A client recently asked us to create a members-only curriculum section, which allows certain logged-in users to download from a library of PDFs. The client also wanted to be able to track which users were downloading which materials in CiviCRM, so they could target the downloaders of certain materials with follow-up e-mail. To do this, I wrote a very simple Drupal module to log the downloading of materials as an activity in Civi. It hooks Drupal's hook_file_download to make calls to the CiviCRM API. Note that this module probably shouldn't be used as is in your site - it lacks error handling. I'm posting it primarily as learning material. Also, suggestions/feedback are welcome!
Palante Tech Blog
If Palante set up your office server, it is very likely running Debian Linux version 6. We set up Debian as the operating system for our client servers due to its stability, flexibility, and low cost of operation. Debian is open source software, and all software updates and upgrades are free to download. However, security support updates for Debian 6 will be coming to an end soon. That means that servers running Debian 6 will need to be upgraded to Debian 7 or later; otherwise they will be at risk of experiencing security holes or other bugs.
Recently at the Aspiration Tech Nonprofit Software Developer Summit, Jamila gave a short presentation based on their work with setting up Ubuntu LTSP computer labs. Our clients have found this to be a great use of old computers which are too slow or too broken to use otherwise. The computers are set up in such a way that there is one main computer running as an Ubuntu Linux server, and then several computers can be set up as terminals that connect to that server.
Palante recently launched a new Drupal website for FIERCE, a grassroots organization that builds the leadership and power of LGBTQ youth of color in New York City. We helped FIERCE shape a website plan based on their goals and audiences, migrated content from their old, proprietary content management system into Drupal, created a new mobile-friendly site design based on their existing organizational branding, and integrated Drupal Commerce store and CiviCRM mailing list functionality into the new site. Palante is proud to work with FIERCE as they continue their brilliant and vitally important work in NYC and nationally. The rebellion is not over!
On April 8th, 2014, Microsoft will end support for their Windows XP and Office 2003 products. After this date, Microsoft will no longer provide patches for any security vulnerabilities found. It's safe to assume that many hackers will hold off on using the exploits they've found until after that date, rendering Windows XP unusable almost immediately. For this reason, Palante Tech will no longer be able to support computers running Windows XP or Office 2003 after April 8th, 2014. We ask that our clients plan to replace, upgrade, or retire the computers you still have running Windows XP and/or Office 2003.
Palante Tech is proud to have worked with the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives and the Democracy at Work Institute to launch their new websites. Both sites are tightly integrated with the CiviCRM implentation that Palante also developed for the USFWC, allowing USFWC members to access member benefits and materials online, view member-only resources in the DAWI Resource Library, and be featured along with service providers in USFWC's online directories.