Nginx and MariaDB Issues Fix on Upgrading DigitalOcean Droplet from Ubuntu 14.04.5 to 16.04.1

Today after I updated the packages on my blog digital ocean droplet (here’s my entire wordpress setup) I discovered that it was ready to be upgraded to the new Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS.

DigitalOcean already offers a wonderful guide for you to follow, but there were some caveats on my system that needed to be fixed before and after the upgrade.

Those were

  • MariaDB repository
  • Nginx failed to restart

here’s how I fixed it. Continue reading Nginx and MariaDB Issues Fix on Upgrading DigitalOcean Droplet from Ubuntu 14.04.5 to 16.04.1

Is DuckDuckGo a Worth Alternative to Google? My 6 Months Test

If you’re here I suppose you already know the DuckDuckGo search engine, it’s a free search engine that doesn’t track you and cares even more about your privacy.

Here there are my thoughts about its pros and cons. Continue reading Is DuckDuckGo a Worth Alternative to Google? My 6 Months Test

How to Automatically Backup your OpenShift Applications with the Openshift Backup Server

Did you know there’s a way to automate the backup of your openshift apps?
I didn’t until I found it on the main OpenShift blogs.
Turns out there’s a whole webapp that does it beautifully and it takes 3 simple steps to setup a scheduled backup for your application. Continue reading How to Automatically Backup your OpenShift Applications with the Openshift Backup Server

Powerful and Cheap WordPress Blog Setup with PHP 7.0, NGNIX, Memcached and MariaDB 10.1 on DigitalOcean 512MB Droplet

I have a few wordpress blogs now, some of them had some spikes in visits, some are quite unpopular, but still I always wanted an easy and secure system to host them all without sacrificing speed and money.

After many trials and errors, I am quite happy with my actual setup which is

  • PHP7
  • Ubuntu 14.04
  • Nginx+Memcached
  • WordPress

All hosted on a 512MB droplet on DigitalOcean (ref.link) but you can easily use any VPS provider. I just like the overall DigitalOcean service and support. Continue reading Powerful and Cheap WordPress Blog Setup with PHP 7.0, NGNIX, Memcached and MariaDB 10.1 on DigitalOcean 512MB Droplet

How to migrate a Node.js App from Heroku to OpenShift

Given the recent price/tier changes of Heroku I wanted to understand what alternatives do we have, as developers, to host a Node.js application free of charge.

Let me be clear upfront… there are not so many alternatives right now, and I can’t praise Heroku enough for putting out a free plan like the one in the past.
The new Heroku freeplan will limit the overall hours your app can stay on, therefore making it not very feasible for apps that need to be always on (although not very task-consuming).

So I decided to settle on OpenShift, and see how it would go.
To do the test I tried porting Haptime.in in OpenShift.

Let me show you what I discovered. Continue reading How to migrate a Node.js App from Heroku to OpenShift

Recovering a Corrupted embedded Apache Derby Database after an error XJ040 (or if you got an error XSDG2)

Apache Derby is a usually a strong database but sometimes it might get corrupted.

This is what worked for me after many embedded  derby databases became corrupted because we finished the free space on the partition (yes, shame on us).

To make things worse, we didn’t always have a recent backup of the db, which just grew the complexity of our problem. Continue reading Recovering a Corrupted embedded Apache Derby Database after an error XJ040 (or if you got an error XSDG2)

Why big companies like Dell sometimes can’t apologize

Some days ago I opened up my work-email and instantly saw this

A newsletter from Dell, strange title isn't it?
A newsletter from Dell, strange title isn’t it?

 

It was clear to me that this title was an error, but guess what?
No one cared, and here’s why.

Continue reading Why big companies like Dell sometimes can’t apologize

What Seth Godin gets right

I’ve read some books of Seth Godin and read many of the posts on his blog.
In all of them, there’s something interesting you might not have noticed, all of them are the results of an avid observation of reality, of how things (and people) work.

For some people Seth Godin might just be a marketer and write books that try to sell you the american dream, but there’s much more than that.

Let’s take the last blog post, “If you want“, in that post Seth describes many of the interactions between people in various fields.
The opening is clear

“If you want employees to go job hunting in order to leverage you into giving them a raise to keep them, then by all means, only give them a raise when they go job hunting.”

It’s simple, but yet it reveals a part of how our society thinks and acts.
We are not just talking about the american dream here, we are talking about people, about me and you, about the choice you do in life.

Chances are you have also been on the wrong side of the fence, the one where you were trying to get more than what you gave.

In the “If you want” post you can see and read a part of the reality that surrounds us, a reality where we live in every day.
We are part of that reality, in fact we shape it sometimes.

Sometimes we are the bad ones, sometimes the victims, etc.
This attention to how things works, to how people react is what make Seth Godin so great, it’s  because he can reveal the “obvious you didn’t notice”.
This is what Seth gets right almost every time.

Want to read more from him? 
Here’s a list of posts I shared because I loved them

The best advice I learned from reading one of Seth Godin books (The Icarus Deception) was “keep a private blog you write every day”.

Sound silly right?
But thanks to that semi-hidden blog, now I write more, and this blog exists also because of that.

 

 

The best way to learn a language using the Jetpack WordPress Plugin

In 2015 I decided I would commit to writing a private no-comments blog everyday.

I got inspired by reading Seth Godin, “The Icarus Deception”, where Seth writes about how important this daily action is.
As a non-english person (I’m italian), this was sure a tough thing to do, mostly because I already know how much difficult is to write good english with no errors.

But there’s one thing that’s helping me improve the way I learn in English, and a few tricks I’d love to share about learning a different language. Continue reading The best way to learn a language using the Jetpack WordPress Plugin

Learning the hard way and setting goals, my story of failure

Lately last year (2014) I decided I wanted to change part of my life.
I realized that a lot of my time was spent commuting, that my job wasn’t exciting me very much and that I wanted to be able to stay with my family when they needed it.

After this thought I understood that the best way to turn this situation around was to find a different job.
I was already familiar with the idea of working remotely (mostly thanks to the Basecamp book, REMOTE).
It was something that fascinated me and I wanted to start doing that.

I was already organized and focused on tasks, therefore taking the remote step would be effortless.

The remote thing was something very popular in some companies and I already knew some I would’ve liked to be in, some really good companies, like Automattic (the ones behind WordPress). Continue reading Learning the hard way and setting goals, my story of failure