Have you got a javax.net.ssl.SSLHandshakeException while trying to connect to a URL which is SSL encrypted? You want to connect to a web page or a SOAP Web Service from your Java application but it is throwing the below exception:

Exception in thread "main" javax.net.ssl.SSLHandshakeException: sun.security.validator.ValidatorException: PKIX path building failed: sun.security.provider.certpath.SunCertPathBuilderException: unable to find valid certification path to requested target

The error says the connection could not be established due to a certificate validation error. You might be wondering why some urls are working while some not. To understand this you need to know what is SSL and how SSL works.

What is Secure Socket Layer?

SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer which is a protocol in which the data transfer between a Web Client(e.g. web browser) and a Web Server takes place in an encrypted format. Content encrypted by the server is decrypted by the client using a public-private key pair.

Key pairs contains a public key and a private key, content encrypted with one key can be decrypted with the other. All modern browsers includes a set of well known certificates issued by certificate authorities(CA), which makes the encryption-decryption possible for HTTPS sites.

Why Java throwing javax.net.ssl.SSLHandshakeException for some SSL sites?

As in browser, JRE also contains a trustsore where all trusted CA certificates are stored. This truststore is stored in a file named cacerts located at <JRE_HOME>/lib/security/. You can connect to all HTTPS sites which are having certificates trusted by Java truststore but a SSLHandshakeException is thrown for sites with untrusted certificates(including self signed certificates).

How to avoid SSLHandshakeException?

There are many ways to overcome SSLHandshakeException, some are given below:

  1. Adding certificate to Java trust store manually
  2. Adding certificate to Java trust store programmatically
  3. Use custom trust store
  4. Turn off certificate validation

Safest option is to add the certificate to Java trust store manually to avoid any security issues.

How to add SSL certificate to the Java Truststore?

It is a two step process, first download the certificate, then add the certificate to the truststore.

1. Downloading the certificate

First, open the url in your browser(steps may vary depends on the browser), then click on the lock icon on the navigation bar, then click on Certificate Information. Now go to Details tab, there you will see a Copy to File button. Clicking on this will give you a certificate export wizard where you need to select certificate format as DER encoded binary X.509. Give a file name say mycertificate.cer and save the file.

2. Adding certificate to the Java truststore

This is a simple step, go to <JRE_HOME>/bin and execute the below command:

keytool -import -alias alias -keystore ../lib/security/cacerts 
      -file mycertificate.cer
Enter the default keystore password 'changeit'(changeme on Mac) for the prompt 'Enter keystore password:'.

Then enter 'yes' for the prompt 'Trust this certificate? [no]:' and press enter key.

If everything goes well, you will get a message 'Certificate was added to keystore' which confirms your certificate is added to the Java truststore successfylly!

Connecting to a HTTPS site with URLConnection

Below program will now work without any SSL handshake exception:

 URL url = new URL("https://secure.skunkworks.net.au");
 URLConnection con = url.openConnection();
 con.connect();
  
 InputStream in = con.getInputStream();
 InputStreamReader inputstreamreader = new InputStreamReader(in);
 BufferedReader bufferedreader = new BufferedReader(inputstreamreader);

 String string = null;
 while ((string = bufferedreader.readLine()) != null) {
  System.out.println(string);
 } 

That's it, now you learnt how to connect to a SSL secured url from a Java application!

Those who want to connect to a mail server over SSL using Java Mail API, use the below property to authenticate over SSL:

 props.put("mail.smtp.socketFactory.class", "javax.net.ssl.SSLSocketFactory");

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India - Income Tax Changes in Budget 2014-2015

Posted by Editor | 7/10/2014 01:14:00 pm | 1 comments »

Even though the income tax rates are not changed, for the middle class salaried citizens, there are something to cheer about!

Following are the changes proposed by finance minister Arun Jaitley in his budget speech 2014:

  • All: Section 80C limit increased by Rs. 50k, from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 1.5 lakh
  • All: Income tax limit increased by Rs. 50k, from Rs 1.5 lakh to Rs 2 lakhs
  • All: Public provident fund(PPF) limit increased from Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 1.5 lakh
  • All: Deduction on housing loan interest rate increased to Rs 2 lakh from 1.5 lakh
  • Senior Citizen: Tax exemption limit for small, marginal and senior citizens increased by Rs. 50k, ie, from Rs. 2.5 lakh to Rs. 3.0 lakhs
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As you might be knowing, Gaming & Animation industry in India is growing fast, there are endless opportunities for the creatively talented people but the challenge is to identify the right track based on your passion and skills.

Gaming & Animation industry is looking for talents in 2D/3D animations, graphics design, game design, game programming, 3D modelling, storyboarding, texture and VFX. Your own artistic skills and hardwork along with proper mentoring can bring great results, no doubt.

Choosing a right institute for Gaming & Animation is not that easy as finding a good Engineering or Medical college. As mentioned above, mentoring is one of the top factors which brings success in this industry. So, choose an institute where the faculties are from the industry, with hands-on experience. Talk to them, understand how passionate are they, ask them to show some works done by them.

Next would be the Lab, you would be spending 90% of your time in the lab with latest software and hardware. Performance is most important in Gaming & Animation, make sure the Lab is equipped with fast computers and graphic cards along with leading software packages.

Talk to the students, what they feel about the institute and about themselves, see some creations done by them, check for placements cells, past placements, events, workshops, studio partnerships etc.

Top Gaming & Animation Institutes in India

Below we have listed top FIVE Gaming & Animation institutes in India, please note they are listed not based on the rank.

  1. AIGA Bangalore - Asian Institute of Gaming and Animation

    AIGA started in early 2008, claims to be the first dedicated Game education institute in India, in initiative of Edulink India Pvt. Ltd. offers various Certificate and Diploma courses in Game Art, Design & Programming.

    For more details, email AIGA @ admissions@aiga.in or visit their website http://www.aiga.in/.

    Address:
    No. 41/1, HAL Airport Road,
    Murugeshpalya
    Bangalore 560 017
    Phone: +91 80 40480900

  2. Backstage Pass school of gaming, Hyderabad

    Backstage Pass fulfills your dream to become Professional Game Designers, Game Artists, Game Programmers, Animators, Game Producers or Animation film Producers through their career focused graduate and certificate programs.

    For more details, email @ info@backstagepass.co.in or visit their website http://www.backstagepass.co.in/.

    Address:
    1-89-3/4, 2nd Floor
    Above IndusInd Bank
    Raghuma Towers
    Madhapur
    Hyderabad - 500081
    Phone: +91 800 800 2794

  3. IACG - International Academy of Computer Graphics

    IACG, established in the year 2004, claims to be India's first institute to offer Bachelor's and Master's programs in Multimedia & Animation in collaboration with Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University(JNTU), Hyderabad.

    For more details, email @ contactus@iacg.info or visit their website http://www.iacg.co.in/.

    Address:
    Nandini Complex,
    Dilsukh Nagar Main Rd,
    Dilsukh Nagar, Hyderabad,
    Telangana-500036
    Phone: +91 98 66 550009

  4. ICAT - Image College Of Arts, Animation & Technology Pvt Ltd

    ICAT offers the following courses:
    - Game Design & Development
    - Game Programming
    - Game Art & Design
    - Animation
    - Visual Effects
    - Graphics Design
    - Media Technology
    - Visual Media

    Address:
    ICAT Bangalore
    ICAT Design & Media College
    424, Bommanahalli,
    Hosur Main Road,
    Bangalore - 560 068.
    Mobile +91 - 96111 73607
    Phone 080 - 4110 7755

    ICAT has training centres in Chennai & Hyderabad too.

  5. DSK Pune

    DSK offers courses in Animation, Game Design & Industrial Design, which is a joint venture between the DSK Group and Globally recognized French Institute-Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Grand Hainaut(CCI). The international quality campus is located at Pune.

    For more details, email @ info@dsksic.com or visit their website http://www.dsksic.com/.

    Address:
    DSK International Campus,
    Survey 54,55, Tarwadi,
    near Loni Toll naka, Pune-Solapur road
    Pune - 412 308, Maharashtra, India
    Phone: +91 020 66784300

Conclusion

As mentioned above, this list is for your reference only, visit the centres in person, ask the right questions, collect the details, evaluate them and finalize the institute for your dream career. Good luck!

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Search engine giant Google recently changed their search engine results page(SERP) which is claimed to be "clean" and "more readable" compared to the old layout.

Some of the changes made are on the page layout, the underline on the links are removed, the font size is increased(to 18px but no change to the page width) and more white space added between search results.

Another change Google brought-in is a yellow Ad label, which will differentiate paid results with organic search results.

Another new feature Google introduced is the section People also search for which is nothing but 'related searches' from Google knowledge graph. All your competitors name along with their logo will be listed which will annoy many of the business owners for sure!

Also you have more number of suggestions in the auto-suggestion box with links to their website. Means no need to go to the search result, you can directly click on the suggestion, Google will take you to the page you requested.

Overall this is an impressive change from Google, not only on the search quality but also on the readability of the search result.

Initially Google will see some resistance from the users, mainly for the bigger fonts, which according to the analysts is normal, resistance to change.

These changes are rolled out only in few regions(including mobile versions) but will be implemented in phases to all remaining regions, we believe.

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To promote housing sector, government introduced a new section named 80EE under the income tax laws, according to which first time home buyers can declare additional 1Lakh for tax benefits if the loan amount is less than 25Lakhs and the cost of the property is less than 40Lakhs.

Also the loan sanctioned date should fall in the financial year 2013-2014(assessment year 2014-2015).

This deduction is over and above the Rs. 1.5Lakh limit under Section 24.

So, the eligibility criteria for this 1L deduction are:

  • Loan sanctioned date between 1st April 2013 and 31st March 2014.
  • Loan amount is less than 25Lakhs
  • Cost of the property is less than 40Lakhs
  • Borrower does not hold another house in his/her name on the date of sanction of the loan
  • Total interest paid in FY 2013-2014 is above 1.5L

If the interest paid during FY 2013-2014 is below 1Lakh(excluding Section 24 limit which is 1.5L), the balance can be carried over to the next financial year ie, 2014-2015.

Illustration:

Mr. Pankaj's income from salary is Rs. 12,00,000. He booked his dream home(first) in April 2013 from a reputed builder which costs Rs. 35Lakhs. He applied for Rs. 24Lakhs loan 8EB5B562-CEC4-436D-8FEC-43DB12BA80FA which got sanctioned in May 2013. Mr. Pankaj's moved into his house in February 2014. Suppose the tax paid for the financial year 2013-2014 is 1,90,000.

Mr. Pankaj's deduction under section 80C is Rs. 1Lakh.

So the computation of income tax for the assessment year 2014-2015 is as follows:

  • Income from Salary: 12,00,000
  • Deduction under Section 80C: 1,00,000
  • Deduction under Section 24(b): 1,50,000
  • Deduction under Section 80EE: 40,000
  • Taxable income: 9,10,000

So, Mr. Pankaj can save tax on Rs. 40,000 additional to Rs. 1.5L.

Conclusion:

Section 80EE was introduced to boost the housing sector, if you are eligible, go for it, declare and save tax on the interest paid.

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With the growing internet availability most of the people are now relying on online services, whether it is shopping, ticket booking, job search or even for ordering food.

In this internet revolution photo printing is not an en exception. With the availability of cheaper digital cameras, online photo printing services got many takers in recent years.

Advantages over traditional Photo Studios or Colour Labs

Main advantage with these online services are you can upload photos directly from your computer and save it for later use(or even share it with friends or family members). You have many customization options available such as size selection, finish selection, cropping, auto-enhancements etc. Most of these online services provides an option to pay online, so once the order is placed you will get the prints at your door step in couple of days!

Selecting an Online Photo Printing Service

Main things to consider while selecting a printing service are:

  • Print Quality - Quality depends on the photo paper they use(Kodak, Fuji etc.), automatic(or manual) photo enhancements, cropping etc.
  • Photo Uploading options - Some providers allow uploading multiple photos simultaneously, with proper error handling, photo preview etc. This is really useful when you are ordering large number of prints.
  • Payment options - Online payment via Debit/Credit/Net Banking, Cash on Delivery etc.
  • Processing Time - 1 to 3 days is the normal processing time but delivery may take another 1 to 5 days depends on the geographical location of the order.
  • Pricing - Go for quality, find a service which is less priced but provides good quality prints delivered in 2-4 days.
  • Customer Care - As in every online service, customer care is most important in online printing too. Support should be available over phone, you need this when you are stuck at online payment or the order B0248B7C-14F2-46A2-BEE6-A622C44D5493 getting delayed with no updates from the company.

ZOOMIN

Zoomin is one of the popular photo printing service(along with other services such as personalized gifts, photo books, photo magnets, photo mug etc.). They offer professional service with affordable prices.

Pricing - Regular Size

Size Price per print
4x6 Rs. 6.00
5x7 Rs. 9.00
6x6 Rs. 10.00
6x8 Rs. 15.00
8x8 Rs. 30.00
8x10 Rs. 40.00

GK Vale & Co

A Bangalore based company with over 100 years of experience in photography is a single source for all photography needs.

Pricing - Regular Size

Size Price per print
4x6 Rs. 4.99
6x4.5 Rs. 4.99
5x7 Rs. 9.99
6x8 Rs. 11.99
6x9 Rs. 15.99
8x10 Rs. 49.00

itasveer

Started by four IIT Delhi alumni in 2006, itasveer has been into online photography and digital printing, providing quality service to its customers.

Pricing - Regular Size

Size Price per print
4x6 Rs. 3.99
5x7 Rs. 6.90
6x8 Rs. 15.00
8x10 Rs. 39.00
8x12 Rs. 49.00

Picsquare

Picsquare is a leading online photo service in India with head quarters in Bangalore.

Pricing - Regular Size

Size Price per print
4x6 Rs. 5.00
5x7 Rs. 14.00
6x8 Rs. 12.25
8x12 Rs. 48.00

Snapfish, an HP company stopped its services in India in 2013, which was once a leader in digital printing.

Some other online photo printing providers in India are Canvera, SnapGalaxy etc.

Conclusion

Select an online service based on your needs, upload photos and order prints. Share with us your feedback on the overall experience including the quality of the prints...

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