My New Free Classified Ad Service Zessir Is Up And Running

I have decided to give hosting a free classified ad service a serious try, and so I’m in the process of decommissioning greensocialtech.com/classified and releasing/tuning a brand new free classified ad service known as Zessir.com.  I hope whoever needs such a service will give Zessir.com a tryout.

By the way, Zessir has strict settings and policies that are aiming to prevent spams and bots.  This means software that allow auto classified ad posting won’t have an easy time in posting ads on Zessir.com.  Each listing needs to be manually validated through email before an ad would be activated for the public.

Does Zessir sounds like Yes Sir?  That’s the idea!

Right now, only listings in Real Estate category get to have 90 days expiration date, and the rest get 30 days expiration date.

One known bug for the site is that you cannot delete an ad without an error, but that’s OK, because the site got a plugin which goes into the database and removes inactive and deleted ads.  So, if you happen to delete an ad which won’t go away, rest assure that the software in the background will eventually delete such listings for you.

As an admin, I’ll try my best to keep Zessir clean from nasty ads and so on.  No promise that I’ll do a good job, but I’ll always be on alert of such things.  Zessir is using Let’s Encrypt SSL to protect users with SSL encryption, and so you should have amble encryption security when accessing Zessir.com.

Zessir is also using CloufFlare to cache webpages and whatnot.  CloudFlare also provides additional layers of Internet security.  This means you’re well protected when using Zessir.com.  Give Zessir.com a try today!  After all, it’s FREE!

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How To Create, Attach/Associate, And Mount EBS Onto Amazon EC2 (Using Ubuntu 12.04 Linux OS)

English: Cloud Computing

English: Cloud Computing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was playing around with Amazon Web Services, and then I thought it would be a good idea to make a how-to video which shows people (who are new to Amazon Web Services) how to add, attach/associate, and mount EBS (Elastic Block Storage) to Amazon EC2 (Elastic Cloud Computing) instance (using Ubuntu 12.04 Linux OS for the EC2 instance).  For your information, Amazon Web Services is like a cloud web hosting and network infrastructure (plus a whole lot more).  Nonetheless, if you have no idea what I just spewed and still think Amazon Web Services is interesting, you definitely can find out more about Amazon Web Services at Amazon (the website and not the jungle).  Anyhow, the thought is awesome in my opinion, and so the end result is the video right after the break.  Enjoy!!!

Skydrive Updates With Dropbox Like Features; For Limited Time, Users Can Retain Skydrive 25 GB Of Free Storage Space

Skydrive img taken from Vinh Nguyen's MacBook Pro and Skydrive account.

Skydrive img taken from Vinh Nguyen's MacBook Pro and Skydrive account.

I’m rushing this blog post out as for a limited time, Microsoft Skydrive allows users to retain their 25 GB of free storage space, and in the very near future Microsoft will only allow Skydrive users to have only 7 GB of free storage space.  How come?  According to a piece on Techradar.com (Microsoft SkyDrive cloud storage gets Dropbox-like features boost), Microsoft has added new features to Skydrive that behave similarly to how the features that can be found on Dropbox.  I’ve not yet able to experiment these features such as syncing files from Desktop to Skydrive folder (i.e., allowing files to be remotely synced to Skydrive’s servers/cloud), because like I’m saying I have to rush this blog post out.  Anyhow, I had gone ahead and installed Skydrive app on Mac, and so now I have Skydrive folder in my finder.  So, in a way I think Skydrive will be very similar to Dropbox even though I have not yet used it in similar manners to how I would use Dropbox.  Nonetheless, I can feel that Microsoft has turned up the heat in regarding to the race in the cloud.

Skydrive is supporting so many devices and operating system types!  On Skydrive app download page (https://apps.live.com/skydrive) where you can download the Skydrive apps, it appears that Skydrive has apps for Windows Phone, iPhone and iPad, Mac.  I don’t really have to mention that Skydrive has a Skydrive app for Windows, but I guess I just did.  Anyhow, this means users can now access files that are residing on Skydrive with most devices, allowing users to feel that their files are more accessible.  I’m sort of disappointed that Skydrive has not yet come out an app for Linux (i.e., I don’t see Skydrive app for Linux on Skydrive app download page).  Hopefully though, Linux users will soon be able to use Skydrive just like users who use other popular devices and operating systems.

In conclusion, I think Skydrive will now be more appealing than before since it has been revamped with new features that compete against a very popular cloud service Dropbox. Plus, Skydrive provides 2 GB more of storage space than Dropbox (i.e., 7 GB free storage space).  For limited time, Skydrive allows users to retain 25 GB of free storage space.  Of course, if you or any Skydrive user isn’t going to log-in into their Skydrive account now to retain their 25 GB of free storage space, sooner or later, Microsoft will stop giving out 25 GB of free storage space — users will then have to play with 7 GB of free storage space only.  With Skydrive and Dropbox services are available for free, I think my using of these services have just allowed me to make the files that I want to have easy access to from anywhere are now even more resilient (i.e., in case of either one of the services is down or inaccessible).

Source:  http://www.techradar.com/news/internet/microsoft-skydrive-cloud-storage-gets-dropbox-like-features-boost-1077366?src=rss&attr=all

Netflix Isn’t Desperate, But Will It Be So?

Netflix has been scarred with mistakes lately, and mostly they had done it to themselves.  By now you probably had heard how Netflix raised prices, tried to split Netflix into two then reverted to one service again, and then decidedly kept prices high as it had intended all along.  Customers were furious, and some of them still do.  Many shareholders bailed Netflix’s stock, gave way to a stock that once was neared $300 but now it’s hovering around $117.

Has Netflix forever destroyed itself?  This question is quite important in this period of time for Netflix, because so many other players are willing to spend huge amount of money to build something that might be fit to compete against Netflix.  Just to name a few, Vdio, Amazon, Google, Dish’s Blockbuster, and Apple.

I don’t think Netflix is yet to be desperate, because it has several advantages that the competitors aren’t yet capable in matching or surpassing.  Let see, Netflix is still considering to be the best service.  It has more film titles than anyone else for instant streaming, and its CD/DVD by mail is still intact — has huge collections of films.  Although Netflix has raised prices higher, it’s considerably cheap, still.  People can instantly stream Netflix’s films on most devices and gadgets in the markets — this hasn’t been the case for the competitors.

I do think that by giving enough time, anyone can catch up to Netflix as long somebody is willing to spend enough cash to play the catch-up game and the customers are willing to switch to try out newer services so they can compare the formers versus the newcomers.  This is why I do think Netflix has to innovate more than just being the service which has acquired more film titles for instant streaming than anyone else.  Why?  Some customers might be contented with just enough film titles, because not everyone is able to sit down and watch all of them titles.  Nonetheless, good titles are very important, because only the titles people want to watch most will be able to promote the charm of the service.

How Netflix should innovate?  Netflix needs to add features and whistles and bells to its instant streaming service!  Let see, when I watch a TV show, I do not want to switch manually one episode to another, because I hate to get out of my couch or bed just to switch to the next episode of the series.  What can I say, people like me are born to be lazy, and I’m afraid there are tons of us out there!  Let see, Netflix might want to try incorporate social network features similar to Facebook and Google Plus into its own service, because it’s logical to allow users to communicate better.  Perhaps friends on Netflix might want to share favorite movies with each other and so on.  Let see, Netflix might want to bring live shows to users/customers.  Live shows have the potential to be game changer, because some people just want to be able to watch news the way they have been doing for ages on regular TVs.  There are so many things that Netflix can enhance its service, and by doing so I think Netflix can basically mute its competitors in way that it’s not even funny!  Let not forget to be simplistic and yet at the same time appearing to be capable!

In summary, Netflix isn’t that desperate yet, but it will be if it allows the competitors to catch up!  Netflix can enhance its service by tweaking its service in ways that appeal to customers more.  Netflix can dominate even more by controlling more popular film titles and TV shows.  Keeping the prices affordable, Netflix will be able to ensure its longevity.  Happy customers in the end will make things very costly for Netflix’s competitors.

Printing Online With FedEx Print Online

Has a broken printer?  Need to print something quick, but can’t?  In my case, I’ve working printers (i.e., more than one), but I refused to buy more inks or toners, because the inks and toners are more expensive than the printers I’d bought before.  So, what a person supposes to do to have his or her stuffs to be printed?

I think FedEx Office Print Online is genius!  I’m sure there probably are other online printing services out there, but I prefer FedEx since its Kinko’s physical locations can be found near my place.  Anyhow, it’s easy to sign up for an account with FedEx Office Print Online, and then it allows you to download a printer driver onto your Windows PC.  After installing the printer driver (i.e., software), it’s pretty much smooth sailing from there.

By filling out correct information in your account’s profile, and whenever you need to print something on your computer, just choose a print icon in your application (i.e., Microsoft Office), choose FedEx Office Printer as the printer, and print your documents away.  I think FedEx Office Printer will log you into your account, and then you have to add your documents into a shopping cart before you can order them to be printed.  You get to choose a location nearby so you can pick up your documents.

If you’re being lazy, you can incur a larger fee by allowing FedEx to mail the documents to you.  Don’t forget to customize the printing options for your documents, because you can lower the printing fees a lot by using normal type of papers and normal ink (i.e., not laser) and printing in black (i.e., print without color) and so on.  Unfortunately, FedEx won’t print anything for you unless your order is above $1.

Protecting Your Websites From Threats And Speed Them Up with CloudFlare

Have you lately been dreaming about having your websites load faster and arm with better security measures against hackers?  Dream no more, because CloudFlare can do all that for you!  Basically, when a webmaster uses CloudFlare, this very service will act as a proxy/CDN (Content Delivery Network) to accelerate the page’s load speed of a website and block threats.  It’s unclear what kind of threats that CloudFlare can block, but CloudFlare does say on its website that it will protect your websites from various threats.

Setting up CloudFlare is quite easy!  First, you need to sign up for a CloudFlare account.  Second, log into CloudFlare.  Third, add a website to CloudFlare by follow CloudFlare’s step by step instruction.  Fourth, copy and paste CloudFlare’s name servers and delete the original name servers from your domain registrar.  Fifth, just wait till the name servers are fully propagated, and then ping your domain name to see if the IP address has changed or not; after pinging and the IP address of the domain name has changed, it means that CloudFlare is working as it redirects web traffic to your website through its multitude servers’ IP addresses.  Sixth (this step can be done before the fifth step), change the CloudFlare’s specific settings for your specific website (i.e., you can add multiple websites under one CloudFlare account).  That’s it!

CloudFlare is a FREE service, and so there isn’t anything to be complained about such generosity!  One gimmick, CloudFlare has to make money and so it has a Pro plan where you can upgrade to get even more features.  For an instance, SSL (i.e., https protocol) isn’t made available for FREE plan, therefore you need to use a work around method such as accessing a subdomain provided by CloudFlare so you can access your website using SSL.  Of course, after upgrade to PRO plan, CloudFlare will provide you with a SSL certificate at a cost of $1 fee per month, and I think you still have to install CloudFlare’s SSL certificate onto your server.  By the way, upgrading to PRO plan will cost you $20 per month.

In conclusion, I think CloudFlare is an amazing service for website owners.  Instead of spending tons of money to pay for other CDN services or create one yourself, CloudFlare provides you plenty of options to make your websites load faster.  The sweetener is that CloudFlare also promises to protect your websites from malicious activities and threats.  My advice to you, don’t go easy on your server’s security even though CloudFlare is providing some protections for your server.  Instead of anything, you should enhance your server’s security evermore so you can be more sure of the security of your websites (e.g., update server’s software, install firewall, etc…).

Check out couple videos on CloudFlare right after the break!