Working with offshore development teams can be challenging. Often differences in culture, working hours and language can make the process of briefing work complicated and error prone. Those same ambiguities at the specification stage can later lead to time wasted at the delivery or quality assurance (QA) stage. Requirements need to be right: verified in QA (did we build it right) and but validated right at the beginning of the process (are we going to build the right thing). Requirements... + read more
Simple 1-branch dev-live version control Git, Subversion (SVN) and Mercurial are class-leading examples of version control systems (VCS). They all work slightly differently, but the fundamental principle is the same. Two developers work on the same codebase. They commit their own changes, and update or pull the other's. When they both work on the same file, there may be conflicts, but the VCS will help guide them through a conflict resolution process to get to a master committed version... + read more
Running a start-up is an awesome freeing experience, where the bounds of what each day might include are vast, but it's hard. There are so many things to do that it's difficult to work out what the right thing to do is. Without focus, a start-up business lessens its chance of growing beyond a fledgling concept, but focus necessitates a choice of what to do over what not to do. It's about saying 'no' to 100 alternatives. The single criterion for deciding what to do next is value. Which... + read more
A development (or dev) machine is designed to make it easy for programmers to try things out. Security restrictions can slow things down, so we publish dev machines with only basic security. They are designed to run in sheltered environments behind another firewall or on a protected network segment, such as your local area network (LAN). Live (production) servers play a very different role. They typically operate in much more exposed environments, so it's important that they're properly... + read more
Virtual machine networking seems more complicated than it needs to be. What I want generally is to: run a dev VM on my local machine and/or nearby server (same LAN segment) access the VM via SSH, HTTP and Samba from my local machine access the outside world from the VM keep it secure On VMware, that's nice and straightforward. The answer is NAT. NAT basically sets up your host machine as a DHCP server on its own subnet. Every guest VM gets allocated an address, and you can... + read more


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