Services Are Hard

It can be tough running software as a service. Apple Maps has had widespread downtime reported today leading to lots of people poking fun at them and their status as second to Google Maps (dozens of people were affected jokes). The other day I was driving with Maps running when the GPS lost where I was and the arrow marker started drifting off-road randomly around town. I snapped a photo at apparently the perfect moment as the marker drifted by Lost Ln. Not sure if that was a precursor to this outage, but the photo and timing seem appropriate. As funny as that is somewhere there was a team of developers and server admins freaking out that things were going […]

OpenVPN Fails to Start on Boot – CentOS 7

This all started one chilly January morning when I upgraded my CentOS 7 virtual machine. My OpenVPN connection would fail to start because the /run/openvpn/ovpn-client.status file was not there nor the /run/openvpn directory. It took a lot of investigative work but what we found was the /usr/lib/tmpfiles.d/openvpn.conf file had this in it: d /run/openvpn-client 0710 root root – d /run/openvpn-server 0710 root root – This temp file was making the directories in the /run folder that were needed on start for OpenVPN to work. As you can see the first line is creating the /run/openvpn-client folder. This would be all well and good but the openvpn.service on startup is looking for /run/openvpn without the “-client” and that is no good. […]

64 Bit ColdFusion with 32 Bit Open Office

If you’re running a 64 bit ColdFusion installation and want to use cfdocument to convert Word, Excel, or PowerPoint files to PDF you may encounter an issue with an incompatibility between the 64 bit dll for ColdFusion and the 32 bit dll for Open Office. Java can’t load and run them both to work together. The good news is that there is a workaround for this issue. You’re going to need to: Download the latest version of Open Office from openoffice.org to your server and install it (you can use the default locations during the installation). Download the Non Sucking Service Manager (NSSM) from┬ánssm.cc and simply save it into a convenient folder – no installation needed. You will then create […]

ColdFusion Error: Truncated class file

I was getting an oddly unhelpful error message when working on some ColdFusion development. Code that I knew ran okay on our development server was having an issue when setting it up to run on my local server. The error simply read “Truncated class file”. It turned out that the settings in the ColdFusion administrator had the component files setup to cache – which you don’t want on a development server where they are frequently changing. So, under Server Settings > Caching I unchecked the Save class files checkbox and used the buttons to clear the cache and everything was working again. Why was this breaking, probably a result of switching between branches in git and / or a file […]

Updating Git Remotes in Tower for Mac

We recently made the switch to using a new software as a service build and deployment tool. During that switch we needed to change over our Git repositories to the new remote URLs. I am using Tower for Mac and couldn’t find a way to make the switch via the app. It simply doesn’t handle custom server authentication well. Here is what I did to get things working again. Open Terminal or iTerm2 if you have it installed Navigate to the folder with your website files in it In my case it was my Sites folder and then picking the correct sub folder Once there you can run: git remote -v This will show you the current remote server URLs […]

Tower, Git, Springloops, Xcode and Authentication Errors

I installed an update to XCode and subsequently found I could not connect to git repositories on Springloops using Tower on macOS Sierra (that’s a nice pile of software). I was getting Authentication errors in Tower when trying to reach the repository. After trying a bunch of things to reconnect and getting rather frustrated by the whole thing I finally found that I need to agree to the XCode license again in order to use git. To do so open up Terminal and type: sudo xcodebuild -license Then hit space a bunch to get to the bottom of the license. Once you do you’ll be prompted to type the word agree. Once you do that quit Tower and start it […]

Docs Onsite Updates

We’ve added a few new features to Docs Onsite. Docs Onsite is the document and project management system that we’ve developed. We’ve been really pleased to see how it has worked for other client based companies who need to manage large quantities of documents with clear, simple, auditable access controls and logging. It is also how we manage our internal tasks, calendars, files, time tracking (which exports to QuickBooks for billing), support tickets, and bug tracking. The latest features are small looking updates, but are both very useful. We’ve added tagging to the Tasks, with color coding. This has really helped make it easy to quickly filter the task list to a related group of tasks. We’ve also integrated a […]

Stopping Exchange 2016 Same Domain Spam Spoofing

We recently converted over to using Exchange 2016 for our internal email hosting and we were immediately buried in spam. Initially we enabled the exchange built-in spam protection and it just wasn’t cutting it. We expanded out and got ourselves BitDefender Exchange Protection which promptly dropped our spam rate almost overnight. However, we were still getting emails from our own domain @infinitewebdesign.com. The best places we found to combat this involved removing the permission: ms-exch-smtp-accept-authoritative-domain-sender in the active directory for the receive connectors. This, thankfully, allowed BitDefender to at least classify them as spam, but we were still able to be spoofed. A simple telnet to our server like so: >telnet <server_ip_here> 25 >EHLO >MAIL FROM: test@<domain_here> >RCPT TO: someone@<domain_here> […]

Stagnation

It is hard to avoid stagnation. It requires pushing yourself and the people around you out of your comfort zone. As you get better at what you do it actually becomes even harder – you know the “right” way to do things and become even more set in your ways. So how do we keep growing ? The Comfort Zone When we start learning something new we don’t have much of a comfort zone. I’ve been teaching my son to play basketball and I’ve been realizing that simple things like not pushing your knees together when you jump are not yet simple to him. It’s a good reminder not to take things that seem obvious to me for granted. I […]

Dell 968w Mac Setup Process

So i recently switched over to using a MacBook Pro and have had all kinds of issues with getting software and hardware configured properly. Nothing has been worse that trying to get my Dell 968w printer to work with my new Mac. After a few hours and a lot of forums here is what i found. Setup Process: Go to System Preferences > Print & Fax Click on the little plus sign (+) to add a new printer In my case I had already setup the printer using a windows pc and had configured the wireless settings, if you haven’t you need to do that first. Go to the IP tab Select “HP Jetdirect – Socket” as the Protocol For […]