Create Website Backups Before You Need Them

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Picture yourself as the unfortunate user who woke up in the morning to check their traffic to their website, and saw absolutely nothing.  How did your traffic go from hundreds of visitors a day to absolutely nothing?  Surely everybody didn’t just forget about you.

In your morning daze, before your first cup of coffee, you take a look at your website to make sure that there is nothing wrong.  Little did you know that while you were in your late night slumber, an attacker was quite diligently  hacking your website due to an unpublished vulnerability in your website software.

Quite distraught, you look at the damage.  Not only do all pages show a message that your website was hacked, but all of your critical files and database are now completely missing.  What do you do now?  Is your entire livelihood now gone in one fell swoop?

If you were making regular backups, it’s merely a bump in the road.  You may only have data from last night or even last week, but you at least have something to get back into the fight.

Never Trust That Someone Else Is Doing It For You

Just as you wouldn’t take a salesman’s word when buying a car without verifying the facts, never fully trust your backups to another individual.

This isn’t to say that subscribing to a third party backup service is a bad idea, or that you shouldn’t choose a host that runs backups for you, but always run your own backups as well.  This way, you know exactly what the backups contain and they are safe in your own hands.

Backup In Increments

Incremental backups are essential.  What if something goes wrong on your site and you don’t notice it until several weeks later when you have already overwritten your backups?

Keeping multiple backups of your site throughout different time frames will help you avoid any issues that go unnoticed over time.  I highly recommend keeping daily, weekly, and monthly backups on hand, depending on how often you make changes.

Never Keep Your Backups In A Single Location

Just as something can go wrong with your website, your backups could disappear as well.  We all know that technology can fail and that hard drive that your backups are stored in can do exactly that at any moment.

With the constantly falling price of removable media, flash drives are your best option.  Flash drives rarely fail and can be easily locked up in a secure location.  Think of this as a backup of your backup.  Every time you download a backup of your website to your computer, copy it over to the flash drive as well.

So How Do I Backup My Website?

cPanel Users

Backup Your Website Files in cPanel

Backup Your Database in cPanel

WordPress Users

BackupBuddy

VaultPress

Joomla Users

Akeeba Backup

Drupal Users

Backup and Migrate

 

 

Automatically connecting to a network share from Linux Mint

It seems that there’s not much out there on automatically mounting a network shared drive on Linux Mint.  While these instructions specific Mint, it should work on various other Linux distributions such as Ubuntu as well.

Create your mount point

First, you need to create your mount point.  Personally, I usually use something in my home directory, but feel free to use whatever you want.  I’m going to assume that you know how to create directories in Linux already.

Edit fstab

Next, you just need to edit your fstab.  To so do, enter this in the terminal:

sudo nano /etc/fstab

Now that your fstab is up, add the following line:

//192.168.1.1/Media /home/user/networkdrive cifs guest,uid=1000,iocharset=utf8  0  0

In this line, I am connecting to a drive attached to a share named Media my Linksys router.  I allow all users that are within my network to connect to it, so I have mounted it with guest access.

Mount all drives

Now that everything is all set in your fstab, you just need to mount all drives.  To so do, enter this in your terminal:

sudo mount -a

As your network drive is now set to automatically mount, this command will mount this drive, as well as anything else that is configured to automatically mount.

You’re all set!  Enjoy mounting your network drives.

Configuring GAW Fury Scrypt Miners

As the price just keeps dropping, a lot of people who have been curious of cryptocurrencies have been picking up The Fury by GAW Miners.  For a beginner, it may seem a bit hard to figure out at first.  Here’s your setup instructions.

Windows Configuration

Windows is fairly simple to work with but the drivers are a bit of a pain.  Othside of that, you’re ready to rock and roll.

Driver Installation

First, install the Windows drivers.  To locate the Windows drivers, navigate to this page.

Once the driver is installed and your devices are detected on COM ports, you’re ready to rock and roll.

Mining Software

Personally, I prefer BFGminer and have had my best luck in terms of stability and hashrates with it.  Thankfully, there is a modified version of BFGminer that supports the GAW Fury.  You can download the precompiled windows binaries for this edition of BFGminer here.

If you want more information on the moedified version of BFGminer, take a look at the litecointalk.org thread.

Create Your Startup Script

Now that you have downloaded and unpacked BFGminer, you just need to make a startup script that will allow you to start mining with a single click.  Open Notepad or your text editor of choice and enter the following:

bfgminer.exe –scrypt -o stratum+tcp://mine.btcd.xpool.ca:3600 -u RG3KZ4r8VH8pSKi9UHZ4rDSFK2aeMqw7gW -p WORKER.PASSWORD –zeus-cc 6 –zeus-clk 340 -S zeus:\\.\COM4 -S zeus:\\.\COM5

As you can see from the above commands, we are connecting to  the minign pool, sending a user and password, then defining parameters for the miners themselves.

To get started, you will need to change your mining pool and COM ports that are defined.  Once that’s all done, save it inside your folder that contains BFGminer and name it something like start.bat.  NOTE: Be sure to save it as a .bat file.

Start Mining!

Once your script is created, just double-check on it to get it running.  If configured correctly, you should see it start mining away.

Linux Configuration

For Linux, you will not need to configure any drivers.  In this section, we’ll just go over grabbing BFGminer, and starting it up.

Mining Software

BFGminer is my mining software of choice.  Thankfully, there is a modified version of BFGminer that supports both the GAW Furty as well as Linux.

Ubuntu users:

Ubuntu binaries exist for a simple installation (which may work on Debian as well, although I have not tested it).  For Ubuntu users, you may pick up the precompiled Debian binaries here.

Building from source:

Building from source is pretty simple.  In your terminal, run the following:

git clone https://github.com/Darkwinde/bfgminer.git

cd bfgminer

./autogen.sh

chmod +x ./configure

./configure CFLAGS=”-O3″ –enable-scrypt

make

Once that completes, BFGminer should be ready to run.

Create Your Startup Script

If you’re on Linux, you should know at least some about a text editor.  Fire up your text editor and enter int he following:

bfgminer –scrypt -o stratum+tcp://mine.btcd.xpool.ca:3600 -u RG3KZ4r8VH8pSKi9UHZ4rDSFK2aeMqw7gW -p WORKER.PASSWORD –zeus-cc 6 –set zeus@/dev/ttyUSB0:clock=320 -S zeus:/dev/ttyUSB0 –set zeus@/dev/ttyUSB1:clock=320 -S zeus:/dev/ttyUSB1

Within this, simply change your server, user, and password as well as the ttyUSB ports.  To locate the ports, you may run the dmesg command within your terminal immediately after plugging in the miner.

Simply save this script as anything you like within the BFGminer folder and make it executable.  Then all you need to do is run it within your terminal windows and you’re off to mining!

 

 

 

Why community will always win over sales tactics in WordPress

People don’t want to be sold things

When approached by a salesman, do you automatically lock up and are put on guard?  Do you immediately become defensive and wonder how someone is going to take advantage of you?  You probably answered yes to those and you would have good reason to doing so.

When making relationships, I see far too many people who are trying to quickly get in, close the sale, and leave the relationship at that.  Often, because of the previously mentioned scenario, things usually don’t working that way, especially in the WordPress community.  What reason does that person have to trust you?

Make friendships, not partnerships

A mutual friendship will always be more powerful than a business relationship that has no other weight outside of monetary value.  In my experiences with the WordPress community, salesmen are shut down extremely fast.  You’re certainly not the first person who wants the publicity of whomever you are reaching out to, and will not be the last.  So how do you break that barrier?  You become friends first and any business relationships that come from it is just an added bonus.  The WordPress community is first and foremost a community, not a revenue stream.

Sponsor to help, not to cash in

Sponsorships in the WordPress community should be made with the intention of assisting with event or product.  When you lose sight of the big picture of open source software, you have already lost the fight.  The purpose that WordPress was founded upon is to produce a stellar product and ask for absolutely nothing in return.  As a company that makes money from WordPress, you should also keep that mentality and continue to contribute to the success of entire ecosystem.  As you reach more financial success, pass it along because without the community, you have nothing.

Dive in and help where you can

Whether you can help financially, or volunteer at a local WordCamp, you have the power to help the WordPress community.  Getting involved and making connections will get you much further than mindlessly throwing money around in every aspect of the WordPress community.  Regardless of how big you get, never lose sight of where you started and the CMS that got you there

 

Forbes hacked by Syrian Electronic Army

Today, Forbes was hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army group.  Various posts were redirected to the Syrian Electronic Army official Twitter account in which they have also stated there and provided screenshots of the interior of the WordPress dashboard.

According to their Twitter, they have dumped all user information including any passwords that were stored on the Forbes site.

At this time, there is still no word on the methods that they used to get it, but it looks like Forbes may need to beef up security a bit.  If you look at the screenshot, it also looks like they may be running an outdated version of WordPress as the UI has changed in WordPress 3.8.

This is bad news for Forbes, and even worse news for anyone with a Forbes.com account.

Do you have any thoughts on this?  Let me know in the comments.

Twitter rolls out new UI chages

Most of you have noticed (unless you are using Hootsuite or are on mobile) that Twitter has just rolled out new UI changes.  I’m sure people will complain about it as they do everything else that is new to them, but I absolutely love it.  From what I have noticed so far, it seems to be mostly just a color change without any changes to layout.  Nonetheless, it’s pretty sexy.

Why AppPresser is an incredible leap for WordPress

Some of you may have heard of AppPresser while some of you may not.  If not, you’re really missing out on a true gem.

AppPresser allows all of us WordPress users to easily deploy native Android and iOS apps with amazing simplicity.  If you’re like me and cringe at the thought of learning Objective-C, this is great news.  With AppPresser, WordPress knowledge can be directly translated to mobile app development with a very minimal learning curve.

Why is AppPresser such a huge leap forward for WordPress?  Well, this pushes WordPress further along to becoming a true application development environment.  With the creation of AppPresser, and as it takes more and more market share from traditional mobile application development methods, WordPress can gain further usage across platforms.

Not only is this a first for mobile application development using WordPress, but they execute it flawlessly.  There’s not a ridiculous amount of setup, and existing libraries from PhoneGap can be used to rapidly develop your application easily.

Made by some incredible WordPress developers, for WordPress developers, I believe AppPresser will further improve rapidly to make it one of the best WordPress tools of the year, if not the decade.

Why you’re probably doing social media wrong

While several individuals use social media for just talking to your friends, being in the marketing industry, I use social media for work.  Every day, I am on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus.  Mostly, just Twitter.  Often times, I run into several people a day who are doing social media completely wrong, and I’ll tell you why.

You’re mass-adding people who don’t care

This is one that irritates me intensely.  Throughout my day, I get notifications on my phone about a new follower on Twitter from people who have never, and will never actually interact with me or care at all about what I post.  These people are just looking to get me to follow them back.

The great thing about Twitter, is that I can see who you follow and how many people you follow.  If I see that you are following 20,000 people, there isn’t a slight chance that you will see anything I post, thus, I have no benefit from you following me at all nor will the chances of me following you have any value.

Most of these people are people that call themselves “social media experts” and will just blast you with content without any type of personal interaction which brings me to my next point:

Do not tweet/post too much

If you fill my news feed with worthless garbage articles on how I can “improve my business”, I will most likely unfollow you.  Don’t get me wrong, I don’t care if you post an article or two, or even maybe post every few hours, but my feed already takes a while to dig through and I don’t want to see 100 of them an hour from your posts and promotional retweets.  There is a time and place for your in-your-face marketing tactics and my news feed is not one of them.

Social media is about interaction, not your billboard

Do not just blast your content out there with scheduled posts and ignore your interaction.  Engaging with your followers is quite possibly the most important thing about social media.  Positive engagements using replies and retweets/shares will make your followers feel as if you care what they are saying.

Not only should you be responding to their engagement, but you should also be looking through your feed of who you are following for things you are able to reply to.  Actively engaging with your followers and those that you follow will dramatically increase your influence and relationships with them.  Never be afraid to go away from your niche.  If someone posts a picture of their cat, they’re obviously proud of it and want you to recognize it.  Never miss a good opportunity to make a relationship that that individual.

In conclusion…

Stop being a robotic billboard.  Know your audience and engage with people who have similar interests.  Stop being spammy and provide relevant content to those who enjoy it.  Following these rules will sure increase your relationship with the social media universe.