Tag: web hosting

webpad : a web based text editor

So I have WordPress (and in fact Drupal, Joomla, mediawiki, Moodle, damn those Dreamhost 1-click installs) as a way of running my website.

But there are still many pages which are outside of a content management system. Especially simple web app projects (such as ircount and stalisfield) and old html files.

It can be a pain to constantly ftp in to the server, or use ssh. Editing via ssh can be a pain, especially over a dodgy wireless connection, or when you want to close the lid to your macbook.

But trying to find something to fit this need didn’t come up with any results. Many hits were either tinyMCE clones which are WYSIWYG html editors that convert input in to html, do good for coding.

Webpad screenshot

Webpad screenshot

Until I came across Webpad. It not only suited my needs perfectly, but it is well designed and implemented.

After a quick install (more or less simply copying the files), you simply enter a specified username and password, and once authenticated you are presented with a line of icons at the top. Simple select the ‘open’ icon to browse to the file you wish to edit on your web server and you’re away!

It’s simple, yet well written and serves its purpose well. If there was one thing I would I suggest for future development it would be improved file management functionality. You can create directories and delete files from the file open dialog box. But I can’t see a way to delete directories, or move/copy files. Deleting directories is of use, as many web apps (wikis, blogs, cms) require you to upgrade the software, edit a config file, and then delete the install directory, or similar.

Oh, and it’s free!

Check out webpad by Beau Lebens on dentedreality.com.au

Dreamhost and nostuff

Well nostuff has been with Dreamhost for a while now, and they are responsible for running the dream. the dream was the ideal of nostuff, which was, ummm, no stuff. They gave me so many goodies that I have ended up with, well, stuff.

For the techies, they give shell access, cron and a powerful web-based control panel and good control over the domain.

Example: I only have one domain associated with my account (i could have more). but I can set up sub-domains easily. Each can be anything you dream of: a redirect, a directory of your main site, something completely separate, have it’s own (unlimited) email addresses (hello@whatever.nostuff.org), have it’s onw google apps etc. Very impressive list of options. The whole setup is very flexible, so if you want to do something unusual with your mail setup or whatever, then you probably can. It’s also the little things, it’s not just that I can setup a WordPress blog with one click, but I can setup unlimited number, at any domain, sub-domain, directory and database I choose, and setup with a good selection of themes and plugins.

This evening I have installed moodle (1 minute), setup words.nostuff.org to point to da blog, setup google apps on nostuff.org (start.nostuff.org, docs.nostuff.org and loads more) and upgraded two blogs to the latest version.

So this is one big advert for dreamhost.

Must find complaints… hmmm, having a web host running servers in West Cost US time when you are in the UK can be a slight pain, and there can be a tiny lag at times (I think). Though my last host was a very simple affair I was never aware of my website being down. Dreamhost have had a few problems leading to downtime, and they seem to take a while to fully resolve it (they do follow up with blog postings explaining why, but of course swear a strange one off occurance caused it and it will never happen again).

But that’s all nickpicking.

All in all, very impressed, and glad I moved my site here.

Now, having written all this (and only after writing all this), I’ve just had the idea of linking to this sign up link and mentioning the sign up code NOSTUFF (using the code should mean YOU get $20 off, think of what you can do with all that cash). Using either means I get a tiny bit of cash off my next payment to Dreamhost, so if this tempts you at all, then hey I am not above whoring. Heck even if you don’t want a hosted domain service, perhaps you’re looking for a new dishwasher, or car insurance or smack, then sign up here, this is what you want. Just enter that promo code and enter you credit card details and do it before thinking about it.

Welcome back

In August I signed up with Dreamhost.

Until now I have used Freedom2surf’s web hosting service. I originally signed up with them as they seemed a good company (and still do, though now owned by pipex) and were cheap, £25 a year. When I first started using them they transferred my domain to them (it was all a bit new to me so I just presumed this was a required step) and their domain name costs were not cheap (£10). A few years later I wanted email as well (another £25), and the cost started going up. The service was stable, but I was started to need more. They offered just one database, not much when you are playing around with different software, such as Joomla, running WordPress and trying to experiment with your own silly web apps which require a DB, plus the quote for the database was tiny (10mb). Plus their web stats were crappy, and the log files were fiddly (kept for a few days on a secure website, no ftp and wget didn’t seem able to get them which made automating difficult, plus each file would download with the same filename by default).

During the summer I ended up at the GoDaddy website. I had heard bad things about them, but they did seem to offer an awful lot for a very cheap price. But I wouldn’t get that warm cosy feeling having my website hosted by them, so I waited. Dreamhost were recommended but not the cheapest. However after seeing just how much you do get (shell account, cron, etc), and that it would still be cheaper that my current setup, I went for it.

So far impressed, a lot of nice things and a lot of stuff (databases, email addresses, easy to get logs, easy to upgrade WordPress, etc). There does seem to be an awful lot of login requests when using their backend, each service and area seems to have it’s own username and password system, but this isn’t a huge problem. Plus I seemed to join them at a bad time, and there has been some downtime of late.

nostuff.org has been down for the last couple of weeks, and this is just down to me. I tried to transfer the actually domain across, though the move was rejected (I may not have set the new DNS servers up right before putting in the transfer request). I then basically did nothing for a few weeks. I finally got around to it yesterday, the transfer this time went fine and now everything seems good again.

So, hopefully this is still on some of your RSS feeds and you haven’t all deserted me! Welcome back.