May 1, 2017 - Steve is no longer available for freelance work. Thanks for your interest!
I've recently come through a downright purgatorial effort to get some sort of IDE debugger set up for my Drupal work. Hopefully the notes below will help other folks from running into some of these same problems.
Enterprise installs of GNU/Linux promise well-supported and rock-solid combinations of software packages.The problem with upgrading the software on an Enterprise install is that the built-in program management system only lets you upgrade and install the limited selection of packages and versions that make up that particular distro.*
It's a really good idea to use a least-privilege approach to most system administration tasks, and especially automated ones. This post describes using a "read only" MySQL user to handle backing up MySQL databases.
We use mysqldump to backup our databases on a regular basis, using scripts like this one:
There is a lot of documentation for developers and hackers working on Drupal. Resources for the everyday end user, however, are not always so easy to find. This list collects of some of the better introductions to using Drupal from the perspective of creating and organizing content for any manner of web site. Hope it's useful ...
This is a very rough outline of my approach to updating Drupal sites. Note that it assumes both that no core files have been customized and that you have command-line access to a Unix or GNU/Linux system.
1. Set up a working directory (or use an existing one)
The e-commerce module for drupal allows custom plugins to handle shipping calculations. There are some complex plugins that allow querying of the US and Canadian Post offices for live rates based on the size and weight of packages, etc. etc.
The various versions of MySQL are more or less compatible with one another, but problems arise pretty regularly, especially when it comes to moving between versions of MySQL. Here are some notes about common MySQL dumping and importing issues, particularly those relevant to Back-End, Drupal, and CiviCRM.