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Microsoft Windows Software Development Kit (ISO) for September CTP of Windows Vista and .NET Framework 3.0 Runtime Components September 29, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Blogroll, Software Engineering, WCF, WF, WPF.
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Windows SDK September CTP DVD ISO

The Windows SDK includes pre-release content for application development with the APIs in Windows Vista, including the .NET Framework 3.0 technologies: .NET Framework 2.0, Windows® Presentation Foundation, Windows® Communications Foundation, and Windows® Workflow Foundation.


Creating a database project with Team Edition for Database Professionals September 29, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, Visual Studio Team System.
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Check out this quick 10 minute demo to get a whirlwind tour of project creation within VSTE for DB Pro.

Microsoft Pre-release Software Visual Studio Code Name “Orcas” – September Community Technology Preview (CTP) September 29, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Orcas, Software Engineering, Visual Studio Team System.
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The first “Orcas” public CTP release of Visual Studio is now available for download as a virtual machine from Microsoft Downloads (Download details: Visual Studio Code Name “Orcas” September 2006 CTP).

The highlights of this CTP include:

  • Improvements on the widely acclaimed Visual Studio 2005 product set
  • Significant investments in improving product quality
  • LINQ to Objects API
    • LINQ to Objects API supports queries over any .NET collection, such as arrays and Generic Lists. This API is defined in the System.Query namespaces inside System.Core.dll. Click here for more details about LINQ.
  • Partial C# 3.0 Language Support: This CTP implements some of the new language features of C# 3.0
    • Local variable type interface
    • Lambda expressions
    • Object initializers
  • Partial C# 3.0 IDE Support: In addition to the C# 3.0 language features there is partial IDE support
    • Colorization and New Keywords in Completion List
    • Edit and Continue Rude Edit Detection
  • Partial VB 9.0 Language support (Due to differences in feature delivery schedules VB implementations of the above C# features will appear in a future CTP)
    • Local variable type inference and Option Infer switch
  • VSTS Improvements in load & unit testing such as unit test for devices
  • Device development improvements
    • VSTS integration
    • Access and modify device security configuration from the IDE
  • Enables developers to build and debug a Windows Vista Application
  • Enables Visual Studio Tools for Office developers to build document-level customizations for Word and Excel 2007
  • Enables eMbedded Visual C++ 4.0 developers to use Visual Studio Code Name “Orcas” to build their existing applications
  • NET Framework improvements such as:
    • New managed add-in model enables developers to add a version-resilient extensibility model to their products.
    • Support for time zone conversion, enumeration and serialization, including cases where Daylight Saving Time rules change over time.
    • Reflection in Partial Trust, enabling sand box scenarios for all applications that depend on these features.
    • The ability to control the garbage collector’s latency mode
    • Improved CLR ThreadPool micro-performance and throughput for worker and IO completion

Patterns and Practices Guidance Explorer for .NET and ASP.NET September 28, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, Software Factories.
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The Guidance Explorer provides a database of recommendations and best practices for ASP.NET, ADO.NET, and the .NET Framework that you can easily filter and search.  Particularly useful are some of the checklists you can easily follow for performance and security best practices prior to deployment.

You can visit and join the project here.  All source code for the Guidance Explorer UI (which is of course built using .NET and Windows Forms) can also now be downloaded for free from the CodePlex project site.
You can create custom views of the library of just those recommendations you care about.  What is cool is that you can now also easily publish these custom views to your friends or other members of your team. You will also be able to subscribe to feeds of guidance either on a local share or on the web.

Best of all, you can also now create your own recommendations and add them into the library (and share them with others).

Download the project (and optionally the full source code) from its CodePlex Project and start using it today!

Tour: Patterns and Practices Lab September 27, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Agile, Software Engineering.
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The Microsoft Patterns and Practices team recently renovated their development lab in order to better support their Agile development methodologies. Movable walls you can write on and “escape pods” are just a couple of the featured additions. Join C9 special correspondant Brian Keller and Patterns and Practices dudes Ed Jezierski and Peter Provost for a tour of their new digs. Cool!


Visual Studio 2005 SP1 Beta and Visual Studio support for Vista September 27, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Coding, Software Engineering.

Are they kidding??

“Pending feedback from you on this beta, our plan is to ship the final version in the next 3-4 months.”

“Visual Studio 2005 SP1 will run on Vista but will likely have a few compatibility issues. We are working with the Vista team to understand those, to provide workarounds where possible and also work on providing you with a set of fixes beyond SP1.”

“However, we will not support Visual Studio .NET 2002 or Visual Studio .NET 2003 as development environments on Windows Vista.”


VSTO 2005 Second Edition Beta: Thomas Quinn September 26, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, VSTO.
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Thomas Quinn is the Architect for the Visual Studio 2005 Tools for the 2007 Office System (code name “Cypress”).  TQ discusses the engineering decisions behind the design of the tools.  He explains the decision to create a new base project type that allowed the team to create Application Add-in projects for both Office 2003 and Office 2007.  He explains the rationale behind the change to the Outlook Add-in project type.

Microsoft Releases New Build of Windows Vista September 26, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering.
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Microsoft has released an interim build of Windows Vista to its usual testers as well as to some 100,000 of the participants in its Customer Preview Program. Build 5728 includes ongoing fit and finish work based on the feedback Microsoft has received on Vista Release Candidate 1 since its release on September 1.

Microsoft is still shooting for Vista to be available to volume license customers in November, with general availability in January 2007.

Monitoring and Analyzing a Load Test Result September 25, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, Visual Studio Team System.
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Microsoft Visual Studio Team Test Edition provides tools for running, monitoring, and analyzing load tests. The load test result viewer is capable of monitoring a running test or analyzing a completed test. This document describes the features of the load test result viewer. (23 printed pages)

by Rick Potts, a developer on the load testing team.

Visual Studio 2005 Service Pack 1 Beta September 25, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Coding, Software Engineering.
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Microsoft is announcing that Visual Studio 2005 Service Pack 1 (SP1) Beta will be released the week of September 25, 2006. Visual Studio 2005 shipped in November of 2005 and this Service Pack incorporates fixes that they have addressed since that release.

VSTO Resources September 22, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, VSTO.

DEV303- Security and Deployment Links


Deploying Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office Solutions
Using Windows Installer (Part 1 of 2)



Deploying Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office Solutions
Using Windows Installer: Walkthroughs (Part 2 of 2)




VSTO Security MSDN documentation



VSTO Deployment MSDN documentation



Security and Deployment walkthroughs



Visual Studio 2005 Bootstrapper



VSTO Outlook add-in architecture




PSS VSTO Client Troubleshooter



Manifest Generation and Editing Tool (Mage.exe)



VSTO Application Manifest Editor Sample


DSL Tools documentation on MSDN September 20, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, Software Factories.
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At the link http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa396774.aspx. This is actually the documentation for version 1 release.

Macaw’s Software Factory September 20, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, Software Factories.

At this link is an interesting article about how Macaw, a System Integrator based in the Netherlands, is implementing the software factory vision. They are supporting VS2003 and VS2005, and taking a very pragmatic approach.

Test Driven Development Related Podcasts September 20, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Agile, Coding, Software Engineering.
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It’s been an Test-Driven few weeks in the .NET podcasting scene. If you’re into it, here are some audio shows that should help you learn a little bit about this world.

  • Hanselminutes has a couple of shows on the scene. The first one is about Test Driven Development. Scott introduces the concept in a clear and cornise way, and points to various resources on the web to go and learn more about it.
  • This week he has a show about Mock Objects. The concept of Mock Objects, which many find quite a bit “over the top” for their knowledge of unit testing, is really one of the concepts that has a horrible name for the simple idea it represents – replacing real objects and classes with fake ones so you can test more easily. I haven’t listened to that show yet, but you should – Scott is an eloquent speaker.
  • .NET Rocks did a show with Jimmy Nilsson on Domain Driven Design and Development, in which he also discusses a lot the notions of Agile development and TDD. I’ve browsed through Jimmy’s latest book and I have a comment:
  • I wish Jimmy was as eloquent and clear as he is in his book. The show audio sounds almost mind numbingly quiet and sedated. No matter how hard Carl (the host) tried, I don’t think he got Jimmy into that place where he was “flowing” with his words.
  • .NET Rocks also has an older show about TDD with Jean Paul Boodhoo. It was quite hard to listen to, although Jean Paul really seems to know his stuff.

VB6 and unit testing: SimplyVBUnit v2.0 September 19, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Agile, Coding, Software Engineering.
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SimplyVBUnit is a VB6 Unit Testing Framework that helps to easily build unit tests in the VB6 IDE.

It is modelled after the popular NUnit for the DotNET framework.

The latest version of it is available from SourceForge.

Check out its companion projects VBCorLib and VBMock.

Is it possible to use Team Foundation System when working in Visual Basic 6.0? September 19, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, Visual Studio Team System.

It is possible to use the Team Foundation Source Control with Visual Basic 6.0 using the MSSCCI Provider, http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=87E1FFBD-A484-4C3A-8776-D560AB1E6198&displaylang=en
The Visual Studio Team Foundation Server MSSCCI Provider enables integrated use of Team Foundation Version Control with products that do not support Team Explorer integration.

This version (1.1) includes:

  • GetLatest on Checkout support
  • Work items can be modified in the check-in window
  • Setup works on x64
  • Check-in lock is treated as exclusive
  • Parameters for external diff are passed in the same order as in Visual Studio 2005
  • Open from source control and save to source control operations are enhanced to behave more like Visual Studio 2005 and Visual SourceSafe
  • Defect fixes

Continuous integration for TFS September 19, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Agile, Software Engineering, Visual Studio Team System.
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Team Foundation Server (TFS) does not ship out of the box with a Continuous Integration capability. Mitch Denny and others at Radify have tried to address this issue with smething called TFS Integrator.

Continuous Integration (CI) is the process of continually scanning the source code repository for changes, and, once they have been detected automatically kicking off a build process to verify that the code compiles successfully. In many instances teams will tag on a round of build verification tests to ensure that not only does the code compile, but that it doesn’t catch on fire when you try to run it (smoke tests).

The software uses a TFS “event service” to plug into in order to listen for events in the source code repository. “The way it works is that whenever you do something significant in Team Foundation Server, such as checking in a file, that TFS sub-system notifies the TFS eventing system which then broadcasts that message to any subscribers. This is how you get an e-mail when another developer checks in some code,” writes Denny. Read more on TFS Integrator.

Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office Second Edition Beta September 19, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering, VSTO.
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Visual Studio 2005 Tools for the 2007 Microsoft Office System (Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office Second Edition Beta, or VSTO 2005 SE Beta for short) is a free add-on to Visual Studio 2005 that empowers developers to build applications targeting the 2007 Office system. Developers can now harness the benefits of the 2007 Office system platform and create Office-based solutions using the professional development environment of Visual Studio 2005.

Unit Testing and Generating Source Code for Unit Test Frameworks Using Visual Studio 2005 Team System September 18, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Agile, Software Engineering, Visual Studio Team System.
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Scott takes a detailed look at the foundation of automated unit testing, and the code-generation engine included in the Unit Testing Framework provided by Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Team System.

The Code Monkey Song September 18, 2006

Posted by Patricio in Software Engineering.

This song about code monkeys is brilliantly accurate (and therefore funny :-).