Posts Tagged server

New year, new developments at Werx Limited

We had an excellent 2010 and I want to share with you some of the highlights:

  • We only had about 10 hours of downtime. This means your website was up over 99.99% of the time in 2010.
  • The utilization of our server has remained steady at under 10%. This means we’ve been able to speedily service each and every request to your website.
  • We have had no security breeches in 2010. There have been many attempts, as there are on any public server, but none were successful. In fact, we attained a certification of security for one of our ecommerce partners early in 2010. Your website was safe and sound throughout 2010.

As great as 2010 was, we are looking to make 2011 even better. So we are working on two big changes in January which should set the stage for the rest of the year.

The first is with hosting

We’ve been on the same server since 2006, and while the server itself is sound, newer technologies, like the rising tide of cloud computing, have made upgrading a priority for meeting future strategic goals. What this means for you is that we will be moving to a cloud-based architecture. Soon, you’ll be able to enjoy all of the benefits of having a website “in the cloud” including

  • lower cost (we’ll get to that in a minute)
  • better uptime
  • scalability

For more information about the benefits of cloud computing, please consult this white paper by IBM.

We’ve already begun moving sites and I’ll send out another notice when we’ve completed the move.

The second is with billing

I must admit that our billing has been rather chaotic and frazzled. And getting a good plan in place is one of our biggest goals in 2011. Our plan is to bill once a year for all hosting and DNS management services (if we are providing that service).

Since our billing terms are new, we will extend our billing terms this year to 3 months to give you plenty of time to accommodate this change. And since our move will be saving us money, we want to pass some of those savings on to you. From now on, rather than charging $15/mo for website hosting, or $180/yr, we will charge $90/yr*. That’s right, we’re now offering our rock-solid hosting for only half the price!

Thanks again for choosing us for your hosting needs. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to send us an email at [email protected].

*Includes 1 domain renewal. Additional domains will be billed at $10 per year per domain.

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Browsers, timezones, and Date

Recently I ran across an interesting problem involving dates and timezones while working on a rich web 2.0 application whose primary purpose was to allow the user to enter time values that were then saved, as true date objects, onto the server1.

Up until now I have not used time values on both a server and client level, I’d referred instead to use a UNIX timestamp that the server2 did not touch or, if they did, they did so with the client being the authoritative source.

This case was different in that the server was the authoritative source and all clients were required to deal with time values in the server’s timezone context3.

Herein lies the rub.

For this project we were using ExtJS 2.2.0 and made extensive use of ExtJS’s extensions to the regular Javascript Date object. Little did we know, the Date object is implemented per browser and while some browsers4 will honor timezone designations, other browsers5 doggedly convert any and all Date objects into the timezone  of the current system they are running on6.

While there are some solutions out there like Freegix that perport to include solutions for switching timezones on the client-side, we have yet to find any solutions that are truly drop-in replacements.

Why couldn’t IE just honor the ‘T’ or ‘O’ designations in the first place? One can only wonder what possessed the IE team when it came to this issue…

So if you are writing a web 2.0 application that passes dates between the client and server, make sure you remember that the browser has the final say in how your time gets parsed.

  1. Which, in this case is JBoss and Oracle []
  2. Database or web application tier []
  3. For us, this happened to be Eastern Standard Time []
  4. Such as Chrome and Fire Fox []
  5. Such as, surprise surprise, Internet Explorer 6 and 7 []
  6. We tested this by simply adjusting the date/time on our Windows desktops []

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