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Paypal Web Payments Pro for CakePHP 2.x

For a while now I’ve been using Paypal Web Payments Pro. I also use the cakePHP framework almost exclusively and have written several pieces of code for it. My most recent code was a Component used to access the NVP Methods of the WebPaymentsPro API. I had released this code on BitBucket, but then decided to actually make it into a Plugin available at https://bitbucket.org/chrispierce/paypalwpp-plugin-for-cakephp-2.x. I hope this helps someone out there using Paypal WPP and CakePHP 2.x. The data is sent using CURL so php5-curl support is required. It is also recommended to use an SSL Certificate when dealing with credit cards on the web.

Posted in General.


DNS Mailer Scam coming to several hosting clients.

Several clients have been getting this in the mail. The PDF attachment shows a bill owed for $65.00 to DNS Services. At first glance it looks sound enough and DNS is one of those things that seem like something you need if you have a website. The icing on the cake is that they even point out a few things that are familiar including the current DNS (ns.csdurant.com / ns2.csdurant.com in this case), Mail servers, etc. The big things to note here are the items I highlighted in green. Name Server 3 and 4 while they seem to be from DNS services show inactive. Also in the glob of fine print at the bottom you see “You are under no obligation to make any payments on account of this offer unless you accept this offer.” And finally, “DNS Services is not affiliated with your current Name Server Provider. Despite the warnings several clients have called asking if they owe this bill.

Don’t be scammed by these mailings. This information is all available to anyone publicly via a command known as whois. These people are just trying to get your money much like the fake yellow page ad’s of yesterday’s scammers. While these people aren’t really doing anything illegal they are in my opinion performing shady business practices which try to trick people into becoming their customers.

Posted in DNS, General, Security.

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The reason site design turns bad.

Website design has been around long enough by now that you would think there wouldn’t be so many terrible websites out there. Today I thought I’d discuss my opinions on why so many of these still exist and continue to exist. I’ll be honest with you as well, I’ve even created several of these monsters. Not necessarily willingly but sometimes what the customer wants isn’t what the customer needs and the result turns out to be catastrophic.
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Posted in General.


Making images [IMG] look nice with CSS Styling

Photos are all over the internet. Someone [or some thing] puts them there with HTML code most generally. This is usually done with a piece of code in HTML known as . The img tag as we’ll refer to it in this post is most generally used to display images on a page but often the image is left bare and raw and causes the page to look ever so BLAH.
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Posted in General.


RAID Technology Simplified (Video)

Latest Video Tutorial to help you understand RAID Technology and how each type of array works.
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Posted in Dell, RAID, Storage, Technology.


10 great iPhone Apps for almost any user

When I give training classes on iPhone’s and iPad’s for business the number one question I get asked is what apps I use for my iOS devices (iPhone and iPad). After getting this question several times a lady finally said “Why don’t you give us a list.” and so this blog post was born. The 10 Apps that I use the most that others would find useful. Don’t get me wrong I use several other apps, but these apps are the ones I find to be the most productive for almost any user.
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Posted in iOS, iPad, iPhone.


Being Charitable in a Slow Economy – A look at both sides of the coin

As a business owner and a community volunteer I love helping our local community as much as possible, however, it seems as if I’ve recently noticed a catch in the system. Non-profits most generally operate on funds provided by the charity of others. They have fundraisers and events, and they take the money raised on these things and use it to fund the cause they support. I serve on a number of these boards so I do know that economic booms and slows directly effect these non-profits. In a thriving economy members of these non-profits and community partners tend to be more generous in giving out money, but when they tighten the proverbial belt during slower economic times, some of these extra expenses are the first to be cut from the budget of many corporations. The problem, however is that as these Corporations cut back on the giving, the non-profits suffer because unfortunately they have to cut back as well.

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Posted in General.

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Will hundreds of thousands of people be without Internet come July?

For those of you following the recent fbi.gov news release saying that users could lose their Internet:

I thought I’d give you some details of how DNS works and why you would/could potentially lose your Internet access. Let’s start by explaining what DNS is … Domain Name Services (DNS for short) is basically a telephone book for computers. In simplest terms, it takes IP Addresses (173.194.33.33) which are numbers that are easy for computers to work with and matches them up with URL’s (www.google.com) which are website names easy for people to work with. This is done so that when you want to go to a website you don’t have to know what IP address the website is hosted at but just the name itself. DNS does that work for you.

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Posted in Bind, DNS, Linux, Networking, OS X, Security, Windows.

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Understanding and Creating User Quota with Dovecot 1.2+

The dovecot wiki for 1.2 was an afterthought in my opinion. It seems they were already starting to focus on 2.0 and just kinda threw 1.2+ (The version that comes with debian squeeze) into the Debian 1.0/1.1 wiki located at http://wiki1.dovecot.org/Quota. I read through this a bunch and decided I’d write a little tutorial about how to setup a user quota using MySQL and Dovecot. From what I’ve seen on the search engines this is something a lot of people are looking for. My mail server setup is based on the configuration from http://workaround.org/ispmail/squeeze which provides a great foundation for setting up a stable PostFix/DoveCot/Amavisd-new solution. So all I needed was a few small things to add to make the quota system work (even with the client reporting the quota to the customer).

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Posted in Debian Linux, Linux.

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Roundcube for your Debian Squeeze Mail Server

I am a big fan of the workaround.org “ISPmail tutorial” for setting up mail servers. It works pretty good and is usually pretty detailed and to be honest, I’ve been using it for years to configure my mail servers under Debian Linux. After migrating to squeeze the first time, I just used the tutorials “Migrating from the Lenny” section to update my server.

I’ve always loved roundcube as well and even in the early days found myself stopping the tutorial and configuring my own copy of roundcube. The new tutorial actually makes mention of roundcube so I was excited when I got the opportunity to configure a new mail server. The only disheartening thing was that the mail server tutorial for squeeze isn’t finished to the point where it talks about roundcube configuration. I’ve set it up many times so I thought I’d try to use the generic debian apt packages and go ahead and document my steps along the way. Here we go…
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Posted in Debian Linux, Linux, Mail Server, PHP, Webmail.

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