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7/02/2015 – Customizing cPanel Dashboards with Paper Lantern

Posted by Jamison on 02 07 2015.

originalWith Paper Lantern having been just recently introduced to the public by the people at cPanel, a good number of users are still searching for guides on how to use this bootstrap theme. While x3 is still in operation, it is believed to soon replace the default cPanel theme, especially now that all cPanel servers have been rolled out with the more intuitive, interactive, and innovative userinterface.




For those who want to use Paper Lantern as their theme for customizing and styling the cPanel dashboard, the following are some tips on how to make the most out of the newest theme.


Initial preparation


Prior to being able to make changes on the style and appearance of the cPanel dashboard, a user must first need to take a number of initial preparatory steps. These include the following:


  • Setting Paper Lantern as the default theme on cPanel.
  • Installing the preferred FTP client (ex. Cyberduck, Filezilla) or using cPanel’s File Manager feature.
  • Installing the preferred text editor (ex. Sublime Text 2, TextMate).


Choosing the appropriate style directory


After the initial steps have been performed, Paper Lantern theme users can now proceed to the next step, which is to navigate to the appropriate style directory. The exact custom stylesheet location is based on three types of users: the End User, the Reseller User, and the Root User. The number of other users that will be given access to the theme style to be used will also determine the custom stylesheet’s location.


End User


For end-users, custom styles can be added via the ~/var/cpanel/styled directory. Creating the correct path for the file requires the following commands to be executed:


  1. “ssh”
  2. “mkdir -p ~/var/cpanel/styled/my_design”
  3. “cd ~/var/cpanel/styled/my_design”


The variables in the above-mentioned commands are “username,” “,” and “my_design.” These should be replaced with the exact information of the user. It is also in this particular directory wherein the styles.css file should be created and saved.


Reseller User


Reseller users who would like to give their customers access to the customized style, adding the style’s file to the root directory ~/var/cpanel/reseller/styled is necessary. Developing the custom style for the dashboard has the same steps an end user follows. In the event that the directories cannot be found, the reseller user needs to create them. To ensure that the file path created is correct, the following commands should be executed:


  1. “ssh”
  2. “mkdir -p ~/var/cpanel/reseller/styled/my_design”
  3. “cd ~/var/cpanel/reseller/styled/my_design”


Once again, “username,” “,” and “my_design” are the variables that need to be replaced with the reseller user’s information. The styles.css file should be created in this specific directory.


Root User


Paper Lantern root users are allowed to use global styles that the other two types of cPanel users have no way to overwrite. In most cases, the root user is a server administrator. Custom styles can be added to the directory /var/cpanel/customizations/styled. Every time that a style is placed in this directory, all of the other users, including the reseller users and the reseller users’ customers, will gain access to it.


These directories need to exist, so if they are not, the root user needs to create them. In addition, certain commands have to be executed in order for the proper file path to be created. These commands are the following:


  1. “ssh”
  2. “mkdir -p /var/cpanel/customizations/styled/my_design”
  3. “cd /var/cpanel/customizations/styled/my_design”


Root users also have to replace are “username,” “,” and “my_design” with their own details. It is in this directory that the styles.css file should be saved.