Lockdown Hosts

Hi All, I'm trying to collect a list of known 'good' lockdown hosts and 'bad' lockdown hosts -- If you have any experiences (good or bad) could you shot me an email (or leave a comment) so I can add them to the list.
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FAQ's

I've been working on improving my FAQ's for the last few weeks. In general I've added quite a few entries and gone for a more 'traditional' FAQ layout (questions/answers).

I was using Accordion which is a fabalous plugin but it made doing searches on the web site a little tough, let me know if you like these new 'web 1.0' style FAQ's.

In order to avoid total loss of eye candy I've also included a comment and rating to each entry. check it out

PlusKit
Lockdown
RapidBlog
SiteMap
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Updates

In case you haven't noticed I"ve been steadily running through my collection of plugins with small, but important, updates. See the respective change logs for details.

Tonight I pushed up a new version of RapidBlog -- A few small enhancements & bug fixes, most important is there is now a RSS Title field that you probably want to change from the default of "A Great Blog"!

I've had a few niggilng issues I'm still tracking down on RapidBlog but I feel I'm close to calling it 1.0 and starting to work on some major enhancements and new features including a archive overhaul, date localization and improved comment system.

-Jm
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Base URL

Most of my plugins require the Base URL to be set up correctly but it seems to cause a lot of confusion.

Fortunately Nik Fletcher has just published a very nice screencast on it.

It's only about 2 minutes long Highly Recommended, Don should consider hiring him (or maybe Nik should consider a competitive offering)
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Lockdown

I just posted a new version of lockdown that fixes a few issues (see here for my godaddy rant). You can read the non-rant change notes here.

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GoDaddy -- The Interent Explorer of Web Hosts

I'm really loving using RapidBlog day in and day out now, it makes it much easier to keep a blog active -- I don't really know why that is except for I'm able to do it at work, the library, etc.

Anyway that's not the point of this point. The point is that I released a new version of Lockdown tonight (1.65U) that fixes a few different problems including making email work with GoDaddy.

You see GoDaddy is the 'Internet Explorer' of web hosts. Like Internet Explorer is very popular and in many ways an OK solution however like Internet Explorer it's almost, but not quite, standard. They have funky server configs and make may bizzare choices that cause me (as a developer who has 3 of his 5 plugins which require sane server configurations) a lot of headaches.

Case in point... I started getting complaints about email notification no longer working on GoDaddy. I fired up a test on my server (hosted by dreamhost.com) and all was well but after the third or forth person contacted me I dug in and figured out what had happened.

So here is the sad thing, I still don't know exactly what they did -- However I did find that by removing a single string from the email message it started working. For whatever reason GoDaddy decided that any emails containing the words "ip-lookup.net" should not go through.

I don't know, maybe they thought it was spam? Who Knows? Anyway I know use dnsstuff.com for looking up ip-addresses in the email. It's kind of frustrating because ip-lookup.net worked well but there you have it.

So I sent out the update to the folks who had problems and they all responded, to a person, that GoDaddy had been no help and showed no interest in fixing the problem -- Not at all cool.

So in honor of that I've set up a promotion code at my web host (dreamhost). It's NoDaddy Use it to get a new account and you get basically the maximum amount off I could give you (in most cases it's $97 off for the first year which makes your first year a total of about $30) -- I don't get anything out of this deal EXCEPT the satisfication of knowing more people are using a sane web hosts and it's fewer people I have to support on GoDaddy.

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Lockdown now in German

Famous last words

"It certainly took longer than I thought
"

That sort of describes my attempts at providing Lockdown in German. I've thought it would be fun (yes fun) to make a localized plugin.

"No problem" I thought "First I need to find someone who actually speaks German"

Enter Marc Widmer who is from Switzerland where everyone (apparently) speaks about 5 different languages.

"Ok, now how do I actually do this"

Enter ilocalize which is also from a couple of brothers who are, curiously, also from Switzerland and who have a company called "Arizona Software" which, in case you are wondering, is not at all close to Switzerland.

"Great... Let's see just type in the german words where the english words, hit save ... ok that should be it"


.... Hmmm.. still in english
... Hmmm

Read more docs from apple where they say things like "You don't have to do anything really... it's all automatic"

Hmmmm....

(Each Hmmm is several weeks passing)

So I finally sat down and got it working... It's not pretty folks. You see the fine folks at apple never actually considered (as far as I can tell) that an application may not be localize but a plugin may. Stubbornly once OSX decides you are a non localized app in English it never reconsiders.

Why do I share this interesting bit of trivia? Well it's a warning, I may at some point in the future drop German localization if it becomes too painful but in the meantime if you put "German" before "English" in your system preferences enjoy

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Lockdown 1.5

I'm back from Vegas. It's an interesting town -- it's hard for me to say "I recommend it" since honestly I don't care for it that much but if you have never been you should see it at least once.

The real upside is instead of heading to Germany next week (Which was my original plan) I'm staying home. This is a really good thing. Nothing against Germany but I've been traveling a lot recently (I'm in Monterey right now) and I'm looking forward to a few quiet days at home.

I just put Lockdown 1.5 final up on the server. I've had no problems with b2 and there are only a few minor changes. If you haven't tried it now is the time as it has some nice improvements over Lockdown 1.1

-John
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Lockdown beta 1 of version 1.5 is here

Hi All,

As promised here is beta 1 of version 1.5 (download). While it seems to work OK for me it probably still has some problems (I don't know of anything mind you... It's just I made a lot of changes and my own testing has been limited).

I'm only going to announce this on my blog (for now) For those brave souls who want to feel free to give it a try. I'm especially curious for the following:

1) Password Expiration.. Does it work for you?
2) Error page redirects
3) Import of version 1.1. Especially if you used the page redirect feature of version 1.1
4) GUI & Wording.... . I'm not crazy about what I called some things (Error Pages?) and some of the new gui elements. Any input here would be great

If all goes smoothly I'll probably get the Localization started by Saturday (started == requests out to folks to begin localization with a list of strings to be localized)

I'm going to Las Vegas this Sunday for my "Day" Job (don't even ask... you wouldn't believe it if I told you...) Hopefully before I leave a stable version is announced on the RW forums and out to a largish number of folks to begin pounding on.
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Lockdown version 1.5

Version '1.5' of lockdown is well underway... This should bring some neat new features......

I'll probably have the beta out in a few days but here is a sneak preview

Pasted Graphic


Pasted Graphic 1
(In case you are wondering.. "Error Occured" is a page in my RW document... The SW is not saying one occured just to redirecet to the page called "Error Occured" so to speak)


This shows off the two big changes... You can now 'expire' passwords after a length of time and you can now set the error document (e.g. what should happen if file isn't found or bad username/password)

I am also hoping to get French & German localizations. Probably not in the first beta but hopefully before final release (and if you contacted me regarding translations don't worry... I still haven't gotten back to anyone. I'm going to figure out the localization process first and then get back to people on the actual translation

-Jm


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Speak French or German?

I was looking at who ordered my plugins (especially Lockdown) and I noticed that a large percentage of sales came from two non-english speaking countries. France & Germany.

In order to help our friends in those countries I'm considering Localizing Lockdown to those two languages for version 1.1, only 3 things keep me from doing it


  1. I've never localized a Mac app before (ok, I can probably figure this out easily enough)

  2. I don't speak French

  3. I don't speak German



So I might be looking for a little help from a certain sort of person. Specifically I'm looking for someone who:


  1. Speaks French and English or German and English. I'd prefer that your native tongue is French/German to make sure the Localized version makes sense

  2. Is interested in helping make Lockdown better by providing it in those languages

  3. Is willing to help update the localization as I add new features

  4. Is willing to help for basically not much. I'll give you credit on the web page and I'll give you a free registration code (a USD $7.95 value! If you have already purchased Lockdown I'll credit you back your purchase price) plus you get the thanks of your countrymen and the satisfaction of helping make RW more friendly to non english speakers



I'll probably have 1.1 out in the next 4-6, If you are interested in helping contact me to let me know
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Lockdown 1.0b3

I released Lockdown 1.0b3 last night. The biggest change is that this release has an 'alternate' configuration method that you can use if the automatic one doesn't work (basically it involves copying a directory into the plugin and then dragging the resulting file back to your site...) It should make it fairly easy to configure for the folks where the automatic configuration doesn't work.

Tom Beardmore gave me a subdomain on his account to try to figure out what was going on with some accounts (thanks Tom!), it turns out that (in at least that case) PHP runs as 'Nobody' which means it can't create files in your directory unless you open your permissions wide open. I presume they run with these permissions for security reasons (although I don't instantly see how it's that much more secure). It really makes me appreciate my own hosting company, they have super generous disk & BW allocations and have very liberal policies of what you can do with your account (and PHP runs as yourself!)

Anyway assuming no major bugs are found in the next few days I'll probably call 1.0b3 the '1.0final' release. I have some more ideas for enhancements to Lockdown but they will have to wait for 1.1 release.

-jm
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Introducing Lockdown

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You may not know this but the busy gnomes at Loghound software have about 5 different plug-in's in various states. The next one I really wanted to get 'out there' is rapidblog but i've recently run into some integration issues (nothing that can't be fixed, it just slowed down my work quite a bit) and to be honest with you working on web services enabled plugin's is a LOT of work...

To that end when I came across my most recent snag with rapidblogger instead of digging in I decided to take a break and actually finish one of my non-web services enabled plugin that I wanted for my own use.

I'm happy to release my next Rapidweaver plugin called Lockdown. It's a simple plugin to solve the vexxing problem of password protecting a page or a series of pages (get it, it will password 'lock' every page underneath it in RW). This plugin won't be for everyone.. It doesn't work on .mac for instance but I think it should work for most other people

So go ahead and give it a spin, you can download it here

As always, your thoughts or comments appreciated

loghound at gmail dot com




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