Thursday, 31 January 2008

Visual Studio Comparison

"Do I get Visual Studio 2008 Pro?"

"Is the express version enough?"

"Do I get Team System what are the benefits?" 

These are a few of the questions I am sure you ask yourself when you are looking at which version of 2008 you should get your boss the buy.  Team System is very expensive and Pro is less but will you miss some features you counted on.

Help is at hand Microsoft have created a comparison chart, well several, which are grouped by feature areas and detail each Visual Studio version including Team System and which features they actually contain.  This should be a great help in making sure that you are getting your boss the buy the right version for your development team.

To see the chart for yourself go here

Tuesday, 29 January 2008

The Stay At Home Server - Funny

The Microsoft Publicity machine is great and with almost every new tool, OS etc comes a gimmick web site or interesting video.

The "Stay-At-Home-Servers" web site is all about how every person should have their own server running, you guessed it, Windows Home Server.  Although I am not advocating home server I did come across quite a funny book on their new publicity site, to have a little chuckle to yourself go here.

IIS 6.0 & 7.0 Deployment

As a web developer responsible for a web farm (in a small company) I have the task of deploying my web application updates to all the servers and when things do not work I have to go to each server and make sure that no one has changed any settings. 

I hear you cry "why not create a tool to deploy to my servers" and we did along time ago but like all internal tools, where no one is willing to back them with money, it does the job and nothing else.

In steps the IIS Web Development Team who have created a the first version of their new web deployment tool.  The tool is in its infancy so do not expect a great deal however I am sure it will go from strength-to-strength.  The tool is a command line tool which allows you to sync and migrate applications and sites between web servers.  This includes content, registry keys and most aspects related to you web application/site.

When you find the time to look further into this tool, by downloading the recent version, you will find that the development team already have a road map for how they wish to proceed so you can see already they have a long term plan for this, and if this tool helps you now then all the better.

To read the team blog entry and download the current version go here

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Silverlight 1.0 Fire Starter

For those of you who are looking for some introduction into how to use Silverlight 1.0 but are not looking forward to reading one of the many tutorials then Silverlight 1.0 Fire Start is for you.  This is a set of eight videos created at a recent one day training event.

The videoed presentations are given by some of the industry experts and are available for view through the web site (using silverlight of cause) or for download in wmv.

You can find out more here

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Bill Gates Last Day - CES Key Note Video

Here is a very funny video which covers the last day Bill Gates works for Microsoft as full time employee, first shown at the CES 2008 Key Note, the final one he plans on attending officially.

Bill's Last Day: The CES Keynote video

Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Visual Studio Team Foundation Tools

The follow is a list of tools for TFS available through codeplex, which also come complete with source code.

TFS File Sharer - Mimics SourceSafe like file sharing.

TFS Continuous Integrator - A TFS 2005 based continuous integration solution.  Of course, it's built in if you are using TFS 2008.

TFS Dependency replicator - A tool to make changes in the source tree when certain events occur (like copying files when a build completes).

TFS Build Virtualizer - Rather than having one physical machine for each team or build server configuration, manage a pool of virtual machines automatically.

Blog entry inspired by Brian Harry

Monday, 7 January 2008

Team Foundation Power Tools for VS2008

For those of you who have made the leap to Visual Studio 2008 and are using Team Foundations Server you may be pleased to know that there are a new set of power tools to help bridge some of those functionality gaps. Instead of recompiling the existing power tools for 2008 the development team at Microsoft have decided to create a new set of tool specifically aimed at 2008.

The new power tools include the following;

  • Find In Source Control
    The ability to search source code from within the source safe database
  • Team Build Notification
    Using this tool, which sits in the system tray, you can be notified of when specified builds are queued, started etc
  • Updated Best Practices Analyzer

Plus many more updates.

To find out more form Microsoft or download the tools please go here