<June 2007>

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#  Saturday, June 2, 2007

Today marks the offical day of me switching from Eudora to Outlook 2007. I have been a long-time fan of Eudora, and it served me well over the years (oh glory days when my mail program plus mailboxes did fit on a single diskette).

With Eudora being end of life, I had to make a decision which mail client I will be using in the future - and I have to say that every single one had its moments (ever enjoyed the fun of querying multiple mailboxes on the same mail server in Thunderbird?).

So long, and thanks for all the fish.

Categories: this
Saturday, June 2, 2007 6:00:24 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


A couple of notes to self:

The latter is especially important if one fails to grasp how to turn the private key plus the certificate into the .pem for Stunnel. By the way, I was using CAcert. That works just fine for internal email servers.

Categories: Administration | Security | this
Saturday, June 2, 2007 5:22:41 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


I have one drawer of CD / DVDs that I haven't GCed in years - and possibly won't ever. That stuff is really a trip down memory lane. For example:

In addition to the agenda for Web TechEd 1998 (the only one ever) I also still have the post conference CDs plus it's accompanying system requirements correction letter: 486 or higher and 8mb of RAM.

Speaking of hardware requirements, here is another goldie:

Chicago SDK Kit, May 1994.

There's a lot more old stuff in this drawer, and I am not going to clean it out!

Categories: this
Saturday, June 2, 2007 2:28:22 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


#  Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Today, I uploaded a preview of version 2.0 to CodePlex. There are two big ticket new items in comparison to version 1.3:

  • Plugin support The TFS checkin policy only tests for existence of code comments. For many applications, this is just fine. However, sometimes you also want to test for completeness of comments (i.e. a refactoring "broke" the documented parameter list). In this case you can use the new extensibility API, which comes with two sample plugins in the cccplibcontrib project. The API allows you to select which checking you want to override or complement, and you get full access to the parsed source file just like the stock implementation ("abuse" for non-code commment checking purposes obviously possible too). If you come up with a cool plugin, be sure to contact me for inclusion into the contrib project!
  • MSBuild task This build task lives in cccplib, which is entirely independent of TFS or VSTS (it was written by Matt Ward). Therefore, you can use it eg with CruiseControl.NET or simply as part of the local .*proj files. What's the purpose of this build task anyways? Simple: as part of the build, you get information on "code comment coverage", just like you do with let's say code coverage and unit tests. Currently, you only get an XML file with the report - if you are XSLT-savvy and want to contribute a HTML report transform, let me know!

To get an overview what v2 looks like, how to configure it, etc you might be interested in this demo screen recording.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007 4:19:28 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


#  Thursday, May 24, 2007

I have been doing some sprucing up of SharpDevelop's Web offerings today - namely the code converter. Up until today, you only could convert syntactically valid classes. Recently, Daniel implemented the SnippetParser class, which is now in use for the snippet converter (C# to VB.NET, VB.NET to C#). Note: the Web service for code conversion does support both class and snippet conversion, a Windows client sample is available for the former.

Also new (just completed a few minutes ago) is the code formatter: it uses the highlighting engine from SharpDevelop's text editor to HTML-ize a bunch of formats: ASP/XHTML, BAT, Boo, Coco, C++.NET, C#, HTML, Java, JavaScript, Patch, PHP, TeX, VBNET, XML. Again, there is a Web service available, as well as a sample using the service. This offering is built upon the HtmlSyntaxColorizer sample that can be found in SharpDevelop revisions > 2522 (currently only on the build server)

I am sure that both the snippet converter as well as the code formatter are welcome additions. Spread the word! After all, it's free.

Thursday, May 24, 2007 10:06:07 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


#  Thursday, May 10, 2007

Today, I completed the setup for my IIS7 FTP site - enabling SSL for secure transfer. It took me a little while longer than expected, mostly because I was looking for passive mode transfer settings in the wrong place at first. To save others from repeating my mistakes, here is a quick step-by-step how to get up and running:

First, we need to configure passive transfers (PASV). This is configured at the server level

via the (in my opinion) not-so-intuitive "FTP Firewall Support":

This shows the following panel (I have opened the range 2200 to 2205):

This panel is also available at the site level (that's where I got stuck), but it won't be of any use.

Although the FTP server is configured for passive, the Windows firewall isn't (and remember, it is on by default!). You need to create an inbound rule for the passive ports like so:

Now we are ready to enable secure FTP - and this is rather simple. Go to your FTP site, and check that the FTP SSL Settings are configured as follows (you could also force SSL connections to make sure no one unintentionally connects with their pants down):

You are basically all set. Give your setup a try using eg FileZilla. Create a new site in Site Manager, and set the server type to "FTP over SSL (explicit encryption)":

The last step is to make sure you are using passive mode (in FileZilla, this is part of Advanced):

If you didn't miss a step, you now should be able to securely connect to your FTP site.

Categories: IIS
Thursday, May 10, 2007 1:42:29 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


Just tried to do the usual "telnet myserver port#" to see if a service is actually listening, but Vista came up with a search window. The command line told me that there is no such tool as telnet. Wtf? Solution: Vista Tip: Get Telnet Back

Categories: Vista
Thursday, May 10, 2007 10:46:01 AM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


#  Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Before going on holidays last week I decided to put a Longhorn Beta 3 box live on the Internet. It doesn't run a lot of things just yet (except for trials of the all-new FTP server), but today I decided to take the plunge and try FastCGI (see Using FastCGI to host PHP applications on IIS7).

An application I wanted to test-drive for a long time is WebSVN. The UI looks like this:

It is PHP-based, needs Cygwin-based tools, and is quite useful for browsing Subversion repositories. After downloading the latest code from the WebSVN repository, I was able to get up and running in about half an hour (that includes failing with WebSVN RC4, installing Cygwin, etc). You can check it out at http://iis7.chrison.net/websvn/index.php

I'll add more applications to this box over the coming days and weeks, to see what works and what doesn't for the mix of technologies I am using.

Oh, and it seems that I am the first European site registered at IIS7 On Tour:

Categories: Administration | IIS
Wednesday, May 9, 2007 2:40:44 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [1]


#  Thursday, April 26, 2007

Bill Staples put together a post on what's new in IIS7 Beta 3. He also talks about the all-new IIS7 FTP server (which I knew about for a long time - I had hoped Beta 3 would be available for my MSDN Briefing in Vienna last month, but no such luck). Also, he mentions the GoLive! license for IIS7.

Categories: .NET | ASP.NET | IIS | Longhorn
Thursday, April 26, 2007 12:20:02 PM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


#  Wednesday, April 25, 2007

In The Virtues of Monoculture James makes an excellent point: "We celebrate the diversity of choices available to solve a problem and call it freedom. IT managers and CIOs look at it and call it chaos, confusion and uncertainty." Touché.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007 10:00:09 AM (W. Europe Daylight Time, UTC+02:00)  #    Comments [0]


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