In Case You Missed It – The Month of April in Review

This is intended to be a monthly wrap-up, but my memory’s not good enough to go all the way back to the beginning of the month. Therefore, you just get the last few weeks. As a bonus, though, I threw in a few stories from May 1. :)

April 13, 2009

YaBB 2.4 Released

The latest version of YaBB Forum Software came out with a long list of bugfixes and some nice new features.

April 20, 2009

CenterNetworks Switches to WordPress

Our sister site, CenterNetworks, made the switch from Drupal to WordPress. While far from painless, the transition seems to have gone smoothly and the site is moving right along on the new platform.

Oracle Buys Sun Microsystems

It will be very interesting to see how this effects the marketing strategy for MySQL, being that MySQL and Oracle DB are direct competitors. With MySQL being open-source, it can’t actually go away, but the focus might change dramatically.

Ubuntu 9.04 Desktop Edition Released

Although I am not an Ubuntu user, I do use Linux Mint (which is based on Ubuntu) as my primary OS at home. This release means that a new version of Mint is in the works and should be released fairly soon.

April 24, 2009

OpenSUSE 11.2 Milestone 1

The OpenSUSE community released the first milestone of OpenSUSE 11.2. Then, on May 1, they also released an update to OpenSUSE 11.1. I am seriously considering either replacing one of my other distros with the new version of SUSE or installing it as my Linux distro at work. Unfortunately, my attempts to test OpenSUSE 11.1 in VirtualBox have consistently failed miserably.

April 25, 2009

New Boxee For Ubuntu, Mac and AppleTV

I have not yet tested the new version of Boxee, but the Linux update apparently fixes Hulu (for now, at least), introduces Pandora Radio and more. I will probably give it a try this weekend.

April 29, 2009

Mandriva 2009.1 (Spring) Released

Mandriva 2009.1 came out the other day. I am still working on trying to successfully upgrade to this version, but from what I’ve seen, it looks really good. The new version comes with KDE 4.2 natively and includes quite a few other “enhancements.”

Drupal 6.11 and 5.17 Released

The Drupal team put out two new releases with various fixes and changes.

May 1, 2009

Microsoft to Give Away Windows 7 For 13 Months

Microsoft will apparently let people use Windows 7 without paying for it for a little over a year. Unfortunately, though, they will stop letting you use it at that point if you don’t pay. I think a better model would be to allow beta testers to use Windows 7 perpetually for free, but then start selling it commercially to everyone else.

Voting Opens for the eduStyle Awards

The premier site for showing off your higher education Web site and soliciting public opinion on your design opened voting on the second annual eduStyle awards.

Six Degrees of Separation – CenterNetworks Featured on Yahoo! (sort of)

This evening, while visiting My Yahoo!, I came across a Yahoo! news article discussing the upcoming voter registration deadlines. I clicked on the article to read it and found a link inside leading to a VentureBeat article about the voter registration application being offered on Facebook.

When I finished reading that article, I noticed an interesting item at the bottom: a link to CenterNetworks. While CN was not really featured on Yahoo!, they are only three clicks away. :)

I’ve posted some screen shots of my progression after the jump.

CenterNetworks Updates (and upgrades) Design

Our sister site, CenterNetworks, unveiled a new Web site design late last week. I must admit that, though I never really had any problems with the previous design, I think the new one is a real upgrade. The new design features cooler colors, working within the blue and green spectrum, and a slightly more intuitive layout. The ads seem a little less obtrusive and more of the items people are apt to use on a regular basis are easier to find. Let me know what you think of the new design, especially if you had experience with previous incarnations of the CN design.

A Very Interesting Web Site

The other day, our IT security guy contacted me to let me know that my computer had accessed a Web site that potentially installed some adware/spyware on my computer. He asked me to run some standard scans (virus, adware, spyware, etc.) to make sure that my computer was clean.

I went ahead and ran the scans and found that my computer appears to be clean. However, while doing research to figure out what had caused the problem in the first place, I came across a very interesting Web site.

YouGetSignal.com is a Web site that offers advanced IP related searches. You can search for the physical location of an IP address, complete with a Google map to display the results. You can use a visual traceroute tool, which is also accompanied by a Google map.

The most interesting utility I found, though, was an IP lookup that allows you to list all of the domain names associated with a particular IP address. I got some very interesting results when I searched for some of my own domains.

For instance, the IP address associated with one of my hobby sites hosted at Netfirms (dcevolution.net) came up with 164 other Web sites using the same IP address.

However, when I searched for Web sites using the same IP address as the hobby sites I have hosted at site5 (dchelp.net), the only results that came up were my other sites.

Searching for centernetworks.com brings up 760 domains using the same IP address, while htmlcenter.com brought up 48 domain names, which all appear to be offshoots of htmlcenter.com (although some of them are rather questionable, so I’m not sure if they are actually associated with htmlcenter or if it is just a weird coincidence that they came up with the same IP – or if the owners of those Web sites are using some sort of proxy to hijack htmlcenter’s IP).

Still, it’s kind of fun to search for that sort of information, and extremely interesting.

How Spammers Attack Drupal Posts Immediately

DrupalOn our sister site CenterNetworks, we use the open source content management system (CMS) Drupal. I’ve used nearly every CMS package, both free and the systems costing large sums of money and Drupal is my favorite.

On CN we get hammered with spam every day. So much spam that I had to turn off comments after three months because every post (some 2000+) gets hit.

One thing I’ve noticed is that within moments of posting some new content, spams begin to come in. Not minutes, hours or days, but moments. And after doing some research into our system and into the way Drupal handles content, I’ve realized why this happens.