File and directory browsing (downloads) for Joomla!

I’ve been revamping a site that’s been collecting dust for far too long. The original site is in really ugly (codewise and in design) plain vanilla HTML, so I’ve decided to move it to Joomla; not so much because Joomla is the ultimate tool for this site, but because there are too many fun CMS-type tools out there, I’d be doing nothing else but getting myself buried in playing with them 🙂

The quest at hand: to find a suitable file and directory browsing (aka “download”) add-on for Joomla.

Continue reading File and directory browsing (downloads) for Joomla!

GParted, where the real partition magic is!

Setting up a SuSE 10.1 lab server for use with XEN virtualization, I ran into a snag where I had forgotten to allocate space for logical volume management (LVM) during the installation. Searching through nine zillion (possibly more) web sites and knowledgebase articles for resizing the root partition in a smooth way (without having to create a new rescue system, and without loading hardware modules manually), I ran into GParted.

Stating what is obvious to already-users-of-GParted; this tool is quite a gem for system and server administrators. It handles a number of file systems (including Reiser and NTFS), comes as a separate Gnome application, a LiveCD application, or (!) as an USB “stick” application.

In this particular case, I was working with a D**L (a company that, together with G*****y should be banned for their dubious business ethics, can you say “Håkan Lans”?) server, and the GParted LiveCD had no problem with the on-board hardware, RAID controllers, and what not.

For a long time, I’ve been wondering when the PartitionMagic product would be updated to a useful state in today’s world of modern file systems. From now on, I won’t be wondering about that any more. PartiionMagic and I just GParted from each other.

You’ll find GParted here: gparted.sourceforge.net

Woa! Where did my Firefox 708090 theme go?!

Now that Mozilla Firefox 2.0 is out, a lot of people will be scrambling to get their extensions and themes updated to work with the new version; well, at least us users will be looking for the updates. Let’s hope all the developers/producers out there actually provide them 🙂

After having been using Azerty I as my Firefox and Thunderbird theme for a long time, I ran into the wonderful and very lightweight 708090 series themes. You can find them here. Roland even provides his themes for GDM and XFCE; what more could one ask for? 🙂

So, heeeeey Roooland.. could we please have ourselves some fixed 708090 themes for the release version of Firefox 2.0?

PuTTY with Tabs

From time to time, I need to boot one of my workstations into Windows instead of Linux, and I’m always reminded of the applications I take for granted under Linux.

Although apps like GnomeTerminal need some serious attention in some areas, one quickly becomes accustomed to how they work. I use terminals quite a bit – that is, terminal emulation software – usually to open a secure connection to another computer where I run things like Emacs and what not. For Windows my choice has always been to use SecureCRT or PuTTY by Simon Tatham. The “problem” with PuTTY for me is the lack of tab support, i.e. being able to contain more than one session in a single window. Cluttering the desktop with nine zillion terminal windows isn’t my idea of fun. So, what to do?

There’s already an “item” on the PuTTY list, but it doesn’t have high priority; and for an application which is more or less rock solid, I don’t expect tabbed sessions to move up the list any time soon 🙂 If you don’t mind spending the money, VanDyke has a bundle with SecureCRT and SecureFX (secure FTP) for around USD 130, which is very affordable for two competent pieces of software.

Googling this topic, two suggested solutions are quickly found, and reading on the PuTTY pages, I see that I am not alone in wanting multiple tab support for PuTTY.

If you need this too, these applications may help:

PuttyTabs: www.raisin.de/putty-tabs/putty-tabs.html (.NET 2.0 required)
WinTabber: www.wintabber.com
PuTTY Connection Manager: puttycm.free.fr

WinTabber is a more generic approach which allows encapsulation of other applications, i.e. it can provide tab support for things other than PuTTY as well.

Last but not least, thanks to Simon for a great and solid program (PuTTY)!

Please Metricate Thunderbird!

From Tsuguya Sasaki’s “Thunderbird: Guide for the Perplexed”:

Please Metricate Thunderbird!

  • United States, the guardian of English as the putative universal language of computers and the Internet, is one of the three countries in the world (!) that do not use the metric system (aka international system of units), the universal language of measurement.
  • Why do developers of Thunderbird (as well as a number of other open source programs), the majority of whom seem to be US citizens, continue to impose upon us an inferior non-universal (“Imperial”) unit of measurement (for length such as print margins and internal calculation) in its original US English version with no option of switching to the metric system, if they really advocate universal, open source software?!
  • There is nothing more irrational and absurd than the continued use of this parochial system in open source software, and it is in a sense even worse than proprietary software they deride. The original US English version of Thunderbird should be metricated as soon as possible in order to be a truly open source mailer!

The original article is here: www.ts-cyberia.net/thunderbird.html.

Ahem, we had the same discussions with many software authors back in 1986; when we used } { | ] [ \ to mean å ä ö Å Ä Ö. Things have improved since then, but I can only agree with Tsuguya Sasaki. This is not by any means intended as US-bashing, it’s a mere fact that the US is using a system of units in disharmony with most other places on the globe. But things may be looking up, I mean even Hollywood is beginning to make movies where the actors use words like “meters” to indicate distance (roughly a yard).

ASCII is dead, long live ASCII 🙂

Widening your horizons, the Samsung Syncmaster 215TW

I’ve been dragging my feet on upgrading my monitor at work. My Samsung 181T TFT was doing its job, and I’ve always thought of it as a good and solid monitor. At home, I’ve been using a variety of Samsung and HP TFT monitors, but they’ve been a bit more modern than the 181T, and apart from Alexander’s 17″ TFT, they’ve been at least 19″.

So it was with some anticipation I unpacked my new monitor, the Samsung Syncmaster 215TW. It’s a wide-style TFT, with a resolution of 1680×1050; which reminds me of a laptop. Although the available screen space, or “real-estate” as some prefer to call it, is upped quite a bit compared to the 181T, the new 215TW doesn’t feel very big. The two major differences I noticed immediately were the improved (lower) response time, and the amazing colors. For they are truly amazing. They are border-line “vivid”, and I’m not too keen on “vivid” when it comes to something I spend at least eight hours in front of almost every day. But Samsung manages the balance, and they do it well.

For anyone looking for a new TFT, I’d recommend giving the 215TW some serious thought. It features the things you need, at an affordable price. It’s by no means the least expensive piece of 21″ TFT you can buy, but it’s worth the money.

The only thing I haven’t tested is the sound. But connecting two small monitor-based speakers to my computer, instead of a real subwoofer and real speakers, isn’t my idea of improving musical listening experiences 🙂