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Importance of Images in Website Design & Hosting

January 23rd, 2013 Comments off

Hosting a Website

When it comes to designing and creating a website, it is crucial to take full advantage of using the images. As far as web design is concerned, it has become a trend a trend, where using of graphics powerfully convey messages that reinforces concepts and product sales that we promote.

These elements are very essential and crucial part of visual communication in tackling web design. However, misuse of images is something we can find easily. We see a lot of images, pictures, that doesn’t relate to the topic covered on website and not fits in the design as well as ideas that do not quite close. Sometimes, such excessive use of pictures and lack of text on site confuses the users.

Therefore, “it is highly important, that the text associated with a picture message should be served to clarify and define the idea we want to offer to the user.”

When designing and creating a website, an image is an important aspect and is the perfect hook to the eye when doing a tour of a page. It is always much easier to alert the user with an image that is shocking, funny, transgressive… But the meanings of an image can be various and very different, so if we just simply include an image, it will diffuse and lose the attention that we have captured in the user at first.

Hence, it is necessary that an accompanying text is served with the image to clear the vision about the image. The text will adopt the specific meaning within the possibilities that can offer us, at first glance, the image corresponding to the message you want to convey. This will further increase the users ability to remember what we wanted to communicate.

This technique is very much utilized in advertising. It uses an image that captures the users attention in the first instance, awakens their curiosity, makes them to read it at least to clear the question that has been posed and to understand the overall meaning of the ad. However, this technique is not commonly used when performing web design.

“Another factor that needs to ponder when using images on the web is that, the location of the images is more important. Most of the times people include images as a “decoration” as simple backgrounds that make navigation more user friendly and to indicate text that precedes them. This area is right for isolated cases, but it is best to make the most we can do to images, relating them to the products, services that we provider on the web page, showing the benefits users can get. In short, making communication a little more aggressive, which will certainly increase the impact on the users.

Another factor to ponder is to know the place where you will put the information. Today, people no longer visit sites through a computer. There are various devices available in the market such as Smartphone’s, PDA’s, iPad’s, Tabs, etc… What if a user visit your site through a device that doesn’t support images? Any information that go up will be imperceptible to the user, making the web page meaningless.

There are two different types of images used on the web pages:

  • Aesthetic images such as background, shading, etc…
  • Informative images such as products, services, logos, etc…

CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) is a kind of mechanism in the site that separates aesthetic images from the content. All the aesthetic images that need to be utilized on site should be added using CSS. Since this is purely aesthetic, you don’t need to insert any extra information using CSS.

Now, informative illustrations such as pictures of product, services should be included with the <img> tags, since it is a part of the web page and offers relevant information to the user. Usually, these images carries the ALT attribute to provide a description of the image, when you are unable to see it. For example, a proper ALT text for services image would be “Web Hosting Services”. For a logo image, the ALT text would be “Host.co.in Logo”.

The optimization of images also helps you in your hosting as well. The proper optimization of images using the right tool reduces the size of the images that you are utilizing for your website, helping you save more space on your server to utilize somewhere else.

Hence, when coding the design of a website or web pages, you must consider that it is designed fine, clear and with well defined elements. All the web page offering products and services must have relevant images and accompanying text to simplify the meaning.

Developing a Website Using the Joomla CMS

July 20th, 2012 Comments off

Joomla Content Management System and Blogging Logo

Purpose of a CMS (Content Management System)

As the webmaster of a busy website you will be familiar with the process of updating the content of your website on a regular basis, regardless of how you achieve this. Some websites are still based around the static HTML model which means that a website must first be modified on a desktop computer using website design software before the modified pages are uploaded the hosting server, often through FTP although there are other methods of file transfer available. The process of modifying a static website can be time consuming and there is always room for error that could impact on the design or layout of the website; CMS (content management systems) systems have been developed to improve the way in which webmasters manage their websites by only allowing the modification of content and no code. A CMS can be seen as offering webmasters and web developers benefits such as:

  • The application that will run the core of your website is solid and well tested; all you need to do is perform a professional installation and install a theme that matches the design of your business and you are set to go
  • There are a number of plug-ins available for popular open-source applications, such as Joomla, that can be used to add additional functionality to the application and improve your overall experience as a webmaster.

Joomla is a popular PHP and MySQL based CMS that is one of the most advanced platforms available for developing a website on, having been developed to be a CMS from the start whereas WordPress, another popular platform, is better served as a blogging application. As PHP and MySQL are technologies supported by both Windows and Linux, any web hosting service from Host.co.in can provide you with the features necessary to run an effective installation of Joomla.

Installing Joomla

Host.co.in offers a software management application with our Linux shared web hosting plans called Softaculous; this can be used to install a number of popular web applications, including Joomla, in your web space in just a few clicks and saves you the time and hassle of having to setup databases and the correct permissions. If you are using any other form of hosting then you will probably need to investigate other installation methods that are available and suit your hosting environment.

For the most part the manual installation of Joomla is a simple procedure that consists of the following steps:

  1. Download the latest version of Joomla from the software’s official website, located at www.joomla.org
  2. Unzip/untar the package that you have downloaded to your desktop
  3. Login to your web hosting account using FTP or any other method of file transfer
  4. Upload the contents of the unzipped/untarred file to your web space
  5. Login to your web hosting control panel and create a new MySQL database for your website
  6. Navigate to your website or the directory on your website in which you have installed Joomla where the Pre-installation Check screen should be visible; following the installation steps and you should then have a fully working Joomla installation at the end.

If you require assistance with the installation of Joomla then Host.co.in’s 24×7 support team can assist you with the installation process if necessary. Our highly knowledgeable staff can perform a clean and professional installation for you at no cost.

Themes and Plugins

Like a majority of third-party applications that are designed for open source use, Joomla has large repositories of themes and plugins for you to choose from that can be used to provide your website with a fresh new design and to extend the core functionality of the application. There are of course APIs available for you to develop your own themes and plugins if you are an advanced user with knowledge of the PHP scripting language, so even though you are going to be basing your website on a third-party application, there is a lot of room for customization.

Creating a theme that is consistent with your business’s branding is an important aspect of developing a web presence because you want your website to stand out to your visitors as being your brand. Developing a theme for Joomla will require knowledge of CSS and HTML as well as a slight bit of PHP so that you can create an effective layout. If you feel that you don’t have the skills required for this then you can always use one of the freely available themes.

Even though Joomla is one of the most feature-rich web applications available, there may be something that you’re looking for that it doesn’t appear to have. Such thoughts can be remedied with the addition of plugins to create new features for Joomla that aren’t part of the core of the software. In order to create effective and stable plugins it is necessary for you to be competent with the PHP scripting language as your code will need to be secure, but also function correctly with the rest of the application.

Valuable Tips To Speed-Up A Magento Cart

March 16th, 2012 Comments off

‘Magento’ is one of most popular CMS used by webmasters due to its excellent e-commerce website handling features. Magento eCommerce Platforms are scalable, flexible and suitable for online business growth. But still there are few cases in which webmasters are found complaining some sort of slow speed functionality with ‘Magento’. But still following are some tips and precautions, by using which you can fasten a ‘Magento e-commerce cart.

  • 1.4 Caching option is found enabled as by default, so one should not disable it without any proper requirement.
  • Use PHP Accelerator, Enable Compiler. Set 32 or 64 MB-Size of Quarry Cache and if possible disable the Logging time if it exceeds.
  • Keep Enabled all Keep-a-lives in Apache because there are the tricks where many HTTP requests can be built through a single TCP connection. So enabling it would improve loading time of your website.
  • Use Memory based file system i.e. tmpfs, this will enable your website to move fast
  • Use Plane catalog of products and the same for the categories also.

The above we saw were all technical tips now look at the following general tips.

  • If possible use dedicated server hosting for your Magento based website, this would allow you to use the Magento at its best level.
  • Keep the redirection as less as possible and make sure to check your output as W3C complaint. This is very important as any possible errors would make the browser slow.
  • Disabling server logging or at least keeping it at minimum level would minimize the disk writing frequencies.
  • Compile MySQL from source instead of your OS’s package manager
  • Swapping Apache for NginX or Lite-speed is beneficial, and if there is not such option available for such swapping then you are suggested to go for Zen Server,
  • Avoid installing any unnecessary Apache modules and DNS look-up is a time consuming element so avoid using many external sources for i-frames and images etc.
  • Regularly check out for any possible upgrades for your cart as it will enable you for advanced features and omission of any bugs which existed with your current versions.
  • Setting Apache mod-express to know how long file are to be cashed is also a good option available.
  • Use CDN (Content Delivery Network) for parallel transfer of static content.
  • Use z-lib, Compress output for output_compression;
  • Enable G-zip Compression in ht-access;
  • You can also optimize all the tables by repairing them, you would find this option in MySQL Admin.
  • Remove any unnecessary files from your server and try to find the web hosting services provider from the same geographical area from where you have the largest number of customers.
  • Use multiple web nodes-front-end server which can handle browsing and checkouts with ease.

By following these above operations you can certainly make a difference in the speed of your Magento Cart.

An Overview of XML – Part 2

December 29th, 2011 Comments off

Since XML is a very vast subject, while you study it and that’s the reason why this is one more post is needed to be written of its review. In this post you can find description of remaining features of XML, after we looked at ‘What is XML and how it is structured in previous post (An Overview of XML – Part 1)

While implementing XML you will always feel that it helps a lot of data sharing options. From a web developer’s point of view this is very positive aspect of XML because for the smooth function of a website you always need such type of data sharing among various web applications, which hold data in different structures. Due to XML this sharing can be made easy for the developers. Because every applicaton’s data structure can be mapped upon XML structure all the applications can share data in a common XML format.

An XML file can be read by human but still it’s not an interesting and easy task to do so. Being free of cost is a positive aspect of XML, it can be written with a simple text editor and tools like ‘XML Notepad’ are available fro free of cost. XML is supported by default by the web development application like Dreamweaver and Visual Studio .NET. If one want to parse it then Microsoft also provide a tool named with ‘MSXML’. XML is also usable with almost all of the leading CMS (Content Management Systems), XML documents are mostly used for storing the content which can be further transformed to provide the output on Web. The advantage of XML while transforming such data is that it make makes all changes to content to be contained at a central location and it is cascaded out in all formats required.

An Overview of XML – Part 1

December 7th, 2011 Comments off

XML stands for ‘eXtensible Markup Language’, a meta-language which is used to create other languages. In XML data remains marked up with tags, somewhat similar to HTML tags. Interestingly, the recently launched HTML version is called XHTML, which is based on XML and follows the syntax rules set in XML.

XML is mainly intended to be used for the purpose of storing data and information. This data further can be read mostly by machines and on a few occasions by humans also. This data is mostly stored in databases and it can be also stored in normal spreadsheets but one more specialty XML has that it can also store data in loosely structured manner i.e. data stored in letters or manuals.

Despite being very useful XML is found lagging behind the other competitive technologies like HTML. When you see a HTML page through your browser it is a nice thing and this is something XML misses out, one really needs to work very hard to make a XML document exciting. The main feature of XML is to store the data in databases and spreadsheets, so that applications can use it for various processes. There are very few areas, where XML has a supremacy over its competitors like it has its own separate structure of formatting where as HTML documents, word processor documents, spreadsheets have some mess-up because of mix structures with formatting which makes things difficult to handle content and design of a webpage. In XML certain predefined tags used for emphasizing can be placed in <em> tags for some other purpose, because a XML document never define that how the content of the particular tag should be displayed and the formatting part is left to an external stylesheet.

Customization Options With Time Formats In WordPress.

November 4th, 2011 Comments off

Most of the webmasters prefer to display time on their websites or blog, for particular events like post submitted, comment posted. In the previous post we saw ‘Customization Options With Date Formats In WordPress. In this post I would like to share similar type of options available to customize the Time formats. Following are the characters to be entered in the ‘Text Box’ beside the custom button option under ‘Time Format’, to get the output shown, on the actual Website or Blog.

a

Small form of character ‘A’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Abbreviation – AM and PM Ante Meridiem and Post Meridiem’ after the time as ‘character in lower case’. e.g. am, pm

A

Capital form of character ‘A’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Abbreviation – AM and PM Ante Meridiem and Post Meridiem’ after the time as ‘character in upper case’. e.g. AM, PM

g

Small form of character ‘G’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Hour in 12-hour format without leading zeros’. e.g. 1 to 12…..

h

Small form of character ‘H’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Hour in 12-hour format with leading zeros’. e.g. 01, 02 to 12…..

G

Capital form of character ‘G’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Hour in 24-hour format without leading zeros’. e.g. 1 to 23

H

Capital form of character ‘G’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Hour in 24-hour format with leading zeros’. e.g. 01, 02 to 23

i

Small form of character ‘I’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Minutes, with leading zeros’. e.g. 01, 02 to 59

s

Small form of character ‘S’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Seconds, with leading zeros’. e.g. 00, 01, 02 to 59

T

Capital form of character ‘T’ is used to get the appearance of ‘Timezone abbreviation ’. e.g. EST, MDT…..

c

Small form of character ‘C’ is used to get the appearance of ‘ISO 8601 Standard format’. e.g. 2011-12-10T18:32:10+00:00

r

Small form of character ‘R’ is used to get the appearance of ‘RFC 2822 Standard format’. e.g. Fri, 21 Oct 2011 21:01:07 +0200

Read This Before Creating A New Drupal Node Or Getting A New Node Identifier From Module Code

October 20th, 2011 Comments off

Drupal is one of the most popular CMS on web hosting accounts. When you are new to Drupal and  you try to modify the code of a module directly so that you can add some features, In such situations you should be able to create several nodes from a single form. While doing this most of the newbies forget that one should never try to modify a core or make any changes directly to modules. You can either implement changes using hook_ and theme_architecture and if these are not supported then the safest option is to copy the function in which you want to make changes, and override it. This way the changes will remain limited up to your code and won’t affect after you override a module or Drupal core.
There are two ways to create a new Drupal Node or to get a newer Node Identifier. You can select one of the two you depending on your choice.
hook_nodeapi ()
hook_nodeapi() – This hook is not reserved for any node modules, but still it allows changes in modules  which affect on nodes, despite that module defines the node. One can turn off a particular operation of a newly created node and run other function as per requirements. If you want to repeat it when the nodes are saved then you can also use the ‘update’ operation.
hook_form_alter ()
By using ‘hook_form_alter ()’ you can perform many alterations before rendering a form. Another well known user of this hook is for addition of form elements to the node form. When you are altering a node form, at that time the node object is retrieved from $form[‘#node’]. Also remember that ‘hook_form_alter()’ works for all forms and if you want to alter a specific form then you need to use ‘hook_form_FORM_ID_alter()’ this hook.

Most Frequently Used MySQL Commands (Tables) – III

August 2nd, 2011 Comments off

Tables are the very important parts of a MySQL Database and one must know the commands of handling tables and records in it to operate a MySQL database on a Web Hosting server. In this post I have mentioned many MySQL commands which are related to table with their short descriptions.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name];
This is a very basic command which a users learns at the start of learning MySQL. It is used for displaying all the records of a table.

mysql> show columns from [table name];
This command returns the columns and other information about them related to given table name.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name] WHERE [field name] = “0999”;
This command returns the certain selected rows which contains value “0999” as the field name.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name] WHERE name = “abc” AND number = ‘1234567’;
This command returns all records after checking the given conditions for two fields.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name] WHERE name != “abc” AND number = ‘1234567’ order by phone_number;
Returns all records which do match with the given conditions.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name] WHERE name like “abc%” AND number = ‘123’;
Returns all records which starts with particular letters ‘abc’ AND the number ‘123’, its useful to be used a find with uncertainty of the records.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name] WHERE name like “abc%” AND phone_number = ‘1234567’ limit 1,9;
Very similar to the previous command but just applying the limitation on the display of number of records.

mysql> SELECT * FROM [table name] WHERE rec RLIKE “^a”;
With the use of this command you can extract all the records starting with smaller case ‘a’ that means you can search the records starting with a particular letter being conditional to case sensitive.

mysql> SELECT DISTINCT [column name] FROM [table name];
By using this command you can find records which are unique.

mysql> SELECT [col1],[col2] FROM [table name] ORDER BY [col2] DESC;
This command is used to display the records from particular fields and sort then in the required order according to given field, i.e. with the above query you can find the records of column 1 and column 2 and they will be displayed in descending order as per the records of column 2.

mysql> SELECT COUNT(*) FROM [table name];
This command returns the number of rows (records) in a table.

mysql> SELECT SUM(*) FROM [table name];
You can perform the sum of records of columns of a table.

Most Frequently Used MySQL Commands – II

July 30th, 2011 Comments off

Continuing from the last post I am carring one few more MySQL commands in this post which are mostly related to handling your database, at your web hosting account.

# [mysql dir]/bin/mysql -h hostname -u root -p

Use this command to login (from unix shell), though using -h is not necessary each time.

mysql> create database [databasename];

This commands creates the database as per your desired name.

mysql> show databases;

You can view the List of databases already exists.

mysql> use [db name];

You can switch to your desired database from the current one.

mysql> show tables;

You can use this command to view the list all the tables in the database.

mysql> describe [table name];

To know the formats of fields of a database you should use this command.

mysql> drop database [database name];

If your find out any unnecessary database in your account then you can delete by using the above command.

mysql> drop table [table name];

If you want to delete any particular table from a database then you can use this command.

Note :- Others MySQL commands related to tables will be shared in upcoming posts.

Most Frequently Used MySQL commands – I

July 30th, 2011 Comments off

Being an open source platform, MySQL is one of the greatest utility for web hosting services providers and their clients to manage their databases, furthermore it can be used with both most widely used platforms of Windows web hosting as well as Linux Hosting. MySQL is a fast, robust, secured with encryption and also has very easy installation process. Following are few commands mostly used while operating MySQL.

ps -auxwww | grep mysql

This command is used for Checking whether MySQL Server is running or not

./bin/mysqld_safe &

For Starting mysql you should use this command

./mysqladmin -u root shutdown

After the work completed for Shutting down the MySQL you need to use this command.

cd mysql/bin
./mysqladmin -u root processlist
./mysqladmin -u root kill ProcessID
Any help required about mysql can be opened by enterting this command.

This is a useful command to check which query is running on which host, from which location query has been fired , which query has locked which table etc.

cd mysql/bin

This command is used to Kill processes

mysql> help alter;

REPAIR TABLE TableName

You can Repair a table by using this command.

Note :- Few more MySQL commands will shared in upcoming posts.