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Upgraded to CS 2008

Posted in at Wednesday, June 25, 2008 5:38 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Today I upgraded http://blogs.sqlxml.org to Community Server 2008. Previously it was running Community Server 2.1, so since I missed a few versions the upgrade was not quite as simple as it could have been. However, it went pretty well overall I think. Let me know if you find anything that is broken.

Right now I think the only thing that I know is broken is my Silverlight add-in, which I will fix as soon as I have some time to dig into how to upgrade that. I also haven't figure out how to get the Google ads on my personal blog. Not sure where those ads go now and the new documentation is pretty difficult to navigate.

Update: That was easy. Just fixed my Silverlight add-in by updating the referenced DLLs to the new 2008 DLLs and recompiled. Works!

How did I break Google Maps?

Posted in General at Tuesday, June 24, 2008 7:48 AM Pacific Daylight Time

On my Windows Server 2008 laptop, if I open Google Maps in the browser this is what I get:


Everything is totally scrambled.  It used to work just fine in IE8, but now it is completely broken. I've tried turning Emulate IE7 on and off, clearing my browser cache, etc, but nothing seems to fix it. I guess I'll have to go download Firefox to see if that fixes it.

Speeding Up Windows Server 2008 Boot Time

Posted in General | Hyper-V | Windows Server 2008 at Friday, June 20, 2008 9:47 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Peter Provost just posted on Speeding Up Vista Boot Time:

When you have a computer with a recent model CPU, chances are it's a dual-core CPU. Both Intel & AMD have been producing dual core CPU's for a few years now. By default, Windows Vista will only use a single core during boot-up. You can easily change this from the System Configuration utility:

He then goes on to show how to do this (not sure if he pulled the instructions from somewhere else since it seems to be quoted, but there is no source linked). Anyhow, you can do the same thing in Windows Server 2008 (just follow his steps).


I just tried it on my laptop and while everything still worked, I can't really say if it was actually faster.

Tour De Cure 2008 Complete!

Posted in General | Cycling at Sunday, June 15, 2008 4:34 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Yesterday I rode in the 2008 Tour De Cure which was part of my 2008 goals for the year. I rode the 65 mile route in 4 hours and 20 minutes (which turned into 67 miles after I took on wrong turn). You can see the map below which I uploaded to Google maps by converting the TCX file from my Garmin 205 to KML using this handy converter.

View Larger Map

The ride was a lot of fun and I managed to keep up with a pack of pretty fast riders for the first half of the race (ave. speed was around 19 mph). I lost them on the hills though, but caught up with them at the rest stops. :)

Up next is the Bike MS: Southern California Ride - Sept. 20-21 which is almost three times as long but over two days. I am still raising money for that ride and if you'd like to sponsor me you can do so here.

Silverlight Beta 2 Releasing Today?

Posted in Silverlight at Friday, June 6, 2008 10:44 AM Pacific Daylight Time

A lot of people are waiting expectantly for the release of beta 2 of Silverlight 2.0. Dave, for instance, is watching a number of blogs and twitter. However, I just saw on Barak Cohen's Silverlight News blog that it is available today. He doesn't have a live link though and just says that:

Silverlight 2 will be available on download center and on http://microsoft.com/silverlight

Hmm.. Today is quickly coming to a close so maybe it will be released tonight? Keep an eye out.

Update: You can get a preview of the new Beta 2 tools that are coming here:

  1. WCF templates for Silverlight Enabled.
  2. Build configurations.
  3. XAML Validation now reports build errors.
  4. Setup Improvements.
  5. Projects created in Beta 1 are prompted for conversion when opening to Beta 2.
  6. Linking a Web Site to a Silverlight Application.

Check the post for a description of each of those. Lots of goodies!

Update2: As AN mentions below it is out! Get it here: http://silverlight.net/GetStarted/

Update3: Get the full scoop over on ScottGu's blog.

Tech-Ed 2008 Recordings MIA?

Posted in Tech-Ed 2008 at Friday, June 6, 2008 3:24 AM Pacific Daylight Time

One of the only annoying things at Tech-Ed was that on the display outside each breakout session it would constantly switch between the list of sessions in the room and then a message stating that all sessions would be available online after 48 hours. So as you were walking by instead of just being able to glance at the monitors to see what sessions you were passing up you would see this message instead (seems like they could have just put the message at the bottom of the list).

So now I'm home and thought I would go check out some of the sessions I missed on Tuesday, but there don't seem to be any online. Hmmm. Anyone know where they are?


Update: Fixed typo...

Integrating MVC with Silverlight (Part 2)

Posted in ASP.Net/Web Services | Silverlight | MVC at Thursday, June 5, 2008 1:41 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Ok, so in my first post on Integrating MVC with Silverlight I didn't actually get to the Silverlight part. I only laid out the navigation and set it up so that it would work with Silverlight when I did add it in. So while on the flight from Orlando to Phoenix I re-wrote my menu using Silverlight 1.0 (using some old wpf/e code I had laying around).  Below is a screenshot of my updated sample which now has Silverlight:


So I'm still using the partial rendering by switching out the master page, which still isn't the ideal solution. What I'd really like is a way to call ViewPartial and pass in the name of the content area that I want to render. I'm also still not integrated with the MVC url system and have the Urls hardcoded in my javascript. Also, even thought the menu control could have state it doesn't actually show which page is currently selected.

So this example does integrate Silverlight with MVC, however, it still needs some more work. Since my flight to Burbank just got delayed from 8:25 to 10:15 maybe I'll have some time to work out these other issues. :(

Download Updated Sample Code Here

Integrating MVC with Silverlight

Posted in ASP.Net/Web Services | Silverlight | MVC at Wednesday, June 4, 2008 10:53 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Ok, so before I go any farther I want to spell out a couple of things. First, my sample code doesn't have any Silverlight in it yet. Since I didn't have a whole lot of time and beta 2 is only a day or so away I didn't think it was worth the effort. This post is more about figuring out where Silverlight would go rather than actually demoing what it would do. Second, I'm an MVC newbie so there is probably a better way to do what I'm trying to do. However, I've been at TechEd 2008 this week attending MVC and Silverlight sessions and talking to the MS folks and so far haven't seen a good answer.

So with that out of the way, here is what I've been thinking about. I'm trying to understand the best way to integrate Silverlight (or Flash for that matter) into an MVC application. I know that I can just stick the Silverlight html tags into my view and that will work just fine, but if I do that then my Controllers will probably not know about Silverlight and vice-versa. For instance, here is the scenario that I've been thinking about.

Let's say I have a nice looking Silverlight menu bar. Now I could easily add that control to my master page and put links in to all my MVC pages. However, I probably want to do a couple of things: (1) I would like the control to know about where I am at so I can display some kind of context information and (2) I would like the control to get the correct urls from MVC instead of them being hardcoded. Now maybe there is a nice way to do this that I haven't thought about, but instead here is what I came up with (and what is in the sample code at the end of the article).

The way that I made this work is pretty simple, but it still feels a little dirty. I created a second master page that I called Partial that contains nothing but the MainContent content area. This goes in the shared views area next to the Site master page.

<%@ Master Language="C#" ... %>
<asp:ContentPlaceHolder ID="MainContent" runat="server">

Next, I added a mode parameter of type string to all the actions in my Home controller which I pass as the name of the master page in the View method (using preview 3 here).

public ActionResult About(string mode)
    ViewData["Title"] = "About Page";

    return View("About", mode);

Lastly I wrote a little javascript (which uses the asp.net ajax library) to get the contents of the page passing the Partial as the mode and then I stick the results into the content div.

function asyncNav(url) {

    url = url + '?mode=Partial';

    var request = new Sys.Net.WebRequest();


function updateMain(executor, eventArgs) {
    if (executor.get_responseAvailable()) {
        $get("content").innerHTML = executor.get_responseData();
    else {
        if (executor.get_timedOut())
        else if (executor.get_aborted())

So now my navigation can accomplish both of my goals because it doesn't unload when the user clicks a link so it has context and it is using urls that comply with MVC. I know, I know, I'm not actually using Silverlight yet, but I think that will be pretty easy to implement and I'm planning on giving it a shot as soon as Beta 2 is released. For now, check out my code and let me know what you think. Am I on the right path or am I missing the boat?

Download Sample Code Here

Update: Just posted Part 2 here which actually uses Silverlight.