For individuals looking to start up their own web hosting business, consulting company, programming company, etc. you absolutely need a billing system to make your life so much easier. I want to show you how to install WHMCS on a vps and even check out some alternatives near the end of the article. WHMCS is one of the most popular billing systems on the Internet. Not only does it do billing, invoicing, and processing orders but it also does support and can integrate into cPanel or other web applications with supported WHMCS modules such as SolusVM. Unfortunately, the cost of the WHMCS license turns a lot of folks away. The license, directly from WHMCS, is $18.95 per month. They stopped allowing people to resell WHMCS licenses a while back so you can't get it any cheaper than this.
For almost all the billing systems, including WHMCS, all you need is a 512mb minimum RAM VPS. This can depend on if you are starting up a new billing system or have an established one. I would get probably at least 2 CPU cores as you are going to be running MySQL or MariaDB, PHP, and a web server such as Apache. Let's get started with the following commands for how to install whmcs on a vps.
yum install apache2 php php-cli
yum install mysql mysql-serverif you are unsure how to install mariadb.
chmod 777 configuration.phpand open up the directory in your web browser where the WHMCS source files are on your web server. You should be able to just enter your IP address or domain name into the browser.
If you want to check out some other billing systems I would have a read on our article about BoxBilling vs WHMCS as it goes in more depth about this alternative billing system. BoxBilling is an easy to use and lightweight billing system that is free or nearly free if you get the pro version 🙂 Check out some other comparisons with billing systems below -
For those looking for a free, open source billing system NeoBill is another PHP/MySQL powered billing system. On the NeoBill homepage, they offer a live NeoBill demo so you can look at the NeoBill web application before you install it on your own server.
It's basic but I've been on WHMCS for so long, that NeoBill looks like it lacks features for me but if you just need a minimal billing system I believe NeoBill would be a good choice for you. Plus, since it's PHP powered, you can easily modify the page that is displayed to the visitor. The project looks like they might have stopped development a while ago, so be wary if you decide to use this as there could be lots of
Blesta looks like the new contender out there for WHMCS. First of all we don't have to pay $18.95/mo so it's already appealing with that aspect. They do offer a free trial and integrate with almost every popular payment processor and control panel. You can take a look at the features here http://www.blesta.com/features/ and the demo here http://www.blesta.com/demo/ They are also offering a 30% off refuge discount after the recent WHMCS owned license price hike. Check them out and let us know what you think!