It is useful to be able to access your Elastic Beanstalk database (or standalone RDS database) from your own computer/localhost for staging/testing/debugging purposes. However, it is undesirable to open up the security settings so that you can access them from home. There is a way to do this all securely by forwarding all local database requests through an SSH tunnel to the Elastic Beanstalk (or other) server that already has access to the database. This is described below and is based on the instructions here: http://quintagroup.com/services/support/tutorials/mysql-linux
I wanted to convert my AWS Elastic Beanstalk instance from using t1.micro to t2.micro since the t2.micro instances cost less and are now the recommended way to use Elastic Beanstalk. However, if you simply just change the instance type to t2.micro, the instance environment will change to a red error state and you will get the following error message:
Launching a new EC2 instance. Status Reason: The specified instance type can only be used in a VPC. A subnet ID or network interface ID is required to carry out the request. Launching EC2 instance failed.
Overcoming this error and switching to t2.micro is not difficult, but it also is not obvious how to do it. The following instructions show how. Continue reading Migrate AWS Elastic Beanstalk from t1.micro to t2.micro
After about a year of running fine, my copy of Adobe Acrobat Pro X (part of the CS6 package) suddenly stopped working. It would not start. If I clicked on the icon in the start menu nothing would happen. I didn’t need the program right when the problem first arose, but after a week I needed it fixed so I did a search and found the solution at http://wpressurecooker.com/adobe-cs6-wont-start-how-to-fix/. The solution is very simple, and I have summarized it below. Continue reading Adobe Acrobat Pro X / CS6 will not run – how to repair
I was trying to add some custom code and links to my WordPress category pages (the
category.php file), but there was no quick and obvious way to get the category ID into the PHP code. After searching around on the web and not finding anything close to what I wanted, I started digging around in the WordPress code and figured out a really short and good solution: Continue reading WordPress: How to get the Category ID on a category page
It is nice to be able to track various statistics for your website using Google Analytics. It really helps you understand what pages web traffic tend to visit, how they get there, etc. Another nicety is to track social media responses (e.g., Facebook like button clicks) to your pages. You technically can track Facebook like button clicks using the the Facebook Insights tool (http://www.facebook.com/insights/), but it really is very limited and I have found it to be buggy. I prefer to use Google Analytics to track these social media responses because you much more easily see what pages received the responses, how many responses, and correlate it with other metrics available in Analytics. You can even track several social interactions other than just Facebook while you’re at it (like Twitter, Google +1 and even AdSense). The major selling point is accessing all of this from a single tool. Continue reading How to track Facebook likes/unlikes in Google Analytics
For some time now I have used Google AdSense. For about the same amount of time I have used Google Analytics. You are supposed to be able to link the two accounts so that Google Analytics can show you your AdSense data and statistics in greater detail. I was able to get my AdSense and Analytics accounts to link, but Analytics would never actually track any AdSense data (i.e., it would always show all zeros). Continue reading AdSense not working in Analytics – reporting all zeros
My blog is a WordPress blog. I think it is a good platform for a blog, but occasionally I will find small shortcomings. One such shortcoming is no obvious way to include an image in a custom menu link. Let me explain: In WordPress, you can create a “custom menu”, which can then be included in various places on your blog. For example, I use a custom menu for my main navigation menu (the one at the top of this blog that has the links “Blog Home”, “About Me”, “Blog Rationale” and “Blog RSS Feed”). The problem is that when you create a menu and add a custom link to the menu (see reference figure below), it only shows options for a link URL and a text label (no option for adding an image). Continue reading How to add images to WordPress custom menu links
How Do I Cancel My AdSense Account?
Since I recently cancelled my old AdSense account in order to create a new one, I realized that it might not be obvious to everyone how to cancel an AdSense account.
Important note: once you cancel your account, you can never use that same email address for any other AdSense account. You will have to use a different email address next time you create an account. Continue reading How to Cancel AdSense Account