DISC is a remote management interface for easy website maintainance. It
will not forfill all wishes of your customers, but will give a workable
environment for most of them. Some websites (needing special access,
special database types or special software) are just not suited for a
system like this, because they need the manual intervention of a system
administrator. DISC aims to offer low-cost webhosting with almost no
DISC is maintained through a web interface, in our situation hosted at https://dischosting.nl/discadmin. There is four levels of accounts in this interface:
- People who can make new domains and maintain almost anything
- People who cannot change, but watch almost anything (good for managers)
- People who maintain a certain domain hosted at DISC. This is the type of account you normally give to customers
- email/ftp accounts that can be created by the domainadmin inside a domain.
You will probably log in as "helpdesk" most of the time.
Making a new domain
Making a new domain is as easy as typing the name and clicking on "Add"
in the left side menu. However, there are some things to think of
- the domain name you choose cannot be changed later. Also, this will be
the default email domainname for users in this domain. Generally, it's best
to choose "yourdomain.com", not "www.yourdomain.com".
- Even if a domain name is not registered yet, always use the "to-be
official" domain name, otherwise the domainadmin will end up making every
email address manually. Note that dns maintainance and domain registration
are not part of disc: the domain owner will have to register his domain
himself and point the ip to the righ machine (with dischosting.nl, this is:
- You can add multiple names for the website later. By default, the www
extension is already active, but if you want to make "mysite.mydomain.com"
as well, there are options.
- If a domainname is not yet active or not pointing to the dischosting
server yet, you can make the domainname you want and add an extra web name
as "mydomain.dischosting.nl" so that the owner can start using the domain
immediately through that URL.
Basic management of a newly created domain
After creating a domain, you can choose manage from the left menu to change the properties of this domain.
- Usually, you start by making a user in this domain and making this the domainadmin for this domain. This is the login information you can pass on to the owner of the domain, together with the url https://dischosting.nl/discadmin/ The domain owner can then create his own users of his domain through the interface.
- For each user on the system, you can change personal
settings. Probably the most handy feature of this is that you can
change someones password if he/she forgot it.
- Through the manage page you can also add other
domain names (domain.dischosting.nl) to make DISC treat that as an
alias for the given domain name. There is two categories here:
- Associated domain names: a name where email addresses can be assigned in.
- Website domain names: alternative names for the website (default to adding www.mydomain.com).
- The manage page can also be used to set up a standard
Content Management System. Usually, setting this up will be left to the
- For each new website created, a mysql database is created as well. In the manage interface, you or the domain admin can add ip numbers that can connect to this.
- All options in the management interface that are available
for the domainadmin are also available for the helpdesk. So if someone
has a problem with specific details, you can use the management
interface to help.
When an account is created, webmail can be accessed at: https://dischosting.nl/mail or http://yourdomain.com/mail/ The first URL is secure, so more advisable (your password cannot be read by others on the net).
Email can also be access through POP or IMAP, both with or without SSL (security, same as above) enabled.
Incoming email is checked on virusses (if found thrown away) and
spam (if found, marked or thrown away). Each individual user can set
his personal preferences on how strict this spam-policy should be (and
even let virusmail through).
Statistics of DISC usage are available through the management
interface. Normal users and domainadmins can only see the statistics of
Mailinglists for each domain can be administered through the pages found on http://yourdomain.com/wws
The entry page will show all available lists under this hostname and
features a login button on the top left. The login interface accepts
both email adresses and usernames as logins. This way both users of
DISC and subscribers to individual mailinglists can login to the
interface. DISC users either log in with their email address or their
usernames (logging in with host specific email address will load
individual preferences for that listserver). External subscribers or
list-owners can only log in with their email address. What users can do
after login, varies with their status:
- users who are listmasters get access to all functions
- users who are list owners and are users of DISC can
manage their owned lists, may request new lists from the listmaster and
may manage their user preferences and subscribtions.
- users who are listowners can manage their owned lists and may manage their user preferences or subscribtions.
- users who are also DISC users can request lists from the listmaster and manage their own settings like everyone else
- users who are subscribers of a list only may set their own preferences and edit their subscriptions, nothing else
For all logged in users who are authorized, the Create List option
will be clickable on the top right menu. In the following interface,
the list parameters can be set. Every value has to be filled
in, otherwise the request will fail. IF the user creating the list is
also listmaster, the list is automatically created and activated.
Subscribers should be added once a list is created (the listowner
should be the first subscriber most sensibly) If the user creating the
list is authorized to do so but is not
a listmaster, then the list is created as "pending request". A
listmaster has to activate the list via the Sympa Admin --> Pending
Lists interface. The settings for the list are written at the time
where a list request is processed (i.e immediately in case of a
listmaster, after approval in case of any other user) and the list can
be used from that moment on.
The table of mailinglists that can be reached by clicking on the
Home button of the top right menu shows an admin button next to any
available list that a user is allowed to administrate. Both listmasters
and listowners may do so. Listmasters for all lists on their domain,
listowners only for those lists they are owner of. Most entries of the
interface are self explanatory. TODO: as soon as there is a layout,,
remove all functions we do not want and make screenshots for
- Every domain has 1 website. One website can have multiple names
(aliases). If you want two websites on one domain, then create a new
domain for the second one (i.e. www2.mydomain.com can be created
- The domain can be updated through FTP. By default, FTP
logins are off when users are created, so the domainadmin has to enable
FTP for new users (and set the home directory).
- With a few clicks, you can install a WIKI in one of the subdirectories of a website, through the manage interface.
- You can also choose to use Drupal as the content management
system for your website. It's already pre-installed, all you have to do
is set Drupal as your website in the management interface.
- Every domain comes with a pre-installed database by default
- The domainadmin can change the password for the database and enable mysql shell and phpmyadmin from certain IP numbers.
- Anything that users put in the website subdirectory streams can also be accessed through the Darwin Streaming Server, if the files permit it.
- Live streaming is possible, but the domainadmins have to
request a password from the helpdesk for it. The helpdesk should then
give them a password for a Broadcast User.