Apple Time Machine & TonidoPlug the match made in heaven !

That’s right! TonidoPlug can now be used to back up your Mac using Time Machine. It’s been tested on Mac OS X 10.6.2 Snow Leopard. The TonidoPlug’s drive doesn’t even have to be HFS formatted – it’s been tested and works on ext2/3, but should also work on NTFS. Just hook up a big drive to your TonidoPlug and follow the guide:

1. Mount the TonidoPlug/MediaDisk share in Finder. Connect as the Guest user.

2. Open a Terminal (/Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app)

3. Run this:

wget http://mikestaszel.com/files/tonido/makeImage.sh

4. Make sure Time Machine is turned off, and run in the Terminal:

defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1

5. You’ll need to make a disk image that backups will be stored on – change the “200″ to whatever size (in gigabytes) you want the maximum Time Machine Backup space to be. You might also need to change “MediaDisk” to wherever you mounted the TonidoPlug share:

./sh makeImage.sh 200 /Volumes/MediaDisk

6. Open up Time Machine in System Preferences and select the MediaDisk drive. Wait for the backup to start and have fun!

Your backup might fail if your computer’s name contains apostrophes (which is default in Mac OS X. Change your computer’s name to something simple (I named mine “Mac” in System Preferences/Sharing) – and re-run the makeImage command.

Note: Posted On behalf of Mike. Thanks mike for a great tutorial :)

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Finally, the winner of Magic Plug is ….

First of all, Let us thank everybody who participated in the contest. We are touched by your overwhelming response. There were several interesting comments. You made our life difficult to select one :) . We have selected 7 comments out of 35 comments which captured the true essence of Tonido. We have selected the winner randomly from that list.

The finalists are:

I mostly use it because I feel like my data is safe and it’s MINE, yet I can share it. I don’t have to worry about 3rd party services losing my data, stealing it, or shutting down. I also like that the developers are passionate about their product. They offer their platform for free in addition to selling innovative hardware such as the TonidoPlug (which I own). Security, Innovation, and Peace of Mind – those are my reasons for running Tonido.

My favorite apps are:
1. Workspace
2. Thots
3. MMEX
4. Jukebox (can we get a non-flash version?
- Mykal

This is the best concept since there is the internet/web: private clouds, which are able to communicate with the greater cloud and/or each other, however, completely under the supervision and control of the user, especially when using ssl and considering you can use your own relay/name service. – Malik Sezgin

Well, I use mainly Thots, Webshare, Workspace and Jukebox.
I am away from home a lot, so it is very convenient to have Tonido as a central, always accessable, trustworthy friend who keeps all my data together, like a personal assistant.The feature I would place number 1 is not available though, it is a mailserver with multiple account support (which retrieves mail from several accounts via pop and makes them available via imap and webmail).Maybe one day this will come as well and make my Tonido even better. -Jasper

We have a group that is split up and living in different Latin American countries that needs access to the same pool of documents and photos. They need to have secure access to those docs and photos, and be able to update them from everywhere. - Marty Lange

Tonido combines the advantages of cloud with the ability to control their own data directly. The very limited consumption allows to run it 24 / 7 and, therefore, to access applications from any place and at any time. Personally I will use it to manage my tasks and to share my files. I see a great future for solutions like Tonido. - Antonio

My reason for running Tonido 24×7 is because the TonidoPlug allows me to have a robust personal cloud available at an extremely low energy footprint. I love using Thots on a regular basis (for bookmarks and other interesting tidbits… it’s a quick and easy online notebook, which I love). I enjoy the ability to manage torrents remotely, it is a godsend for me when I’m on my college campus behind firewalls and such. Money is a great recent addition, helping me manage my finances when I don’t always have my checkbook available. And workspace is indispensible to me–I use it to organize my life! I jot down assignments in class into workspace, and use it for time management. Tonido is a wonderful product, and I highly recommend it. - gatesphere

A Tonido would allow our nonprofit team of champions (volunteers, staff, Board, advisory, consultants) to easily share key information and collaborate on JUST the project documents they need to be involved with. We use WinLive to synchronize docs on at least six different computers which is a lot of waste and over redundancy. But we’re not in a place to be setting up and maintaining blade servers. The Tonido brings that power but with the (needed) simplicity of an appliance. Our kids and families would love being able to view photos of the most recent camp or event/gathering. And our team would love not having to edit and upload to our web site or an external sharing site. - Barry

I can share all my baby’s pictures easily with his grandparents in Japan. I don’t even have to think about it. Share the top level photo directory and they can see his life unfold. - smick

Living in a small apartment means that I have limited space. Having notebooks, they aren’t dependably located and I don’t want an ugly monster sitting in a corner sucking power needlessly, paying for my own server at a data center seems rather sillly. I need a solution that fits in between and Windows home server isn’t it. ;-)
– Josiah

and

THE WINNER IS JASPER…

Please send your shipping address to support@codelathe.com to collect the Magic TonidoPlug :) .

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Tonido Explorer on the iPhone

We are constantly striving to make Tonido accessible not only from desktops/laptops but also from other mobile devices.

So as a first step, we are excited to announce the availability of an iPhone specific WebApp for Tonido Explorer. This will  be part of the next Tonido release. The app will allow browsing of your files and folders and open any file just by clicking on the file. You can also share any file/folder directly and send an email with that link.

Tonido Explorer on the iPhone

Tonido Explorer on the iPhone

tonido_iphone_2

Share folders/files with just one click

We hope to make more functionality available for iPhone and other Mobile/Smartphones in subsequent releases.

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New Tonido Release 0.7.0.11017 Highlights

It has been less than 3 weeks since our last release, but here we are again.

Here’s the list of major changes in this release:

Completely new Tonido Network Stack

One of the cool features of Tonido is that not only does it give you full web-browser based access to your stuff, it also allows connectivity to other Tonido instances. This allows you to create your own private Tonido Network useful for sharing photos, synchronizing Workspace or backing up your files.

Originally, the network stack used UDP communication and used a technique called NAT traversal to cross NATs without any user intervention or setup. Unfortunately, the problem was that while NAT traversal was effective it didn’t work everywhere, reducing the usefulness of the solution considerably. The other issue was that it was hard to debug and figure out what configuration will exactly work. Finally, the UDP protocol was fully proprietary and required the Tonido Domain Server to work.

We weren’t too thrilled with this solution because of the above problems and we finally decided to do something about it. We rewrote the base networking layer to use plain old HTTP instead of using UDP for communication. This provides us with the following benefits:

a) It will always work out of the box for anyone because it will use their URL (http://myname.tonidoid.com) to communicate. And as long as that URL works, Tonido Network will also work.
b) Easy to setup/configure. Anyone can quickly verify if the network is working, by just invoking the other persons URL in their browser. Really easy!
c) Completely standalone and independent of Tonido Domain Server. Since Tonido Network is purely operating via an URL, as long as the URL continues to function there is no other requirement.
d) Possible to scale: Once a connection is established, Tonido Network does not keep refreshing the state/polling etc therefore any number of “connections” can be active at any given time.
e) Internal LAN networks will still be efficient as always
f) Tonido Network transfer remain 100% encrypted as usual

So how exactly does this affect you?

1) If you don’t use the Tonido Network, you don’t need to do anything.
2) If you use Tonido Network within your LAN you don’t need to do anything.
3) If you are use Tonido Network outside your LAN, then you need make sure your Tonido URL is accessible. This can either be through the Tonido Relay service or by portforwarding. Also note that portforwarding will give you faster performance vs using the Tonido Relay service if you are using Tonido Network heavily.

Share your entire music collection in Jukebox

You asked for it and it is here. It is now possible for guest users who you have given permissions to login and play your entire music collection and view your entire Jukebox UI as you would see it. Note that they cannot do anything else other than listen to your music. They cannot modify anything.

jb_guest

jukebox_guest

Brand New Thots UI

Thots is now even more prettier.

thots_ui

Rich Editor Support in Thots

Thots now uses a Rich text editor for creating posts. You still have the simpler editor, but the rich editor is available with a click of a button.

thots_editorAbility to include images in posts in Thots

You can attach any image files for including in your Thot. You can either point it to an URL or attach a file from the computer.

thots_editor_image

Repeating Transaction support in Money

You can now add repeating transactions that help you remind you of upcoming transactions.

money_repeating3

money_repeating4
money_repeating2

Misc Money Fixes

Money gets a bunch of other updates like importing from CSV, copy/paste transaction support and better handling of certain characters like XML unfriendly characters like &, ;, , etc.

Brand New Explorer UI

Explorer is also prettier.

explorer

Share Files from Explorer

It is trivial to share files/folders from explorer. Just click the share button and you get the URL for that file/folder.

explorer_share

RSS Feeds are now W3C Compliant

RSS feeds in Thots/Workspace are now W3C compliant.

Other Bug Fixes

As usual, we have a bunch of other small bug fixes everywhere. Please see this link for the complete list.

Comments, Questions, Feedback is always welcome, so let us know.

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Top 10 reasons to run my Tonido 24×7

What are your reasons for using Tonido? Let us know and have a chance at winning a free TonidoPlug, details below.

I was thinking for a while on how to express the value of Tonido to other users. Finally, I decided to write a blog on stressing the importance of running Tonido 24×7 on my computer, because that’s where the real potential of Tonido lies. Some might not be willing to leave the computers on 24×7 mainly because power usage, but even for them Tonido running on TonidoPlug is a good alternative.

Here are the top 10 reasons to run my Tonido all day and every day:

10. Unique personal URL

Actually this should be the top most reason why I run Tonido 24×7. But decided to rank it at the bottom because this makes all other reasons possible. When Tonido is running, I get a unique URL such as tuxan.tonidoid.com to my computer. I can use this URL to access my computer from anywhere. I don’t need to worry about port forwarding or any changes to the router. Since the Tonido instance is secured with a login id and password, it is like having my own private website controlling my computer.

9. Torrent management from anywhere

Web based torrent client is a feature that is built into Tonido. It is available for all platforms. With Tonido Torrent I can connect to my home computer any time and start downloading torrents. This gets even better with the firefox addon, which is free. This addon allows me to remotely start a torrent download on my home computer, when I choose it on my laptop away from home.

8. Remote file management from anywhere

Tonido comes with a built-in web based explorer. I can use this to navigate through my disks, copy/rename/delete my files/directories and even share a particular file/directory to others with one-click. I can do all this from anywhere.

7. Backup anytime/anywhere

Tonido comes with a built-in backup utility.This feature lets me backup my files/folders to another computer located within my home or to my office computer. I personally have setup automatic backup of my laptop files to my home computer every week. This backup will take place automatically whether I have my laptop at home or I am traveling with my laptop. All I need is a network connection.

6. Download/Upload files from anywhere

Tonido has a built-in webshare feature. This feature allows me to search and download/upload files from/to my home computer. I can setup accounts for my parents to download files from my computer. Tonido also has a small utility for uploading files to my home computer. I can just drag/drop files to it and it takes care of uploading. This is really an useful feature if I have to upload large number of files.

5. Personal photo album website for friends/family

Tonido allows to share my photos in an album format to my friends and family. I can host these photos with or without password. I need not upload my personal photos anywhere and I have my own personal website to host the snaps I have.

4. Listen to my MP3 songs from anywhere

Tonido also allows to listen to my music collection at home from my office. All I need to do is connect to my Tonido music jukebox and play any songs from my collection, everything happens from within a browser. I can even give access for my music collection to my friends and family.

3.Create an URL for a file and share

Tonido Webshare makes sharing files/folder simpler and private. Instead of uploading my files into external servers, I create URLs for files and share the URLs with my friends. I don’t spend anytime in attaching large files into an email or uploading it to some external websites. Moreover, Webshare also gives information on who accessed my shared files and when they accessed it.

webshare-reasons-24x7


2. Manage my finances

MoneyManager EX (MMEX) was recently made available on Tonido. Now I can manage my finances completely from my own personal website running on my home computer, instead of storing my details on third party websites.

1. My personal blog

This is the most important reason from me to keep my Tonido running all day. I keep a private journal of things I do everyday. I can also maintain a typical blog website, where I write blogs and post it for public view.


Want to win a free TonidoPlug?

What are your most compelling and creative reasons for using Tonido or TonidoPlug?

  1. Post a blog comment below
  2. The best entry that is posted by March 5th, 2010 will be chosen
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Ten thousand is the magic number

outliers

Recently, I finished reading Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. Though I’m not a big fan of the author, somehow in this book, Malcolm made his subject compelling for me to read.

Malcolm says if you want to be world class at doing something, you have to spend 10,000 hours on it.

Malcolm gives multiple examples to prove how 10,000 is the magic number.

According to him, Bill Gates had over 10,000 hours of programming before he dropped out of Harvard to start Microsoft. Similarly Bill Joy had worked more than 10,000 hours of programming at UMich before he co-founded Sun Microsystems.

Interesting non-tech example are the Beatles, who had performed before live audiences in bars for ten thousand hours before their super duper hits. After these many examples, I was convinced about this magic number.

Can I gain mastery at anything if I just put thousands of hours working on it?

If I follow stocks for 10-15 years, can I become a master of stock prediction? Maybe not. Which means that there are some skills that can be learned and some that can’t be learned. Also, doing it the wrong way 10,000 hrs will also not help. Not only do we need to work for many hours, we need to do it the right way and that means we need a good mentor to show us the path.

I did a simple mental math how many years will it take to reach 10,000 hrs of experience. If I did it full time, I can do 8-10 hrs/day and finish it in ~1000 days which is close to 3-4 years. If do it as a hobby or part-time, I can spend 2-3 hours per day, and I’ll take probably close to 10 years to reach my ten thousand hours.

However, time available to focus on an area reduces dramatically as you get older. So if you don’t gain a skill early in your life, odds are you might not master a skill when you are old.  Ouch!

Question remains what would have I done if I had known about this 20 years back?

Maybe, I would have been an world class painter today. Probably, the world lost its next Picasso…

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TonidoPlug on ZdNet : A cloud in a plug – brilliant

zdnet

ZdNet’s Christopher Dawson posted an awesome article on TonidoPlug – A cloud in a plug – brilliant.

Check it out!

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WOW!! 4.5 Stars out of 5 Stars

Last month, we sent out a survey to our TonidoPlug users asking their feedback on Tonido and TonidoPlug. We have received a great response, 178 users completed the survey. (We thank all the users for their time and feedback.) Of the people who completed the survey, over 85% (close to 90%) are happy with TonidoPlug. Given the fact that we are a small company and we are bootstrapping our way, any small pat on our back motivates us.

178 users taking the survey and 85% of them saying they are happy with our products give us enough encouragement to work even harder.

We have read through each of user comments, more carefully the comments from ~10% who said they are not satisfied with TonidoPlug. Users will see more of their inputs reflected in our products, documentation and website. Some of user comments have already made into the product. For example, public access for Thots; we expedited Tonido Money release; we improved first run experience, overall user experience and we are continuously working on improving UX. Users will see more changes and features in coming releases.

Here are some of the comments (my favorite) from users.

“Can’t stress enough how glad I am that I went with Tonido vs. PogoPlug”

“This has got to be one of the most impressive and versatile things I’ve laid hands on”

“Very happy with your excellent technical support”

“Here’s to a great 2010 and I will be eagerly anticipating the new things from Tonido and Codelathe.”

“I really am a true believer in what you guys are doing”

‘You are doing a great job and I love the concept.”

“Awesome job guys, I am VERY impressed. Keep up the good work!”

“Absolutely thrilled with Tonido and TonidoPlug “

” I am a Tonido addict. Great Job “

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New Tonido Release 0.6.0.100800 Highlights

We just released a new Tonido release 0.6.0.100800 for all 4 platforms. Windows, Mac, Linux and TonidoPlug. This is a major Tonido release.

Here are the highlights:

New Tonido Money Application

Almost 6 months in the making, we are finally happy to announce Tonido Money Beta. This is the first browser based Personal and Small Business Finance Manager that allows your data to be completely stored locally but still be accessed from anywhere in the world. This really showcases the power and flexibility of the Tonido platform.

This is fully compatible with databases created by the open source Money Manager Ex application originally developed and released by CodeLathe. You can in fact switch between desktop version and browser version effortlessly.

sshot-1

Here are some of the main features:

Checking, Savings, Credit Card or Loan Accountssshot-3

  • Create and maintain an electronic checkbook – Checking, Savings, Credit Card or Loans, Stock Investment Accounts, Assets
  • Manage income and expense transactions within these accounts
  • Create your own categories and organize these transactions to track where your money comes or goes
  • Manage money transfers between accounts
  • Mark transactions as reconciled, unreconciled or void to track them against your bank statements
  • Manage Payees

Stock/Bonds/Mutual Fund Accountssshot-51

  • Track your shares, bonds and related investments
  • Track the gain/loss for each investment
  • Update current share price automatically

General Account Features

  • Ability to handle multiple currency across accounts
  • Internationalization of currency formatting
  • Unicode support for all data storage
  • Track closed Accounts
  • Account Summary Views and Navigation- An easy to use tree view navigator to navigate across accounts and summarized views of your accounts, upcoming bills & deposits and income vs. expenses

Import & Export

  • Import information from QIF format (Microsoft Money & Quicken)
  • Export information from any account to QIF format

Reportingsshot-2

View your spending/expenses in a wide variety of ways.

  • View spending by category over a date range for specific or all accounts
  • View spending on a single category over time
  • View income vs expenses
  • View spending by payee
  • View expenses and how you are doing on a budget.

Please note that Money is currently in beta. Also note that IE8 support is coming in a future release.

Thots Improvements

thots_public

It is now possible to share your thots publicly with the world. Just mark thots as “Public” and they will be viewable by anyone using the public url without logging in.

It is also now possible to customize the header for Tonido Thots. So go wild!

Nicer Explorer UI

explorer_ui1

Explorer is an app used extensively by our users and it is getting some love. The UI uplift is stage 1 of 2 and expect to see an even more nicer looking UI in the next release.

Simpler Profile Creation & Optional Remote Qn/Ans

We just made profile creation even more simpler (if that is even possible). And, now right after profile creation, you are logged in without wading through the account list screen.

Many people were weary of typing in the remote qn/answer and for them security wasn’t an issue, so now remote qn/answer fields are optional. If they are not set, Tonido will not prompt for them during login.

Caching

One other thing we are always looking to tweak is performance and we are happy to say that Tonido’s UI will load faster than ever before because we are caching most of the HTML/JS bits used for most of the UI. Once you load a particular UI, it will be cached by the browser and you will see it respond more snappily.

Other Bug Fixes

As usual, we have a bunch of other small bug fixes everywhere.

We fixed some crashes with 1-click sharing in Windows, added abilities to clear alerts from the simple launch view and fixed some issues in backup. We also made Unlimited speed setting really default to max speeds on plug unlike what it was previously. Also on the plug, USB read/write speeds should be much faster with this release.

Comments, Questions, Feedback is always welcome, so let us know.

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CodeLathe: Two years later…

Today marks two years since I quit my job to start CodeLathe.. See my post 2 years back and our announcing Tonido post 1 year back for a trip down nostalgia lane. Happy to be still around and going strong!

But here’s to clarify something that various people have asked questions about, the meaning of the startup’s name: CodeLathe. If you didn’t know, a Lathe (pronounced Lay-th) is a machine which spins a block of material to perform various operations such as cutting, sanding, knurling or drilling. So our startup is like a Lathe except that the material is software code. So CodeLathe, Get it?

Here’s a video of a Lathe in action from Youtube.

We would be happy to hear your thoughts and comments so feel free to let us know how we are doing…

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