Ubuntu-step Across Texas

I’d set up a Virtualbox VM as a portable “surfing machine” with which I can connect to my OpenVPN server. However, once I’d initiated a connection with the server, I wasn’t able to browse anywhere. A bit of Google-fu showed that apparently Ubuntu 16.04 loses DNS after connecting with OpenVPN, and by adding nameserver 8.8.8.8 (or pick your favorite DNS server) to /etc/resolvconf/resolv.conf.d/head solves this issue.

Link for future reference: https://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2352821

Freeform Portland Site Refresh, Blog Launch, and Ongoing Works

An all-volunteer-run, low power FM community radio station in north Portland, Freeform Portland (90.3 FM in the immediate vicinity near The Radio Room where the transmitter resides – the studio is near PCC on Killingsworth) runs its website on WordPress.

As co-chair of the station's Web Committee, I've been leading the effort to refresh, enhance, and maintain the Freeform website, which now includes a community-contributed blog and integration with a React/Node playlist logging/show scheduling app (to which I've contributed some code).

As part of the ongoing effort to provide the Freeform community with a set of applications that balance resiliency, availability, and a sub-shoestring budget, I've been working to migrate and centralize servers and services on AWS, using EC2, S3/Glacier, Application Load Balancers, IAM, Route 53, certificate management, CloudWatch, Elastic Container Service, etc.

You’re Living in Your Own (Virtual) Private Network

Using a VPN used to be the sort of badge of honor indicating that you did something important enough for your corporate overlords to grant you access to the company network through the magick Cisco tunnel (yeah, so you’re having to sling pivot tables off the office file server over the weekend, but hey, you dontcha feel special?!). Now, especially with the net neutrality repeal, everyone’s getting a VPN, and it’s not just to stream BBC’s iPlayer from the States. Continue reading “You’re Living in Your Own (Virtual) Private Network”

Example Cosmetic Surgery

The website of an imaginary cosmetic surgery practice for InboundRx to demonstrate the marketing of both the clinic and Inmode’s Fractora laser skin treatment equipment. By this point, the customization of a client brochure site template and its subsequent launch on Amazon AWS is pretty much routine. What made this particular deployment a bit more interesting is the configuration of Git and SSH to enable direct production code push from the Cloud 9 IDE to the AWS EC2 instance. It does take a tiny bit more upfront work, but I’m finding that subsequent code changes are significantly simpler to roll out!

Built with WordPress (PHP, CSS, MySQL, etc), launched on AWS EC2 with SSH and Git, secured with Let’s Encrypt and Certbot.

Live Site: https://www.examplecosmetics.com/

Repository: https://github.com/eeronomicon/wp-fractorademo

Four Pharmacies in Four States, Four Websites in Eight Days

Over the past week or so, I got to launch four websites for InboundRx: Gore Drug (Oklahoma), Bernie’s Pharmacy (Alaska), Medical Center Pharmacy (Texas), and Capitol Pharmacy (California). The deployment process involved the creation of a development site for each client on a Cloud 9 work space, on which I customize the WordPress theme via making code changes to the template PHP and CSS files while InboundRx’s designer and copywriter would populate the site’s content.
Continue reading “Four Pharmacies in Four States, Four Websites in Eight Days”

Let’s Encrypt? Sure, Why Not?

The question “Would you put your credit card info on a website that doesn’t have the love green padlock?” should elicit the same vehemently negative response as “Would you wade through a pool of piranhas without wearing chainmail?” Admittedly an SSL certificate isn’t the be all end all of safe browsing, but it’s a rather visible baseline indicator of how seriously the site owner takes security. It’s like what a friend told me about OSHA inspectors: they look for bad housekeeping and a sloppy work area, as they’re indicative of much bigger problems.

Continue reading “Let’s Encrypt? Sure, Why Not?”