Blob of contradictions

loadwatcher: Making your server sane when it thrashes.

Tue, 08/30/2011 - 14:03 -- btmash

A few years ago, Khalid wrote a wonderful script that would help make your apache server sane again after the opcode caching on the server started to throw segmentation faults (he aptly named it logwatcher). It was great because APC would crash for unknown reasons at the time and completely kill a website. It took care of an important issue (the one change I had made was to clear the apc cache instead of restarting the server but all in all, super ^_^).

Drupal Camp LA 2011 - recap of an amazing time.

Mon, 08/08/2011 - 09:52 -- btmash

Over this past weekend (August 6 and 7, 2011), the LA Drupal User Group held its annual Drupal Camp. There were 55 sessions planned over the 2 days by various members of the LA Drupal community (with a few by those visiting LA just for this camp ^_^). I don't know what to say that hasn't been said by more eloquent bloggers but it was a whole lot of fun :D

Drupal meetup in Santa Monica last night

Wed, 07/27/2011 - 09:21 -- btmash

Thanks to some of my projects being completed ahead of schedule, I was able to go to the Drupal Meetup in Santa Monica (LINK) last night. John Romine had a question for the community on how to alter one of the fields in his view to render the way he would like, Jeremy Stoller went about it by doing things at the theme layer while I (as usual) approached it by doing this at the module layer (depending on what you want to do, either way works).

Entity Caching and Drush - a sweet match.

Tue, 07/12/2011 - 10:30 -- btmash

I am a big fan of the Display Suite module. Its quite flexible and gets you up and running with a look/feel fairly quickly. One of my favourite features of Display Suite is that you can create various build modes so that they can power your views or results or have then get used in a various areas of your site. Find out how I keep things speedy through the use of the Entity Cache module with Drush.

Drupal and "Hacking" core - one possible approach

Thu, 06/30/2011 - 12:49 -- btmash
Tweet on twitter by me: Presented on hacking Drupal Core. No burning car (yet).

Over the years, I've seen and heard the phrase "Don't hack core!" mentioned by countless Drupal developers, designers, site administrators, etc. There are many blog posts on the matter (the most recent being a few weeks ago though his stance is slightly different from what I see from the rest of the community) and the number of kittens that die whenever someone hacks core. There was even a wristband created a few Drupal Conferences back. Heck, I may have had it and worn it at some point. Read on to find out.

Click here if you want to skip directly to the 'how' and slides.

Finally got some new games and now a Club Nintendo prize

Mon, 06/27/2011 - 00:36 -- btmash
I am going to receive a batch of Hanafuda cards as my reward. Woohoo!

After years of saving up points, I finally reached the 800 point mark on Club Nintendo. The way it the points work is that for each Wii game that you own, you get 50 points; for each DS game, you get 30 points. It is then followed up by a survey which awards you a further 10 points per game. However, the points expire at the end of the year, and I decided to go all out :)

Backing up your MySQL databases - (yet) another approach

Thu, 06/16/2011 - 00:17 -- btmash

Nearly every place, I work at, a common problem comes up that is not implemented: backing up the database(s). Working with Drupal, I commonly see the usage of Backup and Migrate for backing up databases. Which isn't a bad first approach. But a number of questions come to mind - what if you have a database server that doesn't just serve Drupal websites (I have a db server that hosts sites running wikimedia, wordpress, and in the past Ruby on Rails applications)?

Correcting views queries using views_query_alter

Thu, 06/09/2011 - 14:29 -- btmash
Letters representing tables linked to each other showing complex relationships.

I like problem solving. My good friend Oliver knows this and recently came to me with a Drupal problem that involved nodes related to other nodes and presenting them to the user in the correct order. For the Food Republic, he had galleries which contained story nodes which you could go through via a pager (showing the photo content one item at a time). Both an issue of views and *not* an issue of views, we needed to figure out a way to continue utilizing views while giving correct results.

Optimizing your site - modules gone wild.

Fri, 06/03/2011 - 23:00 -- btmash
This is a graph from munin showing how there was a large increase in queries/sec

While working on the one of the more content-heavy websites at my workplace (over 100k nodes consisting of galleries of photos, with some galleries having well over 2000 photos), I had noticed that while performance for logged in users (which isn't high since only site editors can log in) has mostly stabilized (there are areas where performance can improve), performance for all other site visitors was very inconsistent. Some of the galleries and gallery photos pages seemed to load fairly quickly while others took a few seconds for the page to show up.


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