cPanel recently reiterated several upcoming software deprecations in cPanel 108 with interface warnings. We understand how scary it can be to move away from software and interfaces you’re most familiar with. We wanted to provide additional insight as to why these choices, while not made by Hawk Host, are not without their reason or benefits.
Paper Lantern Theme
The cPanel Paper Lantern theme was released in in February 2014 as a replacement to the very popular X3 theme everyone was familiar with. At the time there was significant push back as the Paper Lantern theme was drastically redesigned. Paper Lantern was utilizing newer design principles and brought with it more possibilities. Eventually it became the standard cPanel theme the majority of users preferred and expected. The Paper Lantern theme is now over 8 years old and is showing it’s age. The interface is not particularly usable on phone or tablets which a growing number of users utilize to manage their website. It also does not provide any ability to provide guided solutions for beginner users.
The Jupiter theme addresses the usability on smaller form factor devices as well as providing a more friendly experience to beginner users with guided solutions. Not to worry for our advanced users it still provides all the same features in a categorized format just like Paper Lantern. The team at Hawk Host has also been hard at work adding many of our custom features, such as the ability to manage your Memcached/Redis instances. We’ve also been providing valuable feedback to the cPanel team to allow for further interface customization by our team.
The Horde webmail was released in 1998 and has been in an option in cPanel as far back as Horde 1.2. It was accompanied by SquirrelMail, another legacy webmail interface, and eventually Roundcube was also introduced as a more modern webmail solution. The SquirrelMail webmail option was removed in 2018 in cPanel due to the fact SquirrelMail had not received any software updates since 2013 and patching the software became a significant undertaking.
Horde webmail reached end of life in 2017 and now similar to SquirrelMail is now becoming a difficult project to actively maintain. Horde has seen a recent increase in necessary critical patches along with short removal due to concerns with the application. Horde webmail does not support PHP 8.x and with PHP 7.4 becoming end of life November 28, 2022 it has been decided the work necessary to support PHP 8.x with it is not feasible.
The cPanel team has been working hard behind the scenes so current Horde users are not completely abandoned. When Horde is removed from cPanel all calendar and contact data will be moved to Roundcube. Then of course you will not lose any emails as it was always possible to view them in both Horde and Roundcube at the same time. We hope that any Horde users will appreciate the significantly more modern Roundcube interface as unfortunately Horde will not be coming back.
At Hawk Host we try our best not to disturb the user experience and maintain everything just like the moment you setup your account. We do this with features like our PHP selector but there are times where it’s out of our control or our software partners control. This is one of these cases with a theme that is more than 8 years old and a webmail interface that is not being actively developed. Our hope though with the help of cPanel it will be a smooth transition to newer and maintained technologies.