Archive for April, 2011

Let’s be honest, we are all wrapped up with our everyday live, worrying about money, our career, our love (or not getting enough love), money, friends… you name it. Everyone of us has their own mind full of things that “matter”. “Matter” because, in the end, these are, after all, material matters (mostly are) that don’t really matter in the end, if it would be your last day of your life.

Studies have shown that most people would change their life on the dot, if they would know they only have to live for another month. As always, my first question is, why don’t you live the life that you want to live now? Why wait? Why waste time on things that don’t matter now? What are you waiting for?

One of those people that had a “wake up call” is Ric Elias. Ric was on the plane that crash-landed in the Hudson River in New York in January 2009. In this 5 minutes talk, he shares some important experiences with us. My favorite quote; “… I regret the time I wasted in things that did not matter with people that matter…“!

Enjoy the talk and make sure to let me know your thoughts.

As an application maintainer you always look for the best performance in your application and website. At one point in your quest for the best performance you will undoubtedly trip over memcached.

In short memcached is (quote); Free & open source, high-performance, distributed memory object caching system, generic in nature, but intended for use in speeding up dynamic web applications by alleviating database load. Memcached is an in-memory key-value store for small chunks of arbitrary data (strings, objects) from results of database calls, API calls, or page rendering.

That said, installing is a no brainer as well. On Ubuntu you simply need to do the following:

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That’s it. Your system takes care of the rest and you will have your first memcached server up and running. Of course, the final step will be to restart apache in order for php to pick up the changes.

Now, memcached alone is of no good use, if your code/application can’t work with it. Thus here I’ll outline 2 examples.

WordPress: Memcached with the W3C total cache plugin

First off, if you aren’t using the awesome W3C Total Cache plugin you should now run install the plugin immediately (just search for w3 cache in the plugin section of the wordpress administration). Even if you are not using memcached it will boost the performance of your WordPress site manifold.

Now, to enable memcached for your WordPress site is as simple as selecting the memcached option for the cache. with the plugin you can even select what you want to place into the memcached cache. Quit slick.

 

Configuring phpBB to use memcached

Actually it took some time to figure this out, since the setting were not so apparent, so I’m hopping this helps others also. phpBB by default used the local disk for caching. This can be chanced in the config.php file in phpBB folder. Open it and ADD or change the following lines:

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Especially the last line with “load_extensions” is important. Save the file and restart apache. Now phpBB will use the memcached server(s). Alone on a board with 800 users I have seen a massive speed improvement.

That’s it. Next up is to get all my CFML apps to work with memcached :-)

I remember when I installed Linux the first time (many many moons ago) and it was all cryptic for me. All that starred at me, was a black screen with some strange symbols and a pointer blinking.

So, this is Linux, I thought and tried to get my way around it. To be honest, it took a couple of re-installs and some learnings to come to the level I’m at now. Nowadays, all of my applications run on Linux servers (my favorite one is Ubuntu server) and I have to say that I’m more then happy how Linux performs.

Actually, my next step is to adopt Linux (Ubuntu) on my laptop, but to move to Linux on my desktop, I really need to have a application like Aperture of Adobe Lightroom. Apart from that, I think Linux on the desktop has a big chance to succeed. Especially, Ubuntu 11 with Unity will probably make this move apparent for a lot of users.

In any case, if you run Linux on your servers or thinking of migrating to Linux, you own it to yourself to watch the below anniversary video and head over to the dedicated “20 years of Linux” site.