Network Solutions Web Hosting

Since I am going to be talking about a web hosting service provider It occurred to me that it would be a decent idea to start by providing a definition.

Web Hosting is the disk space on a web server that holds all of the files needed (html, images, video, sounds, Etc) for a website or blog of any kind.  When a visitor types your domain name in their browser it contacts a Domain Name Server to translate the address you typed into the IP address of the server where the web site is hosted and then it contacts the server with a request for the page you asked for.  The files that make up that page are then transferred to your web browser which then reassembles them.

Ok, with a basic idea of what web hosting is, the next thing to consider is what web hosting provider to choose and which package is right for you?  Network Solutions is an example of a provider of Web Hosting Services.

For Web Hosting services they offer three basic plans.  On the standard plan you get seven gigabytes of disk space (easily enough for a large number of sites), monthly data transfer is 150 gigabytes (every time somebody loads your page the files that make it up are transferred to them)

For a basic personal site or blog, the standard plan is most likely the best one.  However if you’re running a larger blog or business then you’d be better off upgrading to advanced or pro web hosting packages, each of which has progressively more disk space, monthly data transfer, ftp accounts, email boxes and generally higher limits in most features.

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Picture Trouble? fotofix.com To the Rescue

Digital cameras are so common now that there are more people taking more pictures now than ever before.  Of course, people want to use these pictures in a wide variety of situations and honestly it makes sense.  Why spend the time and money for a professional photographer when you can take a pretty good picture with most digital cameras (don’t forget camera phones).  All you need to do is download the pictures to your computer, pick out the one you want to use and then either print it out, send it somewhere by email or post it on a website.

The only downside involved with using your own digital pictures is that because you’re not a photographer and you don’t have fancy photo enhancement software, regardless of how good the shot is it won’t have that professional look that is often needed to put it over the edge just far enough.

Fortunately there’s a photo enhancement service, Fotofix.com that’s perfect for getting those pictures adjusted the way you need them without having to spend a bunch of time and money getting and learning how to use software to do something you would only need once in a while (or maybe you just don’t have the time).

This online photo enhancement service is easy to use, you upload your picture as a .jpg file, specify the edits you want done on it…image crop, color correction, and red eye removal, improve skin, whiten teeth, hair color, eye color, background change, weight reduction, object removal Etc…  They do the edits and inside 24 hours you’re looking at a watermarked preview of the finished product.  Once you approve it you pay their fee and download the completed photo without the watermark

Christmas Shopping and www.techbargains.com

As Christmas approaches it’s once again time to start hunting and searching to find gift ideas.  In addition to finding the right things to get for people, I think most people want to save some money at the same time.  Techbargains.com is a site that helps you find what you’re looking for when it comes to the tech type gifts.

There is Email newsletters with bargain news and consolidate all of the best deals of the week in one place.  The site itself features bargain news in the center column where new deals are added throughout the day.

Of course, no bargain site would be complete without Coupons and rebates.  Their coupon listings make it pretty easy to find things like dell coupons in the positively huge list of coupon codes.  Add to that the ability to subscribe to deal alerts customized to your interests and you’ve got a lot of shopping potential

Their product database is loaded with reviews that help you make comparisons between products and deals. They’ve got a great tool in the “Find Lowest Price” link.  There you can find the lowest prices on anything they’ve got.  You can also sort the listings by popularity and rating as well as by price.

I spent some time looking over their laptop offerings and they’ve got a lot to offer.  Not only is there complete specs on everything there, but all of the listings I looked at also had at least one review from somebody who had bought one before.  That kind of review is really valuable because that gives you the real experience of users to help make your decision.  If something has bad reviews, you can reconsider buying it and look elsewhere, saving yourself aggravation as well as money.

Newsletter Management

If you’ve ever tried to manage a newsletter or some other opt-in email campaign then you know about all the hassles involved.  From designing the email or newsletter template to handling subscription and unsubscribe requests and dealing with bouncing mail it can easily grow into a nightmare.  That’s what iContact Email Marketing is all about. It is an email marketing, surveying, auto responder, and blogging tool.

This email newsletter tool lets anyone from small businesses, non-profit organizations associations to easily communicate online with their customers, prospects, and members. their prices start at $9.95 a month.  Included is a large selection of templates and other features such as surveys, an email autoresponder, and blogging capability from the same application.

The application allows you to track the opens and clickthroughs on your emails, add a sign-up form to your web site, segment your list, and manage your subscribers.

Another ‘Patch Tuesday’

Another ‘Patch Tuesday’ has come and gone, this time with more security patches being released for several versions of IE, including IE7, that are intended to make it harder for evil sites to spoof the content of the location bar as part of “phishing” scams where they try to convince you that the site you’re looking at is your bank when really it isn’t.

Other patches include more efforts to keep people from hacking into the computer to steal information or install malware in ‘drive by downloads’ and so on.

My preference and advice is to avoid a LOT of trouble by simply not using IE for any reason at all, ever.  You’re a lot better off to get Firefox 2 and use it instead of IE.  For most people’s email needs, I’d recommend either Thunderbird or Claws-mail.

In addition to using Firefox instead of IE, I also use WindizUpdate instead of Windows Update.  You get all the same windows security updates & such, but it works in Firefox and you don’t have to connect to Microsoft to do it.

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