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Run Rails 2 Application on Shared Hosting

By Jimmy Bonney | December 7, 2013

Redmine is a project management web application. It comes with plenty of features and this would deserve a post in itself to go through them all but this is another story. We have been using Redmine mainly to track issues and submit new ideas for our applications. Currently, it is in use for D-Sight Desktop and its different plugins and it allows us to make sure that each release get its fair share of bug fix (when needed) and new features.

The beauty of Redmine is that it can be easily self-hosted which really makes it a tool of choice (understand feature-full for a really low price) when getting the company off the ground. In our case, problems started a couple of months ago after our hosting provider decided to go through a server migration which resulted in our Redmine application not being able to run any more.

Following the server migration, plenty of issues started popping up and priorities being what they are, Redmine availability got postponed. Well, as everything else, at some point, this needed to get fixed and this post will detail what needed to be done to restore access.


Fix Drupal Website Not Loading

By Jimmy Bonney | December 2, 2013

Our company website runs on Drupal. The CMS is feature complete and the number of available modules allows to easily find a solution to almost any requirement. To sum it up, Drupal is great but, as any available technology, it doesn’t come without drawback.

While we were performing a website update two weeks ago, our hosting provider (which I prefer not to name but you can probably easily find out) had a network issue. As a result, the complete website went down for 4+ hours. While this is really annoying, it was only a start.


Fix SSH Exchange Identification Issue on CPanel

By Jimmy Bonney | October 26, 2013

I recently faced an issue when trying to connect through SSH to an account on a VPS. For this specific account, I traditionally use the standard username / password combination and everything used to work properly. However, last time I tried to connect, I faced the following issue:


A Few Words about Monit

By Jimmy Bonney | October 13, 2013

In order to monitor a few other important services on our servers, we are relying on Monit. This is an excellent utility tool that ensures that everything is running properly – and should anything happen, it will attempt to fix the problem “on its own” (based on some configuration options that have been defined).

We are probably only scratching the surface of what Monit can do for us so the configuration options that I’ll discuss below might really be some basic settings. But as usual, it will act as a reminder for myself and hopefully it might help someone else in the process.


Legit: An Alternative Git Workflow

By Jimmy Bonney | October 12, 2013

I am using GIT on a daily basis and I already shared some configuration options in a previous article. This article will shortly present a new tool – Legit from Kenneth Reitz – that provides some helpful additional git commands that can simplify your git workflow.


Learning Backbone / Marionette with Rails

By Jimmy Bonney | October 6, 2013

I recently did some research to learn more about single page applications. I had quite a good global overview about the main frameworks that were available but I wanted to find out more about the pros and cons of each one of them. Not surprisingly, I ended up mainly reading about:

This is obviously just the tip of the iceberg and many more frameworks are available (see for instance here), but in this article I just wanted to share one great resource that I stumbled upon.


A Practical Guide to Google Authorship

By Jimmy Bonney | September 15, 2013

I’ve been meaning to fix an issue with Google authorship on this website for a while and I finally managed to do it (well, I hope so at least). The solution is actually really easy to put in place, but many of the sources out there – including Google’s – are not really that clear about how to proceed.

Rick DeJarnette wrote a complete article some time ago explaining the three different methods that exist in order to identify oneself as an author on Google:

  • the 3-link method
  • the 2-link method
  • the email verification method

All methods have however one common requirement: it is necessary to have a Google account and a profile properly filled in for the author.


Automatic Application Deployment with Mina

By Jimmy Bonney | August 17, 2013

It has been a while I meant to write something about Mina, a “really fast deployer and server automation tool” as the team behind it describes it.

The concept behind Mina is to connect through SSH to your remote server and execute a set of Bash instructions that you define in a local deployment file (deploy.rb). There is only one SSH connection, making it faster than other tools that encapsulate each instruction inside their own SSH transaction.

Using such a tool limits the number of manual operations required to deploy a new version of the application on a remote server. All tasks to be executed are gathered in one place and this allows reducing the risk of forgetting something or typing the wrong command.


Pencil Mockup Export

By Jimmy Bonney | July 20, 2013

As discussed in a previous article about flow charts and mock-ups applications, Pencil is a great application to realize quick mock-ups. The application is available on all platforms (MacOS, Linux and Window) either as a stand alone application or as an add-on for Firefox.

Unfortunately, I realized recently that export to PNG files didn’t work any longer from Pencil 2.0.3 (at least not in Ubuntu 12.04). Based on the two links provided in the sources section below, this bug appeared when Firefox 17 was released and can easily be fixed.


Column Header Rotation in CSS

By Jimmy Bonney | July 19, 2013

Last month, D-Sight Web was updated with a pretty awaited feature: splitting the work between experts when evaluating alternatives and defining preferences in a decision process. In other words and without going into too much details (for that, read the release announcement), this typically allows for a technical expert to only provide input for technical criteria and for a legal expert to focus on legal criteria – for instance.

Such a change required the possibility to assign users to criteria in a pretty limited space. Indeed, this assignation is done in a modal window and the the basic idea for such assignation is simply to have a table where:

  • The users are displayed in rows
  • The criteria are displayed in the different columns