cost of camtasia studio buying mac os x 10.5 used matlab discount windows 7 student uk buy autocad 2010 online buy rosetta stone irish buy windows xp pro product key best price quicken starter edition 2010 buy iwork 09 cheap buy windows xp 64 bit edition buy office 2007 ultimate edition buy adobe acrobat 10 cheap adobe cs4 design premium cheap adobe acrobat 9 professional best price camtasia studio 6

Happy System Administrator Day

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 30-07-2010-05-2008


System Administrator Appreciation Day is on the Last Friday of July

Most people read “system” to mean an individual computer, and think that all a sysadmin does is clean viruses off your computer and replace your monitor. That’s not wrong — but it is only one page of the whole story.

A real computing system is larger. Very few computers work just on their own anymore; when you use the web, play a game online, share files with a friend, or send email, you’re using a complex and intricate collection of computers, networks and software that come together to do the job you’re asking.

A sysadmin manages these systems — they figure out how to bring storage from one server, processing from another, backups from a third and networking from a fourth computer all together, working seamlessly. For you

So when you think of a sysadmin, think of the people who run the servers that help you clean it off, the people who run your backups to make sure your data is safe, the people who bring you the network, the people who monitor it for security — and yes, the person who cleans the virus off your computer and replaces your monitor.

So again here are some ideas on how to properly use your System Administrator’s valuable time

  • Make sure to save all your MP3 files on your network drive. No sense in wasting valuable space on your local drive! Plus, your sysadmin loves browsing through 100+ GB of music files while he backs up the servers.
  • Play with all the wires you can find. If you can’t find enough, open something up to expose them. After you have finished, and nothing works anymore, put it all back together and call your sysadmin. Deny that you touched anything and that it was working perfectly only five minutes ago. your sysadmin just loves a good mystery. For added effect you can keep looking over his shoulder and ask what each wire is for.
  • Never write down error messages. Just click OK, or restart your computer. your sysadmin likes to guess what the error message was.
  • When talking about your computer, use terms like “Thingy” and “Big Connector.”
  • If you get an EXE file in an email attachment, open it immediately. your sysadmin likes to make sure the anti-virus software is working properly.
  • When your sysadmin says he coming right over, log out and go for coffee. It’s no problem for him to remember your password.
  • When your sysadmin sends you an email marked as “Highly Important” or “Action Required”, delete it at once. He’s probably just testing some new-fangled email software.
  • Send urgent email ALL IN UPPERCASE. The mail server picks it up and flags it as a rush delivery.
  • Don’t use online help or FAQs or Knowldgebases . They are for wimps.
  • When you receive a 130 MB movie file, send it to everyone as a high-priority mail attachment. your sysadmin’s provided plenty of disk space and processor capacity on the new mail server for just those kinds of important things.
  • Don’t ever thank your sysadmin. He loves fixing everything AND getting paid for it!


Once again this was just for the sake of laughter don’t feel offended we love you all.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 9.8/10 (4 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)

Sys Admin deep thoughts (aphorisms)

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 27-04-2009-05-2008


Credit for those thoughts goes to : Steve Stady and Seth Vidal

 1. do it the same, over and over and over again

2. Backups are sacred! If you do not know if your backups are current,
   then test them by restoring the data and comparing.
3. Do not make many, tiny partitions, make a smaller number
   of larger partitions, instead.

4. Why change the system default when you don’t have to?

5. Think now so you don’t have to later (at 4am).

6. If you have to do it more than once, automate it. If you cannot
   automate it, document it.
7. Personality is for people, not for computers.

8. “Debugging is twice as hard as writing the code in the first place.
    Therefore, if you write the code as cleverly as possible, you are,
    by definition, not smart enough to debug it.” – Brian W. Kernighan
9. If you do not know what a machine will do when it is rebooted, then
   it is not production ready.
10. Unless you write an essay on why you need to do something “special”
    use the tools, procedures, techniques and resources the OS provided
    for you.
11. Remember the Mack Truck Scenario: If no one will be able to figure
    this out if you get hit by a Mack truck, then you’re doing something
12. Revision Control! Comment!

13. Log and rotate logs. Log remotely for best effect.

14. Simplicity is its own reward.

15. If you haven’t thought of at least one potential negative outcome
    of hitting enter at the end of the command you just typed; then you
    don’t understand the command well enough to use it on a production
16. Use a unique marker for names of packages that are locally developed.
    $domainname perhaps?
17. If you cannot enumerate every port that should be listening on a given
    machine; then it is not production ready.
18. If the host firewalling allows access to more ports than ABSOLUTELY
    necessary; then the host is not production ready.

19. If it seems like someone else would have encountered this problem
    before, they probably have. We do not live in a vacuum. Google for
    the answer

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 5.0/10 (6 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 0 (from 2 votes)

Oracle Acquires Sun Microsystems

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 20-04-2009-05-2008


Oracle announced today that its going to acquire its rival ” Sun Microsystems” for $9.50 a share, or about $7.4 billion.

The agreement with Oracle came about two weeks after I.B.M. ended its talks with Sun. The Sun board balked at that deal after I.B.M. lowered its offer to $9.40 a share from $10. Still, Monday’s deal represented a 42 percent premium over Sun’s closing price of $6.69 on Friday.

Oracle and Sun said in a statement that net of Sun’s cash and debt, the deal was valued at $5.6 billion.
The deal immediately disrupts the traditional relationships formed between some of the technology industry’s largest players and thrusts Oracle into the hardware business. Oracle, for example, has long-standing partnerships with Sun’s rivals, including Hewlett-Packard and Dell. These sellers of server computers work to fine tune Oracle’s database and business software for their computers.

What disturbs me is Oracle has now obtained the MySQL database, which Sun acquired last year for $1 billion , Hope this will have good effect on the shared and dedicated hosting markets, am a fan of MySQL myself and would like to see it progressing, I would be really disappointed if I am forced to move to Postgres or any other database.

Lets all wish for the best.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 4.8/10 (6 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: -2 (from 2 votes)

Why Every Business Should Have a Website

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 16-04-2009-05-2008


In the last decade, as the internet is growing and so does the access to all the information that is stored on it a business with no website is left without a representation dropping a good opportunity to be caught online via social websites or search engine results hence you will mess some potential customers.
It can rely on other websites to mention it, but eventually that is not the same as having its own website.

These days, for just a few bucks, with very little time and effort, any business can have a professional looking website that will help boost its services. Many benefits will be provided by the website to the business and its customers. Here are a few of them:

24/7 website availability – customers and potential customers can access your website whenever they want.
Access – The business will appear in search results which can bring it new customers
Business visibility – It’s very easy to the customers to learn about your business and what you are offering.
Easy to publish updates – Customers will be able to view what’s new on your business and hear about deals from your site.
It can save you money – A business website will allow you to save money on product advertisements, brochures and more. You can advertise your products and provide information related to your business in your website without any additional cost.

There are many more benefits from a business website, and the best thing about it is that it’s very easy to do and everyone can build their own website without spending too much money.

We can help you start your website here with HostsVault we will provide you with all the tools  you need to start your business including a sitebuilder,  database, mail software to start deploying  your business and managing it.
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 4.8/10 (5 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)

If programming languages were cars

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 05-01-2009-05-2008


The list

Assembly Language is a bare engine; you have to build the car yourself and manually supply it with gas while it’s running, but if you’re careful it can go like a bat out of hell.

Assembly Language you are the car.

Basic is a simple car useful for short drives to the local shops. Once popular with learner drivers, it has recently been stripped down to a shell and rebuilt by a major manufacturer, The new version has been refurbished for longer journeys, leaving only cosmetic similarities to the original model.

C is a racing car that goes incredibly fast but breaks down every fifty miles.

C# is a competing model of family station wagons. Once you use this, you’re never allowed to use the competitors’ products again.

C++ is a souped-up version of the C racing car with dozens of extra features that only breaks down every 250 miles, but when it does, nobody can figure out what went wrong.

Fortran is a pretty primitive car; it’ll go very quickly as long as you are only going along roads that are perfectly straight. It is believed that learning to drive a Fortran car makes it impossible to learn to drive any other model.

Java is a family station wagon. It’s easy to drive, it’s not too fast, and you can’t hurt yourself.

Lisp At first it doesn’t seem to be a car at all, but now and then you spot a few people driving it around. After a point you decide to learn more about it and you realize it’s actually a car that can make more cars. You tell your friends, but they all laugh and say these cars look way too weird. You still keep one in your garage, hoping one day they will take over the streets.

Matlab is a car designed for novice drivers going on short trips over terrain similar to the terrain the Mathematica car is usually driven over. It is very comfortable when driving over this terrain, but if you go off the trail even a little the car becomes so hard to drive that more snobby drivers refuse to even acknowledge that it’s a car.

Perl is supposed to be a pretty cool car, but the driver’s manual is incomprehensible. Also, even if you can figure out how to drive a Perl car, you won’t be able to drive anyone else’s.

PHP is the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, it’s bizarre and hard to handle but everybody still wants to drive it. [from "CosmicJustice" off of]

Prolog is a car with a unique trial-and-error GPS system. It will go down the road looking for your destination, and if it gets to the end of the street without finding it, it will back up and try the next street over and continue until you get where you need to go.

Python is a great beginner’s car; you can drive it without a license. Unless you want to drive really fast or on really treacherous terrain, you may never need another car.

Ruby is a car that was formed when the Perl, Python and Smalltalk cars were involved in a three-way collision. A Japanese mechanic found the pieces and put together a car which many drivers think is better than the sum of the parts. Other drivers, however, grumble that a lot of the controls of the Ruby car have been duplicated or triplicated, with some of the duplicate controls doing slightly different things in odd circumstances, making the car harder to drive than it ought to be. A redesign is rumored to be in the works.

Smalltalk is a small car originally designed for people who were just learning to drive, but it was designed so well that even experienced drivers enjoy riding in it. It doesn’t drive very fast, but you can take apart any part of it and change it to make it more like what you wanted it to be. One oddity is that you don’t actually drive it; you send it a message asking it to go somewhere and it either does or tells you that it didn’t understand what you were asking.

Visual Basic is a car that drives you.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 5.8/10 (10 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)

pssh: Run Command On Multiple SSH Servers

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 02-11-2008-05-2008


Many people use SSH to log in to remote machines, copy files around, and perform general system administration. If you want to increase your productivity with SSH, you can try a tool that lets you run commands on more than one remote machine at the same time. Parallel ssh, Cluster SSH, and ClusterIt let you specify commands in a single terminal window and send them to a collection of remote machines where they can be executed.

Why you would need a utility like this when, using openSSH, you can create a file containing your commands and use a bash for loop to run it on a list of remote hosts, one at a time? One advantage of a parallel SSH utility is that commands can be run on several hosts at the same time. For a short-running task this might not matter much, but if a task needs an hour to complete and you need to run it on 20 hosts, parallel execution beats serial by a mile. Also, if you want to interactively edit the same file on multiple machines, it might be quicker to use a parallel SSH utility and edit the file on all nodes with vi rather than concoct a script to do the same edit.

Many of these parallel SSH tools include support for copying to many hosts at once (a parallel version of scp) or using rsync on a collection of hosts at once. Because the parallel SSH implementations know about all the hosts in a group, some of them also offer the ability to execute a command “on one host” and will work out which host to pick using load balancing. Finally, some parallel SSH projects let you use barriers so that you can execute a collection of commands and explicitly have each node in the group wait until all the nodes have completed a stage before moving on to the next stage of processing.

Parallel ssh (pssh)
The Parallel ssh project includes parallel versions of the shell (pssh), scp (pscp), rsync (prsync), and kill (pnuke).

pssh is packaged for openSUSE as a 1-Click install, is available in Ubuntu Hardy Universe and the Fedora 9 repositories. I used the 64-bit package from the Fedora 9 repositories.

All of the Parallel ssh commands have the form command -h hosts-file options, where the hosts-file contains a list of all the hosts that you want to have the command executed on. The optional -l argument specifies the username that should be used to log in to the remote machines.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 6.0/10 (6 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: -1 (from 3 votes)

geeks dictionary

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 20-08-2008-05-2008


419 Scam Named for section 419 of Nigerian law which makes confidence schemes illegal. This is a scam where someone pretends to be a wealthy foreigner who wants help moving a large amount of money overseas. Usually, the scammer requests bank account information to pay for fees supposedly incurred in the large-sum transfer. The large sum transfer never happens and the victim is taken for as much ‘fee’ money as possible.

Anti-virus Software Computer software that attempts to locate, disable and remove from a computer any malicious software (such as viruses and worms). Anti-virus software typically relies on so-called signature files that allows the software to detect malware based on particular code segments that are only present in unwanted programs. Since it is not possible to know what these code segments are before the malware start infecting machines on the Internet (and is analyzed by anti-virus companies), this type of prevention mechanism does not help early on as a new malware version spreads. Some types of anti-virus software also performs so-called behavioral checks to detect yet-unseen strains of malware based on what they are trying to do. This is possible since malware is typically accessing and storing data at computer memory locations that other types of software do not.

Authentication Token A security device carried by an authorized user. The device has a changing value or a secret algorithm that cannot be copied — thus requiring a valid token to be possessed by whomever wants to authenticate. An example of an authentication token is the RSA SecurID token. Also see “second-factor autentication”.

DNS Poisoning A way of forcing users to a malicious site by injecting bad data into a domain name server’s cache in order to change (for users of that server) the destination a domain resolves to. The effect of DNS poisoning is that the conversion from a URL to an IP address fails. For example, instead of translating the address to the IP address corresponding to the actual site of American Express, a server that has been a victim of DNS poisoning will supply the incorrect IP address. The URL that the user types will still be printed in the address bar, and if the content of the fraudulent website to which the translation is done looks the same as that of the legitimate site, then the user will not notice that the attack took place. Moreover, the fraudulent website will be able to harvest all the cookies intended for the legitimate website, which will allow it to impersonate the user’s machine to the real site as well. Also see man-in-the-midddle attacks. DNS poisoning is sometimes referred to as pharming, and can be performed in a large number of ways. One of the recently discovered ways in which an attacker can mount an attack of this sort is by uploading malware to a person’s router (or access point). These are devices that have no inherent protection against malware, but which are very powerful in that all the user’s Internet traffic passes through these machines. Therefore, an infected router can easily cause incorrect IP address information to be returned to an unsuspecting user.

DNS server A server that translates DNS names (such as into an IP address that is actually used for communication on the Internet.

Favicon The small icon displayed next to a URL in the address bar of a browser. Phishers can place a ‘lock’ icon here to pretend the connection is secure, or they can set this icon appropriately to mimic a real site. This means that seeing a lock in the address bar does not automatically mean that the corresponding site is secure.

IP address A set of four numbers from 0-255 separated by periods (.) that are used to identify each computer on a network. (Example: An IP address instead of a Domain Name (like can be used in a phishing URL to hide the fact that a given website is not legitimate. In a DNS poisoning or pharming attack, the IP address returned by a DNS server is changed to direct victims to a phisher’s site.

Keyboard logger Also known as ‘keylogger’, a piece of software (or hardware) that records all keys pressed on a computer’s keyboard. Often, keyloggers will report the sequence of keys to an ‘owner’ of the malicious logger. The intent of this is to steal passwords and PINs, but also other confidential information types by the victim user.

Lock icon A small padlock icon displayed by a web browser to indicate that the browser has established a secure connection to the currently loaded website. This suggests to the user that nobody can ‘eavesdrop’ on their communications with the server.

Malware Malicious software such as a virus, worm, trojan horse, or spyware that is installed on a system with harmful or malicious intent. Some malware uses technical vulnerabilities (such as buffer overflow) to attack a machine, whereas other types of malware instead uses social vulnerabilities, i.e., attempts to make the victim willingly install and run the software. To do this, various types of deception is used. Commonly, the user is told that the software has a beneficial purpose, such as a screen saver, an Internet optimizer, or spyware detector. While the malware may perform some of these functions, it also performs other functions, unbeknownst to the victim user.

Man-in-the-middle attack An attack where an attacker relays all messages back and forth between a client and server. During the attack, messagesmay be changed or simply recorded for later use. An example of this attack is where a victim contacts a web server that is controlled by an attacker, thinking that this is his bank. The web server then immediately establishes a connection to the user’s bank. It send any information it receives from the bank to the victim, who thinks he received the information from the bank. Any information sent from the victim to the attacker’s web server is immediately forwarded to the bank, who then thinks it receives the information from the user in question. There is no noticeable delay, so this is not detectable. As the web server sends information back and forth, it may also save all the information it receives. While SSL may help protect against man-in-the-middle attacks, there are also ways by which an attacker can cause two sessions to be started by the victim at the same time, where one of them results in a connection with the bank and the other results in the theft of information sent to the bank. Man-in-the-middle attacks can be performed by malware, whether residing on the victim’s machine, on a router or access point he connects to, or on another machine on the Internet.

Pharming In computer security, this is an attack where an attacker compromises domain name values and redirects many people to the wrong IP for a given domain. Often this is accomplished with DNS poisoning or by modifying the hosts files on peoples’ computers. This is a special case of DNS poisoning, and is often the result of malware infections.

Phishing Tricking someone into giving up private data by masquerading as an authority. This is mostly accomplished using email or instant messages, directing the recipient to a fraudulent website that appears legitimate. Phishing is related to conning, but is taking place at a much grander scale, due to the use of the Internet, and is harder to track back to the criminal.

Phishing IQ test A test where emails are displayed to a participant who is then asked to classify each as fraud or real. Usually these tests are used to illustrate the difficulty of identifying phishing emails. Recent research shows that phishing IQ tests are not measuring susceptibility to phishing very well, but rather, simply measure fear of phishing.

Puddle Phishing A phishing attack targeting the clients of a small financial institution, typically with very limited geographical coverage. Smaller institutions typically have lesser resources to fight phishing attacks than large banks do, and their clients are less accustomed to being targeted. This makes puddle phishing often more successful for the phisher.

SSL Post A form submission that originates from an unencrypted ‘http’ page but posts to an encrypted page (https). Encryption only occurs in this case after the submission button is pressed. Some phishers try to make it appear that the sites they manage (and which impersonate legitimate brands) perform SSL posts, whereas they do not. It is difficult for typical users to determine whether a given webpage will perform an SSL post or not, which makes SSL posts less secure than traditional SSL connections.

Screen scraper Software that analyzes the graphics displayed on a computer screen and translates displayed images into text. This is often used to steal information from users, in particular in a user uses an on-screen keypad to enter a PIN.

Second Factor Authentication Second factor authentication demands more than just a password from a user logging in. It could be something he or she knows, something he or she has, or something he or she is. Examples of these three possibilities are: knowing one’s mother’s maiden name; to have a device that displays frequently changing passwords only known by the service provider and the person with the device; and use of a thumbprint to provide evidence of identity. There are many other forms of second factors, but not all are equally secure. Recent banking regulation demands that banks use some form of second factor authentication, but do not specify what type.

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) A communication protocol developed by Netscape that is used to establish cryptographically secure communications between a client (usually a web browser) and server. This protects against data from being stolen by eavesdroppers. Additionally, when a web browser starts an SSL session, a small lock is displayed in the frame of the browser. However, phishers know that it can be hard to know exactly where the lock should be placed, and even though phishers cannot easily place locks in the browser frame, it is trivial to place lock images in the content portion of the webpage. Many people do not notice the difference.

Signature-based malware detection A method of detecting malware that identifies malware by analyzing behavior of software, configuration and software patterns. See malware.

Spear phishing This attack is to phishing what targeted advertising is to advertising. Namely, in spear phishing, the attacker infers or manipulates the context of his intended victim, and then “personalizes” his attack. It is possible for attackers to learn information about the victim in many ways, and it is difficult to know when this has taken place. This makes spear phishing very dangerous.

Spoofed email Assuming the identity of another person while sending email; often used to disguise the actual sender of a message. It is trivial to spoof an email, and it can be done to make the email appear to come from anywhere, whether it is your best friend, your system administrator, your bank, or

Spyware Malware installed on a computer that covertly gathers information about the computer’s user.

Subdomain A subdivision of a master domain, e.g. ‘cs’ in and ‘informatics’ in

Synthetic identity fraud Posing as someone using identity that is completely fabricated — making up a new identity and assuming it. While not commonly in the news, this is one of the predominant types of fraud.

Yield (phishing) The percentage of targets in a scam that fall victim. If email asking for credit card details is sent to 100 people and 2 of them respond, the yield is 2%. Phishers, of course, hope for a high yield. It is not known exactly what the yield of phishing attacks are, but researchers and security specialists believe that it is in the range of a few percent, but believe that the increased use of spear phishing can increase the yield well above 20%. Given that phishers target huge numbers of potential victims at the same time, even a yield of just a few percent create a sufficient profit for the phishers to be attracted to committing this crime again and again.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 6.7/10 (3 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 0 (from 2 votes)

Webhosting terms

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 13-08-2008-05-2008


Just what is web hosting anyway?

In simple terms, web hosting is renting space on a web server. A website is not simply a domain name, it is a collection of files linked together by HTML code to display text and graphics on a computer. In order for anybody to see this collection of files you’ve created, it has to be housed on a computer somewhere that has access to the internet. Not just any computer will do, of course. A web server is a computer set up with special software that allows it to receive requests from the internet for the website files it has stored on it and to send those files out over the internet so that the requesting computer can display them. It is very much like a waiter in a restaurant taking your order and bringing the food that you ask for from the kitchen, hence the name “server.”

What kinds of web hosting are there?

Shared Hosting – Most websites are not huge affairs with hundreds of pages and thousands of files and graphics, and they are targeted toward a particular audience, so they will not get as many visitors as the large general sites like Yahoo! that are targeted at everybody who uses the internet. As such, the average website therefore is not going to require the full resources of an entire web server to run it. Web servers are designed to be able to handle dozens, even hundreds of websites at once because they are powerful machines.

Shared hosting is simply the concept of hosting more than one website on a particular server. Over 95% of all websites on the internet are being run in a shared hosting environment. Since the resources of the server can be split among the clients hosted on it, so can the costs of operating the server, so shared hosting is universally cheaper than any other type. Shared hosting packages are generally designed so that each client is allotted a certain amount of each resource, with different payment levels representing different amounts of resources such as disk space, bandwidth, email addresses, and so on. Shared hosting is also known as virtual hosting.

Dedicated Hosting – If you do have a big, powerful website that gets lots of visitors and has a tendency to hog resources, then you might want to have a web server all to yourself. Some companies also prefer the extra security of not having to share the server with anyone else who could do something accidentally or on purpose to crash it. Renting the use of an entire server is known as dedicated hosting. The web hosting company still owns the machine and takes responsibility for maintaining the hardware and the web hosting software, but you have greater control over the configuration and use of the server. There is also such a thing as semi-dedicated hosting, in which a web server is only split between a very small number of clients, such as 2 to 4, with strong partitions between each to prevent them from interfering with one another. Since the hosting company is still responsible for the upkeep of the server, this type of hosting is also known as managed hosting. For obvious reasons, dedicated hosting always costs significantly more than shared hosting.

Server Co-Location – If you really want complete control over every aspect of your web server, you might very well choose to buy one and maintain it yourself if you have sufficient knowledge. However, chances are that you still don’t have the resources to keep your server completely safe from power outages, roof leaks, thieves, unwary employees and other hazards and keep it on the internet on a fast, high-bandwidth connection at all times. You need a data center to provide those services for you. Co-location is the rental of physical security, continuous electrical power and a fast, reliable internet connection for a server that you own. The data center is not responsible for any of the hardware or software maintenance of a co-located server, you are. This can be a cheaper alternative to dedicated hosting if you have the necessary expertise and time to run a web server yourself.

Some web hosts are offering UNIX hosting and Windows hosting. What’s the difference?

The terms UNIX hosting and Windows hosting refer to the operating system (OS) that is running on the server. The operating system, of course, is the software that allows the computer to function and manage all of the other hardware and software that is installed on it. Chances are good that you are reading this on a computer running a version of the Windows operating system, the most popular operating system in the world for personal and business computers. Other operating systems that are growing in popularity are Macintosh and various versions of Linux. However, the operating system you use on your computer is irrelevant to which type of hosting you choose. Here are some of the main features of UNIX and Windows:

UNIX Hosting

Most of the web servers in the world today run on one of the many variants of UNIX. The UNIX operating system was originally developed by universities for servers and networking, and many different versions have been written by programmers around the world under the open-source protocol, which means that the code for the operating system is openly available for programmers to customize and make improvements. Linux and BSD are the most popular forms of UNIX and come in many varieties, such as Red Hat Linux, Debian, SuSE, and FreeBSD. Most of these different versions (and much of the software that runs on them) can be obtained for free, which makes UNIX hosting cheaper for a web host than other operating systems and allows them to offer lower prices. UNIX hosting platforms are generally considered to be stable, secure, powerful and fast. Most web programming applications can be performed by software that is available for a UNIX platform. “UNIX hosting” has become a generic term to refer to any platform that is derived from the original UNIX.

Windows Hosting

Microsoft has developed its own operating system for servers as a special version of its Windows operating system, Windows Server 2003. It is a commercial product which requires the operator to purchase a license, which increases the cost of operation for the web host and usually results in higher hosting prices. Windows is designed to be user friendly, but it is generally considered to be less powerful and secure than UNIX for operating in a network environment. ASP, ASP.NET, and ColdFusion are scripting languages which will only run on a Windows server, as will the Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Access database programs. These are popular for certain web programming applications, and if you are planning on using them to build your website, you will need to find a Windows host.

What are some of the terms I need to know when I choose a web host?

Disk Space or Storage – Because your website is a collection of files being offered on the internet for viewing, they have to be stored somewhere for retrieval and take up space. Each web server has a finite amount of hard disk memory to divide up and offer to hosting customers. Typically that space is divided up by different package levels so that the more you pay, the more space you are allowed to store pictures, web pages, videos and whatever other files you like on the web server’s hard drive. If your website gets bigger than the space you are given, you will need to purchase more disk space from the web host.

Bandwidth or Data Transfer – Whenever you visit a website and view a page, you are transfering a copy of the files that make up that page over the internet from the web server to your computer. If the page you are viewing consists of an HTML file that is 3KB in size and three pictures of 47KB, 100KB and 250 KB, then you have just used 400KB of bandwidth or data transfer, because that is the total amount of data you just downloaded from the web server to view that page. Bandwidth is a commodity like disk space that the web host has to buy from its internet service provider, so it too is divided up and offered to the customers in specific amounts. Bandwidth amounts are usually measured in gigabytes (GB), because while only one copy of your files needs to be stored on the server, thousands or even millions of copies may be downloaded for viewing. If your website is viewed more times than the amount of bandwidth you are allowed can handle, your website may be turned off until the next billing period starts, or you may simply be billed for the excess amount used, depending on your host’s policies. You can always purchase more bandwidth as your site’s traffic increases.

Uptime – In an ideal world, every web server would be up and running and offering your web pages to the world 24 hours a day, 7 days a week forever. However, web servers are computers, and like any other computer, things happen to make them fail, or they get old and out of date and require maintenance and repair. When a web host gives you a 99% uptime guarantee, they are saying that the web server will be up and running for 99% of the billing period. If they fail to meet this guarantee, most web hosts will refund a certain portion of your money depending on the amount of excess downtime they experienced.

Traffic Statistics – Website traffic statistics programs try to track visitors to your website. They can track how many times your site was visited, how many visitors were unique and how many returned more than once, which pages were most popular, where the visitors came to your site from, what search terms they used in the search engines, and many other types of information which could be useful to you in marketing your website to a target audience. These statistics can be displayed in tables, graphs and charts by hour, day, week, month or year. Some statistics programs are better than others and offer more types of data, better displays, easier navigation or other useful features. Most web hosts today offer some sort of traffic statistics software with their hosting packages.

CGI Scripts – Many web hosts offer a variety of free CGI scripts with their packages. These are things like hit counters, guestbooks, form mail programs, message boards, and other programs that allow your website to perform commonly desired functions. You can use the ones your host provides you with or you can upload and run custom CGI scripts written by yourself or somebody else to perform different tasks like conducting a survey or processing customer information to produce an automatic price quote. Most CGI scripts are written in common programming languages like Perl, PHP or ASP.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 5.8/10 (11 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: +3 (from 3 votes)

General rules to make your website attractive

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 13-08-2008-05-2008


For a website to be interesting, it must be able to give its visitors a constant stimulation of freshness. Therefore, a successful website must have the ability to evolve as time goes by. For any good website, they must have the 5 factors so that the website is professional.

Firstly, what a professional website should have is the consistent look and feeling. What we are talking about right now is the mantra of the website. This is the feeling that surfers see when they arrive to your website. Throughout times, the website must have a consistent design, colors, font and general look. If your website has different fonts on different pages and the color scheme is changing as the visitor surfs through your website, it will create an unprofessional attitude because your website will look like a patchwork of web pages. This will also create a visual confusion to the visitors making them feel like your website links to their people’s website. Another point is, the visitors might feel that the contents in your website tend to be irrelevant. The best way to give the visitors a professional yet comfortable feel is to use 1 font as the heading and maybe 2 fonts for the text. As for the colors, you should use two primary colors and have a third one as a secondary color. The shading of your website should also be made up of one or two primary color one more for the secondary color. With all these elements build into your website, it will be able to create a sense of harmony and unified design.

Another issue to look after on your website is the consistent navigation. What we mean here is the way your visitors could get around your website. For instance, your links should always place at the same location in all pages. This is a matter of consistent and to achieve this will give your visitors an assured impression that you have gone through great effort in designing your website. This feature is very important so that users could get back to your home page no matter where they have gone in your website. This is very useful as visitors tend to want to get back to home page most of the time and being able to do that with just a click is a must. Another situation where this function could be useful is when someone lands into a subsidiary page on your site from a search engine or another website, they can easily find a way back to your home page.

Search function is also very important for your users so that they could search for specific details in your website. This can save him ample time so that he doesn’t have to go through all the pages in order to reach his destination. Next, your website should have well balance text and graphics. Too much complicated graphics may make your website load slower. Therefore, it creates a longer waiting time for your users. So, in spite of going for style, we must also remember the effectiveness of the website.

Contacts should be displayed with extra care and attention. Make sure that you phone numbers, logo and slogan is properly displayed. This is very important so that you customers can contact you if they feel the need to. It would be very frustrating if they can’t find a way to contact you.

If you website possesses all the factors that we have discuss, you will have a very informative, useful and effective website because visitors could get around easy, get information easily and so on. Make sure all the pages in your website have such elements and the foundation of your website will have the ideal balance. Then, your website will be successful.

In case you’re shopping for web hosting, have a look on HostsVault you wont regret it.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 7.2/10 (21 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 0 (from 6 votes)

Choosing a Web Development Framework

Posted by HostsVault | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 13-08-2008-05-2008


I recently had the opportunity to develop a small web based application. This time round I was determined to make use of some development framework. Not for me the slow slog of writing all my code from scratch – surely we have moved beyond that now in 2008.

The big question was – which framework to use? Since the advent of Ruby on Rails, development frameworks have become quite the flavour d’jour and there are now, well, maybe not thousands of them, but quite a few! The last time I heard there are about 80 development frameworks out there. I am not 100% user of this number, it could be a bit higher, it could be a bit more conservative (on the phpwact site you can find about 40 PHP frameworks listed). The point is, the web developer is now really spoilt for choice. Which is a problem in itself, since having too much choice can leave you dithering between different options.

This article is therefore about how I made my choice, which was CakePHP, and which factors I took into consideration.

Obviously, and certainly, I will get bombarded with “Why don’t you try X framework, it is really much simpler to use…” type responses. That is quite OK, to each his own! But this is the choice I made and I am sticking to it. Frankly, the idea of going through another learning curve gives me the heeby-jeeby’s….

I found that the selection criteria were not independent. In other words, once I have ruled out some frameworks due to some specific criteria, other factors came into play. It was therefore more a process of elimination than judging all the frameworks off a predefined set of criteria.

The first major selection point was: Ruby on Rails or not.

Obviously there is the attraction of using a brand new, hip, buzz-word hyped framework. You can’t go wrong with something that is getting so much attention… or can you?

Let’s look at some of the selection criteria that filtered out Ruby on Rails

1. Ease of installation and ability to run on shared hosting
The problem is that most of my clients make use of a shared hosting environment. Can Ruby on Rails run on common-or garden variety type shared hosting? The answer was, I soon discovered – no. One needs to either have access your own private servers or run on a shared hosting environment that has Ruby on Rails preinstalled. Admittedly, there are a couple of them now starting up. A comprehensive list of hosting providers that offer Ruby On Rails hosting can be found on the RoR Wiki –

2. Minimize the learning curve
Even though I knew that any new framework will involve a steep learning curve, I really did not have the guts to go through TWO learning curves – one for the language itself and one for the framework. I might still have been prepared to go through the learning curve though if it wasn’t for the fact that RoR requires special hosting.

So basically the decision was: Not RoR. And based on criterion 2, I decided to stick to a PHP framework, and not go for something else based on Perl or something else since I’ve been developing in PHP for the past two, almost three years. Having said this, it is all very well to say that CakePHP allows you to use your PHP skills – because it is an object oriented framework/MVC based framework it has its own rich language infrastructure. You still need to learn the CakePHP terminology and the learning curve is pretty steep!

3. Ability to run on PHP 4
Although PHP 5 offers more object oriented features, once again, not all shared hosts offer PHP 5 out of the box. I decided that I wanted to stick to a framework that will offer backwards compatibility and enable me to run on most of the servers that I, as well as my clients, host on.

My further criteria came down to:

4. Must have good documentation
Under good documentation I count the following:

- User manual

- Examples and code snippets

- Screen casts and videos – although I do not see these as essential

5. Good support by the user community
This, in combination with formal documentation is absolutely essential. All of these frameworks are pretty young and the documentation is also constantly evolving. Some documentation might be patchy in details. This is where the user support in terms of the community comes in. How active are the forums? Is there a bug tracker? Any other informal tutorials, write-ups, comments, blogs and other support?

6. Regular upgrades and bug fixes
..but not so close to each other that the software becomes unstable and unusable. Backward compatibility is also important.

Version number of the software can be used to indicate maturity.

Working off the following list ( one can see that the list has narrowed down to the following frameworks:

Seagull Framework
WACT – latest version now requires PHP 5 so its OUT!

The next step was a bit less scientific – but still fitted in with point 5 – how well is this Framework regarded? How much support does it generate in the ‘community’.

I scouted through forums and followed links and surfed the net and tried to get a general feel – and overall, CakePHP did seem to come out tops. A similar check that one can do is the following – do a Google search for each of the frameworks and see how many results are returned. This will give you a good idea of the general support, number of tutorials, number of forum posts and general ‘talked about’ factor for the specific framework.

After doing all this it was clear CakePHP is the chosen one.

VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: 5.1/10 (7 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.20_1166]
Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)