Getting Started Guide: Fantastico
Written by Brad Markle
Published: Aug 24, 2011
Last Modified: Sep 21, 2012
If you're building a website, there are thousands of free applications available online that you can install to your account to help get you started. You don't need to design a website from the ground up, which is a big plus for many of those that simply don't have the time or knowledge to design a website starting from nothing.
Why is this software free?
There are many different reasons that software is available for free, and there is also quite a bit of history behind the free software movement. To keep the focus of this article on Fantastico, we've provided a few links below to help get you started if you're interested in learning more about open source / free software:
How can I install this software to my account?
To install most 3rd party programs, you'd follow steps similar to the below:
- Download the software to your desktop
- Upload the software to your hosting account
- Create and Configure a MySQL database
- Run the installer script for your program
For the average user, this is indeed a lot of work. This is where Fantastico comes into play. Fantastico will automatically install many programs for you, without requiring that you download/upload any files or setup any databases.
How do I use Fantastico?
1. Access Fantastico
To begin using Fantastico, you'll want to click the "Fantastico De Luxe" icon located in your cPanel.
2. Choose a program
In the left menu of Fantastico, you will see an organized list of the programs that Fantastico can help you install. If you click on a particular program, you will see a description of the software on the right side of your screen.
3. Click "New Installation"
After you have decided on a program and loaded the information page by clicking on the program in the left menu, click the "New Installation" link on the right.
4. Fill out the required information
Please note, in this example we installed Drupal as the tutorial. In most cases, the process to install other third party applications will be the same as installing Drupal when using Fantastico De Luxe. Before Fantastico can install an application for you, it must know a few things first. For example, it must know where to install it, as well as the username and password that you want to use to login. When you've completed filling out the required information page, click the install button at the bottom of the page.
Support after installation
As you can see from the list of programs available in Fantastico, there are many applications that are available for you to choose from. In fact, there are many (many) more free programs available online that are not listed in Fantastico. We can assist you with installing these applications, however due to the sheer number of programs available, we are unable to provide support for all of them. Keep in mind however that many of these programs in Fantastico are quite popular, and many include a community of thousands of users that are more than willing to assist others using the same software.
For example, if you're running an online shopping cart, you can install OsCommerce. OsCommerce is a free online shopping cart that you can use to sell items online. It is used by hundreds of thousands of people, and they have an online community of over 239,200. This community is comprised of store owners and developers who support each other and extend OsCommerce Online Merchant with add-ons being contributed on a daily basis. If you need help with OsCommerce, you can access their online forum by clicking the Community link on their homepage.
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