24/03/04 – added section on upgrading SpamAssassin, rewrote some of the email sections.
25/02/04 – added some tips, added non-javascript menu
15/02/04 – complete rewrite of the email/spam pages.
15/01/04 – name changed from "Westhost Hacks" to "Westhost Tips and Tricks"
29/12/03 – minor updates
26/12/03 – DNS section in tips. Bash page update.
21/12/03 – added maillogscanner.php and report.
05/12/03 – added further SSH information.
16/11/03 – started a section on SSH.
14/11/03 – added a new section on spam handling.

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