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All WordPress site owners have their own list of "must have" plugins. Is one or more of these administration and security add-ons among yours? Each adds valuable functions to WordPress, and is simple to configure and use.
For a long time, I recorded a basic list of all the backups I made of my movie collection in a scruffy notebook. In due time, I found that relying on a simple piece of paper was wishful thinking. I then endured the laborious process of migrating my list to a spreadsheet on my computer -- but that still wasn't enough. Eventually I found Griffith, a movie collection manager, and was pleasantly surprised to discover what it was capable of.
While I'm a die-hard Google user -- especially the PIM apps -- I still appreciate offline applications for the integration with the desktop, speed, and features they sport. The Evolution contact and calendaring application is a great example: it's as feature-packed as Microsoft Outlook, but with GNOME integration, and it's fast. Gmail, by comparison, is slow and lacks any desktop integration. In a perfect world, Evolution would sync with Google's PIM apps. Unfortunately, there aren't any good, easy-to-use, comprehensive guides for setting up Evolution to sync with all of these apps -- until now.
After more than a year in development, Amarok, a multipurpose media player with a host of features, has issued release candidate code for version 2. It comes with a completely redesigned interface, and takes advantage of KDE 4's new libraries and interfaces. While you may have a hard time getting used to the new interface, you'll probably come to appreciate all the improvements.
GameLayers' Passively Multiplayer Online Game (PMOG), which allows users to immerse themselves in a virtual world of adventures, challenges, and intrigue, has been picking up traction thanks in part to its robust open source framework. Underpinning the popular online game is Ruby on Rails, a full-stack framework for developing database-backed Web applications that works with a variety of Web servers and databases.
Two Oregon educators who founded the K12Linux project seven years ago are glad that they have been able to hand that project over to Fedora, the home they always meant for K12Linux to have.
GNOME's Vala programming language lets you use the GLib2 object system at the heart of the GNOME desktop without having to do object-oriented programming in ANSI C. Unlike Mono or Java, a Vala program does not require any virtual machine or runtime libraries, so people who use your Vala objects don't even have to know they are not written in C.
"The future of software is in cloud computing," says Fabrizio Capobianco, CEO of Funambol, a company that provides mobile services. And if free and open source software (FOSS) is going to survive in that emerging market, he says, then the community needs to adjust by promoting greater use of the GNU Affero General Public License (AGPL), a license specifically crafted for software as a service.
Corporations and home users alike need firewall protection. Many choices abound, including some expensive, commercial options that only run on specialized hardware. Others, like SmoothWall Express, are freely downloadable, built on the same technology as the commercial solutions, and even deliver some superior features.
Archmbox lets you list, move, and copy messages from one mbox mail file to another, primarily for archiving messages. This tool lets you easily move all messages that are older than a given date into another (possibly compressed) mbox file, and you can also grab or delete messages by matching regular expressions against message headers.
Suppose you need to chart some demographical or geographical data. Using OpenOffice.org's chart module you can present the data as a bar, pie, or even exploded donut chart. What you can't do, though, is to create a map chart that shows data distribution by continent, country, or region. To do this, you need the EuroOffice Map Chart Professional (EOMCP) extension. Unlike many other OpenOffice.org extensions, EOMCP is not free, but the price is right (it costs 9.90 EUR or about 12 USD), and there is a free trial version available.
Virtualized computing environments can take advantage of built-in virtualization support in modern dual-core processors, but when it comes to 3-D acceleration in virtual machines, almost all fall flat on their faces. VMGL is a little-known application written as part of Google's Summer of Code 2006 program that lets OpenGL apps running inside a virtual machine take advantage of the graphics hardware acceleration on the host. It has limitations, but if you want 3-D in VMs, VMGL is your best bet.
Squid Graph is a Perl script that takes your Squid proxy server access.log file and generates a Web page showing you statistics about your proxy accesses and transfers, including the number of cache hits and the percentage of requests that were served by the cache alone. With Squid Graph you can see how well tweaks to your Squid configuration are working.
PC/OS aims to be an easy-to-use Linux distribution right out of the box. Being Ubuntu-based, it has a head start on being user-friendly, but PC/OS goes above and beyond Ubuntu's measures to ensure ease of use by having common third-party non-GPL software included in the install.
If you run Ubuntu, openSUSE, Debian, or Mandriva, among other distributions, then whenever you run OpenOffice.org you don't run the "official" version, but rather Go-OO, an office suite based on the OpenOffice.org source code. Go-OO includes enhancements and functions that haven't been accepted by Sun, and that may never be, because of licensing, business, or other reasons.
Ruby on Rails is garnering a lot of praise as an easy-to-use, database-driven Web framework for developing Web applications. Most of the documentation for Ruby on Rails centers on Macintosh, with the remainder seemingly only for Windows machines, but RoR is perfectly usable on Linux computers too. This article explains how to install and begin developing with RoR in Linux.
With the JShot screen capture and uploader utility, you can quickly put all or part of your screen on the Web and send a URL to it to a friend. JShot is free for noncommercial use, and is great when you want to show people a screen capture and don't want to have to deal with file names and upload permissions.
New Delhi resident Raj Mathur is living proof that a Free and Open Source Software advocate can earn a decent living working with clients who are using or planning to use FOSS. Raj has also been a member of the Open Source Initiative board of directors and is a leading member of his local Linux users group. He's also contributed to more than a few Free Software projects over the years. Raj is a "heartbeat of GNU/Linux" kind of guy -- not famous, but a stalwart soldier in the worldwide FOSS army. (And a nice person, too.)
If any process ever cried out for a graphical interface, it is using NDISwrapper to enable wireless devices to run on GNU/Linux using Windows drivers. The process is often torturous, especially for first-time users, who are unsure whether any problems are due to NDISwrapper's limitations or their own inexperience. By organizing and explaining the process, KNDISwrapper promises to remove much of the labor. But, so far, it only partly delivers on that promise by neglecting the hardest part of working with NDISwrapper -- finding the right Windows driver.
Everyone knows and loves rsync, the command that lets you clone a directory tree to another disk or system with the ability to keep the clone fresh in an incremental and bandwidth-efficient manner. Sometimes, however, you want to sync in the reverse direction. With bidirectional filesystem syncing tools, there is no primary filesystem -- you just tell the tool to make sure both target directories, or clones, are identical. Here's a hands-on look at two tools designed to accomplish that task: DirSync Pro and Unison.