Category Archives: IT

Information technology blog

Mozilla Firefox, now number 1 browser in Europe

Firefox Internet browser, developed by Mozilla, has become number one Internet browser used in Europe and managed to dethrone for the first time is history Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, according to StatCounter, an audience measurement company. This is the first time Internet Explorer comes on the second place in a such competitive market such as the one of web browsers.

In December, Firefox’s market share reached 38.1% in Europe, compared to 37.5% for Internet Explorer. Another web browser, Google’s Chrome, has also increased its market share to 14.6% from a 5.1% level recorded a year ago.

According to Aodhan Cullen, general manager of StatCounter, this change in market share is due to the fact that Chrome is grabbing more and more from the piece held by Internet Explorer while Firefox maintain its position, thus becoming the most popular browser in Europe. He also added that this could also be the effect of March 2010 agreement between the European competition authorities and Microsoft when they have decided that any Windows user can choose from a list of browsers which one would he like to use it further, when installing the operating system.

Two years ago, Internet Explored was dominating the worldwide market with 67% and while this browser still remains the most popular choice for most users around the globe, Microsoft’s browser market share went down to 50% in September 2010. However Internet Explorer still leads in North America with 48.92% while Firefox has 26.7% market share followed by Chrome with 12.82% and Safari with 10.16%.

Firefox still continues to increase in popularity while it is offering a great and secure browser, highly customizable with plugins and extensions and with a little extra-goodies other browsers do not offer, at least this time.

Web hosting by Velnetweb

VelnetWeb is an UK based company that intends to offer good online services for web businesses at competitive prices. Whether someone is looking for a domain name to register, a cheap web hosting plan or an affordable ecommerce store, VelnetWeb has a wide range of services to offer.

With the domain name registration feature, anyone can choose and register a name for a web business for all type of .uk extensions and furthermore, for more general extensions like .com, .org and others.

Coming to web hosting, VelnetWeb offers four packages for choosing what suits best for specific needs: Basic, Premium, Business and Reseller Hosting. The cheapest plan offered by this company is the Basic one, coming with a price of only ₤2.42/month. Lately, there is also a special offer for Velnet Business Plan that makes this package one of the most attractive available from this company: -40% discount, which cuts the price to ₤4.95/month for unlimited bandwidth, 400MB hosting space and lots of other features.

Their ecommerce website package is a very worthy one while the purchase of Boss Cart shopping cart software comes with extra-features like free cPanel, free 1-year web hosting, free installation and support, SEO features and many others. Boss Cart is build in PHP and MySQL and it’s an easy to use and SEO friendly shopping cart, so that no user will have any problems in managing its products, images and prices.

In addition, for creating secure pages on a specific website, VelnetWeb offers the safe and professional Comodo SSL certificates.

Along other services, VelnetWeb also offers a professional web design plan starting from £199. This includes the website’s design, a free hosting package and a free domain name, both for one year and a free search engine submission for the website being visible by search engines as soon as it is released online.

Finding affordable student hosting

Low cost web hosting for students

Have you got that last college or university web development project that you are looking to get finished but you need to test it in a live environment. It all runs ok on the campus network but have you tried it in the real world? A lot of students look for a way to get their projects online but at an affordable rate. Finding low cost student web hosting is easy to get. However to find a reliable one needs some careful consideration.

What do you need?

Some of the biggest sites on the internet today such as Facebook, Google and Youtube started out on college and university servers and grew from there. But the key thing is initially they grew – fast. What they discovered was the college campus was not the ground to develop but being students, budgets were tight so they needed low cost hosting to start with.

So is your site going to grow that way? Well who knows, it may do, it may not. But why feel you have to invest a lot of money up front on something when you can steadily grow it. The hosting business is a busy market place so competition is fierce. If you want hosting and you want to pay budget prices for high end efforts then you can.

Who can help?

Companies such as offer packages tailored for students and businesses on a budget. Not only do they offer great features in their Windows and Linux packages but they also can provide a first rate support. They are keen to help get students and businesses off the ground and they will help you do it.

The key things to look for in student web hosting are that you have the expandability to grow your site and bandwidth. It may be you get an influx of traffic over night and need to purchased add ons such as extra webspace, more MySQL databases or even extra bandwidth. Make sure when choosing a provider that these options are available. A good test is to get in touch with the pre-sales or support team and ask the question. Not only will this help you find out what is offered, but will also give you an idea of their response times. This generally helps determine how fast the after support will get back to you too (and if they don’t, you know you can get a response with the pre-sales teams!)

Take time to take a look around and see what offers there are. As the market is so competitive it is always worthwhile asking web hosting companies if they will do you a deal or discount. Sometimes if you introduce so many friends, you get your hosting for free. There is no harm in asking, the worst they can do is say no.

So that is about it. Hopefully that is a few pointers to get your site off the ground. Just remember to start small but think big no matter what your budget – You never know, you could be the next Facebook…

Chatting blogs

Is it possible for those lifeless, body-less, AI-less things to communicate? Of course! And as it shows it may be beneficial for your blog!

Chatting blogs ;)

The magic words are: blog pinging. The technology created to make avaliable crosslinking between blogs following same topic or simply for giving credit to an author of interesting and/or cited by you post.

Here’s how it works:
1. I write a post which you like on my blog.
2. You write a post on your blog about same/similar topic and mention my post (giving link to it).
3. Right after you post your new entry in your blog, your blog software checks each outgoing link.
4. If the link is to another blog (my blog in this case) the software looks up the html code if it contains a special tag, which points to a pinging script on my blog, it looks more-less like this:

< link rel="pingback" href="http://DOMAIN-SUBFOLDER/PINGSCRIPT.php" />

5. Then your blog sends a ping to my blog with a short notice of the related entry on another (your) blog. (It contains urls of my post and your post).
6. My blog receives this ping. First it checks if the post on my blog really exists.
7. If yes, then it checks the referral post url (your entry).
8. If incoming link is also from a blog, then my blog grabs some small summary and link to your posts and puts it in comments under my original post.

As you see this makes cross-linking almost automated and really useful. In building authority, relatedness and SEO of each blog.


Yes, your blog/server needs to have this feature enabled. To see the geek description of this check this page.

If you want to check if your blog has this feature enabled the easiest way I think is just to view any of your pages source code and look for element < link rel="pingback"... />. If it’s there (it should be in the section) then it is enabled. The following blog platforms are known to support pingbacks: WordPress, Blogger, b2, Ecto, MarsEdit, Movable Type, Nucleus, Radio UserLand, TypePad.

In addition, if you are registered in Technocrati, it is good to know they also use pinging feature to update their info about your blog. It works similarly, only yo need to set up your blog software auto notification settings to ping Technocrati when you post a blog. Technocrati has a detailed instructions hot to set your platform to do that (look in Tools -> Pinging). If you’re using them to promote your blog it is worth adding this feature.

And finally there is also a ‘thing’ called Trackback. It is very similar to ping back but it is not automated. It does not require you to post any link in your blog as well. You just go to the blog you cited (or is related to what you have written) and ‘leave a trackback’ there (look for this feature next to ‘leave a comment’ link). This way you give the author of the other blog notice about your blog, then if he likes he can add info about your site to his blog.

I hope this puts some light on this features which I think are cool and make our Internet life better 😉

To CMS or not to CMS…

Okay – the question may seem dumb. You say “of course yes” – it is easy, installs fast and has looots of features. And most of all it does not require you to have much technical idea of what is going on with all this PHP, MySQL and stuff. Even if you pay something it still saves your time and time is money…

Sure… But go back to the project itself. What is your purpose? To build a unique website on your desired topic. Unique in look and contents. Only this can guarantee success of the project in search engines optimalisation and users rating. But what do you get with those ready-to-go CMS? Themes – few standard themes. So if 2000 people use this software and there are 4 themes your site will look like 500 other sites… This is no good.

“But there are loads of free themes on the web!” -Okay, yes, not all of them are free, but sure there is more. There is also more sites using this and other CMS’ with all of their themes… But let’s say you end up with sharing “the look” with 2-5 other website. Better, but not perfect. And if your theme is really nice it has quite a chance to become popular…

So what now? To make it really unique you need a little bit of D.I.Y with the theme files. But this requires at least minimum HTML and CSS, not to mention it would be very good to know some PHP on top of that… Huh… What is the option then? Basically there are two – either you learn mentioned above or live with the fact some site look alike as yours. There is a third option too – you get someone to do it for you…

“Okaaaay – so should I or should I not use ready CMS???” Well, I say yes, no matter if you are beginner or advanced, do it for money/company or pleasure. The reason is quite simple – time and effort to build it from scratch is just not worth it (unless you are a professional and really do this things in minutes/hours…). But how to stand out of the crowd? By trying! The picked up theme is good for start. Then in time, if you learn (because you do it for pleasure) or earn more money (business) you can make effort (in time or money) to make it unique. This or that way the real thing that makes people come back is the CONTENT which actually is another vote for CMS in matter of saving time and using it for building good content 🙂

I haven’t said anything about the soft yet. This is because it really depends on what you really want your site to be.

Blog – WordPress – the best soft I ever worked at – it is extremely EASY! in installation, use, customisation and adding extra modules. If you want blog, this IS your choice 😉 Oh, yeah, it has like a million free themes…

Forum – I’ve got experience with two kinds of software in this field – phpBB and VBulletin. The first one is quite simple. However installing any extra features require some… patience 😉 In looking and changing all those template files… It’s biggest feature is being totally FREE. And you can really have nice forum with it. VBulletin on the other hand is a commercial product. The licence for 1 year is around $100! But if you can afford it it is worth the price. Better support, easier installation of additional modules, more functions in administration panel and for users too. Worth trying it, but if you are sure you really need it 😉

General CMS – you just want a website, some news, few articles, few pics etc… Yes, this is your choice. I will skip commercial products, mainly because there is quite a lot of free and good software! Just to give few names of popular ones: Joomla, Mambo, PHP-Fusion… Basically there are almost the same. So my advice – look for feature you will want to include, extra modules, themes etc. on websites supporting such for those CMS. See how they look like, are they easy to install and if they are free (yes, people write those addons also for sale, so be careful – free basic pack does not mean all of the addons are also free!). Once you’ll find what you want go for it! 😉

And there is a cherry on top of that! Imagine you have forum and after a while things go sooo good you want to make it a portal. How to do it without any data loss? It turns out there are software ready for that. E.g. MKPortal can adopt some popular forums (phpBB, VBulletin) and other CMS. It will even import the skin! Beautiful.

OK, that’s all from me, hope this helps some of you with a start 😉

Best wishes,