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Server on Willem's Blog

Dig for dummies

Explaining an highly useful network tool

May 24, 2019
Learn how to use the dig command to query domain name servers to find the source of network problems, IP-addresses, hostnames, mail servers and related info.

When you're building websites, apps or email services you may run into domain names and their configurations. When everything is working as it should, most of this is invisible. But when troubleshooting a domain name configuration, it may be necessary to dig a little deeper... read along to learn how!

WordPress: 10 tips to secure your website

Keep hackers out of the world's most popular content management system

Mar. 31, 2019
A lot of people use WordPress to manage their website. Prevent your site from being hacked using this blog post.

A lot of people use WordPress to manage their website, therefore it's no surprise people ask me to have a look at their site's security. As ethical hacker, I encounter WordPress in different shapes, sizes and states. Some of them are really badly protected against hacks. Prevent your site from being hacked using these 10 practical tips.

Understanding the security concerns in shared hosting

Considering open ports and unused network facing services

Feb. 28, 2019
People pay me to hack them, provided I'll explain how I did it. Read along to learn how hackers use security holes to hack your app, webshop or website!

People pay me to hack them, provided I'll explain how it was done, so future hacks can be prevented. As security consultant, I scan for weaknesses in my clients' apps, webshops and websites. Very often a hack starts by exploiting a security hole that is visible remotely. Read along to learn how hackers find security holes and what you can do to secure them.

Is the Apple Watch the modern tool watch?

Testing the Apple Watch's usefulness in real life

Nov. 2, 2018
I tested the Apple Watch during my work in Frankfurt this week where I had to go inside an internet data centre.

This week I went to Frankfurt for business. I had to perform maintenance to servers in a data centre. This seemed like a great opportunity to test the Apple Watch's usefulness in real life (other than health and fitness). I wondered, is the Apple Watch the modern tool watch?

Optimising images for the web and performance

Reduce filesize with jpegoptim, optipng, pngcrush and pngquant

Sep. 26, 2018
Make your website faster by optimising the images. This posts explains how you can do this.

One way to make your website faster is to make it smaller. Not with tiny fonts, but with less bytes! More than half the weight of an average website is because of images. Yet very few people optimise their images for the web and performance, time to find out how much bytes you can safe!

Google Analytics vs AWStats

Understanding web traffic statistics software

Aug. 20, 2018
Comparing Google Analytics with AWStats to find out where they differ and which is better.

This month I have been working on website statistics, tracking traffic using different technologies. Some of my customers use Google Analytics, others use AWStats, and some use both. Which is better is often debated, but few people really understand the differences. Time to shed some light on the magic of web statistics.

Cyber security: 5 easy tips to protect your server against hackers

Server hardening best practices for Windows and Linux

Mar. 10, 2018
These 5 practical cyber security measures will improve the safety of server, website and data.

This week one of my clients was hacked and asked me for emergency assistance to help secure their server infrastructure. It was a web server that ran WordPress websites on Apache (with PHP/MySQL), including a few webshops with customer data. This hack could easily have been prevented with the following best practices, is your server secure?

Updating Snake '97

About the challenges of developing a wildly popular game

Feb. 21, 2018
This month I bit the bullet big time: I redesigned the game engine of the wildly popular Snake '97 game. Read about the design challenges in this blog post.

Few years ago my brother threw a beer on my iPhone in an Amsterdam bar. The poor thing didn't like the Dutch brew as much as I do: it died. While waiting for a new phone to arrive, I used an old one that couldn't do anything but texting, calling and... Snake! The idea for Snake '97 was born and this month it was time to update the wildly popular game.

Clouds below my floor

Building a little datacenter in my basement

Aug. 31, 2017
Building a little datacenter in my basement utilising a very fast internet connection.

At my home I have this crazy fast optical internet connection. It is a 600MB up and down fibre connection which directly arrives in my home (no copper cables involved). It's like a private internet highway. Reason enough to find out if I could do something to make better use of all this speedy fiber galore...

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Using dig to get information about a domain name, willem.com
Using dig to get information about a domain name, willem.com
Prototype of Snake '97 running on various devices
Prototype of Snake '97 running on various devices
Update WordPress from the wp-admin dashboard
Update WordPress from the wp-admin dashboard
Time and date can be checked easily using Apple Watch
Time and date can be checked easily using Apple Watch
Check the reputation of a WordPress plugin by looking at the number of downloads and its rating
Check the reputation of a WordPress plugin by looking at the number of downloads and its rating
Password dictionary attacks use lists of known (leaked) passwords, you can find them on shady parts of the internet
Password dictionary attacks use lists of known (leaked) passwords, you can find them on shady parts of the internet
Inspecting quality: left original, right pngquant
Inspecting quality: left original, right pngquant
Snake '97 rocking the carts with Angry Birds and WhatsApp
Snake '97 rocking the carts with Angry Birds and WhatsApp
This is what the cloud looks like, dear boys and girls.
This is what the cloud looks like, dear boys and girls.
Google Analytics and AWStats - web traffic statistics software
Google Analytics and AWStats - web traffic statistics software
Use WP Security Audit Log to keep an eye on what's happening with your WordPress website (wpsecurityauditlog.com)
Use WP Security Audit Log to keep an eye on what's happening with your WordPress website (wpsecurityauditlog.com)
Happy engineer with Apple Watch inside the data centre!
Happy engineer with Apple Watch inside the data centre!
The data centre is where your server lives. Even though it may be physically secure, you should check upon its software too!
The data centre is where your server lives. Even though it may be physically secure, you should check upon its software too!
Sniff WordPress password using WireShark packet capturing (via blog.wpscans.com)
Sniff WordPress password using WireShark packet capturing (via blog.wpscans.com)
Apple Watch showing an estimated delivery time of a parcel (from the Dutch PostNL service)
Apple Watch showing an estimated delivery time of a parcel (from the Dutch PostNL service)
Console connected to server
Console connected to server
Wide screen gameplay is now possible thanks to the new responsive graphics
Wide screen gameplay is now possible thanks to the new responsive graphics
Apple Watch - a modern tool watch?
Apple Watch - a modern tool watch?

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