Browsing the web category

internet explorer turn off cache

A coworker called me with a problem of one my web applications.  When they put new data in, it didn’t show up.  Turns out it wasn’t an issue with the code, but the browser.  Her browser (Internet Explorer) wasn’t showing any updates – it was always showing the old/original version of the website.

The solution: ensure the cache is turned off (and get the latest version of the page every time it was viewed)

Internet Explorer >> Settings >> General Tab >> Browsing History >> Settings >> Check for newer versions of stored pages >> “Always”

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  • 04.22.2017
  • web
  • 07.30.2015
  • web

Firefox won’t load Yahoo – sec_error_expired_certificate

I convinced my great aunt (90 years old) to use the Internet.  Her computer is quite old (but surprisingly fast), and she has DSL.  I put Firefox on her computer as the default browser, and it opens when the computer loads.  Yahoo is her homepage; but she was getting an error (immediately – on Yahoo’s website) about “This website is not trusted…” and there was an expired certificate.

She didn’t know how to proceed, so I went over.  The computer had worked for years; not sure why it suddenly changed.  A “System Restore” did not solve it.  In the browser, I clicked the button “Add Exception,” but it was kind of weird in that Yahoo shouldn’t have caused that error.  I clicked the button for viewing details and it said: sec_error_expired_certificate.  When I went to the Google homepage, it wasn’t causing this issue.

I tried to install another browser (Chrome, portable), but got an error about Windows not having an updated Service Pack.  The computer was so old (Windows XP, IE6), I couldn’t even do a Windows Update (!!!?).

Of course, I searched for the solution, and it had to do with the date/time + timezone of the computer.  Somehow it was set back to be 10 years ago, and a timezone off.  The solution was to correct it, which I did.  That caused the Yahoo homepage to load, but Yahoo email still wouldn’t.

Being pressed for time and having hardware/software limitations (ex. unable to even upgrade a service pack to install a newer browser), my solution was to just use Google 🙂

But it was weird (and interesting) that the Yahoo homepage somehow needed to read the computer’s local time, and gave a security error when it couldn’t.

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  • 05.10.2015
  • web

Files in Git don’t delete after a reset

I’m still new to Git.  The following steps occurred:

  • I committed my project and pushed to the server
  • I did a scaffold, which created new files
  • I wanted to roll-back to the last thing I committed, so I did git reset – – head MASTER
  • Everything got reset, but the new files that were created from the scaffold were still there

I was expecting it to reset everything back to the current state, prior to the scaffold being created.  But instead it only reset the files that had existed.

The solution was to delete the untracked (new) files, via git clean -n (to verify) and git clean -f (to delete)

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  • 04.18.2015
  • web

How to change default colors for links in Internet Explorer

A coworker wanted to  change the default link color in his Internet browser.  When he would click on a link (from Google), he wanted the color to change to indicate it was visited.  I thought this was a default function, but it wasn’t working on his computer.

The solution:

Options >> General tab >> Appearance >> Color button

Uncheck “Use Windows Colors” and then you can change the color of “Visited” links.

There’s a link for “how to ignore preset colors” with additional information, but I think the above will do the trick.

I also said in my response:

Note: as a web developer, I should mention it’s possible that the person who made the webpage set the colors to specific values, no matter what the “default” ones you have set are.


As it turns out, he was still unable to make the changes – sounds like a limitation of not being able to change settings/configuration, as placed by the company that manages our computers.

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  • 09.28.2014
  • web

Waterfall graph in HighCharts doesn’t work in IE8 when using Bootstrap CSS

I’m using HighCharts for jQuery graphs on the web.  I’m also using Bootstrap for some CSS (specifically, a table).  Everything works in Chrome, but of course it doesn’t work in IE8 (what my users have).

Specifically, the “waterfall” graph doesn’t show correctly in IE8 – but only when also using Bootstrap.  After a lot of investigation, I realized it was the Bootstrap CSS file (and not the jQuery that I originally thought).

First I grabbed the non-minified version, and taking out everything, one-by-one (of course, in large chunks) to figure out what the problem was. Surprisingly, here’s the culprit:

body {

  font-family: “Helvetica Neue”, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;

  font-size: 14px;

  line-height: 1.428571429;

  color: #333;

  background-color: #fff;



Specifically, it was the one line:  line-height: 1.428571429;

One you remove that, it worked! For me, in the version of Bootstrap I was using, it was around line 280.

Maybe IE8 has some sort of limit on a maximum decimal point precision for the line-height… but it was somehow conflicting with how the HighCharts graph was being loaded.  By removing that one line (of the ~6,000) this caused the waterfall graph in HighCharts to correctly work in IE8 when also using Bootstrap!

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Listen to you customer, then ignore them

A non-technical lesson learned: figure out what the customer wants.  I remember reading that developers should listen to the customer, and then ignore them!  (Unfortunately I can’t remember where I read that  that – it was probably “Getting Real” or “Don’t Make Me Think” – I did a quick Google search for the quote but couldn’t find it.)

I had some rather complicated code that was used to generate graphs on the web ( – which I highly recommend).  After running the SQL through a recordset, I created a few (dynamic) arrays. (I was using ASP, but really it could be for PHP or any language).

I had to work on a brand new project for a customer, which involved graphs.  Of course I started from something I had already made.  But getting the graphs to work in my existing code was a bit tricky.  I would have to had get the data, transpose it, and then use that new data for the graph.  I was better off with a brand new SQL statement and getting a sample graph from the documentation to start from scratch.

Lesson learned: find out what the customer wants – if they only need something simple, then there’s no need to use complicated (but working) code to replicate it.

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Easily share screenshots

I use the server to easily share screenshots.  You might think it’s not a big deal, but this tool is surprisingly handy!

I setup a keyboard shortcut (Ctrl + Alt + some letter), and then the program activates.  You draw a window around the part you want to take a screen shot of.  Then it automatically uploads that image (to their site… but really, it’s Amazon Web Service), and you get a super short URL that’s automatically copied to your clipboard.  So all you have to do is “paste” (as, it’s already copied) into the email / FB / etc.

The one downside: the URL that you get is like – so I’ve had people unsure they want to click the link, because it looks suspicious.  But if you upgrade to the “Pro” account, you can get a custom domain.

I find this so useful, that I DID sign up for the “Pro” account.  You can’t have it in a subdirectory but you CAN have it as a subdomain.  For example:

I think it’s pretty useful.  Try out the free trial.  If you like it, please use my droplr referral link so that we can both get a discount.


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embedded videos for YouTube won’t work in FireFox

I had to embed a video into a website.  I grabbed the code from YouTube – it worked in Chrome and IE, but not in Firefox.

After a lot of searching,  I found out it’s basically a bug with Firefox.  There’s no fix.  What I ended up doing was right below the video, I had a link to the YouTube version.

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  • 11.21.2013
  • web

Web Programming Languages

The core language used to make web pages. Browsers translate HTML code into the visual output that users see. It is used to layout where/how the content appears on the screen.

Used to format how the page looks. Although this can be done with HTML code, this gives much more control. Also, it provides a way to make every page appears in a similar manner, and changes in multiple pages are easy to make.

Provides user-interaction, based on events (mouse and keyboard clicks, form submissions, timers, etc.) One common usage would be validating user input, such as making sure someone entered in a “required” field on a form. JavaScript is more complex than HTML, and is roughly based on the Java language.

ASP, ColdFusion, JSP, PHP
These are languages to interact with a database. I feel that ColdFusion was the easiest to learn, but you do not have as much control with the data. ASP (commonly used with a Microsoft SQL Server database) and PHP (commonly used with a MySQL database) are used more often. I do not have any experience with JSP.

A method to store information; generally not used to make web pages. One can use this to create their own markup-language.

A combination of technologies (JavaScript and XML) used primarily to interact with a database without refreshing the web page. For example, with Google Maps, the map does not refresh every time you “move” (scroll in some direction to see a new part of the map) – instead, just part of the web page (the map) is reloaded with a new picture.

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  • 08.08.2013
  • web