Blog Archives

Custom Theme Page Template

Custom Wide Page Template for SME Tech

Today was spent creating a custom page template for one of my websites – SME Technology – to use a wide format for single column, no sidebar pages.

WordPress Custom Pages Easy

custom wordpress page template featured imageIt’s quite easy to add a custom page to a WordPress theme… At least if an existing page template is used. This time the main goal was to use a custom style sheet to increase the page width and reduce white space between the header menu bar and the page title.

To get this right, I had to use a custom header.php file with the custom page template. Again, the theme header.php was the basic file, the only change being the link to the new style sheet.

For some reason getting a relative path to the stylesheet gave the most trouble. Maybe I’ve just got used to using full urls for stylesheets coding, and don’t usually worry about relative paths – why bother if the stylesheet is only used on the site it’s designed for. This time I wanted to package the template files for a download for other users, so a relative path was needed.

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Stop Timthumb Attacks at Server

Stop Timthumb Attacks Before WordPress

Stop timthumb attacks wordpress iconAll owners of busy, and not so busy, self-hosted WordPress sites and blogs will know all about timthumb scripting attacks on their site. If the site has the latest up to date version of the vulnerable files, that’s as far as the attack will go.

But constant timthumb attacks are still annoying and use up resources with 404 page not found responses.

Stop Timthumb Attacks at Front Door

Here’s a way to stop these annoying attacks at the front door, before they even get to WordPress. The following script shown below added to your website or blog .htaccess file will prevent nearly all timthumb RFI attacks from wasting server resources.

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WPOnlineStore PHP Fatal Error ‘function.require’

Googlebot Error with WPOnlineStore Plugin

Googlebot triggers a PHP Fatal Error ‘function.require‘ error causing the bot to receive a “500” internal server error when trying to crawl the pages created by the WordPress WPOnlineStore plugin. In my previous post I mentioned this ongoing problem. Today I can provide some additional information.

The problem is not unique to my shop site; initial searches of the internet found only a few references to this problem. for the past two days the hosting company server engineers have been looking into the problem, unfortunately without any success. After disabling Apache mod_secure settings, which appeared to be causing the error, Googlebot still triggered this error.  As previously mentioned in Googlebot has Problems with WPOnlineStore, it is only Googlebot – and there lies the first clue.

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Apache Down

Our Website Server Has a Problem

500 errors enough already cartoonThe horrible feeling of clicking on a page, and the site reports a server error, and stays down… Since just after midday yesterday the Apache server hosting graphicline.co.za and all our sub sites has experienced problems. Major configuration changes were rolled out starting on Sunday April 16, which have severely disrupted the function of these sites…

Memory Allocation Reset to Default

First off all, memory allocations were reset to the server default value of 32MB – totally inadequate to run Drupal and WordPress. Then today I discovered sub-domains with static HTML files only were also throwing up a server error – so the sub-domains weren’t being seen as such by the server.

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TimThumb Exploit

TimThumb PHP WordPress Vulnerability

Timthumb WordPress ExploitAn image re-size script timthumb.php released by Google and used by many Word Press (self hosted) themes and plugins had a vulnerability allowing hackers to load malicious script files to a Word Press website.

Hackers use automated bots to trawl sites looking for timthumb.php files in certain folders e.g. wp-content/themes/ and /wp-content/plugins. Once the bot has found timthumb.php the hacker will try to attack the site.

The vulnerability was discovered in August 2011, and the file was immediately patched to prevent these attacks. Judging by the large number of bots still looking for these files, there must be many un-patched versions still used on Word Press blogs and sites. Read the rest of this entry

Website Service Advisory

We are upgrading

Upgrading to provide a better service

NOTICE OF POSSIBLE WEBSITE INTERRUPTIONS!

Starting on the 15th of July 2011, we are embarking on several projects which may affect the availability of our website www.graphicline.co.za

The main part of this project includes:

  • Re-configuring the server for MySQL and PHP content  (Completed)
  • Installing Drupal for development purposes (Completed)
  • Installing WordPress for development purposes

We expect the process to be fully completed and tested before the 30th of the month. During this time there may be periods when the website will be off-line, and visitors may experience 404 “page not found” and other errors.

We extend apologies in advance for any inconvenience this may cause.

Relevant noticfications will be posted on this (Graphiclineweb) site.

During research conducted over the past several days, several technical items have been highlighted which can cause a problem or two when installing these applications on a live HTML based website. The company, Afrihost, which provides our hosting solution has been notified of this planned installation and agrees there may be a few things to sort out. They have committed their support should it be required. (I would prefer to get the whole thing working myself – what can be learned from having someone else do it for you?) and an associate, a Linux/Unix programmer will also be available if needed.

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