August 2010 Entries

Visual Studio 2010 – Patch the growing find and replace dialog

I was pleased when I came across this patch - for a couple of reasons. One is that it’s very annoying behaviour, and looks pretty ridiculous when you have a find dialog spanning an entire 30” monitor. However the second and main reason was that I was starting to feel I was going mad in thinking that the find dialog was messing with me. Link: The Visual Studio Blog - Patch Available for the Growing Find and Replace Dialog Tags: Visual Studio

Happy Customer x 2

I’ve had a couple of positive buying/services experiences recently, and wanted to write about them briefly. I recently replaced my main computer. I wanted something which would work well for day to day development but also for the occasional gaming I manage to do. I spend a lot of time in my office as I work from home, so it’s important to have something powerful but quiet as well. Also as an added complication I’d recently purchased a SSD which I wanted to drop into the build. I did a bit of shopping around PC retailers in...

Merchants under pressure to comply with PCI DSS

While I'm pretty sure PCI DSS compliance is slightly more complex than this, it’s interesting to note that the 12 steps required for compliance as cited in this article are all pretty obvious and basic things: 1. Install and maintain a firewall configuration to protect cardholder data 2. Do not use vendor-supplied defaults for system passwords and other security parameters 3. Protect stored cardholder data 4. Encrypt transmission of cardholder data across open, public networks 5. Use...

It ain’t a crime if you don’t get caught

If a doctor saw one of his colleagues hacking open the chest of a patient with a chainsaw, you’d like to think that he’d report this fact to relevant authorities and something would come of it. I’m no brain surgeon, or any type of surgeon at all, but yet I know that chainsaws aren’t a suitable means for performing surgery of any type. I like to think that there’s a certain level of checks and balances existing in the medical profession, and as a rule those who lack the ability to perform the basics with any level of competence (or...

Microsoft.Data.dll - “Someone on the Internet is wrong!”

I’ve had a few posts on the topic of Microsoft.Data.dll sitting open in my browser for a few days, and I keep coming back to them trying to work out what I think of it. In some ways it doesn’t matter, because I’m never going to use it – which is fine, because I’m not the intended demographic. If you’ve not seen it already and want to get enraged/interested (pick one!), then basically the syntax is a simplification of ADO.NET and LINQ allowing queries such as the following: using (var db = Database.OpenFile("Northwind")) { ...

Issues with iPhone mail and Exchange since applying iOS4?

They seem to be fixed with iOS 4.0.1. My mail was syncing, and then not syncing, and coming up with “Unable to verify account information” – until I applied 4.0.1 and low and behold my mail returned. It seems I really need to get into the habit of plugging my phone into iTunes more for updates. Tags: Apple, iPhone

TortoiseSVN “The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable” on Windows 7

I’ve hit this a couple of times recently, but it wasn’t until last night that I had cause (and time) to do a bit of research into it. It occurs when you’re adding a large amount of files to Subversion, and appears to be due to the disk indexing process and/or anti virus. Some people’s experiences vary, in my case it seemed to be excluding my repository locations from indexing which solved it, but others seem to have fixed it by excluding their code locations from being scanned by their AV software. The other side affect is...

Subversion’s “read length line” error

When I did something stupid as a kid my parents would occasionally say words to the effect of “We’re not angry with you, just disappointed”. That’s how I feel right now with Subversion after finding out about this repository corruption issue which seems to have been lurking around for a while. Finding such a bug in any system you rely on as heavily as a source control system is always going to hurt, and more so if you find about about it first hand. I’ve been unable to repair the repository in question, and although it’s not much of...

Pixma MP980 on Windows 7 driver issues

I’ve had a few issues reinstalling the drivers for my Canon Pixma 980, and this morning I found a post which worked for me: Installing Scanner Drivers for my Networked Canon MP980. I actually didn’t experience the exact error mentioned in the blog, but the fix worked none the less. The Pixma was one of those things which sounded good on paper (no pun intended) – I needed a multi function printer, and the MP980 looked like it’d do everything I need for work, plus let me mess about with printing photos. I print about once or twice a...

TinyMCE and “A potentially dangerous Request.Form value was detected”

If you’re currently using TinyMCE and are disabling page validation to get around the above error then you’ll probably want to read this post: TinyMCE and “A potentially dangerous Request.Form value was detected” This becomes more useful if you’ve upgraded your projects to .NET 4.0, as it means you can get rid of the config tag to force your application to use the 2.0 validation model. Legacy support, eeeugh. However be aware that if you’re using ScriptManagers anywhere that they don’t seem to like the new validation model too much, so if you’ve got any of them lurking...

Calculating the risks of inherited code

At some point in their career, most software developers will have taken over a project from someone else. I tweeted about this briefly, and at the time 140 characters was probably a wise constraint in terms of forcing me to compress the issue, but the more I think about it the more it makes sense that there must be some good resources out there covering this topic in more detail. When you inherit a codebase from someone else (be it internal person, external person, another dev company, whatever) there’s often a large amount of risk involved. The previous developer(s)...