Making a career change: Why you should choose tech

Changing careers is a major life decision, and it can be a stressful time of one’s life. People switch careers for a variety of reasons – maybe they aren’t happy in their current career or maybe there are not enough job opportunities for making a decent living. The idea of returning to school for several more…

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When escaping user input isn’t enough

Many web developers have been taught that escaping user input with mysqli_real_escape_string() in PHP (or similar functions) is enough to make the input safe to use in a SQL query. However, this isn’t actually the case. While mysqli_real_escape_string() and the older form mysql_real_escape_string() are more comprehensive than addslashes(), hackers can still get around them to…

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Empower users with keyboard shortcuts

While web interfaces are typically thought of as point-and-click, power users often prefer being able to access functionality quickly just by pressing keys. You might think that JavaScript would be necessary to provide this ability in a website, but it’s possible to create a shortcut key with a simple attribute, namely, accesskey. For example, the…

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Share Excel Workbooks in SharePoint

When working in Excel on a file system, you can share the file so that multiple people can edit it, even simultaneously. However, you may wonder how to do a similar thing in Microsoft SharePoint. One way to do this is to publish portions of an Excel file as Web Parts. When editing a Web…

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How Database Availability Groups streamline high availability in Exchange Server

Starting with Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Database Availability Groups (DAG) have replaced a number of features that provided redundancy for purposes of high availability and disaster recovery. The earlier high availability approaches included Single Copy Cluster (SCC), Standby Continuous Replication (SCR), Local Continuous Replication (LCR), and Cluster Continuous Replication (CCR). Supporting these were the concepts…

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Tricks to running CMD commands in Windows PowerShell

While Windows PowerShell (powershell.exe) offers greater flexibility and programming sophistication compared to the Windows command line (cmd.exe), it’s also possible to use regular CMD commands within PowerShell. Even in cases where PowerShell has its own equivalents to these commands, it’s nice to know that you can use older commands that you’re used to and that…

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Why sandboxing isn’t sufficient for ruling out malware

One technique for determining if a file is dangerous is to experiment by executing it on an isolated virtual machine. While this approach can help detect malicious software, it can also lead to false negatives. For example, malware may only perform malicious actions in certain situations, such as after a long or random time period,…

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Easily provision resources amongst multiple clouds

The cloud offers many advantages, such as the ability to scale quickly and to outsource maintenance tasks. However, the plethora of cloud choices can get dizzying, and managing all these options becomes its own challenge. To facilitate managing infrastructure across public, private, and hybrid clouds, Cisco has created a set of tools called Intercloud Fabric.…

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One simple way to reduce the risk of hacked routers

A common avenue through which hackers can compromise routers is remote management. If you manage the devices through your network, you may need remote management enabled. Unfortunately, hackers can use brute force attacks or hidden vulnerabilities to hijack this capability and gain full control of the device. However, you can minimize the risk by configuring…

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Don’t flip flop between RGB and CMYK (CS3/CS4/CS5/CS6)

Multiple conversions between RGB and CMYK color space can degrade your image file since Photoshop rounds off the color values each time it makes a conversion. The best workflow is to make all of your image adjustments in RGB mode, then convert images to CMYK if you need the files separated that way for printing…

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Why ping tests may not accurately measure network performance

When testing network performance, one metric used is the amount of time taken by a ping test. This measures the latency involved in sending a packet and receiving a response. While unusually slow pings may suggest a problem, they don’t always correlate well with overall network performance. The reason is that throughput is another important…

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Set up variable headers and footers for multi-page templates

(97/2000/2001/2002) When you’re creating a template, you’ll often want the header and footer on the document’s first page to be different than the header and footer used on subsequent pages. A letterhead template is a classic example–typically, the first page of the letter should include your company letterhead, whereas subsequent pages should not. However, not…

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