Categories
Editorial

Introducing WpNginx – our new service to put your WordPress on steroids

Before I tell you more about WpNginx, our new service, let me ask you one simple question!

When was the last time you have seen Devils Workshop down?

If you are one of our reader who frequently visits Devils Workshop, chances are seeing this site down are almost nil. Downtime you might have seen here was for scheduled maintenance few months back. In fact that can be prevented also, had we more time to invest in playing with our servers. 😉

WpNginx – The magic behind our great uptime!

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Every time, fellow bloggers contact me, wondering about which hosting we are using for such great uptime, I can’t stop myself from thanking Igor Sysoev, the man who created Nginx webserver. Nginx worked for us like a charm.

You may be get a shock to know that, we now run more than 30-sites with 50K total pageviews daily from one single VPS and going through analysis of our server logs, it seems that we can handle another 50K hits daily without upgrading our VPS plan further.

On top of Nginx, we have explored many more ways to optimize websites’ performance to the level where our rtCamp.com homepage beats Google.com homepage in YSlow as well as PageSpeed like performance metrics. 😉

To get this kind of performance, we have worked very hard for months. All our efforts pulled together are now available as a service which every blogger running high-traffic blog/site can avail. Two of Devils Workshop’s contributors, Bapun (from SolidBlogger) and Sri Ganesh (from Symposiumz), already managed avail our service while we were in close-beta. You can read about their experience here.

You can read more about our new service here. More about why we love Nginx can be found here.

Link: WpNginx

p.s. just noticed this is my 600th post on DW! 🙂

Categories
News

Blackberry’s solution for India

Research in Motion’s Blackberry has found a solution for its Indian users. It will have a corporate forum which will allow the Indian government to get access to data which might be sensitive from a security point of view.

Previously the government had given a deadline until the 31st of August 2010 for RIM to conform with certain demands. The sore point has been the messaging service which is encrypted and has a lot of users using it for privacy.

What are Indian demands?

The government has wanted some clarifications from Blackberry since 2008. It seems it has set a deadline and looks a lot more serious on following through and if needed even banning Blackberry’s messaging service.

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  • Indian government wants a Blackberry’s server to be located in India. This is so that their solutions can be tested within the country.
  • The government wants to be able to track or access encrypted data sent over the RIM messaging network for security purposes.

Blackberry’s Solution

Blackberry has offered a solution that it will lead an industry forum to allow lawful access. This access will be given only on issues on security. This offer has got Blackberry a reprieve of 60 days.

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What saved blackberry?

  • The Common Wealth Games 2010 start in Delhi, India on the 3rd of October. This will obviously attract a lot of tourists from around the world. International criticism of banning RIM’s messaging service is what the Government might be trying to avoid.
  • Considering there are over 1.2 million Blackberry users in India, the government might think twice before actually following through with a ban.

What could this mean to other companies?

  • It is not clear what the plans are for the government for the future. But if RIM complies to demands for data access than Google and Skype might be the next companies which would need to give assurances to India’s telecom regulators.
  • There is speculation that this might lead to people to move over to getting an iPhone or the latest from Nokia. But that seems unlikely as the service affected will only the messaging service.
  • Also applications like Nimbuzz which already offers alternatives which comply with the regulations.

What do you think about the entire issues? Is RIM right to protect the privacy of its users or should it comply with regulators? Do drop in your comments.

Link: Bloomberg

Categories
Editorial

Blogger To WordPress Migration Professional Service Launched

Update: Get updated information about Blogger to WordPress Migration Domain here.

More than 2 years ago, I released my first WordPress plugin for Blogger To WordPress Permalink Redirection. A year later, I wrote a fullproof guide to migrate Blogger.com blogs to WordPress without loosing permalinks, SEO juice and traffic.

Apart from free plugin and guide, we were offering professional migration service from long time to help bloggers who either did not have technical skills or time or both to do their migration themselves.

After helping many bloggers with our professional service, we decided to launch a new portal – BloggerToWp.org. This portal gives detailed information regarding features of our service and available packages, answers FAQ, lists blogs we have migrated among other details.

In this professional service, we will be doing additional things that we did not cover before like migrating images from Blogger.com server to your wordpress server using our own tool.

This is our first portal, so please let us know if u have any suggestion to improve.

Link: Blogger To WordPress Migration Professional Service

Categories
Reviews

hi5 adds Chat to Attract Users

clip_image002In a desperate attempt to attract new users, social networking site- hi5 is now adding an instant messaging service. Currently, hi5 has almost 60 million users – which is not a bad sized audience, but way less if you compare it with other social networks such as – MySpace and Facebook, with 125.7 million and 294.7 million unique visitors respectively.

A couple of months back, hi5 had added entertainment features to engage more people through casual gaming (like sports, arcade, etc). Last month it announced its partnership with PlaySpan, powering micropayments for virtual goods and premium content sold on the social network. And very recently it partnered with Paymo to power mobile payments for virtual goods.

Chat features

hi5’s chat service is quite similar to the Facebook chat. It:

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  • Is an instant one-on-one messaging service
  • Allows you to check who are online or offline
  • Runs directly within the browser of hi5
  • Has the provision to changing your online status
  • Allows you to write updates
  • Allows you to post profile comments
  • Allows you to share photos while chatting
  • Allows you to express better with hi5 “star” emoticons

Although, quite slow to change, but this seems like a good move after all. The new IM feature will not be able to bring hi5 up to Facebook’s level for sure, but might just help engage more audience. Better late than never.

Link: hi5

(Source: TechCrunch)

Categories
Reviews

HostGator: One Months Review

gatorThere are three kinds of hosting companies – small, big & huge. Small companies host hundreds of domains. Big companies host thousands of domains and huge companies host over lakhs of domains. HostGator fails in third type, it hosts more than18lakh domains! I had heard a lot about Hostgator so decided to try it.

Aspects I would cover…

  1. Company Bio
  2. Pre-sales Questions
  3. Sign-Up & Migration Experience
  4. Review of Service & Support
  5. Pricing
  6. Conclusion & Rating

Company Bio

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HostGator is a provider of shared, dedicated and reseller web hosting services focused on the consumer and small business markets.It was established in 2003 by Brent Oxley, since then its growing leaps and bounds. The company uses ThePlanet Datacenter for hosting its servers, which is one of the reputed DC in US.

Pre-sales Questions

Before going to sign-up for any hosting service, I always ask questions. The main objective of pre-sales question is to ensure that the particular service suits me and to check the response time. I opened a sales ticket which contained 10 questions asking various things. i received answer to all my questions in about 15-20mins. Then i sent a few more question this time acting dumb, so to test their patience and how much do they care about their customers. I received answers to all my doubts in grammatically correct English. even after they, the customer rep asked if i had any more doubts i could use live chat option to get instant help. Happy with responses of sales staff , So i decided to sign-up.

Sign-Up & Migration Experience

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Sign-Up process is just like any other host. Entered few details and paid via paypal. instantly got E-mail from Hostgator giving Account details. To my surprise the Server IP, Username & passwords field very empty!. This time for help, I went to live chat. explained my problem and got missing details within 5 minutes. One more problem I faced was whatever content i upload on site didn’t show up on domain which was ordered along with hosting. I went to live-chat for help, it turn out my domain wasn’t even registered! operator said it would take 12-24hrs as domains are registered manually after fraud check. this wasn’t told to be before and i wasn’t happy. Then, i sent a ticket for data migration from old server and went to sleep.

Review of Service & Support

This is where HostGator scores most, its customer service is just awesome. After my domain was registered and site was live, I opened lots of support tickets at different time slots over a period of 30 days. the average response time was about 20minutes which is the best I have experienced so far. the service which I was on was Intel Xeon 2.2ghz with 4GB ram, the average load on server was less than 1% at all times. for testing, i moved a existing forum so i could test how they handle heavy traffic sites. just after two hours i got a mail from HG saying my site is taking lot of resources and i should move it to dedicated. to my surprise they didn’t suspend the site completely. Good, as most shared host would simply suspend your site or maybe your whole account. One more thing is that, if you aren’t happy with support response you can email owner of company, Brent. He would make sure you get all the V.I.P treatment. I even tested their money back guarantee by asking for refund, they quickly refunded my money within two days.

Pricing

Their Baby plan which has Unlimited Diskspace and Bandwidth costsunder $10 per month. Further Discounts can availed if you pay in advance. however the discount coupon can only be applied on first order and without discount the prices seem to be little on a higher side, I guess this awesome support costs

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Hatchling Plan

* $8.95 (monthly)
* $83.40 (12 months @ $6.95)
* $142.80 (24 months @ $5.95)
* $178.20 (36 months @ $4.95)

Baby Plan

* $9.95 (monthly)
* $214.80 (24 months @ $8.95)
* $282.20 (36 months @ $7.95)

The best thing about their pricing is, the have coupons which enable you to get hosting at $0.01(1 cent) for first month,so that you can try them risk free.

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Conclusion & Ratings

HostGator is one of the best company to host your site. however hostgator is more suited to small business and people with multiple websites, as it tuns out to be cheap. however if you have a single website i won’t advice you to go far HG as its little costly.

Pros: fast Support,24/7 Live chat

Cons: Big company so you won’t get customized solution you could get at small companies

Ratings

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* Pre-sales Questions: 5/5
* Sign-Up & Migration Experience: 3/5
* Review of Service & support: 5/5
* Pricing: 4/5
* Overall: 4.5/5

Tip: Try Hostgator’s baby plan risk free for 1cent for first month with coupon “BloggerToWP

Link: HostGator-Sign Up


[Editor Note: This post is by guest blogger Gaurish Sharma. He blogs at Gaurish Sharma Live about technology.

If you too like to write for Devils Workshop, please check this. Details about our revenue sharing programs are here.]

Categories
Tips

How can I club all my accounts into one?

nutshell-mailBaffled with too many messaging accounts? Now, don’t waste your time logging into different accounts separately to check your emails.

NutShellMail will allow you to access and manage your emails and social networking accounts from one common place, for FREE.

After a one time set up, NutShellMail will pull copies of your messages (from your multiple accounts) and then send them to your most preferred email address (the inbox of your choice). For example, if you chose Gmail as your most preferred account, then NutShellMail will send all the messages from your other accounts to your Gmail account. This means you end up saving a lot of your time, as you will have everything consolidated in one single account.

NutShellMail supports most of the email services, like:

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  • Gmail
  • Hotmail
  • AOL
  • Yahoo
  • Mac
  • All POP3 or IMAP enabled accounts

Social networks currently supported by NutShellMail are:

  • Facebook
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn

(they have plans to add more providers to the list soon)

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NutShellMail is compliant with most corporate policies:

Most of the companies these days do not allow access to any external messaging accounts. This means that you can not access your personal emails or messages from office even when critical. For all those who face a problem, this could be the solution!

This service allows access to third-party messaging accounts, WITHOUT violating the company’s corporate policies. How??? Well, NutshellMail is based on an email forwarding concept, which means it would forward all your emails and messages to your corporate account, and as a result, pass through your company’s email servers, like any other email. Isn’t that awesome?

Try NutShellMail – club all your accounts in one place, save time and improve your productivity.

Link: NutShellMail

Categories
Reviews

Create Your Own Favicon on Favicon.cc

A favicon is short for favorite icon, which is also known as the website icon, shortcut icon, url icon, or bookmark icon. It is a small, 16×16 pixel square icon that you could see in the browser’s address bar and next to a page’s name in a list of bookmarks.

There are various ways you could create your favorite icon and favicon.cc will help you achieve that quite easily.

This site will allow you to draw your own icon, with or without animation and even import an existing image that you could further edit to suit your requirements. Preview the favicon in the ‘Preview’ window or in the address bar of this site and once you think you’re done, download it or even publish it under an open license.

favicon

How does it work?

  1. Choose a color or colors you wish to use.
  2. Click on the squares and paint your logo as desired.
  3. Use animation if necessary
  4. Preview your favicon
  5. Download when done
  6. Put the favicon.ico file into your webserver directory
  7. Optionally publish it under the CC (Creative Commons) license

Hope you enjoy creating your very own favicon!

Link: favicon.cc

Categories
Reviews

How to make your Online PDF Search Easy?

pdf-searchI recently came to know about this website called PDF Search Engine that I found quite useful, and thought of sharing it with all of you here. It is a search engine that allows you to find PDF files on sites, forums and message boards.

All you need to do is type in the keyword/ name/ title of what you’re looking for and it would list the related PDF files for you.

For instance, when I was searching for the RBI notification on free ATM cash withdrawals for my first post on Devils Workshop, I tried to use this tool and very easily found the PDF file I had been looking for.

1

Although, I am not very sure if the search will always be this easy, as the engine generates a huge list of search results on the key words that you type, some of which aren’t even relevant.

But from what I’ve heard and my own experience, this search engine often comes in handy when you’re looking for an e-book, or some PDF document you couldn’t locate otherwise.

I think it wouldn’t hurt to give it a try. It worked for me! 🙂

Link: PDF Search Engine

Categories
Reviews

Get a ‘lil crazzzy… with Photofunia!

poloroid picWould you like to see yourself on an ad banner in NYC? Get clicked with a movie star? Pose as a model flaunting a perfect hourglass figure? Or, even better, on the cover page of Vogue magazine? Ever wanted to sport Superman? Or just wanted to be an artists’ wonder on his canvas?

If you’re thinking, “I wish… but could I?”, then the answer is – Yes! all this and more is possible and the good news is that it’s only a few clicks away.

Busted! A funny story…

Recently a friend of mine uploaded some of her pictures on Orkut that caught my attention. I was surprised to see her posing for ads on huge hoardings.

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I knew she was an aspiring model, but never realized she made it this big so soon! I got suspicious when one of her pictures had Victoria Beckham in it. Although the results were super realistic, but in this case she just pushed her luck too far, don’t you think? 😛

About the service that makes it all happen…

VogueSome of you would already know about this service through an earlier post on Devils Workshop, however, for those who don’t, this service is provided by – photofunia –  a must visit for an amusing and a fun-filled experience.

This photo editing tool works on face detection technology that automatically identifies the face in a picture uploaded by you and creates crazy montages. All you have to do is choose any effect from their library, and upload the photo of your choice to it. Rest gets taken care of… simple!

Bride

Here’s your chance to get creative…

So, why don’t you try this out for yourself? It’s a lot of fun and you will be surprised to see how realistic the results can get. Here are some of the things you could attempt in your spare time:

  1. Run your imagination wild and play a photo-prank on someone (hmm… now this could be a risky business… so don’t go over board in doing this… haha)
  2. Create personalized postcards for your friends and family (unfortunately, people hardly engage in doing  such things anymore)
  3. Make your own greeting cards for Birthdays, Christmas, New Years, etc.
  4. Create your personal calendar with the photos of your own choiceon the wall
  5. Or even better – create your own portfolio!

Icing to the cake…

It’s FREE!!!

It’s time to get a lil’ crazy folks! Let me know how it goes.

Do share your results with all of us here.

Enjoyyyy…!!!!! 🙂

(Note: If you wish to learn more about the features of Photofunia, please read Prateek’s post – “Remix Your Photos Using PhotoFunia!” on Devils Workshop)

(Source: Photofunia)

(Image credits: photofunia-livejournal)

Categories
Reviews

Remix Your Photos Using PhotoFunia!

Many of us want to learn Photoshop for many reasons, but of course we do not have that much of time for such things, there are lot of other things to do. So if you want to create amazing effects without use of Photoshop, then here is a site that has a big list of pre-defined backgrounds and effects to add in your pictures. PhotoFunia.com, which was formerly known as photofun.od.ua, offers a free online service to remix your pictures. This service has following features-

Photofunia Features:

  • No need to sign-up
  • Tons of special effects, from artsy to fun
  • Very fast service, available right in your browser
  • Works on Mac, Windows, and Linux
  • No download required, nothing to install
  • Create Effects Using Face Detection Technology
  • Most importantly, it’s all free 😉 !

Check out preview of some cool effects below-

PhotoFunia

If you are looking too, to remix your photos, but don’t know much about photo editing tool or cannot do so keeping in mind time constraint, then PhotoFunia is for you. 🙂

Link: PhotoFunia.com


[Editors Note: This post is by our co-blogger Prateek from Go Hi-Tech where he writes about Technology.

If you too like to write for Devils Workshop, please check this. Details about our revenue sharing programs are here.]