Author Archives: Robert

MYSQL: Get Flag Emoji Unicode from ISO 3166-1 Alpha-2 Country Codes

Today I had to figure out the most efficient way to generate Emoji from ISO 3166-1 Alpha-2 country codes such as US, GB, etc. I opted to go for a for 100% SQL solution.

The most efficient way to convert each ASCII letter to their Unicode Regional Indicator Symbol Letter that I determined is provided below (simplified)…

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Adjust the Volume for Individual Windows 10 Applications

A quick run-through to show you how to adjust the volume of individual Windows applications…

  1. Right-click your “Volume” icon and select “Open Volume Mixer”
  2. Slide “Device” to 100
  3. Adjust “System Sounds” until achieving desired level
    • You will hear Windows’ “Default Beep” sound when releasing the slider. If moving the slider with your mouse wheel, click/tap bar to hear the test sound.
  4. Continue adjusting the volume for other applications
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Better Windows Batch (.bat) File for Testing Internet Connections

I wrote a post yesterday about testing your internet connectivity using a Windows batch file, but since I cannot leave well-enough alone, I decided to keep working on it.

A few things to keep in mind…

  • The line “set ESC=” ends with a non-printable ASCII ESC character (ASCII 27; Hexadecimal 0x1B) that may not be visible in your browser. Editors like Notepad++ show non-printable characters.
  • If you add “hosts” you should also add “names” – hosts entry will be displayed otherwise.
  • hosts index should start at zero with no sequence gaps
  • The “for” loop’s “end” should match count(hosts + 1)
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Create a Windows Batch (.bat) File to Test Your Internet Connectivity

I have been having issues with my ISP‘s WiFi router, so I decided to create a batch file I could run as-needed to check internet connectivity.

@echo off
set "router="
set /p "router=Enter router IP address or press [ENTER] for default [%router%]: "
@ping %router% -n 1 | FIND "Reply"
@ping -n 1 | FIND "Reply"
@ping -n 1 | FIND "Reply"
echo Press any key to exit...
pause >nul

Save that as `ping.bat` and put in somewhere convenient. Then…

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Organizing Images or Other Files with Hashed Folder Names

I finally decided to tackle a site that had over 20GB of images in a single folder. I won’t say who created this monster (whoops), but while moving the site to a new dedicated server, I decided it was time to remedy the situation.

The first issue is with anything you want to (graphically) process folders is limited greatly by the GUI and how much data needs to be processed for each request. This is why I decided a hashed folder naming convention would be the best approach. The folder names do not matter, just so long as there is reasonable grouping and/or separation.

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How to Find Your Payeezy FirstData GGe4 Credentials for Payment Module Settings

My most common request for help stems from the following error…

Error 4025: Invalid credentials
The credentials supplied in the authorization request are invalid.

This error indicates you are using the wrong credentials for the transaction server selected in your payment module’s settings. It can also indicate FirstData has not enabled web transactions for your terminal. Continue reading

Additional Alert Email Does Not Work in OpenCart

Even though we are still finding bug in Open Cart, it is still a far cry better than what we’ve seen from 3.x by far.

You may have noticed the “Additional Alert Email” field simply will not save in your OpenCart “Store Settings” editor. This is a result of the OC devs renaming the input field in without changing the references everywhere else. Continue reading

SEO URLs for OpenCart Using a “web.config” File on Windows IIS Server

I always suggest Linux hosting for any OpenCart installations. The main OC developers either don’t know much about Windows IIS or neglect to include the necessary SEO URL configuration file for it to work.

This omission results in “not found” 404 (dead link) errors when you visit a page with an SEO URL assigned after enabling SEO URLs in your OpenCart store settings.
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PHP Function to Sum or Concatenate Associative Array Values

Here is a quick function I created to merge multiple arrays and sum or concatenate the values thereof. If the values are numeric they will be added together (sum). Otherwise the values will be appended to each other (concatenation).

function arrayMergedSumConcat() {
	$out = array();

	$num_args = func_num_args();
	$arg_list = func_get_args();
	for ($i = 0; $i < $num_args; $i++) { $in = $arg_list[$i]; foreach ($in as $key => $value) {
			if (isset($out[$key])) {
				if (is_numeric($in[$key]) && is_numeric($out[$key])) {
					$out[$key] += $in[$key];
				} else {
					$out[$key] .= $in[$key];
			} else {
				$out[$key] = $in[$key];
	return $out;