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Getting Started with PyCharm – Hello World

PyCharm is a fully featured IDE. For the new user this can be quite overwhelming. Even for the seasoned developer it can be quite difficult finding your way through a new IDE. Completing a simple hello-world app is a great way to break ground on this tool.

We will start from the welcome screen. After you have installed and launched PyCharm this is how you will be greeted.

PyCharm Welcome Screen
PyCharm Welcome Screen

1.) Select “Create New Project”, and you will see the screen slide over and we can walk through the “New Project” dialog.

PyCharm - New Project Dialog
PyCharm New Project Dialog Screen

2.) Change the file name to “hello-world”

PyCharm - Name a New Project
PyCharm – name a new-project

3.) Click Create

PyCharm - Create Button

4.) Right CLick on the FileFolder name “hello-world” on the left side of the screen. Select “New”, the “Python FIle

PyCharm - Add a Python File
PyCharm – add a new Python file to your project

5.) Give your python file a name, like “helloworld”

PyCharm - Name a New Python File

6.) Now type this into the black pane on the right:

print ("hello world!")
PyCharm - HelloWorld code
PyCharm add code to your project

7.) Highlight the “” file in the Project Tree on the left and click the Run item in Top menu. The second Run entry will be highlighted, select that.

Pycharm - Running Code

8.) From the Run Dialog select the helloworld file ( right facing white triangle ). The click green Run Arrow

PyCharm - Select file to run

If all goes well you will see the run output at the bottom of your screen.

PyCharm - helloworld code output

An that is all there is to it. Once you have navigated the “helloworld” you have the basics necessary to use this IDE.

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DIY Analytics – Matomo Install for WordPress

Get the latest Matomo ( Piwik ) code


Place this file into your Apache2 httpd “Document” directory and unzip/untar


Set permission to the owner of the httpd process ( www-data in my case )

chmod -R www-data:www-data matomo

Check the permissions

ls -l 

Make it accessable

I like to just place a symbolic link in the Documents directory of the Virtual Host I am using it with. I don’t know what the security ramifications of this might be. You, of course, will have to discern the paths for your particular setup. I keep my Virtual Hosts and Matomo at the same level.

ln -s ../matomo matomo

Browse to the newly installed system, and work through the installation. You will likely have to install some PHP extensions to get the system working fully. I had to install mbstring.

Update you apt so you get that latest

apt update

First find the package

apt-cache search mbstring

php-mbstring - MBSTRING module for PHP [default]
php-patchwork-utf8 - UTF-8 strings handling for PHP
php-symfony-polyfill-mbstring - Symfony polyfill for the Mbstring extension
php-symfony-polyfill-util - Symfony utilities for portability of PHP codes
php7.2-mbstring - MBSTRING module for PHP

What PHP Version

php -v

PHP 7.2.24-0ubuntu0.18.04.3 (cli) (built: Feb 11 2020 15:55:52) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) 1997-2018 The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.2.0, Copyright (c) 1998-2018 Zend Technologies
with Zend OPcache v7.2.24-0ubuntu0.18.04.3, Copyright (c) 1999-2018, by Zend Technologies

Ok install the correct one

apt install php7.2-mbstring

Restart the web server

systemctl restart apache2

Once you have worked through all the PHP extensions fin the link for continueing over SSL:

Next, to the database setup, bring up a console to create a user for Matomo:

Modern distrubutions allow root to connect from a local terminal instance ( ssh ) without user name and password, type mysql at the console to get the mysql-client command prompt:

Create the database:


Add a user

CREATE USER ‘matomo’@’localhost’ identified by ‘agoodpasswordgoeshere’;

Give the user permissions on the database

GRANT ALL ON matomo.* to ‘matomo’@’localhost’;

Head back to the Matomo installation wizard and Complete step 5 through 8 for your website. I am using WordPress so I only need the tracking code to plug into the WordPress Plugin.

The office WordPress Plugin for Matomo Let’s simply add the plugin and Activate. Using the default tracking option you should be good to go!

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WordPress, Apache and MySQL – Memory Management, 2 simple things.

How to keep them happy together.

Running a Low Traffic Website on a Low-End server is a great way to learn. Constrained resources necessitate careful planning of your services. In my journey to keep MySQL from crashing due to memory constraints, these two items fixed the problem.

I manage my own web site ( this site ) as a means to learn and grow my technical know-how. It does not generate any revenue, yet. As a result, I spend the least amount of money on it as possible resulting in the most anemic server. At the writing of this article, my site was slowing to a crawl and MySQL was regularly crashing. Inspecting the processes that where running I found that kswapd, the swap file daemon, was chewing on 50% of my CPU time. It was time for a beginner’s lesson in resource management.

Put MySQL on a Diet

WordPress uses MyISAM as the default storage mechanism. On my distribution InnoDB is included in the default setup. It is not needed for WordPress. As I am only running WordPress on this server I decided to remove InnoDB and free up some memory.

To remove InnoDB support you will need to find your mysql.cnf. More specifically you will need to find the instance that is being used by MySQL. I am running Ubuntu 18.x on my server. Ubuntu is a Debian based system so my configuration file is located here:


The MySQL configuration file uses sections denoted with brackets []. For example., there are two sections one name [mysqld_safe] and one called [mysqld]. The sections are completed at the start of the next section.

Place the following command anywhere after the [mysqld] but before the next []


You can now restart the MySQL service with one of the following commands:

service mysql restart
systemctl restart mysql
sudo /etc/init.d/mysql start

Break up the Apache Party

When I checked in on Apache using the command top.I had 26 processes running for Apache. My website just simply isn’t popular and not so important that it needs that much attention. The spammers and search engine bots can wait. Maybe someday I will need more resources for connections but not today.

With the version of Apache2 I am running on a Debian based system the configuration can be found in the mods-available sub-directory. However is you work from the mods-enabled directory you will see a smaller sub-set of choices. You will also answer the question of whether or not the mod you are configuring is actually enabled simply by seeing it in the directory.

To tame Apache bring up the configuration file in your favorite editor, mine nano.

sudo nano /etc/apache2/mods-enable/mpm-prefork.conf

I changed the following to lines to experiment on performance:

   MaxSpareServers          8
   MaxRequestWorkers       10

Squeeking in under the wire

These two tasks have moved my server sentiment from annoying to hopeful. This micro-server now sits just below the meager physical memory limit imposed by it’s $3.00 budget. Take a look at my output from top.

top - 09:50:03 up 15:11,  1 user,  load average: 2.76, 1.17, 0.91
Tasks:  93 total,   2 running,  52 sleeping,   8 stopped,   0 zombie
%Cpu(s):  8.4 us,  7.0 sy,  0.0 ni, 84.0 id,  0.5 wa,  0.0 hi,  0.0 si,  0.0 st
KiB Mem :   492640 total,     8576 free,   379640 used,   104424 buff/cache
KiB Swap:   524284 total,   267688 free,   256596 used.    67740 avail Mem 

I am just getting by with a teeny bit of left-over space. The key bit is kswapd has calmed down and now MySQL is no longer crashing. It may be short-lived but it is a victory for today.

Update 1:

Had to up the MaxRequestWorkers to 25, pages kept timing out.

Update 2:

Trying to find the lowest number of “Starting” and “Spare” servers I can get away with. Starting with one and having three spare.

Update3: Final Update

Looks like I have tamed the beast. I am now sitting at about 100mb free space. The final step was deactivating WordPress Plugins I did not need. I am very glad it worked as I was about to start dis-abling Apache2 mods that WordPress does not use and I am fairly ignorant on that subject, for now.

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Docker Compose – The minimalist instructions

The first pieces of how to use Docker Compose

What is Docker Compose

For me, docker-compose is a case study in the right tool for the right job. At the least, it allows us to carefully manage and maintain the instancing of our containers. docker-compose takes the command-line options for docker and places them into configuration files.

Continue reading Docker Compose – The minimalist instructions
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WordPress, Node-RED and Twitter

Publishing to all the available Social media sites can end up being monumental. Using IFTTT, rings hollow to followers and friends. Orchestrating content from WordPress using NodeRED Automation may be my answer. Stay Tuned.

My first efforts with Node-RED and Twitter were simple and promising. I was able to send a Tweet in a matter of moments. However, as I used the “contributed” Twitter nodes I quickly realized I would need to do much of this the hard way. At this point I will be digesting the following documentation from Twitter.

There is quite a bit in this documentation so I am learning both Node-RED and Twitter Authorization at the same time. If I can climb this mountain I expect I will learn many things.

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MySQL Workbench – User Migration

Working on manual backup of my WordPress site I developed a very simple approach to migrate the WordPress database user along with their password. This can be used on any or multiple users of the database.


  • A MySQL server with the user you want to copy to the backup
  • A working installation of MySQL Workbench
  • Server Connection to Source ( web-server for the source )
  • MySQL Server connection to target ( localhost in my case )

Getting the user with CREATE Statement

From the source database open a new query and enter the following SQL: Replace mcp_user with the user you would like to migrate.

show create user 'mcp_user'@'localhost';

First, using the MySQL Workbench connect to the source that has your user.

It should look something like this:

Run the query and then you can copy the results by right clicking on the Result Grid row and selecting “Copy Row (Unquoted)”. Connect to your local MySQL instance and paste the result into a new query.

Retrieve the Permissions

we will use the same command but for grants, again replacing “mcp_user” with your user.

show grants for 'mcp_user'@'localhost';

Perform the same copy action from above but this time select both rows before right clicking.

Copy User to Local Database

When you are finished you should have in your local host the following query, add a USE database; statement at the top, where database is the name of your schema.

USE mcp_wordpress;
GRANT USAGE ON *.* TO 'mcp_user'@'localhost';
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON mcp_wordpress.* TO 'mcp_user'@'localhost';
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON mcp_wordpress.* TO 'mcp_user'@'localhost';

Test the User

Run this SQL and the attempt to login and do a show database to confirm.

mysql -u mcp_user -p

The password will be the same as the originating database

show databases;

Only the one database should be listed in my case.

That’s it, seems like a lot but it only 7 or 8 lines of SQL. If you know how to execute the results of the SHOW GRANTS or the SHOW CREATE, statements or an easier method, leave a comment I would love to learn that without a lot of digging around.