PHP APC and Gallery Issues

PHP offers a PECL package called APC or Alternative PHP Cache that can significantly increase performance on your LAMP server with high loads. I have seen significant decreases in performance issues over the time that I have tested it. However, once I had turned it on, I noticed some serious problems with PHP Gallery and since I was short on time, I figured I would turn it off till I could find a good solution to the problem.

Gallery will return an “undefined method” or an obscure security error with APC turned on. This is mostly evident on Gallery 2. Restarting the apache webserver normally solves this problem temporarily. I had tried to turn off the performance peice inside Gallery to see if the caching was crossing hairs with APC. That did not solve the problem. (WordPress cache might also have problems with APC, that needs addressed as well).

To make a long story short, I found the answer by trial and error. Turning off APC for Gallery classes normally fixes the problem. I built a filter for APC in php.ini that kept the Gallery files from being cached by APC. After searching some more, I found a more complete solution on the Gallery forums.

Just add the following line to the APC config inside php.ini, right above the apc.mmap_file_mask line:

Your gallery should work without any further trouble.

What Really Saves Gas? And How Much?

What Really Saves Gas? And How Much? How to save gas. Edmunds tests the “gas saving tips” that we have heard oh so often and over and over again. A couple really caught me by surprise. I really did think that leaving the air conditioning on would use more gas, not true at all. I also thought that tire pressure would have a major impact on gas mileage, again not true. No measurable gain.

Test #1 Aggressive Driving vs. Moderate Driving
Result: Major savings potential
The Cold Hard Facts: Up to 37 percent savings, average savings of 31 percent
Recommendation: Stop driving like a maniac.
Aggressive vs. Moderate Driving: read the entire test

Test #2 Lower Speeds Saves Gas
Result: Substantial savings on a long trip
Cold Hard Facts: Up to 14 percent savings, average savings of 12 percent
Recommendation: Drive the speed limit.
Lower Speeds Saves Gas: Read the entire test

Test #3 Use Cruise Control
Result: Surprisingly effective way to save gas
Cold Hard Facts: Up to 14-percent savings, average savings of 7 percent
Recommendation: If you’ve got it, use it.
Cruise Control: Read the entire test

Test #4 A/C On, Windows Up vs. A/C Off, Windows Down
Result: Nice in theory; not true in practice
Cold Hard Facts: No measurable difference (unless you open the sunroof, too!)
Recommendation: Please, make yourself comfortable.
Air Conditioner: Read the entire test

Test #5 Check Your Tire Pressure
Result: Important for safety and to reduce tire wear
Cold Hard Facts: No measurable effect on the vehicles we tested
Recommendation: Check your tire pressure often but don’t expect a big savings.
Tire pressure: Read the entire test

Test #6 Avoid Excessive Idling
Result: More important than we assumed
Cold Hard Facts: Avoiding excessive idling can save up to 19 percent
Recommendation: Stopping longer than a minute? Shut ‘er down.
Excessive idling: Read the entire test

Microwave Popcorn may cause cancer

MIcrowave Popcorn may cause cancer The culprit is FLUOROTELOMERS (which was spelled incorrectly on the site linked).

American’s gobble up more than 17 billion quarts of popcorn a year, but a recent FDA study found that a chemical coating used in microwave popcorn bags is seeping into popcorn.
DuPont is one company that makes the chemical coating. They say flurotelemers {fleuro-tella-meers} can come off the bag and into the popcorn.

A former DuPont scientist warns that more of the chemical is coming off the paper than originally thought.

“Even before we cook the popcorn the butter is already contaminated with a paper flurochemical that will be absorbed into your blood and stay in your blood for a long, long time.”

FDA scientists say the popcorn is still safe. But, now another study has found an acid that can be extracted from the chemical causes cancer in animals and is “likely to cause cancer in humans.”

The popcorn council says companies are moving away from using this coating on their bags.