In the several years I have been doing freelance work I have never used invoices. An important part of business is learning to adapt as change is needed. On this Thanksgiving weekend I visited my parents for a weekend of fun. I also took on my Dad as a new client. He has me designing and hosting his website for his business. After talking to him about what he expected and needed the conversation ended with him asking for an invoice for the services. I suddenly realized what a great idea it would be to have the ability to provide invoices to my clients. I quickly got to the internet to examine my open source-web based-invoicing options.
After exploring a few options I decided to use Bamboo Invoice. My over all review is A+! I can’t believe I have gone these whole years without something like this. I was able to add clients information and list itemized services to receive a total of charges for the job. No longer will I have to worry about remembering counseling fees assessed on top of quoted charges, or have to bother with my client forgetting what was expected of them. Bamboo allows me to e-mail the invoice to the client from the application, or print it into a PDF that i could archive to distribute.
Like any new project, I ran into a few hurdles. The first problem was an error with SELinux. My initial solution was disabling SEL temporarily while I tried to configure Bamboo. The next problem was new to me:
A PHP Error was encountered
Message: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system’s timezone settings. You are required to use the date timezone setting on the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier.
I searched for a few hours to a solution to this problem. Turns out the solution was rather simple. Edit the /etc/php.ini file. In there you need to comment out the date.timezone field and insert your time zone. For me it was date.timezone = “US/Central”. After saving the php.ini I restarted httpd service and then Bamboo worked like a charm.
Back to the SEL issue. Everyone has a love hate relationship with SEL. I don’t want to just leave it off. I turned it back off making my invoice page Forbidden again. Searching Google found me a few SEL commands that would open up my vhost; however, I was unsure because this article was more focused on vhosts stored in home directories. They worked just fine. I like making SEL work but I’m still not 100% on how the the syntax work.
My Dad’s website is sceduled for Dec 1st and you can check it out @ www.theportsweeper.com.