Super size me

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Having fixed all the outstanding “Oh my [deity/dictator of choice], we have to fix this now or people will be really rather unhappy” issues (as they’re referred to under our bug tracking system. Or is that my imagination? You know, I think it probably is) against DTS Package Compare 2.0, it was time to turn … Read more

New Check for Updates Client too

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Well not only have we got the currently running SQL Data Compare Beta – well SQL Tools beta really but that’s the important bit ;). We have the new DTS Compare Beta, we’re going to be starting work on the next update of our brilliant SQL Log Rescue tool too. Not only all that but … Read more

Filtering foibles

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There are times when you’re striving for a usable design, and no matter what you try, your attempt just fails to cut the mustard.  Everyone has a difference of opinion as to what should be done to fix it and you’re stuck there trying to think of a sensible improvement.  What to do? Time to … Read more

Count down to SQL Backup 4.0 release

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We are now ‘feature complete’ and only have a few weeks until we have code lock off. The beta program has in the region of 75 customers signed up, many of which are actively posting feedback on the private forum. The comments have been encouraging. The beta testers have been carrying out some impressive tests, … Read more

SQL Server Documentation

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Brian Welcker has posted that the December 2005 updates of SQL Server Books online, SQL Server Samples and Sample Databases and the Express Editions documentation and samples are now available to download from the following links: SQL Server 2005 Books Online (December 2005 Update) SQL Server 2005 Samples and Sample Databases (December 2005) SQL Server … Read more

Cowboy filenames

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If you ask me, and I take it as implicit by your visit that you do (sorry about that, but it’s Friday afternoon and I need a weekend), Windows is far too facist about filenames. Most notably in terms of the characters one can put into a filename, and the obstreperous way it will cough … Read more

Mapping of .NET Assembly attributes to File Version Information Attributes.

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.NET automatically generates a FileInformation resource when building the assembly. Here is a mapping of the .NET attribute to the corresponding named element in VersionInformation and the name that Windows Explorer puts on its UI. Assembly Attribute VersionInfo Windows Explore name AssemblyTitle FileDescription Description AssemblyDescription Comments Comments AssemblyConfiguration AssemblyCompany CompanyName Company AssemblyCopyright LegalCopyright Copyright AssemblyTrademark … Read more

The new SQL Data Compare beta

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The new SQL Data Compare beta is about to be released and I hope you all get a chance to have a good look at it and send me your opinions. There are a few features that we are quite proud of mostly of course these are surrounding our new Yukon support, SQL Server 2005 … Read more

Cat detective

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Ahhh… now… er… that shouldn’t happen.  Oooh, yup, that’s not at all clear.  Purrr, Meow, Purrr.  Hmmm… they’re not finding that and why are they trying there?  Reviewing a usability trial recording is akin to playing the role of a detective.  You can’t be one of those detectives who, week after week, fail to solve … Read more

.NET Oddities #3

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OK, so I’ll admit this is a bit cheeky: this entry should almost certainly be .NET Oddities #2a because it’s so closely related to #2, but there. You may have noticed, and in fact I already knew this, that OutOfMemoryException (like StackOverflowException) has a null value for its StackTrace property. Again, this can be a … Read more

Wild card registering COM dlls

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When developing a COM based application sometimes it’s sometimes useful to register all the DLLs/OCX at once.From a command prompt This will try to register all dll’s even if they are not COM dlls. This is fine as the registration will fail silently.You can change the above command to register COM servers eg… Read more

Debugging Arbitrary thread stacks in .NET

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Check out John Robbins November 05 Bugslayer article.. He has ported his excellent SUPERASSRT code from native C++ into C#. Part of his solution uses CDB.(a command line version of WinDBG)I have previously found producing minidump files very useful in tracking down native code problems, so I will be trying out his new C# implementation … Read more

Explorer and Environment variables

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You can type environment variables into the the Explorer Address bar and it is expanded into its full path. Typical examples include: Environment Variable  Meaning Example %TEMP% Temp directory C:TEMP %TMP% Temp directory C:TEMP %USERPROFILE% Current Profile C:Documents and SettingsDavid Connell %WINDIR% Windows Directory  C:Windows You may have some company specific enviroment variables, check it out … Read more

Type safe collections

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I must admit that creating a nice type safe collection for a new feature in one of our products took me a little time. There are some very good resources online on how to setup your own type safe collection so I thought I’d contribute a little to that resource. The key to all this … Read more

Wing Dings

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Occasionally when developing software you come across really absurd or bizarre bugs. The user interface for the application I’m currently developing recently exhibited one of these: a propensity for beeping periodically, for no readily explicable reason. To be precise, not so much a beeping as a “ding”ing. Now like most software developers, I work in … Read more

SQL Data Compare: Comparing Views

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In case you haven’t come across this before you can actually compare two views in SQL Data Compare. The only pre-requisite is that the view has an index defined on it. As an example lets create and compare an indexed view on pubs. First we must create the view with the schema binding option: We … Read more

SQL Backup 4.0 BETA is ready!

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Phew… on November 15th an email went out to a select group of SQL Server DBA’s, Developers and other potential SQL Backup users to let them know of the SQL Backup version 4.0 beta program. The beta version is pretty much feature complete. It’s a major upgrade from version 3.2. The final release is scheduled for 16th … Read more

Always set Warnings as Errors

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How many of us have developed some code only to find the compiler outputs some warnings such as unused parameter, or unreachable code and just thought “yup, I’ll fix it tomorrow”. Unfortunately tomorrow never comes and the warning just get left in. Before you know it when you build a project there are hundreds of … Read more

Testing for empty String

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I was speaking with James a few days ago about strings and testing for them being empty, and as usual we had an interesting discussion. At the end of it I thought I better go off and write some test code to find out some real numbers. I investigated three environments. .NET 1.1 .NET 2.0 … Read more