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A PHP handler is a type of Apache module that contains libraries that the Apache web server can use to interpret and run PHP code.

How to select a PHP handler

You can use WHM's  Configure PHP and suEXEC  interface (Home >> Service Configuration >> Configure PHP and suEXEC) to select a PHP handler.


The PHP handler that you select affects how quickly your server handles PHP requests and how securely Apache handles the PHP requests.


cPanel & WHM no longer develops EasyApache 3 and only releases security updates for it. We will deprecate EasyApache 3 on December 31, 2018. After that date, we will no longer update EasyApache 3. In cPanel & WHM version 78, we will remove support for EasyApache 3. For more information, read our cPanel Long-Term Support documentation.

We strongly recommend that you upgrade to EasyApache 4. For more information, read our EasyApache 4 documentation.

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EasyApache 3 does not support Tomcat for new installations. EasyApache 4 does not support Tomcat and we do not plan to provide support in the future. 


EasyApache selects the suPHP PHP handler by default unless you select the MPM ITK option in EasyApache. The suPHP PHP handler executes PHP scripts with the permissions of their owners. For more information about the suPHP PHP handler, read our Apache Module: SuPHP documentation.


EasyApache installs the DSO PHP handler functionality by default, but does not select DSO as your PHP handler. If you select DSO as your PHP handler, your web server will provide the version of PHP that you select through the library.

This is generally the fastest way to respond to PHP requests, but PHP scripts will execute as the nobody user. If PHP scripts execute as the nobody user, you cannot identify which user account executed the script.

For more information about how to migrate from DSO to suPHP, read our  Configure PHP and suEXEC  documentation.

How to install additional PHP handlers

In order to select a particular PHP handler, you must use WHM's EasyApache 3 interface (Home >> Software >> EasyApache 3) to install the Apache module for the handler in EasyApache.

After the EasyApache build completes, the EasyApache 3 interface will display the Configure PHP and suEXEC interface automatically.

The CGI PHP handler

The CGI option in EasyApache provides the CGI PHP handler functionality. EasyApache selects the CGI option by default, but does not select it for your PHP handler. If you deselect the CGI option, you can reselect it at a later date. The suPHP PHP handler requires that you select the CGI option.

For more information on the CGI option, read our PHP Module: CGI documentation.

The FCGI PHP handler

The Mod FastCGI v2.3.9 option in the Exhaustive Options List stage of WHM's EasyApache 3 interface will install the fcgi PHP handler.

For more information on the Mod FastCGI v2.3.9 option, read our Apache Module: FCGId documentation.