Upgrading PHP 5.X to PHP 7 on Ubuntu 14.04 / Apache

I upgraded my DigitalOcean droplet today to run PHP 7, after a few hiccups this was the process that worked best for me.

1. sudo apt-get install python-software-properties
2. sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ondrej/php
3. sudo apt-get update
4. sudo apt-get update && apt-get purge php5-fpm && apt-get --purge autoremove && apt-get install php7.0-fpm php7.0-mysql php7.0 php7.0-json php7.0-curl libapache2-mod-php7.0 php7.0-opcache php7.0-xml php7.0-gd php7.0-bz2
5. sudo service apache2 restart

If you are using NGINX, swap step 5 above to:

First udate your NGINX fastcgi_pass directive to: fastcgi_pass unix:/run/php/php7.0-fpm.sock;

then restart NGINX:

sudo service nginx restart

When you are all done type in php -v and it should say you are running PHP 7.

So far I haven’t run into any issues with WordPress or the various plugins I’m running.

There is a very noticeable speed increase across the board with WordPress as well!

Voice Activated Home Automation with SiriProxy & ioBridge

Siri Lighting the Fireplace

Siri Light my Fire

I’ve been using ioBridge & X10 for a couple years now to control some of my appliances / lights etc. in my apartment. ioBridge is a small module that allows you to web-enable your projects. Once you buy the control panel you can extend it with various boards, probes and sensors.

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Multitasker Dream Software

“Virtual” multiple desktops is something I have dabbled with on and off for the last couple of years. No one software has manged to wow me till now, it’s called WindowsPager. Simple, open source and unique all at the bargain price of $0 – once you download (only 330kb) and run this software you are ready to start managing multiple desktops.


After you launch WindowsPager you are given 3 more desktops to keep all your different applications organized. To move programs around simply right click on the windows title bar and select which desktop to move it to. You can also move an application by holding down ctrl and dragging the icon to the desired workspace. A great feature is the flashing icon that will update you when a window has been activated, great for those IM conversations.

Do your photo editing in one desktop, keep track of your e-mail in another and do all your web surfing in yet another, WindowsPager is a powerful tool that may be just what your inner multi-tasker needs to keep on top of things.

Get it now:

Create a PDF from Anything

What many people don’t realize is that PDF is a Federal Information Processing Standard, which means the specifications behind the format are widely published. Numerous developers take advantage of this fact and create programs that offer effective alternatives to Acrobat.

doPDF is one of these alternatives that works great and allows you to create a PDF from anything, and best of all it’s free. When you download and install doPDF it creates a “virtual” printer, anytime you want to create a PDF you simply print to the doPDF printer. The document is then saved as a PDF in the location of your choosing. If you can print it, you can convert it to a PDF with doPDF.

Check it out at: www.dopdf.com