Tiny Tiny RSS: Building my own RSS Reader

ttrssI finally setup my TinyTinyRSS server following the guidelines on LifeHacker outlined in this article.  The original plan, when Google Reader shut down, was to have my own RSS server and not be beholden to someone disappearing.

Next on the list is to find a bookmarking tool that wouldn’t go away.

While I have the basic system setup and am going for coffee now I have a few things to still look at:

The feature set – read more about them here, the Android app, the Chrome extension, and more third-party supported apps.

I haven’t set it up for auto update.  I am running the PHP update script in a terminal window for now.  I think I may simply use the client to update itself by setting it as a pinned tab, it would update every 30 minutes then.

Open up your config.php file in a text editor, and scroll down “SIMPLE_UPDATE_MODE” and change its flag from “false” to “true.” This will make TTRSS update your feeds for you every 30 minutes (by default, you can change this in the Preferences) as long as you’re logged in. Set it as a pinned tab, and you’ll never have a problem.

And I have the final sheet of items I may look at someday, depending on whether I actually switch in the next 7 days from Feedly to it.

Additional Reading

That One Privacy Site

This is a solid site and well referenced on the Internet for those looking for information on VPNs.  From the author of That One Privacy Site:

There are some other good resources that cover privacy based topics quite well, but when I started down the path of retaking my own privacy, there was very little unbiased and reliable information with regard to VPNs.

I started researching data about VPN services for my own knowledge, then posted the information online in the hopes the Internet might find my work useful for themselves.  Through the positive feedback and assistance those in the community offered, I’ve been able to take this step into compiling all of my related work in one location and moving away from the Google Spreadsheet that it was originally created on.

Please enjoy my Simple VPN Comparison Chart, Detailed VPN Comparison Chart, VPN Reviews, and Commentary on how to choose the best VPN (for you).  Please also take a moment to read the FAQs!

(I plan to add more content as time goes by, but for now the site focuses mainly on my VPN Comparison Project).

Replacing Surname with Last Name in Moodle 3.1.1+

This is a post recommending utilizing Moodle menus as opposed to writing your own code.  If you prefer to customize your site in a manner that upgrading becomes nigh on impossible, please, do so without leaving a comment or reading further.

New accountI had an amusing time reading the posts of folks who have hacked the PHP code, and brilliantly, they really can code elegantly, in various places to modify the sign in screen to replace “Surname” which is English (think across the water in either direction) with “Last Name” which is the US English version of what is required in that field.  Some of these hacks were worth seeing just to learn how simply one can change a great deal of code.  In addition, they were accurate and changed with various versions of Moodle. 

HOWEVER, for all of the versions I read there was also an answer in the Moodle documentation.  Maybe it is that the answer references Language Packs and that deters folks.  I will argue that making a change that uses Moodle in a standard format does make updating much easier and straightforward, and well, as you might imagine, also fixes other language issues.

If you are running a US site, in version 3.1.1+ (the documentation references v2.7 on)  one simply goes to Site Administration –> Language –> Language packs and installs the EN_US version of English and then sets it as the site default …

Today’s Lesson

error/invalidrestorefile Errors Trying to Restore a Course in Moodle

I am running Moodle 3.1 (Build: 20160609); however, none of that matters.  I had errors restoring files as I reset my system for the next academic year which I do immediately before they send me packing for the summer season. 

I got it to work last Friday but on Monday decided to start again from scratch and ran into the problem again and the forums simply didn’t help me.

Both last Friday and Monday, with a fresh install and database I had the eror ‘error/invalidrestorefile’ crop up when attempting to restore backups files from a Server File Repository I had created on the server.  I tried all the suggestions in the folder, but so many seemed to end with “that fixed it” when the resolution should not have.  

The trick to solving this is to see the patterns in the postings on http://moodle.org.  Most “magically” solved the problem and couldn’t really give developers any explanation.

It doesn’t restore from the respository, not with “Import a backup file”, it appears to run into the 2MB limit and yet returns ‘error/invalidfilerestore’.  I did grin at the person who deleted PDFs, delete what you will, when you are under 2MB it works.   UNLESS, you simply waltz into the Front Page Restore and ADD the file to the backup location.  Yup, on the page below I was selecting the “Import a backup file” location when I needed to click on “Manage course backup area” [it also works in “User private backup area”], then select the Moodle “copy” to copy the file from the Repository to the appropriate backup area and THEN it restores just fine.

Whew!  Somedays I should have more coffee and click less.

Moodle File Restore

BestOf: Wireless Nework Watcher

Everyone in my neighborhood is so close, and along with XFinity routers, everyone attaches to everyone else’s Bluetooth and WiFi without much thought at all over various times.

When I wanted to monitor my WiFi I used one of my favorite tools Wireless Network Watcher from NirSoft.  I had forgotten one of their other cute little tools WakeMeOnLan which will allow me to shut off my computers and wake them up prior to getting up in the morning.  Inexplicably difficult on the BIOS anymore.

wnetwatcherWireless Network Watcher is a small utility that scans your wireless network and displays the list of all computers and devices that are currently connected to your network.
For every computer or device that is connected to your network, the following information is displayed: IP address, MAC address, the company that manufactured the network card, and optionally the computer name.
You can also export the connected devices list into html/xml/csv/text file, or copy the list to the clipboard and then paste into Excel or other spreadsheet application.