Where do I host my websites ?

This is a question which I am asked many time and then I give them the name and they forget and ask me again. As part of this conversation, they also ask me queries like

* how many e-mail accounts I can have ?
* How much space
* How much data transfer
* Is the service good
* How long you have been with them and how would you rate them
* and so on

So I thought that I would write a small post.

I host my sites with
and its been almost one and a half years. I was referred this place by someone who has been running a site for a while.

My requirement was very simple. I wanted a host which can allow me to do almost everything by myself. The worse thing which one has to do in this business is call someone and then ask them to publish something or get DB access or whatever. Also, it has to offer a rich set of tools like databases, blogging s/w, billing s/w, e-mail clients, scripting support and so on. I had setup many sites at my work and the most frustrating part is when you can’t install a new Perl Run-time because the server belongs to someone else and he would want you to port your code in Php or Python.

Hostmonster has all of this. I pay USD $ 100 every year and as part of that I get unlimited domain hosting, hundreds of e-mail id and so on.

You can also get shell access which is really handy. Though I haven’t used that so far since I am able to get everything done through the UI itself.

I have not used any other hosting directly in the past but my experience so far makes me recommend this provider. Click on above link to know more, also if you do sign-up then I get a cut 🙂

Making a file with no extension acccessible on IIS

We were doing some tests and as part of one of the tests, we had to access a file which was hosted on a server running IIS 6.0. The program was making a http Get request and was getting 404. Yeah, the fabulous 404 error. What was really happening was that server was returning 404 for all files which has no extension.

We searched around and asked local experts and almost everyone could tell us on how to add a file extension but almost every one had no clue on how to add a Mime type with no extension. We tried many crazy things.

So we searched and searched and finally were able to get past. Since it took some time for us to find a relevant info on web, I thought that I would write a small post on this. So here’s what you need to do.

Go to IIS, then Server name and then the domain name where you need to make a file accessible with no extension. Click ‘Properties’ and go to ‘HTTP Headers’ and then click [Mime Types]. I am not giving step by step as I am assuming that you would be able to figure this out.

Now comes the real part. In the ‘Mime Types’ dialog, click [New]. You would get following.

Enter the following information:

* Extension – *
* MIME type – application/octet-stream

Remember the screen-shot has some other extension. Just ignore that and enter ‘*’ for file type and application/octet-stream for MIME type and you are good. Hope this information is useful for you.

Setting a meaningful WP sender e-mail

I have a blog which is hosted on WordPress. Its a travel blog and I wanted that Authors be notified when a new comment is made on any of their posts. So I did the relevant settings but funnily the sender e-mail id is host#.hostmonster.com. I have taken the hosting from Hostmonster.com.

This was my first experience with a website so I sort of let it go. Once the site was old and I had more information and time, I started looking for a solution. I found the solution here


and it worked. In a nutshell the solution is
1. Look for a file called php.ini. Its usually on the root
2. Look for a following command and add -f option followed by e-mail id.

sendmail_path = /usr/sbin/sendmail -t -i -fusername@domain.com

3. Copy this file to WP blog root.

You need to ensure that the e-mail id which you are using is correctly configured in cpanel.

This did solve the initial problem. Now users were getting e-mail from a relevant id. But still it was not looking very elegant as there was no sender name. I wanted to see if there could be a way where I can set a ‘Sender’ name instead of an e-mail ID.

I asked Ritesh and he was not aware so I did some research and buoyed by the initial success after Reading Ritesh’s article, I found a solution.

I did following

sendmail_path = /usr/sbin/sendmail -t -i -fusername@domain.com -FfromGhumakkar

I was expecting that it would set the Sender name as ‘From Ghumakkar’ but WP actually now setting the real commenter as the sender, which is all the good.

If its useful to you then do write a small comment.

India in slow motion – By Mark Tully – Review

I recently read a book by Mark Tully, its called ‘India in Slow Motion’. This is the first time I have read anything by Mark Tully, the famous BBC man and I am very impressed by the narration.

The book is about ‘Poor Governance’ and talks about social/political/cultural issues around governance. To me the book also sounded like a travel book and I picked a lesson or two in detailing things from Mark and am gradually applying them in my recent travel stories at Ghumakkar . There are about 14-16 chapters with chapter talking about a issue ranging from Carpet makers in Mirzapur to Gujrat rain harvesting solutions to Cyberabad and so on.

Mark and his partner Gilly have traveled extensively to capture the story at grass roots, the real reason behind the poor governance and even though it may appear that it would be a tough and a boring read, its not. Probably because the narration is super, the detailing amazing and most importantly its a real experience book and not a gyan by someone.

What greatly impressed me was this non-judgmental style of writing. Mark comes out as a great man of tact as writing against a particular government or person could get one into a problem but he handles it with so much of tact that its sounds convincing, true but yet very much un-biased.

I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to know about India. Its also a great read from travel point of view.

I have just picked up ‘City of Djins’ by William Dalyrymple and I hope to finish that in next 2 odd months. Yeah I am a very slow reader 🙂

What is Tequila ?

Its the name of a town, its also a kind of drink. Is there a connection between the two, well there is. And the connection is ‘Blue Agave’. ‘Blue Agave’ is a plant whose juice is used to make drinks. Tequila is one such drink. The other important thing to note is that this town is in Mexico and till date Tequila is only brewed in Mexico. The usual alcohol content is about 40 % but you can find one which has as much as 46% alcohol.

Blue Agave
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