How light can cPanel get?



After a long host search that seems to be ending with KnownHost, I think I'm at least beginning to understand what I don't know. So here's a question that arises:

I think I'm going to want to use cPanel, for things like setting up Fantastico features, ensuring the version and possibly recompiling PHP (need FreeType), and of course watching the stats. But I also understand that it takes a bit of memory. And no matter how much RAM I have, I'd always want to use as much as possible toward actual page serving.

So is it possible to "turn off" cPanel when I'm not actively using it, or at least scale it down heavily? Or does it infiltrate itself on the base level as just something I have to get used to? I've seen demos and have a decent idea of the features, but I've never actually used it, so this is the kind of thing I think about.

No, you can't turn it off. You can disable some functionality to save on resources but it's always there.