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Friday, January 27, 2012
How to really REALLY delete Google Gmail emails on Windows Phone 7

As a proud owner of a new HTC Titan I followed the same path many other people went down who

  1. Came from a different previous mobile phone platform (iPhone/iOS, Android)
  2. Use Google’s Gmail email service on their mobile phone.
  3. Regularly delete emails on their phone.
  4. Want deleted emails to be deleted on the server as well just like their previous mobile phone used to do.
  5. Don’t want to accept any answer involving explanations of how POP or IMAP work when other mobile phones still get it right.

Chances are, you are reading this because you are one of these people and stumbled upon this in hopes of a REAL solution, which is exactly what I promised in the title of this post. So let’s get right to it! I have to admit, I didn’t even figure it out all by myself, I stumbled over the solution by coincidence while configuring my Google Sync Settings to show multiple calendars on my Windows Phone following a blog post on the Windows Phone blog. None of the many discussions I found online on various popular forums ever mentioned the Google Sync Settings, it was usually all around POP vs. IMAP vs. EAS, or changes made in Windows Phone 7.5 Mango, so I figured it worth typing up if it helps somebody else out there.

Typically the described behavior is that even if you delete files on the phone and manually execute a sync, they will still only end up in the Gmail Archive folder, but not the trash. However, if you visit the Google Sync Settings page from your phone at http://m.google.com/sync, you will see the following screen:

After logging on to your account you will get a list of phones you use to sync with your Gmail account. As you can see I came from an iPhone to a Windows Phone:

And now right at the top the obvious answer jumps right at you: Check the “Enable “Delete Email As Trash” for this device” checkbox, and emails deleted on the phone will really REALLY get deleted (meaning end up in the Trash folder) from Gmail at the next sync interval or after a manual sync:

I tried it out of course, and it works as described for me. Hope it does for you as well!

posted @ Friday, January 27, 2012 3:46 PM | Feedback (18)
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
MIX10 Session Downloader and Renamer curl scripts

Status: The current scripts (Downloader version 0.7, Renamer version 0.5) contain 130 sessions and were last updated on 3/25/2010 11:13 AM PDT.

Inspired by the amazing work of Mike Swanson and Craig Randall I took the curl scripts written for a complete download of the PDC09 sessions and modified it to work with the MIX10 sessions! Update 3/18/2010: The MIX team now updated the sessions page to point to an updated version of Mike’s original script. It doesn’t contain any of the improvements I pointed out below, so feel free to use whichever script fits your needs!

The batch file works exactly the same way as the PDC09 Downloader. You just call it and pass in the video format or PowerPoint extension and it will go out and download everything for you. Updating it for MIX10 was very easy. Since the directory structure and file naming convention is very similar, all I had to do was update the session names to match the MIX10 sessions.

For your convenience, I rewrote the original instructions for PDC09 to use with MIX10:

If you’d like to download all of the keynote and session content, download a recent build of cURL (~250K), and extract it to your folder-of-choice. Then, download MIX10Downloader.zip (1.7 KB) and extract the MIX10Downloader.bat file to the same folder. From a command prompt, start MIX10Downloader by passing it one of the following parameters: WMVHIGH, WMV, MP4, PPTX. Then wait. For files that aren’t available, cURL will download a file that is around 221 bytes in size (if you change the extension to .html and open it, you’ll see that the file is simply an HTML “not found” error page).

To rename the files, first, download the MIX10 Renamer batch file (5.5 KB). Then, extract the MIX10Renamer.bat file to the folder that contains your downloaded files, and from a command prompt, type MIX10Renamer WMV to rename all of the .WMV files to the full session title. By changing the parameter, you can also rename your PPTX and MP4 files.

I made the following improvements to the original Downloader and Renamer scripts:

  • Added proxy support for the downloader. You can now specify a proxy to use for downloading since cURL doesn’t seem to pick it up automatically from the Windows Connection Settings. Run the MIX10Downloader.bat script without parameters for instructions.
  • The format of the renamed files includes both the original session ID as well as the speaker(s) in parentheses. Sometimes the same speaker has several sessions that build on top of each other, this way it is easier to find them!
  • cURL is now invoked using the –-compressed option, which should speed up file transfers a bit. I checked the response headers from the server and it looks like deflate and gzip are supported and should be used.
  • After running the Downloader script the variables used for folder, extension and proxy are cleaned up properly.
  • Fixed high quality keynote video filenames which did not follow the regular session naming convention.

If you’re looking for a more GUI driven download tool check out Frank La Vigne’s MIX10 Session Downloader.

Thanks to Microsoft for putting up all the videos!

Enjoy!

posted @ Thursday, March 25, 2010 11:17 AM | Feedback (464)
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Visual Studio 2010 Beta 2 available now

After a surprise comment to a three year old posting I realized that I have gotten sloppy, since I used to post about Visual Studio beta and service pack releases. Since Visual Studio 2010 Beta 2 just came out I thought it would be a good opportunity to pick up that old tradition again.

Visual Studio 2010 Ultimate Beta 2 Splash Screen

Visual Studio has become much more than the development environment it used to be when Microsoft released the first version of Visual Studio .NET in 2002. After losing the .NET moniker with the release of Visual Studio 2005 the number of different editions dramatically increased, the flagship model now being called Visual Studio 2005 Team System Team Suite, and it gained a real source control system in the form of Visual Studio Team Foundation Server. The different product editions lived on in Visual Studio 2008, which still came with a plethora of editions lead by the flagship Visual Studio Team System 2008 Team Suite edition (depending on where you look Microsoft apparently couldn’t make up their mind on where to put the year in the product name).

For 2010, Microsoft decided to shed some weight and reduced the number of editions to three (four if you count Express), and it is also losing the Team System moniker, which shortens the name simply to

So I said above that Visual Studio has become much more than just the development IDE, so what else is there? Well, how about this:

Most of these products are available in x64 and x86 flavors, depending on what OS version you are running, and all of them are supported up to and including Windows 7 of course. Curiously the F# Runtime download is only available on MSDN, but don’t worry, it is of course included in all Visual Studio 2010 editions already (with the exception of Express I believe).

One of the most notable new features in Beta 2 has to do with Team Foundation Server, it now ships with a Basic configuration option that allows installation on client operating systems. The installation has also been extremely streamlined, so no longer do you have to wade through pages of pre-requisites and set up a whole fleet of virtual machines, you can simply drop it onto your Windows 7 client box and try it out! Brian Harry describes it all in detail here.

If you are interested in any of the other feature enhancements of Beta 2 or Visual Studio 2010 in general check out the detailed descriptions on Soma’s Blog, Brian Harry’s Blog, Paul’s Blog and Scott's Blog, and did I already mention Beta 2 comes with a Go Live license?

The final release for Visual Studio 2010 and all related components is expected to take place on March 22, 2010. I’ll post more details as they become available!

posted @ Wednesday, October 21, 2009 3:05 PM | Feedback (13)
How to (not) restore SQL-driven ASP.NET websites

After having really nothing important to report on for quite a while I wanted to share some experiences and gotchas I ran into while restoring this blog.

Basically what had happened was that my server (and the rest of the stuff from my old house) was moved to a new location, and at the same time I decided to perform a hardware refresh (I really wouldn’t call it upgrade since I replaced the existing processor with a low power Celeron and an energy saving power supply) and topped it off by switching from the old Windows Vista 32bit system to a fresh Windows 7 64bit install. Since I was also using a new hard drive for the OS install, I still had all the old data, but I didn’t bother taking any database backups or saving any files before I wiped the machine out.

On the software side the following things changed:

  • I went from Windows Vista 32bit to Windows 7 64bit
  • That also meant going from IIS 7 to IIS 7.5 which comes with Windows 7
  • Instead of SQL Server 2005 32bit I installed SQL Server 2008 SP1 64bit

And these are the things I had to do to get my blog and other ASP.NET web applications running again:

  1. After installing Windows 7, I added IIS7.5 to it and then installed SQL Server 2008 SP1 64bit. So far so good!
  2. Next I copied over all the ASP.NET web applications from the old harddrive wwwroot folder into the Windows 7 wwwroot folder. You might want to make sure you give the files the right permissions and take over ownership as needed, otherwise the user accessing the web application might have issues reading the files.
  3. Getting my old SQL Server 2005 databases into SQL 2008 was much easier than I thought, especially since I didn’t take any backups but only had the original MDF files from the old Data folder. I copied all the files from the old folder (depending on the name of your SQL instance the folder path should be something like this: Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\MSSQL\Data) into the same path on the SQL 2008 installation. Then I fired up SQL Server Management Studio and used the Attach menu option (see screenshot below) to load the MDF files and import everything into SQL 2008. It even took care of automatically upgrading the databases from SQL 2005 to SQL 2008!

Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Attach Database

Now for the complicated part: Since Windows 7 comes with IIS 7.5 there were some changes Microsoft had made that I was not aware of. They have since been widely published and talked about in other blogs such as here and here. The main change that affected me is the fact that the default Application Pool Identity in IIS 7.5 changed from NetworkService to AppPoolIdentity. That meant my database connections were not working anymore, because the authenticating user was not a member of the database users. To get it working again I had to do the following:

  • First I removed the old NetworkService account from the database users, since I did not want to have old entries lingering around. The account name is NT AUTHORITY\NETWORK SERVICE.
  • Then I had to do some reading to find out what the actual username of the AppPoolIdentity is. Finally I figured it out: It is IIS AppPool\<app pool name>.
  • After adding the app pool users to their respective databases, everything immediately started working again!

In the end I learned a couple of neat new things about IIS 7.5 and how to restore web applications with databases without much preparation :-)

posted @ Wednesday, October 21, 2009 2:53 PM | Feedback (11)
Sunday, October 12, 2008
iPhone 2.1 Development in Windows using Eclipse

A couple of days ago PJ Cabrera published a document through IBM DeveloperWorks on how to use Eclipse CDT to develop iPhone applications under Windows or Linux. The instructions included jailbreaking the iPhone and installing software through Cydia to be able to transfer applications over to the phone. It also required the user to decrypt parts of the iPhone firmware to compile the toolchain. Apparently it did not take long for IBM to realize what they had allow to be published, so at the time of this posting the link to the document as well as the PDF have been removed by them.

However, those who were able to get a copy of the document before it was pulled might have noticed that the instructions did not work as printed under Windows. It took me a while to figure out what needed to be changed, especially since the document was written for the original 2.0 firmware, so I thought it might help somebody else to get some hints on how to get it working with the current 2.1 firmware. The following updates to the instructions only apply to Windows, I have not tested the instructions under Linux yet:

CygWin

  • When installing CygWin, for autoconf pick autoconf2.1. For gcc, pick gcc-core and gcc-g++, which will automatically select gcc-mingw-core and gcc-mingw-g++.
  • In addition to the CygWin packages listed in the instructions, you will also need to select openssl-devel from the Devel category, otherwise you won't be able to compile vfdecrypt.

iPhone Firmware

  • Download the iPhone firmware that matches the firmware currently installed on your iPhone. The instructions assume that you have 2.0, but since then newer versions have come out. Currently 2.1 is the latest version, and the firmware to download in that case is called iPhone1,1_2.1_5F136_Restore.ipsw.
  • That also applies to the version of the operating system image, which for the 2.1 firmware is called 018-3946-43.dmg.

vfdecrypt

  • The instructions for vfdecrypt are incorrect. The command line parameters in Windows have to be like this (using the operating system image for the 2.1 firmware):

   vfdecrpyt 018-3946-43.dmg decrypted.dmg

  • This also means that you cannot actually pass in the decryption key into vfdecrpyt, it has to be compiled into the executable. To make vfdecrpyt work you have to edit vfdecrypt.c in the iphone-2.0-toolchain\src directory and find the line in the code that says

   --------INSERT KEY HERE--------------

  • Undernath you will find two lines

   convert_hex("--------------------------------", aes_key, 16);

  • and

   convert_hex("---------------------------------------", hmacsha1_key, 20);

  • The first 16 bytes of the key go into the first line, the remaining 20 bytes of the key go into the second line. Replace the dashes with the key parts and then compile vfdecrpypt.
  • You need to use the key that matches your iPhone firmware. The key printed in the instructions only works for firmware 2.0. Because of the possible legal implications I am not going to publish the key for firmware 2.1 or link directly to a website that publishes it, but it should be okay to point out that keys for all firmwares (including the latest beta firmwares) can be found on the iPhone Wiki website.

That's as far as I got in the instructions so far. I will update this post as necessary to get all the way through it!

posted @ Wednesday, October 21, 2009 9:03 AM | Feedback (10)
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
A (re)fresh Start

After a painful hard drive crash in my laptop I finally extended my home network and added a dedicated server machine with a RAID5 disk array to minimize future data loss from hard drive failure. This also allowed me to finally separate the web serving duties from my gaming rig, but it caused a couple of days of downtime for my blog while I was juggling hardware and reassembling and reinstalling the machines. Now everything is done and up and running again. And I think the only people who noticed that the blog was down were probably the comment spammers anyway ;-)

I am running Windows Vista Ultimate 32bit on my file server and Windows Vista Ultimate 64bit on my gaming rig. While this might seem a bit reverse it makes sense for me, since my gaming rig is also used for software development and 3D rendering jobs, and it has 4 GB of RAM as opposed to the 2 GB my file server has. Also, it makes automatic processing of recorded TV shows on my file server easier, as I use the excellent and free DVR-MS Toolbox software to automatically detect commercials for me.

That is also the reason why I am running Windows Vista and not Windows Home Server on my file server, since Windows Home Server is lacking any Media Center functionality which is crucial for me since I am using my file server with my Xbox360 Media Center Extender to play back recorded (commercial-free) HDTV programs.

I called this blog post A fresh Start because I am also getting back to the roots of why I started blogging in the first place. After my first (surprisingly popular) posts about different Subtext configuration scenarios on Windows Vista and IIS7 I fell into the habit of rehashing news from other blogs without adding a lot of value to it. Back in March I wrote a blog post about Upcoming Articles, unfortunately none of which ever got written. The problem was that I wanted to produce more content then I had time for while trying to match (or excel) the quality level of people that get paid to blog all day long.

Now, 9 months later, some of the beta products I wanted to write about such as Windows Home Server and Visual Studio 2008 have been released as final products already, and I better leave it to people such as Paul Thurrott to review and write about them in a more timely manner. I have been working on some of the programming projects I announced back then, but with a full-time job and family & friends I simply haven't had the time yet to bring the results into a format that others can understand and use.

So I am taking a fresh stab at my blog by doing what I did in the beginning: When I hit a problem that I cannot find a solution for on Google and I manage to solve it, I will blog about it. Consider this my mission statement! I had such a case today with my latest blog post about Virtual Server on Vista. If I don't have anything to write about in a couple of months, then I won't talk about things you can find on any other blog already. Most people find my blog through keywords and Google anyway, which means I don't expect anyone to ever hit this post and actually read it :-) It is more of a reminder to myself and a marker in time in case I look back at some point in the future and wonder what I have been thinking about.

Enough said, see you when I solve the next problem!

posted @ Tuesday, December 11, 2007 1:34 AM | Feedback (7)
Configuring a separate Virtual Server Administration Web Site with IIS7 on Windows Vista

I installed the freely available Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Enterprise Edition on my Windows Vista machine today and noticed that the setup did not let me add the Administration Web Site for Virtual Server on a different web site than the default web site. Instead the only option was to have it added as a virtual directory to the default web site running on port 80. However, I expose the default web site to the outside world (as a matter of fact I run this blog off that machine), so I did not want to have the virtual directory for my Virtual Server exposed to the outside world as well. Since I couldn't find anything on Ben Armstrong's blog about this I decided to share my findings here.

So what does it take to configure IIS7 on Windows Vista to have the Virtual Server Administration Web Site in a separate web site and a different port? Follow these simple steps:

  1. First of all, make sure you are running one of the supported editions of Windows Vista. Basically the Starter and Home editions don't even let you install IIS7, and Home Premium does not support Windows Authentication, so only the Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions have the required features.
  2. Before installing Virtual Server, you need to enable the right options for IIS7 in Control Panel -> Programs and Features -> Turn Windows Features on or off. See this post on Ben Armstrong's blog for details on which options need to be installed.
  3. Execute the Virtual Server installer.
  4. Open the Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager from Administrative Tools.
  5. You will see that a virtual directory called VirtualServer has been added underneath your Default Web Site. Right-click on the parent folder of the Default Web Site called Web Sites and select Add Web Site...
  6. Fill in a name. I used Virtual Server, but you can pick any name you want. You can use the DefaultAppPool with the web site, or you can create a separate app pool if needed. However, since the Virtual Server web site is CGI and not ASP.NET, I believe it does not make much difference either way.
  7. The Physical Path should point to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Virtual Server\WebSite or whichever directory you installed Virtual Server into. Make sure it points to the WebSite subfolder.
  8. Pick a port other than 80, so that the web site cannot be accessed from the outside world. If you want to expose the web site to the outside world, you should still pick a port that cannot be easily guessed by a stranger for security purposes. Even if someone guesses the right port the web site will not be completely exposed, since Windows Authentication will require correct credentials to display the web site. By default, the Virtual Server setup will use port 1024 if it creates a separate web site automatically (presumably on a Windows Server 2003 system).
  9. If you are not exposing the web site to the outside world, simply enter localhost as the Host header, otherwise enter your desired Host header. If you want to access the administration web site from a different computer within your network, make sure to also add a second binding to the actual host name of the machine.
  10. Leave the Start web site immediately checkbox checked and click Ok.
  11. Now click on the web site you just created in the web sites tree so that the configuration icons for the web site appear in the IIS management console. You can ignore the ASP.NET configuration settings, since as I said before already this is not an ASP.NET application.
  12. Open the Authentication configuration settings and disable everything except Windows Authentication.
  13. In Handler Mappings, make sure CGI-exe is enabled. If it is not enabled, right-click on it and select Edit Handler Permissions, then check all permissions, in my case Execute was unchecked and needed to be checked.
  14. Done!
  15. Open a browser and test your configuration by navigating to http://<hostname>:<port>/. If you entered localhost in step 9 and for example port 1234 in step 8, the address would be http://localhost:1234/. The Virtual Server Administration Web Site should come up successfully.
  16. You can now remove the virtual directory that was created by the setup from your default web site.

 

Troubleshooting:

  • If you open the web site in your browser and it offers you the CGI application as a download, you did not enable CGI execution on the web site. Make sure you followed steps 2 and 13 above.
  • If the administration web site comes up but says "Could not connect to Virtual Server. Access Denied. Please contact Virtual Server administrator to set the required permissions to manage Virtual Server.", then you did not enable Windows Authentication. Make sure you followed steps 1 and 12 above.
  • If you get a HTTP 400 Bad Request error in your browser, you probably didn't set up the host header for the web site correctly. Make sure you followed step 9 above.
posted @ Tuesday, December 11, 2007 12:57 AM | Feedback (15)
Monday, December 11, 2006
Debugging Subtext on Windows Vista using IIS7 and Visual Studio 2005

This post describes how to compile and debug a web application using IIS7 instead of the built-in web server that comes with Visual Studio 2005. The built-in server should work right out of the box without any further configuration. While this post can pretty much be applied to any ASP.NET web application, I am writing it specifically for the source code of the open source blogging engine Subtext and as a third installment on my blog posts about how to install Subtext on Windows Vista and IIS7. Most people that set up Subtext on a machine are likely to compile the source code at one point or another, especially if you want to make changes to your page template and use user controls (as I did for my Technorati and Flickr controls). For the remainder of this post I assume that you already have successfully set up the compiled binaries for Subtext and the database mainly so that I don't need to reiterate certain necessary installation steps.

There are plenty of resources online that describe how to create/debug web applications using Visual Studio 2005 on IIS7. The two most important things you have to keep in mind are:

  1. To debug web applications you need to start Visual Studio 2005 with the "Run as Administrator" option from the right-click context menu.
  2. For debugging to work you need the IIS 6 Metabase and Configuration Compatibility components installed (which should already be the case if you set up IIS7 to work with SQL Server 2005).

Update 12/10/2007: As pointed out in some of the comments, IIS7 does not have the same functionality on all editions of Windows Vista. See this post for details. Basically the bottom line is that you won't be able to get it running on the Starter, Home, or Home Premium editions of Windows Vista because the authentication portion cannot be configured as required. The Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions will work fine.

For the Subtext solution the same applies as for the binaries when setting up the Virtual Directory, meaning you have to make sure the application pool is set to Classic .NET AppPool. Also, the project properties for the Subtext.Web project have to be changed from Use Visual Studio Development Server to Use IIS Web server. It is okay to let Visual Studio 2005 create the Virtual Directory for you using the Create Virtual Directory button (note: If you are not executing Visual Studio 2005 with elevated rights, you will get an error message when trying to create the Virtual Directory), but again you will have to change the application pool if the default app pool is not set to Classic .NET AppPool. Now when you start debugging the application here are some common error messages you might encounter and how to resolve them. If anyone gets any other errors please let me know and I will add them to the list (with solution if available):

Message: "Unable to start debugging on the web server. The web server is not configured correctly."
Solution: Unfortunately this is one of the most vague errors you can encounter. Microsoft recommends executing the web site in non-debug mode so that you get to see the underlying IIS error message. Check to see if that message is listed below to resolve it. If there is no error when executing in non-debug mode, make sure that debug is set to true in the Web.config file like this: <compilation debug="true" defaultLanguage="c#">. Alternatively this can also be set in the .NET Compilation settings in IIS Manager.

Message: "Server Error in Application "Default Web Site". HTTP Error 404.0 - Not Found"
Solution: This message comes up if you don't even have the Virtual Directory set up. Set up the Virtual Directory and make sure the application pool is set to Classic .NET AppPool.

Message: "Unable to start debugging on the web server. Debugging failed because integrated Windows authentication is not enabled."
Solution: On the Authentication dialog in IIS Manager enable Windows Authentication and disable Forms Authentication. You cannot have both enabled at the same time.

Message: "An exception of type 'System.InvalidOperationException' occurred in System.Xml.dll but was not handled in user code. Additional Information: There is an error in the XML document."
Solution: This exception is thrown in XmlSerializerSectionHandler.cs when deserializing the blog configuration section from Web.config. When making changes to Web.config through the IIS Manager it seems to clear out the values in the BlogConfigurationSettings section, so I had to fill in the values for all configuration parameters in the section again. These are the default values:

<!--
Checkout Subtext.Framework.Security for hashing passwords.
This should be set when first installing the application
and really shouldn't be changed afterwards.
-->
<UseHashedPasswords>true</UseHashedPasswords>

<!-- Globally control access to web services -->
<AllowServiceAccess>true</AllowServiceAccess>

<AllowImages>true</AllowImages>

<!-- Globally control use of XHTML -->
<UseXHTML>true</UseXHTML>

<!-- Default Item Count -->
<ItemCount>25</ItemCount>

<!-- Default Number of Posts to Show on Category Pages. Use 0 to show all. -->
<CategoryListPostCount>0</CategoryListPostCount>

<!-- Default Server Time Zone Offset -->
<ServerTimeZone>-8</ServerTimeZone>

<!-- Whether or not to GZIP the RSS and/or atom feeds. -->
<UseSyndicationCompression>true</UseSyndicationCompression>

Message: "An exception of type 'System.Configuration.ConfigurationErrorsException' occurred in System.Configuration.dll but was not handled in user code. Additional information: An error occurred creating the configuration section handler for BlogConfigurationSettings: There is an error in the Xml document."
Solution: This message appears as a follow-up error of the previous message. When the previous one is fixed this should go away as well.

posted @ Monday, December 10, 2007 11:31 PM | Feedback (53)
Friday, July 27, 2007
Visual Studio 2008 Beta 2, Silverlight, Rosario August CTP, and more!

Update 3/8/2007 2:32pm: As promised by Brian Harry they released a VPC image of the Visual Studio Team System Code Name "Rosario" August 2007 CTP! Head over to the download page and give it a try! The white paper mentioned on the download page is available here, and additional documentation for the CTP and the new Team Foundation Server is available here.

It's been a while since I posted something since I was busy working on some of my programming projects (so busy I even left the much anticipated iPhone launch day without a comment), but the recent slew of Microsoft announcements just required an update.

Most notably Visual Studio 2008 (which has lost the Orcas code name since Beta 1) Beta 2 has been released just three months after Beta 1 as ISO images that contain the installer files as well as Virtual PC images for those who want to take a look at it without making changes to their development environments, together with the .NET Framework 3.5 Beta 2 and Silverlight 1.0 Release Candidate. Make sure to look at the samples and documentation in the Silverlight 1.0 SDK RC as well as the Silverlight Tools Alpha for Visual Studio 2008 Beta 2, which integrates Silverlight with VS2008 (yay!). Instead of rehashing all the download links posted on various websites, I'll gladly refer to Brian Harry's blog, where he wrote up a couple of very nice postings on the release of Visual Studio 2008 Beta 2, the download links for all the different versions that are available including Team Foundation Server and Test Load Agent, and the upgrade process and interoperability with other components. Brian also announced that they reached a milestone with Rosario, which is going to be the next version of Visual Studio after Visual Studio 2008.

Along with these announcements Microsoft released the Secure Content Downloader July 2007 CTP, which allows very comfortably the download of everything listed above using a friendly (and secure) Download Manager that might prove more stable and reliable especially if the servers are under heavy load. Also, make sure to check out Rob Caron's Hitchhiker's Guide to Visual Studio 2008 Part I and Part II for some further information on changes between Visual Studio 2005 and 2008. Finally there is the official Visual Studio Team System 2008 Team Foundation Installation Guide document, which will help setting up the new TFS beta for testing.

Rounding off the round up of updates are the Microsoft Expression Blend 2 August Preview as well as Scott Guthrie's First Look at IronRuby, an excellent addition to the IronPython dynamic language implementation based on the Dynamic Language Runtime (DLR).

Enjoy!

posted @ Friday, August 3, 2007 2:56 PM | Feedback (1)
Friday, June 8, 2007
7:42 Minutes of your Life well spent

While reading about the TED idea conference I stumbled over this video of a very impressive Microsoft presentation of the Seadragon and Photosynth technologies. Those who have been following the recent Microsoft Surface and Silverlight products might have heard about or looked at Photosynth, but Seadragon is another very impressive imaging technology which deals with quickly navigating, zooming, and panning through vast amount of image data without using a lot of bandwidth.

The video is only 7:42 minutes long and as I wrote in the blog post title time well spent. If it is any indicator of the quality of this presentation, Blaise Aguera y Arcas (the Microsoft presenter) was caught off guard by sudden applause during the presentation and even made a remark that this has never happened since he joined Microsoft…

Enough said, see for yourself!

posted @ Friday, June 8, 2007 1:16 PM | Feedback (2)
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Welcome! This is the blog of a .NET software development enthusiast living in Silicon Valey, California, USA. The opinions posted here are my own and in no way represent the opinions of my employer or anybody else.