Free Way to Change Your Avatar Colour For Twitter

Published on Jun 15, 2009   //  Tutorials, Video

I put together this quick video on to make your avatar a different colour.

Plan B

Published on Apr 23, 2009   //  Tutorials

Servers

When things don’t go as planned it is always nice to have a Plan B. We have various plan’s A through Z for many different situations and even then those plans do not always go as planned. There are lots of variables, lots of things that can happen some are foreseeable while others are unknowns.

This post is to help you have a Plan B which we will call your Backup Plan.

Let’s start off with some of the basics and get more complicated as we go….

  • cPanel has a built in complete backup tool inside of it. You can manually do a backup at any time, save it to your account and then back it up to your local drive. The backup includes all of our cPanel settings, files, databases and stats. The problem with this method is that it requires you to remember to do it.
  • We have a database and file backup tool in our Customer Resource Center which you can use to automate the backup of your files an databases. This is included free to our customers. You do have to set it once and be sure to place it in your start up folder to ensure it starts up every boot up. This method is fairly easy but to enable the software it means you need to allow your local IP to the MySQL data access area in your cPanel.
  • For some sites the files do not really matter as much as the databases do. You can use a simple cron to send you the database to an off site email for storage. The cron would look something like this….
    •  mysqldump –quote-names -u [DBUSER] -p[DBPASS] [DBNAME] > mail -s “MySQL Backup” [email]
  • If you have a WordPress blog there is a plugin that will backup your site for you and again email it. If you do not use this plugin already install it now.
  • There are scripts to do backups for you automatically through a cron. Here is one that looks promising.

I am sure a few might wonder if we do backups and why should you bother to do backups. It is possible that backups may be incomplete, corrupt or older. We do daily, weekly and monthly backups of  all your cPanel settings, files, databases and stats. Although it is rare there is a possibility that our backups can and will have issues.

This is where you should have a Plan B in place to restore your own backups which as you can see from above can be fairly painless if you set up that plan today.

Web Dev: Getting Started with XHTML

Published on Dec 29, 2008   //  Development, Tutorials
Off

Web Development Tutorials

Welcome to the new Web Development series on the BlueFur Blog. I’m Matt Freedman and I’ll be writing the new Web Development, Everything PHP, WordPress Development and Moving Beyond SSH series’. During the Web Development series, we’ll cover everything from AJAX to XML and will have content for beginners and techies alike. So, let’s get started.

(X)HTML is an essential part of the Internet; it is the structural markup for webpages. If you’ve ever viewed the “source” of a webpage, that is (mostly) HTML or XHTML. During the next couple of weeks, we will have a multi-part mini-series on XHTML. During this week’s tutorial, we’ll be going over the basics of XHTML.

Basics

The basic rules of this markup language are simple:

  • An XHTML document must start with an XHTML declaration, and contain a head, title and body.
  • XHTML is made up of tags which are surrounded by angle brackets (< and >).
  • All tags in XHTML must be in lower case and be closed.

Let’s start out with that first point. The simplest of XHTML documents will look like this:

[code=’xml’]


Hello world!


[/code]

In the above code, the first two tags are the XHTML declaration. You’re telling the browser that this is an XHTML document using the Transitional rendering mode. There are a couple different XHTML rendering modes, but Transitional is the most forgiving. The third tag () is the head section. This is where you will define various page properties and tell the browser to import external stylesheets and scripts. The next tag is the title tag, this is where you will specify the title of the page that will appear in the titlebar of the browser. After that is the body section and that’s the end of the document.

Something very important to note in the above example document is the closing tags. The XHTML declaration states that all tags must be closed. This is generally done by copying the starting tag, but prepending a forward-slash to the tag name (so a tag). There are a few exceptions to this rule. Some tags have to be “self-closed”, where a space and forward-slash are appended to the starting tag name. So, for example, the br tag (which adds in a line break) is formatted like
. Notice how there is no closing tag, but the tag in itself is self-closed. These are referred to as “singleton” tags. The tags that require to be self-closed are link, meta, img, br and hr.

Basic Tags

In addition to the standard “building blocks” tags, you’ll also need to know some basic formatting tags. To separate text into paragraphs, you should wrap each paragraph in

tags. To produce a line break, you should use the singleton tag
. To make text bold or emphasized (italicized) wrap it in <strong> or <em> tags, respectively.

Next time on the Web Development Series

Next Monday we will be going over more advanced tags and tag attributes. If you have any questions so far, please feel free to ask them in the comments section of this post.

PHP Tutorial – Part 3 of 5

Published on Oct 16, 2008   //  Tutorials

PHPIn Part 1 of our PHP Tutorial series we covered how to use PHP and HTML together and use the print command. In Part 2 of our PHP Tutorial series we covered using variables.

In this tutorial we will cover how to send an email using PHP. If you ever need to capture information from a contact form and email it then using PHP mail is one of the more secure and easy methods of doing so.

To start you will need an html form page which captures the details. I have placed the code into a file so you can easily copy it. Once you have the form setup the way you want create your form.php file.

Place the following code into the form.php which you should have in a text editor:

[code=’php’] $emailto = "me@myaddress.com“;
$emailsubj = “Email Submission”;
$emailmess = “Name: “.$_POST[“name”].”\r\n”;
$emailmess .= “Email: “.$_POST[“email”].”\r\n”;
$emailmess .= “Comment: “.$_POST[“comment”];
$successpage = “http://www.google.com“;
mail($emailto, $emailsubj, $emailmess);
header(“Location: $successpage”); /* redirect */
exit;
?>[/code]

The above code should be edited to fit your needs. You can change:

$emailto should be set to the actual email you want the content sent to.
$emailsubj can be set to a more meaningful email subject.
$successpage should be set to a relevant thank you page on your site after the person submits the form.

Again be sure to save the file form.php with a .php extension and upload it to your site. In this example you should see a form and emailed the details when you submit it.

Stay tuned as we will continue this tutorial with more details on using PHP.

What is RSS and Why You Should Use It

Published on Oct 3, 2007   //  Tutorials

How many pages a day do you visit and how much time do you spend visiting sites?

I use to spend close to 6 or more hours a day going from site to site looking to see if new content was there. I would visit news sites, blogs, forums and various other sites. This consumed a lot of my time but it seemed like the only solution.

Then about a year ago I started to hear about this thing called RSS. I did some investigation and noticed that almost 75% of the sites I visited had this little RSS button on them. So I downloaded an Outlook plug-in from Newsgator and started testing what this RSS thing was.

To my surprise I received new content into my inbox from these sites I use to visit. I didn’t have to go out and find the new content the new content found me. Those hours of going from site to site to was cut down now because I didn’t have to check if new content was updated.

The one issue I had with the Outlook solution was that it bogged my system down. Based on Matt’s recommendation I started testing Google Reader. Their reader is 100% online and will definitely not bog down your system. I also found a Google Reader Notifier that lets me know when new content is available.

So what is RSS?

Wikipedia summarizes it as…
“a family of Web feed formats used to publish frequently updated content such as blog entries, news headlines or podcasts.”

Why should I use RSS?

It will free up the time you spend online seeking out new content. Instead the new content will come to you. Also unlike spam if you don’t want to get the content anymore you can unsubscribe and never get it again.

If you want to test out an RSS reader sign up at Google Reader and then add our RSS Feed.

How to Bypass Company Firewalls to Access cPanel

Published on Sep 11, 2007   //  Tutorials

Firewall

So your at work and the system admin has decided that like BOFH (his hero) he is going to make your life hell when it comes to viewing your email and stats in cPanel.

Fear not fellow webmaster!

You can access your cPanel using a script. cPanel Proxy is a great script you can install into your cPanel so you can access cPanel and webmail even if you are behind a company firewall.

To install follow these simple instructions (at home where your not blocked)…

  • Create subdomain “cpanel.yourdomain.com”
  • Download and unzip cPanelProxy.zip
  • Upload the files to the subdomains directory, probably “public_html/cpanel”  in FTP

Now your ready to access your cPanel and by pass the company firewall.

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