Friday, December 11th 2009


UKFast – Installing cPanel on fresh CentOS x_64
posted @ 10:28 am in [ Apache -Hosting -osCommerce -PHP -Technology -Web2.0 ]

We’re just starting to move one of our clients Merc (http://www.merc.com/) onto a new webserver as their site has been doing so well that it need a faster, more optimised server to cope with the traffic and went with a new Cloud CentOS x_64 server from UK Fast for a very reasonable £70.00 odd per month.

The server seems lightening quick which is great, but didn’t come with a nice install of Plesk or cPanel or similar so we decided to install cPanel.

It’s actually really easy to do – just follow this really helpful guide here from Network Data Center in the US and you are up and running with a full blown cPanel in a couple of hours.

Job done! 🙂

References:
https://helpdesk.ndchost.com/index.php?_m=knowledgebase&_a=viewarticle&kbarticleid=25




Thursday, October 29th 2009


Fixing cross-site scripting attacks in PHP for PCI Compliance
posted @ 9:49 am in [ Fixing Things -Technology -Web Design -Web2.0 ]

More PCI compliance checks meant that we found a number of scripts in some of the simpler pages on our sites (email register for example) were subject to possible cross-site scripting attacks

(see the Wikipedia entry for a pretty good explanation of what they are and why you need to fix them http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross-site_scripting)

Anyway – here’s the quick code to fix pretty much any form using htmlspecialchars to encode the input.

Original: (note the weakness in using REQUEST_URI here)

<form method=”post” action=”<?php echo $_SERVER[‘REQUEST_URI’]; ?>” id=”registerTop” class=”smallForm”>

Fixed: (note the replacement of PHP_SELF for REQUEST_URI to stop injection of different pages)

<form method=”post” action=”<?php echo htmlspecialchars($_SERVER[‘PHP_SELF’],ENT_QUOTES); ?>” id=”registerTop” class=”smallForm”>

Happy days – PCI test passed 🙂




Thursday, October 29th 2009


Just in case you wondered who was responsible for all of IE6’s bugs…
posted @ 6:49 am in [ Technology -Web Design -Web2.0 ]

I found this last night while scanning for another document, the thankyou note from Microsoft sent to me for being one of the beta testers on Microsoft Internet Explorer 4 (IE4)!

Obviously I didn’t do a very good job as IE5 and IE6 both turned out to be horribly buggy browsers, but then again they didn’t pay me for the pleasure so it can’t be all bad 🙂


MicrosoftIE4BetaTestersLetter




Friday, June 5th 2009


Club e-Luxe summit Paris
posted @ 6:38 am in [ Paris -Web Design -Web2.0 ]

Just returned from a amazing summit in Paris on Luxury brands and how they are and should approach e-commerce.

The speakers included Louis Vuitton and other great brands, and it’s good to see the work that we are doing with our largely UK Luxury Brand clients is matching or pretty close to what the best are doing in Paris!




Thursday, April 23rd 2009


Launch of Mitchell and Peach, natural bath products
posted @ 8:22 am in [ Technology -Web Design -Web2.0 ]

If you’re buying gifts for nans, mums, aunties, daughters, nieces, sisters, girlfriends or girl friends it’s kind of tough to find something original, ethical and beautiful with a nice transparent background.

Well, some good friends of ours have been growing lavender on a farm in Kent for the past god knows how long, and in deciding what best to do with it have made these incredible all natural bath products in soap, shower wash, body cream and bath oil.

They’re really beautifully packaged, lovely smelling and are all round pretty luxurious products so if there’s someone you think might deserve it… it’s a nice way to treat them (and it’s quite a nice story too).

www.mitchellandpeach.com

Oh and if you enter the code MPC1 in the checkout area you get a cheeky £10 off. Nice!

And of course the beautiful e-commerce website is built by Skywire 🙂




Monday, April 30th 2007


White noise jpg fading problem in Internet Explorer 6
posted @ 5:23 am in [ Javascript -Prototype Library -Scipt.aculo.us -Technology -Web Design -Web2.0 ]

You wouldn’t believe it was true, but there is an incredibly annoying problem in Internet Explorer 6 (IE6) where fading out jpg images using nice libraries like script.aculo.us or prototype.js gives a strange ‘white noise’ effect on the image during the transition.

Well, it turns out it is actually a bug in IE6 where it takes true-black colours in JPG images to be transparent, and thus shows the background colour behind it when fading the image (in our case white).

So how to work around it?

Easy – go into Photoshop and adjust the levels to remove the true black in the image – Image -> Adjustments -> Levels and slide the true black slider 1 or 2 pixels to the right. Save out your image again and the jpg artifacts are gone.

Weird but true! and here’s the pointer I found to solve the problem from a Slimbox forum

– SNIP –

“white noise”: After making some tests with images showing the problem, I’ve come to the conclusion that:

– It is NOT related to the software generating the images.
– It shows in totally black areas of a jpeg image in Internet Explorer only.

It’s like the black portions of the images are interpreted as transparent by IE, so the background color (white by default) shows through them. So far I’ve only seen this happening in Internet Explorer (both IE6 and IE7). Thank you Microsoft for making the lives of web designers and programmers so fun.