What Is CloudLinux? | phoenixNAP KB


CloudLinux is an operating system that creates a secure and stable platform for shared hosting. This CentOS-based cloud computing platform offers a more robust and secure environment for shared hosting providers. With CloudLinux, users gain greater control over server resource allocation.

This article explains what CloudLinux is and elaborates on the key features as well as the advantages and disadvantages over the traditional server environment.

What is CloudLinux?

CloudLinux is an operating system designed specifically for shared hosting providers. The operating system focuses on solving issues related to server stability, security, and resource allocation. CloudLinux corrects resource contention and security risks in shared hosting environments by isolating each account, website, or application and allocating dedicated resources. This method avoids performance issues or potential crashes.

CloudLinux offers a range of security features to protect against malicious attacks. In addition to security features, the operating system includes other tools to improve stability and security, such as KernelCare, LVE Manager, etc.

The operating system also supports different versions of PHP through the built-in selector. Therefore, users have more control over the hosting environment.

Traditional server environment

vs. CloudLinux

In a traditional shared hosting environment, resources are shared equally among all accounts hosted on the same physical server. There is no division or allocation of resources to individual accounts, which leads to performance issues. For example, if one account consumes excessive resources, the process hurts performance and causes downtime for other accounts.

In addition, the traditional environment lacks granular controls for managing resources. Administrators cannot restrict the use of RAM, CPU, and other resources for a particular website account. As a result, it is difficult to manage resource abuse.

On the other hand, CloudLinux uses kernel modifications and server virtualization to allow system administrators to manage resources effectively. In shared hosting environments based on CloudLinux, when a tenant uses allocated resources, its performance gradually slows down until resource usage returns to normal levels. Meanwhile, other accounts on the server continue to run normally. The operating system accomplishes this through the LightWeight Virtual Environment (LVE) feature.

With LVE, CloudLinux encapsulates each account in an isolated environment and limits each user to a certain number of resources. Therefore, one account cannot use excessive resources and degrade the service for others.

In case of sudden traffic surges, only LVE is affected, preventing server slowdown or failure.

CloudLinux features CloudLinux has several unique features that improve security, stability, and performance. The key features of CloudLinux are:

  • Lightweight Virtualized Environment (LVE). LVE provides resource isolation and ensures that each account has constant access to allocated resources, preventing resource sharing.
  • CageFS. This virtualized file system creates a secure environment for each tenant, preventing users from accessing other users’ files or data.
  • PHP selector. CloudLinux offers multiple versions of PHP to provide flexibility to users. The built-in PHP selector allows end users to choose the specific PHP version they need.
  • Hardened kernel. CloudLinux’s security features include a hardened kernel that deters malicious attacks from users on the same server.
  • Governor of MySQL. The feature helps system administrators track CPU and disk I/O usage for each tenant and monitors abusers in real time. This ensures stable performance of the MySQL database.


offers several advantages for shared hosting over traditional servers. The main advantages are:

  • Resource allocation. CloudLinux allows you to allocate dedicated resources to each account. Therefore, a single account does not consume too many resources and negatively affects the performance of other accounts on the server.
  • Greater stability. Server stability is improved through efficient resource allocation. One account does not monopolize server resources and causes performance problems for others. Sudden spikes in traffic or high resource usage for an account will not affect the server or other accounts.
  • Compatibility. CloudLinux supports multiple control panels, such as cPanel, DirectAdmin, and Plesk. Therefore, web servers can seamlessly integrate CloudLinux into their existing hosting infrastructure without having to change their control panel or server management software.
  • Increased security: Cloud Linux’s security features ensure that malicious users cannot attack other accounts on the server.
  • Improved database performance. The MySQL Governor feature in CloudLinux tracks resource usage for each user and stops abusers in real time. This feature improves the overall performance of the database.
  • Greater flexibility. The ability to choose which PHP version to use ensures that servers support the specific version of PHP they need.


of CloudLinux While CloudLinux

has numerous advantages, there are negative aspects of CloudLinux. The drawbacks are:

  • Additional cost. CloudLinux requires a license fee, which is in addition to the overall hosting costs.
  • Limited compatibility. While it supports most control panels, CloudLinux doesn’t support all third-party software and applications.
  • Learning curve. Administrators need to learn how to work with CloudLinux’s unique features and interface, which takes time and effort.
  • Resource allocation limitations. While resource allocation is beneficial for stability and security, the operating system limits the resources available to individual accounts. Limits may be inadequate for certain websites or applications.
  • Dependency on CloudLinux. Once a server is configured with CloudLinux, it is difficult to switch to another operating system, limiting future options.
  • Problems with the PHP selector. While CloudLinux allows users to choose the PHP version to use, if the web host is not proactive, the default PHP version may be outdated and pose a security risk, even if CMS and plugins are up to date.


After reading this article,

you know the essential features of CloudLinux and its advantages and disadvantages


Next, read this article to learn all about the best CentOS alternatives.

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