Archive for the ‘Tech’ Category

11 July, 2013 — Tech, WordPress

WP Daily – Says Goodbye

Today is a sad day for many WordPress fans – as quickly as it came it was gone. WP Daily yesterday evening closed its doors displaying this message to its users.

  • COLLABORATION, NOT COMPETITION
  • COMMUNITY, NOT AGENDAS
  • FRIENDSHIP, NOT FORMALITY
  • PEOPLE, NOT PERSONALITIES
  • PARTICIPATION, NOT OBSERVATION

This sure is a sad day for everyone who loved and used WP Daily – well daily! A press relese on there company blog stated:

It was a great run, to be sure.

We achieved every single goal and metric that we had set out to accomplish (and then some) in this glorious experiment and so we consider it a “success.” But, it did not achieve the much larger global goals and strategy of our organization at this present time.

Consequently, we’ve pulled the plug. A huge-mega-super shoutout to all of our supporters, readers, and financial partners who made it a success – we could not have done it without you!

Let us know if you have any questions.

What will be the next project for 8bit? Who knows…

Server Rack
3 June, 2013 — Hosting, Tech

How To Transfer / Migrate cPanel Accounts With No Downtime

Before The Move

Before we even think about moving accounts we need to think about a few other things that need sorting first.

Purchasing A New Server

First things first, if you haven’t already you need to have your new server set-up, have cPanel installed, installed your Firewall and then leave it… just leave it for 4-5 days. This is so you can make sure a. the server is stable and b. the new companies network is stable. The last thing you need is to move all your accounts over and find out the new network is rubbish and your server crashes every five minuets.

Update DNS TTL (Time to Live)

This step has to be done 48-72 hours prior to migration. Changing the TTL (Time To Live) from 14400 (4 hours) to 300 (5 minutes) means that as soon as we make a change to a DNS zone, it will take affect everywhere within 5 minutes as opposed to 4 hours.

To do so you need to run the following commands in your SSH console.

mkdir -p /backup/named-baka ; cp /var/named/*.db /backup/named-baka
perl -pi -e 's/\$TTL 300/\$TTL 14400/g' /var/named/*.db

Once you have done this its just a waiting game… Leave it for a while just to make sure its populated though out the world (24 hours).

Migration Day

Once a day has gone by its d-day… The day of migration. First we need to stop all services on the old server other than Apache and MySQL (to avoid loosing any emails or files people upload) You can do this by running the following commands in SSH

/etc/init.d/cpanel stop
/etc/init.d/exim stop
/etc/init.d/pure-ftpd stop;/scripts/ckillall -9 pure-ftpd;/scripts/ckillall -9 pure-authd
/etc/init.d/proftpd stop

Let The Copying Begin

After that login to WHM on the new server as root then do the following steps:

  1. Click on “Copy Multiple Accounts/Packages From Another Server” (under Transfers)
  2. Fill out the old server data
  3. Select the accounts to transfer
  4. Start the transfer process (this can take some time)

Update DNS

Once the transfer has finished make sure everything is copied across ok and nothing is missing, if you run into any trouble comment below and I will try to help. Once you are happy everything is there SSH into the old server and run the following commands:

mkdir -p /backup/named-bak ; cp /var/named/*.db /backup/named-bak
sed -i 's/[OLD_SERVER_IP]/[NEW_SERVER_IP]/g' *.db
/etc/init.d/named restart

The above commands first make a backup of your DNS databases for each account. Then goes through all of the accounts and updates the DNS records from the old IP to the new IP forcing the DNS servers to send all traffic to the new server! (note this can take anything from 15 – 60 minuets to take effect).

For sites not on a shared IP you will need to edit these DNS records separately to reflect the new IP. Well Done! – All the websites are functioning on the new server, now transfer your Nameservers! Don’t forget to give it 48 hours for the DNS to settle down. DNS can be a pain and take longer to update than other peoples DNS its all different. Once you have waited 48 hours you can shutdown your old server and cancel your account with that host you couldn’t wait to leave!

Resellers?

Note: If you have resellers, we have to copy all the files in /var/cpanel that reference resellers and anything ending in .accts to the new server.

Photo By: Getbutterfly

29 May, 2013 — Blogging, Tech

Ghost Fully Funded!

Ghost is a blogging platform that was foundered by John O’Nolan to add a bit of a mix-up to the blogging world with its simple and to-the-point solution and an attempt to rival other blogging platforms.

Yesterday Ghost successfully raised well beyond there goal of £25,000, pulling in a staggering £196,362 from there Kickstarter project by the end of the 30 day campaign.

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Now the wait will begin to see what the product will become and how it will stack up against competitors. They have 5,236 hungry backers who cant wait to get there hands on the first release of Ghost!

This Tweet was posted by Ghost not long after the project ended.

We are all very excited to see what Ghost will bring and to see if it really is a major competitor for the likes of WordPress and Tumblr.

Did you back the project? I did! Let me know in the comments!

Big Brother
16 May, 2013 — Blogging, Tech

Finding Photos For Your Blog

Finding photos for your blog or website can be hard, where do you look and how do you find images that you can use without breaching copyright? Well, many other people have the same problem when they are running a website. I am going to share with you how I find my images for this blog and how to avoid breaching copyright.

Where to find FREE images

If you have been on the internet for some time you might have herd the term “Creative Commons” been used before. However lots of people don’t know what Creative Commons actually is.

Creative Commons is a type of license that people license their content under, for use by others. There are different types of licenses that fall under the Creative Commons umbrella. You can find out more about those here.

So I hear you ask, where can I find Creative Commons – licensed content?

One word to answer that… Flickr

CC Flickr

CC Flickr

Flickr has an advanced search function that will allow you to search for only images that fall within the Creative Commons-licensed content.

You can then choose how you are going to use the images. For websites and blogs you need to make sure you tick “Find content to use commercially”. However if you are looking to edit the photos you are downloading and we’re not talking about cropping here. I mean editing colours, putting people in or taking people out of photos you need to tick “Find content to modify, adapt, or build upon”.

Larger website or blog?

Once you have achieved a larger audience and have started to make money out of your website you might want to start and look for stock images. Sometimes you just can’t find the photo you are looking for under the Creative Commons license. This is where you are going to have to dip into the money pot slightly and purchase stock photography.

Below are a list of Stock Photography websites you might want to take a look at for when you’re really in need.

Don’t use Google!

People think a quick and easy way to find images online is by hitting Google Images and taking a photo off there. However that isn’t the case as you may well find the images on Google are copyright to someone and use of those images (even though they came off Google) will breach copyright and you could find yourself in bother.

For example I am a photographer and my images appear in Google Search, but that doesn’t mean your automatically entitled to use those images because even though they are on Google the copyright still remains with me. Cutting it short if your not sure don’t use it.

Conclusion

There are lots of websites out there that offer images for commercial use for free. It can take some time to find the right image for you but its worth it as you don’t want people coming back to you and finding you have used an image you are not entitled to use. It not only looks bad but you could find yourself in deep water quickly. However most people will just ask that the image be removed and that will be the end of the story.

Photo Credit: Mike_fleming

5 May, 2013 — Development, Tech

Google AdSense – Unable to login

Recently I have been looking into Google AdSense. I signed up for an account many years ago but never used it. Now I have come to look into it a bit more, I find myself unable to login and stuck in what appears to be a “login loop”. Every time I put my email and password in Google just reloads the login page again and I am still unable to login.

After searching around on the internet for this issue I found a few posts about this from back in 2009 time.

After going through and trying everything that has been said in those posts nothing has worked!

What I have tried to date

  1. Cleared browser Cache & History
  2. Using different browsers (Chrome, Safari and Firefox)
  3. Use different login domains (https://www.google.com/adsense/login2) and (https://www.google.com/adsense/login3)
  4. Changing Google Account password (according to the forums)

This problem is really starting to drive me nuts!

If anyone has a fix or know what could be causing this please comment below and I will add it to this post for other people suffering from the same problem.

Update 1

Doing some more research today I found a post with a form to submit to Google if you are having trouble loggin into your account.
It does say it may take up-to 24 – 48 hours for them to reply. I will update once I hear from Google.

Photo Credit: psd

Amazon Web Services
30 April, 2013 — Development, Hosting, Reviews, Tech

Amazon S3 Review 2013

Below is my Amazon S3 Review for 2013.

What is Amazon S3

S3 stands for Simple Storage Service and is exactly that. S3 is storage that is located in Amazons large data centres across the world, designed to make web-scale computing easier for developers. Amazon S3 provides a simple web services interface that can be used to store and retrieve any amount of data, at any time, from anywhere on the web.

I was sceptical when I first started looking into S3 as I didn’t believe it was as cheap as people said it was. After using it for the past 4 months I know now why people love it! The clue really is in the name “Simple”. The user interface is easy to use and is clean, the pricing again is simple and easy to understand. Keep on reading below, where I will go into more detail about why I love S3.

Amazon S3 Dashboard

Amazon S3 Dashboard

S3 Pricing

S3 operates on a basis of paying only for what you use, with separate fees for storage and data requests. The fees break down as follows:

Storage

5GB FREE (for the first year), then $0.095/GB per month (100GB = $9.50)

Data Transfer (Upload)

$0.00/GB Yes FREE for the first 1TB of data

Data Transfer (Download)

$0.00/GB Yes FREE for the first 1TB of data

PUT, COPY, POST, or LIST Requests

$0.005/1000 Requests

Find out more about the prices here.

No-one can really argue with these prices, and yet Amazon keeps dropping there prices! Only a few years ago S3 storage was priced at $0.15/GB and people thought that was cheap, now with it at an all time low of $0.095/GB people are wondering just how cheaper it can go.

Glacier

I know this is an S3 review but I wanted to bring your attention to a similar service as part of Amazons Web Services and almost a brother to S3 – Glacier.

Glacier is one of Amazons other 25 web service products that is designed to be used for large amounts of data you want to archive away and not touch very often. This is known as Cold Storage. This is because the data is stored deep inside Amazon’s servers where you know its safe but unlike S3 you have less of a need to keep dipping into your data. If you suddenly have the need to access your data you can, however it takes anywhere between 3 to 5 hours to retrieve your data from the Glacier servers. Almost think of Glacier like storing something in a freezer for years until that one day when you need it and you have to wait for it to defrost before using it.

Amazons Glacier’s pricing is as little as $0.01 per GB / month!

Conclusion

Its very hard to find something wrong to write about Amazon S3 because its just so easy and simple to use. You know how much your bill will be at the end of each month and you know the bill will be lower than you think it will be (I know I did). I even managed to not pay a penny for 3 of the 4 months I have been using S3.

Give Amazon S3 a go, I think you will be surprised.
If you already use S3 or any other often Amazon’s web services I’d love to hear your experience.