Drupal 8.4 Available and Fixes Huge Database Caching Issues

Submitted by Bryan Ruby on Sat, 10/14/2017 - 21:31

Your hosting account was found to be causing an overload of MySQL resources. What can you do? Upgrade your Drupal 8 website to Drupal 8.4 or higher. 

One of my goals in rebranding my website from CMS Report to socPub was to write diverse articles beyond the topic of content management systems. Yet, here we go again with another CMS related article. The Drupal open source project recently made available Drupal 8.4 and for me this version has been a long time coming as it addresses some long standing frustrations I've had with Drupal 8 from the perspective of a site administrator. While Drupal 8.4 adds some nice new features, I'm just as excited about the bug fixes and performance improvements delivered in this new version of Drupal.

When Drupal 8 was introduced it made significant improvements in how it caches and renders pages. That's great news for websites that use Drupal's built-in caching to speed up delivery of pages or page elements. But there was one unwanted side effect to the cache enhancements, excessive growth of cache tables with tens or hundreds of thousands of entries, and gigabytes in size. For my own website it is not too uncommon to see my database reach 4 GB in size. Let's put it this way, it was no fun to receive a letter from my hosting provider that they weren't too happy of my resource usage. Worse they threatened shutting down my website if I didn't manage the database size better. Just in the nick of time for you and me, Drupal 8.4 delivers a fix to the cache growth by introducing a new default limit of 5000 rows per cache bin.

Why Your Website Needs SSL Certificate Security

Submitted by Walter Moore on Thu, 10/05/2017 - 23:00

In recent years, SSL certificates have become more of a necessity than a choice.

Many people believe that website security is only important where personal information, and credit card transactions are involved. This could not be further from the truth. Your website needs security regardless of whether it is an e-commerce site, or blog. SSL is the industry standard in website protection and millions of website owners use it to protect their customer’s details and online transactions.

To secure your website, you need to buy trusted SSL Certificate (I recommend the Cheap SSL Shop). If you have multiple domains,  you can use Multi-Domain Certificate to secure each individual domains rather than purchasing single domain SSL certificate for each domain. The Multi-Domain Certificate secures your main domain plus several Subject Alternative Name (SAN) domain names hosted on single or multiple servers. Before we get into the finer details of why your website needs SSL security, let us look at what SSL is.

What is SSL Certificate?

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a cryptographic protocol provides private, and secure communication over the internet. The term is also used to refer to Transport Layer Security (TLS) a successor of the Security Sockets Layer. These protocols are the industry standard security technology used to create an encrypted link between the web server and a browser. Typically, SSL provides client and server authentication, data encryption and integrity.

Findings from TERMINALFOUR's 2017 Global Higher Education Survey

Submitted by Bryan Ruby on Thu, 09/28/2017 - 17:02

Results highlight significant concerns among higher education institutions about student recruitment targets due to proposed visa/travel restrictions as well as accessibility priorities.

TERMINALFOUR, a digital marketing and web content management platform has a long history of serving the higher education community. This week they announced the results of its 2017 Global Higher Education Survey. The results highlight significant concerns among higher education institutions about student recruitment targets due to proposed visa/travel restrictions.  In a survey of 391 higher education professionals from 333 unique higher education institutions, 56% stated that travel restrictions will directly impact their institution’s ability to meet recruitment targets.

The survey was carried out among web, marketing, recruitment and leadership professionals in higher education across the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Ireland, Australia and South Africa.

The survey also found that 37% of higher education professionals have high levels of job insecurity. When asked to rate their personal job security in the context of Government policy, student recruitment challenges and internal restructuring, just 28% of respondents stated that they feel highly secure in their current role.

Fast-Loading AMP Pages Dominate Google’s First Page Results for News

Submitted by RealWire on Tue, 09/26/2017 - 16:15

Seachmetrics releases Google Ranking Factors Study for the Online Media Sector highlighting the importance of a good user experience

San Mateo, September 26, 2017 - News and information publishers who enable fast-loading Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)[1] for Google searches now overwhelmingly top mobile search results, suggesting holdouts are increasingly likely to lose readership and advertising revenue, new Searchmetrics research finds.

Some 78% of news-related results on the first page of mobile screens are AMP-enabled, according to Searchmetrics latest study, Ranking Factors for the Media Industry. In desktop Google searches too, the data suggests high-ranking content from online media and publishers will prioritize the user experience. High-ranking content is significantly more relevant to the search query, uses more words in the text to cover topics more comprehensively, and includes more links to direct searchers to related information on other sites.

“This study is designed to provide advice and observations to web publications, company blogs, online news sites and other publishers who are all competing for traffic and revenue as sources of news and topical information,” said Marcus Tober, CTO and founder of Searchmetrics.

Online media and publishing is a highly competitive field, relying mainly on advertising for revenue. In an era of so-called fake news, relevance to the search query is becoming even more important for success.

DRUD Tech Launches ddev Community Open Source Toolkit

Submitted by Bryan Ruby on Tue, 09/19/2017 - 16:42

Last week, I received an email inviting me to take a sneak peak at a press release that became public today. In the email, I was asked if I would be interested in hearing "news from new open source startup, DRUD Tech, founded by a couple of long-time Drupal contributors". According to the email, the company has been in "stealth mode" quietly working on their new product which is ready for launch this week. Given that I'm a long time fan of the Drupal content management system of course I said yes.

The new product is ddev (pronounced Dee-Dev) Community which is an open source solution intended to automate a number of web development tasks that frustratingly takes too much time and resources to manually accomplish. Having already mentioned Drupal, I should probably also mention that this toolkit is also intended for other CMSs including open source favorite WordPress. I've attached below a copy of the latest version of the press release I received. I also did a little digging around DRUD's website and found a video I placed under the press release which shows off some of the features in an earlier version of ddev.

DRUD Tech Releases ddev Community, the Premier Open Source Toolkit to Simplify End-to-End Web Development Processes

The new enterprise-grade, open source solution automates local web development processes to deliver unmatched cost and labor efficiencies

socPub: Introducing CMS Report "Lite"

Submitted by Bryan Ruby on Sun, 09/17/2017 - 13:48

As most of you know, earlier this year we rebranded the website CMS Report to this site, socPub. The website's new identity has allowed me, article contributors, and our readers to explore topics well outside the norm of conversations surrounding content management systems. Although we're going through a bit of growing pains with establishing a new identity under socPub, I'm fully committed to this new website. The change has been good for me and I'm once again inspired to write on topics that interest me.

Nevertheless, there is a very loyal segment of longtime readers that want CMS Report back. While some readers want the old site returned for personal reasons, others have expressed a professional need to cite articles from reputable CMSReport.com for their information and are uncomfortable with referencing an "unknown" website like socPub. For this reason, I've decided to introduce a new slimmed-down version of CMS Report. Moving forward, all new content management articles we publish at socPub will also be found at CMS Report.

Within the next two weeks I plan to publish a follow-up article that talks about "lessons learned" from the rebrand. This article will also better explains how CMS Report fits in as a "channel" for socPub. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them below in the comment section at socPub.

What Impact Do Google Algorithm Updates Have On SEO?

Submitted by Derek Iwasiuk on Thu, 09/14/2017 - 21:44

Among various online sought after services, SEO or Search Engine Optimization clinches the highest demand these days. Everyone wants to find a professional and reliable SEO service provider so that his or her online business can flourish. Everyone wants to have professionally designed websites so that his or her online business platform looks good. However, at the same time, they know that having a good website is nothing if it has not been promoted in the right manner. For effective business promotion, you need SEO. However, SEO is not a simple thing to be described in a few words.

SEO is complicated, and with every update of Google, algorithm SEO becomes more complex as well as difficult subject to understand. Those, who have the technical knowledge and vast experience in the field of SEO, are only competent personnel to predict the impact of particular algorithm update of Google on SEO. An algorithm update can bring in a significant change in your SEO strategies. Before going into details of SEO strategies before and after Google's new algorithm update, we should understand the necessity as well as the essence of Google algorithm update first. Why is it important for Google to update its algorithm after certain time intervals? To find the answer to this question, we shall check the following section of the article.

5 Best Alternatives to WordPress for Beginners

Submitted by Alex Levitov on Wed, 09/06/2017 - 19:44

WordPress is one of the most popular website builders favored by almost every budding blogger and entrepreneur. The open source platform is can be customized and is compatible with almost every device, offering users a wide range of plugins and extensions for powerful content management and website development. However, WordPress is not always the best option for the websites build on a basic framework. For all its user-friendliness, WordPress does require a degree of technical expertise and coding skills. The extensive blogs and technical support though helpful can be quite exhausting to understand and implement.

Luckily, there are much better and simpler alternatives to WordPress out there which are more comprehensive and competent in handling the functionalities of your start-up. Listed below are five such alternatives to WordPress that you can check out:

Weebly

Weebly is one of the oldest and most well-known website building platforms that support both growing businesses and established enterprises. An easy to use and customizable platform, Weebly has a very minimalistic interface, very different from WordPress UI that’s crowded with widgets and tools. The intuitive drag and drop framework can be operated by almost anyone as it requires no coding knowledge. If you are looking for a simple yet powerful blog creation software then Weebly is your go-to site builder. Sure it lacks the complex technical features of WordPress or the extensive template collection of Wix and Squarespace, but the platform makes up for all that with its robust and solid solutions.

ESW Capital Acquires DNN Corp.

Submitted by Bryan Ruby on Tue, 08/29/2017 - 19:30

DNN Corp. has just announced that ESW Capital has acquired the company to further invest in the CMS platform as well as the DNN open source ecosystem.

"Together with the open source community, DNN Corp. has over a decade of experience enabling customers to be successful in managing their digital content," said Andy Tryba, the new CEO of DNN Corp., and added: "As mid-market firms continue to invest in content growth strategies - DNN's simple, cost-effective and extensible CMS platform is now mission critical."

Founded in 2006, DNN provides a suite of solutions for creating rich, rewarding online experiences for customers, partners and employees. DNN's products and technology are the foundation for 750,000+ websites worldwide. In addition to the commercial CMS, Evoq, DNN is the steward of the DotNetNuke Open Source Project.

ESW Capital is based in Austin, Texas and focuses on buying, strengthening, then growing mature business software companies. ESW and its affiliated companies have been in the enterprise software space since 1988, and the group includes notable brands such as Aurea, Ignite Technologies, Trilogy, and Versata.

"We are incredibly proud of having served both customers and community for over a decade. We are glad to see ESW’s commitment to build on the foundation we have laid," said Navin Nagiah, the outgoing CEO of DNN Corp., and added: "Given the dynamism in the world of content consumption, a powerful but simple-to-use CMS platform will continue to be critical for mid-market organizations."

SendGrid Improves Email Marketing Editor Experience

Submitted by Bryan Ruby on Fri, 08/04/2017 - 17:19

While I may be an old dog with decades of experience utilizing websites for marketing purposes, I'm more like a newborn puppy when it comes to email marketing. Until a couple years ago, I never utilized email campaigns or email newsletters in hopes to get more visits to my websites. My current email marketing service provider is MailChimp, but there is another customer communication platform that is on my radar, Colorado-based SendGrid.

This week, SendGrid announced a new editing experience for SendGrid Marketing Campaigns. The new email marketing editor addresses familiar pain points for marketers who previously had to choose between the convenience of visual design and efficient editing of code.

“Savvy, time-starved marketers crave elegant visual design tools that also allow them to quickly and safely edit HTML,” said Steve Sloan, Chief Product Officer at SendGrid. “With the enhancements made to the SendGrid Marketing Campaigns editor, marketers no longer have to choose one or the other. They are now equipped with the tools to choose their own path when editing for flexibility and efficiency, empowering them to drive high engagement from their campaigns.”

New flexible editing options give marketers the ability to edit in code, design view, or a mix of both, minimizes the risk of unwanted changes to custom HTML and delivers time savings and efficiencies. The improved editing experience benefits SendGrid customers whether they send campaigns via Marketing Campaigns or create API triggered templates through SendGrid’s delivery platform.