CW10 – May 22, 2008 – Zend PHP 5 Certification Study Guide and Open Flash Charts

Angelo discusses the Zend PHP 5 Certification Study Guide 2nd edition and explains how to implement Open Flash Charts into your PHP project.

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Line-bar graphs and Pie charts for your web application

Open Flash ChartIf you ever needed to display reports of information in a visual way in your web application then you’ll appreciate Open Flash Chart.

This flash based charting library has everything. From line graphs, bar graphs, pie charts, mixed line/bar graphs and more with the ability to add hovers, custom colors, sizes and web links. The quality of these charts is remarkable. If you have ever used Google Analytics, these charts and graphs match, if not surpass, in quality.

Sun acquires MySQL

If you have not herd, Sun Microsystems is acquiring MySQL. I think this is a great move, especially since Sun has embraced the open source community as strong, if not stronger, than other large companies such as IBM, Yahoo and Google.

Article: http://www.mysql.com/news-and-events/sun-to-acquire-mysql.html

I think the move is a good one for MySQL. With the recent purchase of the InnoDB storage engine by Oracle, there has been some concern that MySQL could end up in the hands of a company that’s best interests do not involve the open source community.

The recent influx of participation in the development of MySQL by Google gives me a lot of hope that MySQL’s future will be a bright one. The next generation storage engine called Falcon hopes to become a replacement for InnoDB and many of the performance tweaks Google has implemented over the years will most likely find their way into the future versions of MySQL.

Lighty Web Server Fast with static pages

Three months ago I started looking at an alternative web server to serve URL redirects.  The need arose when I found that Apache web server would consume a lot of system memory when testing simulated spikes to the server.  Apache could handle between 1,200 to 1,700 requests a second.  Though the number of requests per second was satisfactory, the memory usage when these simulated spikes was concerning.

I did some research and came across Lighttpd web server, also known as Lighty.  Lighty took some time to figure out, but once I did I found the XML style configuration files were not hard to implement and understand.  I did find the rewriting to be rather limited in comparison to the mod_rewrite module found in Apache.  Never the less, I was able to duplicate the rewrite that I had in Apache in Lighty.  For my application, I did have to modify the Lighty source code that way redirects returned a 302 HTTP response (It defaulted to 301 without any way of changing in the configuration files).

After performing similar tests with the same server configured with Lighty, I found that Lighty could handle between 3,900-4,100 requests per second.  On top of this, memory usage was minimized to only a fraction of the total memory available on the server.  Processor usage did increase, but was not substantial enough to warrant the change.

I am currently experimenting with combining Lighty with Apache services on one server in order to utilize the best of both worlds.  See my post on the lighttpd.net forums: http://forum.lighttpd.net/topic/13830

Lighty may be able to also serve dynamic PHP files using FastCGI faster than Apache.  I am still concerned that PHP will not function correctly since it is not multi-threaded friendly.  I also have security concerns based on what I’ve seem with source code being exposed with a popular web site recently, I am not ready to take on that much risk.

Freeware CD/DVD burning application – InfraRecorder

If you are looking for a full featured and simple to use CD/DVD burning application, look no further. Check out InfraRecorder found at Source Forge.

Link: http://infrarecorder.sourceforge.net/

I just used it to do some basic burning and it worked beautifully. It’s light weight and gets you going. Check it out!