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Everyone can make their website HTTPS for free

In case you have not heard the amazing news, Mozilla, EFF, Automattic and a few other folks are banding together to help end the SSL certificate cartel by the end of 2015

https://letsencrypt.org/

This is huge. Everyone will be able to make their website HTTPS for free, without paying an annual fee and much easier than StartSSL

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CentOS 6.4 update finally supports IW10 for tcp/ip tuning

iw10Google and others have published several whitepapers showing benchmarks where tuning tcp/ip on servers can really help web browsing performance.

One of these important tweaks is known as IW10 which improves the tcp/ip congestion window by reducing ACKs (initally sending 10 packets instead of only 3) and is enabled by increasing initcwnd and initrwnd.

Unfortunately those on CentOS (one of the most popular linux production distributions) were not able to take advantage of this – until this weekend when CentOS 6.4 was shipped.

CentOS 6.3 could change initcwnd but NOT initrwnd (RWIN) which requires a kernel > 2.6.33

CentOS 6.4 is 2.6.32-358.0.1.el6 (Red Hat 4.4.7-3) so the feature has been backported

Here’s how to take advantage of IW10 on CentOS 6.4

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Nginx 1.2.7 released

A new version of Nginx stable branch has appeared today with a rather long changelog:

http://nginx.org/en/CHANGES-1.2

download: http://nginx.org/en/download.html

When building manually, remember to update pcre, currently at 8.32

ftp://ftp.csx.cam.ac.uk/pub/software/programming/pcre/


Google Chrome Browser launches

Go try it: http://www.google.com/chrome
http://cache.pack.google.com/chrome/install/149.27/chrome_installer.exe (direct download)

If anyone is interested in the 90 minute video presentation of it they did today, it’s over here, otherwise go read the comic book all about it.

It seems pretty good, fast but not very smooth on some dhtml actions I use on some pages.

However there is no plugin interface for it (like Firefox extensions) so that is going to limit adoption.


PngOptimizer makes smaller PNG than PngOut

Many designers/developers have discovered and used PNGOUT for awhile now to make smaller (sometimes significantly smaller) PNG files with better compression. I recently discovered another GPL program, PngOptimizer that makes even smaller files in many cases, especially for PNG8 files (256 colors with transparency, similar to GIF but better in some cases and IE supports it).

http://psydk.org/PngOptimizer.php
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Flash Stand-Alone Installer for Internet Explorer

Ever since Adobe took over Macromedia’s Flash products, they have slowly converted everything into their corporate style, making the software big and bulky and taking away the “stand-alone” installer for Internet Explorer that you could put on a CD or flash drive and take with you so you don’t need an internet connection to install it.

The Firefox version has to be stand-alone since it’s a plugin and they can’t execute code from Firefox, but the IE version insists on installing itself from the web via active-x, which I don’t allow on my network since it’s incredibly dangerous and mostly just used for annoyances like ads.

But I stumbled across this little gem buried halfway in this page: (more…)


Finally upgrading to Windows XP

I’ve gotten seven years out of Windows 2000, and I could use it for a few more I am certain, but software vendors are forcing me to finally upgrade. There’s been a slow but steadily growing list of applications that refuse to install on Win2k, no matter how I try to trick them or manually unpack and run. The “won’t run on win2k” reasons have eluded me, but some research over the past year leads me to believe it has to do with some of the subtle new native features in the XP API like compression for undo features and other stuff that’s beyond my grasp. (more…)


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