Monday, 17 December 2007

ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions

You would have thought that after the latest version of the .NET Framework packed with its many new features the Microsoft .NET team would have sat back to enjoy their accolade, but this is not the case as they are still developing and have produced a number of extensions to the framework which will help developers add some of the functionality that usually takes allot of time to implement

For examples they have crated a MVC (Model-View-Container) framework and a new AJAX version, to mention just a couple of the new technologies ready for you to take advantage of.

To get the full information on these extensions please see Brad Abrams blog entry which also includes direction to tutorials.

Monday, 10 December 2007

DDD5 Videos

Unfortunately for me I missed the last DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper (DDD) day, personally I think a DDD is a good excuse to miss clashing family events although my wife does not hence I did not attend.

If you are like me and could not attend than do not fear as most of the presentations where videoed and they are now available at the web site, so although you missed out on the event at least you can watch the presentations.

You can find the videos at the DDD web site here

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

P & P Team System Guidance In Print

The Patterns and Practice team at Microsoft have been the driving force behind many of the additional framework which have eventually found their way into the full .NET recently this includes the new MVC framework which is due to be release early next year. 

Besides frameworks they also have a number of documents outlining best development practices, recently I have been responsible for the maintenance and implementation of Team System within my organisation and have used the P & P guidance documents within CodePlex, these have been an invaluable resource for the best way to use and run Team System. 

For those of you who prefer to read your document in physical form the Team System guidance is now in print and can be purchased from Amazon, find it by clicking here

You can also get the performance testing guidance for web application in print too, find it by clicking here

[Original Information from Jeff Beehler's blog]

Tuesday, 4 December 2007

Visual Studio 2008 Training Kit

Every version of Visual Studio has been accompanied by a suite of presentations, demos, and hands-on-labs and Visual Studio 2008 is no different.

This latest training kit takes you through the new buzz features including LINQ, WCF, WPF, WF etc and most of the new language features.  This is a great place to start if you want to really investigate what is new and great about Visual Studio 2008 download this kit.

You can download the 120MB kit from Microsoft here.  After downloading the kit, simply run the installation program to extract the contents to your local machine.  Once the installation process is complete, you will see an HTML page that allows you to navigate through the contents of the kit.

[Original Information from Eric Nelson]

Monday, 3 December 2007

.NET Framework 3.5 Poster

Ok this may sound a bit geeky, well in fact it is very geeky, but I like to put .NET/development posters around my desk this includes information on the MSF development cycle and coding mantras.  I find that they help me keep all those little bits of very useful information at the front of my memory especially as I seem to have a really bad one.

Recently I came across another poster to put by my desk, this one contains an overview of the .NET 3.5 common namespaces and types.  I am sure you will agree this is information no developer should be without!

Seriously you may find this useful to find your way to some of the nice new 3.5 features.

You can find the poster in XPS format here

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Windows Live Writer

Up until recently my blogging experience has been, come up with an idea, write up the blog entry in an Outlook email (so I can spell check), copy-and-paste to Blogspot and format the text and insert links using HTML mark up.  This process has worked very well except I have to hand craft my links and double check that they are all working before I post.

I have seen Windows Live Writer around for a while and had the usual thought 'I should look at that', well finally I did and WOW!

I installed Live Writer, pointed it at my Blogspot account (a google site) and it signed-in checked the account took some settings from the site to configure my experience and here I am writing this blog from inside Live Writer.

The experience is everything I could hope for its a complete Word-like experience with the usual spell checking, something I greatly need, font formatting, tables, bullet points etc, insertion of links and also difference media (pictures, videos etc). Once I have finished formatting my blog entry I click 'publish' and it appears in my blog, the experience of the interface means that I could stop physically logging into my Blogspot account from now on, if I so wished.

If you write a blog or are thinking of writing one but are held back by the process of having to use another web interface then give Windows Live Writer a go I am sure that once you start using it you will suddenly realise that the only thing stopping you from blogging now is time and ideas.

To download Windows Live writer go here

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Microsoft Marketing - Win A Dream Office

We all know that the Microsoft marketing machine is big and strong, they have come up with some interesting ways to promote their products.  For example to promote the use of Visual Studio the Defy All Challenges web site was created which seemed to serve no other purpose than to tell you something we all know, Visual Studio is great!

Along the same line of slightly pointless marketing web sites Microsoft are running a new competition to win £500 worth of office equipment.  To gain your entry to this competition you first have to navigate around a virtual office  and click you way through a number of clues to find the keys, all while being told how great the Microsoft suite of office products are.

If you have the spare time you can find the web site here

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

WPF Boot Camp - FREE

WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation) is a fantastic new UI technology available to the .NET developer, which also appears as a sub set in Silverlight.  So you can see that WPF will soon surround every .NET developer.

The biggest issue with a new technology is finding the best resource to learn it, and for those of us with tight IT budgets, the backing to learn it.

The Internet always has resources to allow you to learn these technologies for free and there have been a number of articles on Codeproject, MSDN and Nibbles however these articles and tutorials fall short of providing the complete information from end to end for the beginner.

Microsoft  have addressed this shortfall by providing a complete online boot camp.  The boot camp was originally run for a number of selected individuals who attended it in Redmond, but as the organisers brought the speaker list together they realised that they had got together the WPF cream.  The list of speakers included, among others, Ian Griffith who presented at the Bristol VBUG last year.

The online presentations are structures in the same way as if you had attended the boot camp, opening with a keynote followed by presentations to teach you the entire WPF technology.  You can view the videos online, through Silverlight, or download them as WMV.

As an additional bonus you also have two hands on labs to complete at your leisure.

To get hold of this amazing resource go here

Monday, 12 November 2007

Visual Studio Team System Widgets

VSTS is a large application and contains a number of interest areas for all users, some need to watch the check in rate or code churn (the count of code lines changes) and some just need to make sure that they have the latest version of their files when they check them out.

For those of your who know VSTS you will know that although you can get hold of the information you need or perform the necessary actions you do have to go through some hoops, the power tools power tools for VSTS help a lot but there is still some gaps.

Now as most of us are programmers we could use the VSTS SDK to write our own Visual Studio add-in. The SDK is very well documented and you can create great a very powerful tool to do any number of VSTS related functions, however if you are like me you most probably have a number of other project on the go and no time for anymore.

Never fear there is a website called Team System Widgets to help you find the widget you are after bringing together a list of developed widgets from commercial, community and Microsoft sources. The web site contains tools for build monitoring to VSTS event subscription.

Click here to find out more

Thursday, 8 November 2007

Team Development with Visual Studio Team Foundation Server

To use and make software correctly you need guidance, a manual for how the makers suggest you use it. I am very keen on getting hold of the guidance produced by Microsoft whenever it is available especially when it comes to Team System. The amount of work to get Team System correctly set up is quite a lot, although it’s a great product, it is very easy to get lost in its implementation.

To help bridge the knowledge gap the team responsible for the development of Team System have created a WIKI on Codeplex and also created an overall guidance document which has recently been put on MSDN.

Each document encompasses a lot of information for users and administrators of Team System, if you have not already looked at both of these sources I suggest you do so now to avoid misconceptions and incorrect implementations into your SDLC.

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Speed up Visual Studio 2005

Like most developers I hate waiting for my PC especially once I have hit F5, in Visual Studio, I do not want to wait for it to compile all 20 projects I want it done NOW! Ok maybe I am a bit impatient, for those of you who find Visual Studio 2005 to run a little slow there are a few little tweaks you can do to make it run that little bit faster.

You can find these very helpful tips here

10 types of programmers you’ll encounter in the field

When working in the IT industry it is hard not to pigeon hole your fellow codes by their actions. Normally the only people I tend to categorise are the ones who do not work efficiently and without passion for doing a good job, these people I tend to categorise as the ‘9-to-5ers’ for their commitment to fitting all IT related learning and working to the hours between 9am and 5pm.

However there are many other categories you can use to identify the type of programmers you are surrounded by and a recent article by Justin James gives you the top ten, by his own experience. It’s a very interesting read as I have worked with nearly all 10 types of people and I am sure you have too.

Read it here

Thursday, 25 October 2007

DDD6 Registration

You can now register to attend DDD6. The event is on Saturday 24th November.

Registration link :

The aganeda will be posted shortly on the DDD site.

If you are thinking of going register NOW

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Estimation Poker

The skill of task estimation is something we all have to deal with, I like to lean more towards overestimation rather than under, however when you are sat there after completing your 1 day task with still the majority of the day left you cannot help feeling that if you could have done better in your estimation. Now you can spend the rest of the day working on those research tasks or the next item in your project plan or you can plan a game!

This is not any old game this is a game that will actually help increase yours and your teams estimation skills, this game is called Planning Poker. I know you can hardly contain your excitement, you can buy your own copy of this game or play the online version at The idea of the game is that you come up with an outline for a task then all the players put in they estimation of how long it will take to do the task and between each player you talk about your decision.

The game is a good idea and it may work for your team to help increase your teams skills for estimation but this is never a replacement for historical data.

Entry inspired by Coding Horror by Jeff Atwood on October 21st 2007

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper 6 – Voting Opened

I cannot believe we are so luck to have another Developer day event, this years event is due to be held on Saturday November 24th at the Microsoft Reading campus.

If you visit the web site( for the event you will be able to vote for the topics you wish to see, every year the votes are used to create the schedule for the coming event.

If you have not heard about the DDD events, it’s a community event run by the developer community for the developer community. This event is so popular that each year they run out of spaces within three days of registration opening, not that amazing, but when you think that blogs like mine are the only way the event is publicised its no mean feet.

Also did I forget to say its FREE FREE FREE

To find out when registration for the event opens add my blog to your RSS reader or you can add the blog of one of the committee members who is always the first to inform the community Guy Smith-Ferrier.

Thursday, 11 October 2007

.Net Developer Network - WPF and Silverligh

This is just a reminder that Bristol’s only FREE user group is holding its next event, next Tuesday 16th October. This meeting is called ‘WPF and Silverlight’ and is being presented by Oliver Sturm. So far over 40 people have registered and we can still fit in more people in our new meeting location at the UWE in Frenchay.

Please visit for detailed information and FREE registration.

Hope to see you there.

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

C# Coding Standards

I am all about the standards, the reason being that it means I have to concentrate less on how to structure the code in a methodical manor and more on what the code will actually do standards are the leveller between all developers.

Code Complete by Steve McConnell is a great book but it’s not specifically geared to C# development, however Juval Lowy has created such a document. The document is 26 pages long, and rather than give you a long explanation of why you should code in a certain way it is just a list of what you should do, which you either agree with or you don’t (I do), either way they are a good starting point.

To download the pdf go here

Monday, 8 October 2007

10 Usability Nightmares You Should Be Aware Of

If you are like me, you are designer, developer and tester of your web application. Microsoft spends a lot of time talking about collaborating with designers, but in the ‘real-world’ we have yet to be able to employee one of these people so you design your site the best you can taking ideas from other sites and putting your own twist on them. Often I find myself so immersed in technical function of the site that I can loose focus on the fact that my interface has to appeal to the common denominator, at these points I find myself referring to a top 10 worst list to help me take out those features which do not work for everyone.

Smashing Magazines has just published an article where they review the top 10 things not to do with web user interface design, to read what they have to say go here

Thursday, 4 October 2007

.NET Source Code Release

Have you been debugging that .NET code and watched the stack window fill up with calls to the many .NET framework classes and wondered what is .NET class doing? Or why is it not working how I expected? And how does it do that?

Well put that copy of reflector away and just step into the code!

In Visual Studio 2008 you will be able to step straight into the .NET Framework code and debug as if you where one of Microsoft’s employees. The code can be automatically downloaded on demand and, unlike a reflection tool, will have the variable names and comments as you would expect any normal production code to contain. The download feature will mean you always get correct version of the code for your framework version but to save time you can always download all the source to your machine, however you will need the space to store it.

The code is released to you under the Microsoft Reference License so you cannot change or redistribute, and initially you will only be able to get the source code for version 3.5 of the framework although this will change and be added to as time goes on.

Jscript intellisense and now framework source code on demand, what super feature will they think of next?

To read more about this see Scott Guthrie's blog, see a video at Channel 9 and listen to Scott Hanselman talk to the guy who headed up the project

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Java Script Tips and Tricks

As a web developer I often find myself involved with writing Jscript, which is something I quite in enjoy….and yes I am a geek. I do find the challenge of finding out about how Jscript will handle certain events and debugging it to find out what it knows, a nice change of pace, Besides the language is not that far from C# which I enjoy working with.

However my knowledge did not go far beyond short functions used with ASP.NET validation controls to provide that instant user feedback.

With the recent invention of AJAX frameworks I have found that my tiny validation code knowledge does not event scratch the surface of what Jscript can actually do for me, in fact it’s a very powerful language which implements some language features that C# has only recently gained or will not gain until the next version.

To help me get a better understanding of what Jscript can actually do and hopefully allow me to better understand what I can do within the AJAX framework I came across my favourite kind of article, tips-and-tricks on Jscript but for the ASP.NET developer…that’s me! This article covers all those advanced features of Jscript I did not think I needed to know, although now I do I cannot wait to take advantage of them, and tips on other functions to help provide a more responsive application.

To read this two part article on Tips for ASP.NET Developers please go here

Tuesday, 2 October 2007

Team Foundation Server – Power Tools (September 2007)

Team System is something I use almost every day and it is a great product, however like most software there are a number of features that never made it into the final product which I actually need. Microsoft understands this which is why almost all developer software produced is accompanied by some Power Tools, and Team Foundation Server is no different.

The Power Tools, which have been updated and released this month, offer a number of invaluable features to anyone involved with TFS these include;

‘Best Practices Analyser’ for checking your server is set up correctly
Check-In Policy pack for new ways of stopping bad code making it to the final product
A Process Template Editor to make those company specific tweaks
Number of command line tools for managing your projects

You can find the full information and detail on how to download the tools here

Monday, 24 September 2007

Devexpress – Refractor! Free (ASP.NET)

Last week Devexpress released an update to their popular Refactor! For ASP.NET. This tool provides a number of refactorings to ASP.NET developers using VB.NET or C#.

Refactoring is the method of taking existing code and reducing its complexity. This may sound scary to some especially as you used to have to be very careful refactoring as you could disable your whole program but Refactor removes the risk and gives you some time saving methods.

The tool integrates with Visual Studio 2005 and 2008 and provides the same refactoring that C# already supports and more, and the best thing is it’s faster and uses animation to show you the result of you refactor before you commit to it.

To download this great free tool go here

Thursday, 20 September 2007

.Net Developer Network : Team Foundation Server with Richard Fennell

Last night I attended a great presentation on Team Foundation Server, at my local user group '.NET Developer Network'.

Being a leader in this technology and responsible for its implementation and administration at my company, I have spent a lot of time watching sales videos on how this is ‘Complete Solution’ to my development project needs, yet the actual knowledge on the day-to-day use information is very thin. However Richard brought his own experiences to the presentation and gave a real insight in to the pains and joys of using Team Foundation Server 2005 and the Orcas verson.

Richard started from the begging of the implementation with how to setup your Team Foundation Server and the pitfalls associated with this, something I have first had knowledge of, then took us through how a developer would actually use the system. The later part of the presentation was give us an overview of the many Power Tools available which fill the gaps in Team Foundation Server.

It was a great presentation, with well thought out content, aimed squarely at the developer who needs an insight into this mammoth technology.

Richard has made his slides available and has included a number of speaker notes in the Power Point slides, which is a great help as it is the detail of what is said that you usually need when you look back at these things.

You can download the slides from

Richard is an active blogger and you can find his blog at

If you think this presentation sounded interesting then the .NET Developer Network User Group hold free monthly meetings available to anyone, all you need to do is register at

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

Beginners Guide to Silverlight

I know everything coming out of Microsoft at the moment is Silverlight-this-and-Silverlight-that and I have tried to keep clear of being another voice in a sea of thousands saying the same thing, and at the risk of falling on def ears I thought I would tell you about a short article which should give you a background to what Silverlight is all about.

This is a concise article detailing what you need to know about Silverlight, so if you have not had time to watch a video or listen to a Podcast yet then you may want to give this a read.

The article is written by non Microsoft staff so gives a more rounded view, you can find the article here

Debugging ASP.NET Server Requests and Response

How often have you gone to a client site or worked with your production server and wondered what is IIS receiving? This sort of information, like all information needed, is in the memory of the server but you cannot see it as you would need to interrogate the servers memory using something like WinDbg and workout at what position (memory address) the request and response are and work back to re-piece the information into a form you can read.

Now do not get me wrong this would be great thing to do and I would learn so much but like you, I have a heap more things to do with my day like actually creating that new web widget.

However do not fear as someone has already done the hard work for you, Tess Ferrandez, who works for Microsoft in Sweden is the person you want on your side as she spends her free time working out how to debug code. If you want to read how to get the request and response data from IIS or just copy the scripts, read her blog article here

Monday, 10 September 2007

User Interface Design

When I learnt about how to program and application design in College we spent a lot of time reading old books and using them as our reference for assignments, as I my knowledge increased I left a lot of that text behind me in the notion that is was all out of date and not valid in an industry which seem to move at a million miles a minuet. Although technology has moved on how we actually design software and the problems we have to overcome when doing so are quite old and in their simplest form date back to the early years of Computer Science.

For example take interface design, it is still the same as it’s always been, present an easy to read interface which is intuitive to the users business function while presenting any information to the user in a structured and ordered manor. This idea has not changed since Clayton Lewis and John Rieman wrote their book on User Interface design in 1993.

The book covers the theories and methodologies of user interface design with step-by-step guidance on how to create the best user interface for your application, after all, without a good interface no amount of well structured class will help you. The book is now over ten years old but is still as relevant as it was back then.

You can read the book on line at or download a PDF version. You are not charged to read this great resource but you can donate $5 to the authors through the site.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

ASP.NET Performance Tips

I spend my life reading as much as I can about how to squeeze that little bit of extra performance out of my applications and in the Web deployment world there are so many areas you need to be aware of, the client browser, the server config and your ASP.NET application. So when ever there is a list of techniques to employ or avoid when developing ASP.NET I lap it up especially as each time I developer I like to do as little boilerplate coding as possible and use the framework controls which are not always the most efficient.

Miguel Angel Carrasco has just release 20 ASP.NET development tips on his blog at The list is short but comprehensive with some very useful tips on ASP.NET do’s and don’ts.

Thursday, 30 August 2007

Performance Testing Guidance for Web Applications

When developing all applications you came to that point in the project, usually near to shipping, when you think about looking at the performance of the app. Hopefully you have read the books and persuaded your stakeholder to give you some metrics to work by or you just want the app to run on the smallest amount of hardware possible allowing your customers to have little reason to not use your new widget.

The guys over at the patterns and practices team have a lot of information to help developers like us with information on how we can tune our apps and they have just released a new document on how to tune your web applications using performance testing. I have not read the whole document but from I have seen it is to the usual high standard and contains a wealth of information on the subject of performance for web applications, for those of you who also do Windows apps I am sure that you will be able to use some of the same methodologies in this area as well as the document gives you a strong grounding in the methodologies (I expect nothing less from these guys).

To read the document on line or download the PDF go here

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Microsoft have just released a new service called ‘SkyDrive’. This new service provides storage for any data up to 500mb. It secured to your passport account and but you can also share your storage area with selected people.

The web pages only allow you to upload 5 files at a time but you can download a tool which allows you to upload more than five at a time making far more usable.

You can find more information here

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Team System Web Access Power Tool

Yesterday Microsoft released the updated version of their Team System Web Access Power Tool, this free tool allows you to control your Team System projects entirely through a web interface. This tool is the updated version of the DevBiz tool which Microsoft bought earlier this year.

The development team at Microsoft has put some time into improving the tool over the original, which was already quite feature rich, by putting it through their own release cycle which includes many rigorous checks. They have also spent some time putting increased support for AJAX to make the interface more response and have removed the need for keys to activate the product, it is now accessed using Windows Authentication.

This tool is available to download from here
Remember you need to have Team System already installed for this to work.

To see a full list of changes read this blog

Tuesday, 31 July 2007

SilverLight 1.0

On 27th July version 1.0 of Silverlight was released, this came as small surprise to me as after all the hype and the ‘download now to look’ that it was not already a released product. The 1.0 release includes around 2000 bug fixes and work items, they have also put this release through rigorous stress testing making the product more robust than the beta version released at MIX 07 and faster in the magnitude of two to three.

Along with version 1.0 being release the Microsoft team have also made some improvements to the 1.1 version, the one with the .NET framework, these are mainly to the core runtime in reflection of the 1.0 development changes.

You can download the runtime from the following locations

Silverlight 1.0 RC1 / Windows
Silverlight 1.0 RC1 / Mac


Wednesday, 25 July 2007

A bed-time sleeping aid

I am a self titled Geek and I know it, I find nothing better at the end of a hard day coding than sitting down with a good book and reading it, I am sure your now thinking ‘Harry Potter’ or some similar. Well you are wrong I sit in bed before I sleep and read ‘Code Complete by Steve McConnel’ or ‘Writing Secure Code By M. Howard’ two of the most influential books I have ever read. The first tells me how to be the best programmer I can, the second makes sure I do not write code which can be easily hacked, I call them my ‘Coding Bibles’.

I recently head about a new book released by Microsoft not one which you can buy from Amazon a free one, this one is titled ‘SOA in the Real World’, it is a 196 pages of in depth discussion on what SOA actually means and the theories around the term. The author has drawn on knowledge taken from the industry and Microsoft experts to present what SOA is and how it can be implemented in its many forms. To some, not me, this may not be the most interesting book but if you are still unsure what SOA and the methodologies that should be implemented with it, then this may be work a look.

To download the book go here

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Opposition to Congestion Charging in Bristol

I try to keep this blog purely dedicated to technical content but if I may, I would like to tell you about an e-petition which opposes bringing in congestion charging to Bristol without a referendum. I believe that with Bristol’s poor public transport infrastructure a congestion charge would be no more than an extra tax, and if you think the same then please use the link to add your name to the list.

For those of you who think that something like this cannot do any good, 1.8 million people signed the ‘Travel Tax’ petition earlier this year which prompted a response from the PM and a re-think of their ‘pay-as-you-drive scheme’

Stop Bristol Congestion Charge here :

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Object Design Theory

For those of us who have not spent our lives immersed in Object design theory it can be quite confusing to find out there is a whole universe of techniques and design styles and acronyms when creating your code. Usually on closer inspections of the theories you normally find out that the latest pattern of design guidance is something you have always done the only difference is that you did not know what it was called, which is always reassuring however you do ten to feel overwhelmed until you find out this fact.

Sometimes when you listening to Object design theorists you also hear new techniques of design which you had always thought where no-no’s but now seem to be acceptable in the right place. For example I recently heard someone tell me that using public fields is acceptable when you never plan on doing anything special when the value is set or got, something I had burned people for doing!

The more I follow the path of investigating coding theory the more I am coming to the conclusions that there is no one rule which covers every situation, there is no all encompassing pattern of design its what ever fits the situation, which means we need to understand every situation and have a pattern or design style to fit it. However do not get me wrong there is never an excuse to write bad code.

On the topic of object and code design the guys at dnrTV have just finished a two part screen cast coving some of these techniques, they call it ‘Fundamentals of Agile Design’. Do not be put off by the agile design title as it’s a very informative discussion and presentation of how best to design your code for flexibility and future proofing, it also talks a lot about some of the design theories and acronyms. Have it on while you work, trust me there is not so much to watch but a lot to listen to.

To watch or download part 1 go here :

To watch or download part 2 go here :

Before you watch the video (if you download them) you will need the Techsmith Video Codec (160 K)

Monday, 16 July 2007

Community Events

At the last '.NET Developer Network' meeting I heard some more news about the UK version of MIX 07 but like all pre-release information nothing is yet confirmed. However the guys from the NxtGenUG are planning to attend and hold their own game show in family fortunes style event. The rest of the line up is subject to change so I will not discuss it any more.

There is currently an estimated cost for the two day event which currently sits at £150 to £200, so get saving those pennies.

To register your interest in the event go here

Also at the last .NET Developer Network meeting, Guy Smith-Ferrier (organiser of the group), mentioned that there will be another DeveloperDay event in November. It is so good to hear that we have another great community day not to far in the future.

I cannot help thinking that the committee which organises these events is relentless in offering us great community events, something which I am very grateful to them for.

Add the feed from this site onto your RSS aggregator to hear the latest news :

To find out about the .NET Developer Network events in Bristol (UK) go here

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Hotmail Case Study : Testing with VSTS

The team responsible for developing Hotmail have just released their case study of testing the Hotmail web site using Visual Studio Team System. For anyone (like me) who is using Team System, you will find it an interesting read to see what they found and how they used it in their environment.

It’s a 10 page word document so set yourself some time to read it.

To get the document go here

Silverlight Top 50

Silverlight is gaining a lot of ground so much there are now a number of sites and example sites dedicated to silverlight alone, Tim Sneath from Microsoft recently put together a list of 50 sites using silverlight and the Alpha version to see the list go here

Thursday, 5 July 2007

SQL Server Best Practices Analyser

Microsoft have just released the next version of their Best Practices tool for SQL Server 2005. This tool is a great help to anyone who has to administer a SQL Server as it will scan your SQL instances and any selected databases against a list of best practices settings.

Once the scan has completed you will be presented with a report, ranked by severity, detailing recommended changes and detailed information on where to get more information on the recommendation.

To download the tool go here :