Entries Tagged 'Development' ↓

Visual Studio 2008 Final released!

There we go, Visual Studio 2008 Final has just been released, including the .NET Framework 3.5 Final Version.

Here are some instructions for the Install-Process from Scott Guthrie, especially if you were using VS2008 Beta 2:

People often ask me for suggestions on how best to upgrade from previous betas of Visual Studio 2008. In general I’d recommend uninstalling the Beta2 bits explicitly. As part of this you should uninstall Visual Studio 2008 Beta2, .NET Framework Beta2, as well as the Visual Studio Web Authoring Component (these are all separate installs and need to be uninstalled separately). I then usually recommend rebooting the machine after uninstalling just to make sure everything is clean before you kick off the new install. You can then install the final release of VS 2008 and .NET 3.5 on the machine.

Once installed, I usually recommend explicitly running the Tools->Import and Export Settings menu option, choosing the “Reset Settings” option, and then re-pick your preferred profile. This helps ensure that older settings from the Beta2 release are no longer around (and sometimes seems to help with performance).

Note that VS 2008 runs side-by-side with VS 2005 – so it is totally fine to have both on the same machine (you will not have any problems with them on the same box).

I really hope the final Release will fix some annoying bugs I was fighting with lately, although I expect this to be a much smoother release than Visual Studio 2005.

Quick Note to Silverlight Developers: You should wait until Microsoft released the updated Silverlight Tools for VS 2008, it’s expected within the next two weeks.

Futhermore Microsoft released a cool Training-Kit for the .NET Framework v3.5, grab it here. The Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Training Kit includes presentations, hands-on labs, and demos. This content is designed to help you learn how to utilize the Visual Studio 2008 features and a variety of framework technologies including: LINQ, C# 3.0, Visual Basic 9, WCF, WF, WPF, ASP.NET AJAX, VSTO, CardSpace, SilverLight, Mobile and Application Lifecycle Management.

vBulletin still the best ASP.NET Forum Software

I’m building a pretty big ASP.NET Application at the moment for the gaming sector which needs to have a forum for discussions about site related stuff, games and all kind of topics.

I would really like to use an ASP.NET Forum, but after one week of crawling through every available ASP.NET Forum out there I came to the conclusion that vBulletin (PHP) still offers the best features you need for a successful community in that kind of genre.

Yet Another Forum
Version: 1.9.0
Date: Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Last update in the year 2006, I won’t need to comment this any further. Honorable try to build a free .NET Forum but unfortunately it seems like people are not motivated to continue it anymore.

CommunityServer 2007

Actually the best currently available forum, although it’s a complete Community with Blogs, Gallery and Downloads. I prefered the splitted versions some years ago, now it’s one big package. What I miss here is: Support. The public forums are missing essential support by experienced CommunityServer Users and Developers. Another point is the missing SEO capabilities. Since CS 2.1 and CS 2007 they became much better regarding SearchEngineFriendly URLs but there are still big drawbacks. The Forum doesn’t feature the words of the title in the URL and duplicate content is being generated due to multiple URLs pointing to the same page – an example would be the profile link:

When viewing a forum the Link to the Profile looks like that:

Inside a thread it looks like that:

I’m running the Trial Edition of CommunityServer at the moment and was almost ready to buy the full version, but after starting more than 3 threads in their forum which all ended up with no reply I changed my mind. Maybe you got more luck if you buy Gold Support, but for me the first impression matters. If I post a question over at the vBulletin Forums I usually got an answer in less than 1 hour without any kind of Gold Support. And instead of about 2000$ for CommunityServer I just paid around 140$ for a vBulletin licence. CommunityServer is rich on features but vBulletin has such a big modding Community and therefore ends up with even more features. For SEO vBSEO is all you ever need.

Even worse is that there are almost no converters available for CommunityServer, if you’d like to switch FROM vBulletin to CommunityServer start looking for a CommunityServer AND vBulletin specialist.

All other ASP.NET Forums besides CommunityServer and YAF are not even worth mentioning. I would recommend CS 2007 as decent Blogging Solution, but once again you can just buy the whole package here which leads to an overpriced WebBlog-System if you ask me.

I (have to) stick with vBulletin

It’s sad, but true. I keep on building all kind of bridges between my ASP.NET Application and the PHP vBulletin and I eventually dig into the vBulletin MySQL database directly.

Check the comments on this post for more info on this.

PS: Of course vBulletin is not an ASP.NET Forum as written in the title, but I still use it as Forum for all my ASP.NET Applications and that’s why I’ve chosen such an evil title.

Fix the slow Firefox when using localhost with Visual Studio

Dan Wahlin found out why the Firefox is responding so slow when it tries to connect to the localhost which for example is being used by the Visual Studio 2005 and Visual Studio 2008 integrated webserver. He writes:

It turns out that the slowness is caused by an IPv6 issue with DNS and can easily be resolved by turning IPv6 support off in Firefox while doing localhost testing. To make the change, type about:config in the address bar, locate the network.dns.disableIPv6 setting and double-click on it to set it to true. This does the trick for the Firefox localhost issue on Vista and everything is running fast again.

Good job, thanks Dan!
Source: Fixing Firefox Slowness with localhost on Vista.

Visual Studio 2008 Beta 2

Quick note: Scott Guthrie confirmed the Release of Visual Studio 2008 Beta 2 in the near future:

VS 2008 Beta2 should be available for free download in the next three weeks. It will support a go-live license.

Sounds great, I usually don’t like using Beta Software that much, especially as IDE, but for proper and comfortable WPF / Silverlight development this is a must.

.NET Framework 3.0 Final download

If you haven’t noticed yet.. .NET Framework 3.0 final has been released! That’s a bit surprising for me I didn’t expect it that early.

Read more and download it here: .NET Framework Developer Center

Red Gate SQL Refactor Beta released

Red-Gate released a fantastic SQL Refactor Tool which helps you refactoring that horrible SQL Code you have to deal with on a daily basis.

SQL Refactor is an Add-In to Microsoft Management Studio. Therefore you must have Management Studio installed. SQL Refactor’s features are available from the Management Studio menus, which can access both SQL Server 2000 and SQL Server 2005. In this release of SQL Refactor you can use the following features:

  • SQL Lay Out reformats your T-SQL scripts. You can select this feature from the top level SQL Refactor menu. There are over 30 options to control this feature, these you can access from the top level SQL Refactor menu.
  • Smart Rename renames functions, views, stored procedures and tables, and updates all the references to these renamed objects. You can select this feature from the context menu in Management Studio’s Object Explorer.
  • Smart Rename parameters and columns renames parameters of stored procedures and functions, and columns of tables and views. You can select this feature from the context menu in Management Studio’s Object Explorer.
  • Table Split splits a table into two tables, and automatically rewrites the referencing stored procedures, views, and so on. You can also use this refactoring to introduce referential integrity tables. You can select this feature from the context menu in Management Studio’s Object Explorer.
  • Uppercase keywords turns keywords in your script or selection to uppercase.
  • Summarize Script provides you with an overview of your script. By highlighting items in this overview you can see the corresponding statements highlighted in your script.
  • Encapsulate as stored procedure turns your selection into a new stored procedure, and if requested, introduces a reference to it in your script.
  • Expand wildcards expands SELECT * statements to include a full list of columns in the select part.
  • Find unused variables and parameters shows you the variables and parameters in you script that are not used, or that are only assigned to.
  • Qualify Object Names modifies the script so that all object names are qualified. You can select this feature from the top level SQL Refactor menu.

Download it here: ftp://ftp.red-gate.com/sqlrefactorbeta/sqlrefactorsetup.exe

Great Job!

When to use .NET inside SQL Server 2005

Some meaningful scenarios when to use .NET programming inside SQL Server 2005:

  • The developer is not very comfortable with T-SQL, an implementation with .NET seems to be easy and uncomplicated. After some tests the created elements don’t show any performance impacts.
  • The realization of T-SQL seems to be inadequately complex. Especially string manipulation and sequencing are not the strength of T-SQL. However, in .NET it’s rather easy by using existing methods and functions. It’s better to use .NET if it’s faster to develop but also faster or as good as T-SQL in performance.
  • The realization in T-SQL is not possible at all. .NET commands make functions possible which wouldn’t be equivalent to T-SQL. This is mostly the case when accessing external resources.

So in my opinion .NET in SQL Server 2005 is only a real alternative if you have to access external resources or have to deal with complex tasks. It’s still SQL Server 2005 and not .NET Application Server 2005 ;).

.NET beats Java

Microsoft is leaving Java in the dust, but the company still has room to grow in the developer arena, a key executive said. Speaking at the Microsoft FAM (Financial Analyst Meeting) on July 27 in Redmond, Wash., Bob Muglia, Microsoft’s senior vice president of Server and Tools business, said Microsoft’s .Net platform has outpaced Java, particularly the Java Enterprise Edition, over the past five years to become the development platform of choice for enterprise development.

“Five years ago we had problems with J2EE [Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition],” Muglia said. However, “We’ve grown from having a quarter of the market to, now, 60 percent,” he said. Microsoft displayed the FAM presentations via Webcast. “J2EE has run its course,” Muglia said.

.. as expected! Along with the .NET Framework 3.0, Java will be far behind.

CommunityServer bug with URL Rewriting?

There might be some kind of problems with the URL Rewriting in ASP.NET v2. CommunityServer is affected by this as you can see on this Screenshot:

click for img

This screenshot also shows you where to get this Tool – Fiddler ;).

First I made some tests with a site developed by us, we use custom URL Rewriting in the global.asax and everything runs fine, that’s why I’m not sure if this is really an ASP.NET v2 issue as it’s being claimed to be one by a couple of people.

Later on you see the CommunityServer Request and the possible bug: A 302 redirect instead of a 200 redirect which is very bad for SearchEngines. Due to this fact your site may drop out of most SearchEngines. Matt Cutts blogged on this, too: ASP.NET 2 + url rewriting considered harmful in some cases.

Anyone else got problems with a 302 Redirect when using URL Rewriting?

We are using Context.RewritePath to perform our URL Rewriting and didn’t run into any problems so far.

Atlas features Dynamic UpdatePanels

The new June CTP of the Atlas Framework (internally known as build M2.2) finally features Dynamic UpdatePanels. Additional several bug fixes have been included. UpdatePanels can now be added dynamically into the page at runtime! This opens up a number of scenarios including UpdatePanels inside templates of data-bound controls, UpdatePanels in user controls used as WebParts etc.

Nikhil Kothari posted an great entry about the new Atlas build here, check it out!

Validation of ViewState Mac failed

Probably many of you know this exception:

[HttpException (0x80004005): Validation of viewstate MAC failed. If this application is hosted by a Web Farm or cluster, ensure that configuration specifies the same validationKey and validation algorithm. AutoGenerate cannot be used in a cluster.]

If your page doesn’t load slowly and you are not on a web farm, this little tipp might help you. Most people suggest to add the following attributes to the Page directive:

<pages enableEventValidation=false viewStateEncryptionMode =Never

This is known to be a security risk and in my case it didn’t fix the problem.

I think I found another way to eliminate the Error, add this to your Button which triggers the Postback Event:

   23 PostBackUrl=”~/yoursite.aspx”

Just post it back to the same site explicitly and you should be fine.

Edit: Another discovery, you can use the maxPageSateFieldLength attribute of the Pages element in the web.config. That will split the viewstate across multiple hidden fields if the content length is larger than maxPageSateFieldLength.

Hope that helps!

Visual Studio 2005 Professional – Trial Edition

Great news for everyone who is still using the free Express IDE’s. Now you can check out Visual Studio for 90 days, although you should be careful.. you might want to buy if after testing it 😉

Microsoft offers Visual Studio 2005 Professional Edition for professional developers working alone or in small teams who build mission-critical, multi-tier applications. The Professional Edition expands on the Standard Edition feature set to include tools for remote server development and debugging, SQL Server 2005 development, and a full, unconstrained development environment.

Professional developers will enjoy unfettered access to the .NET Framework 2.0, a robust, fully functional development environment, support for creating tools that extend the Visual Studio Integrated Development Environment, and tools for creating multi-tier Windows and Web applications.

Download: Visual Studio 2005 Professional Trial Download


Even 180 Days Trial for Visual Studio Team System!
Download here: Visual Studio 2005 Team System Trial Download

CopySourceAsHtml 2.0.0 released!

The official CopySourceAsHTML v2.0 for VS2005 has finally been released. It is a very nice tool to convert Code in Visual Studio 2005 to HTML.

This new version features a lot of new refactorings and bug fixes, makes use of generics, and has a WiX based installer with a NANT build script.

Excellent work, Collin!

Go and grab it here: CopySourceAsHtml 2.0.0

New MSDN Wiki

As part of the preperations for the TechEd (which started yesterday), Microsoft introduced a new project: The MSDN Wiki.

Microsoft tries to encourage their costumers and developers to join the creation of a documentation and information Wiki. By using the MSDN Wiki everyone is able to add code samples or documentations to Visual Studio 2005 and the .NET Framework 2.0. In the current stage the Wiki is build on additionally to existing documents. Microsoft wants to listen to their customers in the future when it’s about the integration of new functions and the further Development of the Wiki.

A localized Version is also planned for the future. Sounds like an interesting new project!

WinFX is now .NET Framework 3.0

Golo Haas, a german software architect, just published a Blog Entry ( The technology formerly known as … ) about his discovery of WinFX being renamed to .NET Framework 3.0.

He writes:

Today – when doing some research for a new article about the Microsoft InfoCard technology – I just found out that WinFX was renamed; by the way, InfoCard was renamed as well, it is now Windows CardSpace. WinFX’s new name is … .NET Framework 3.0.

Microsoft renamed quite a lot Technologies in that sector and it’s almost a bit confusing by now. I found this picture to clarify the change:

.NET Framework 3.0 WinFX

The .NET Framework 3.0 / WinFX will ship with Windows Vista and will also run on Windows 2003 Server and Windows XP. According to Microsoft Windows Vista will ship in the first Quarter of 2007.