TFS Build Numbers & File Version Now with Hosted TFS Build Support

Over the years I’ve been posting on the blog here at Wintellect a set of MSBuild tasks that make it easy to get the TFS Build number during a build and use it as your binary version string. You can read about that code here and here. In a nutshell, you modify your C#, VB,…

Improving the Readability of Windows Store Tests

I’ve grown to appreciate the value that testing adds to software development. In my opinion many developers spend far too much time focusing on the red herring of code coverage or writing tests just to check them off, rather than the real benefits they provide when you take a more Test-Driven Development (TDD) approach. Although…

MVVM and Accessing the UI Thread in Windows Store Apps

Any developer who has worked with MVVM in WPF, Silverlight, or Windows Store apps has likely run into the issue of executing an action on the UI thread. This most often happens when work has to be done on another thread. It is a common mistake to perform the work and then attempt to set…

Automatically Load the Right SOS for the Minidump

Don’t you just love the following error message when trying to debug a minidump with SOS and WinDBG? The version of SOS does not match the version of CLR you are debugging.  Please load the matching version of SOS for the version of CLR you are debugging. CLR Version: 4.0.30319.1 SOS Version: 4.0.30319.235 SOS is…

Simple Validation with MVVM for Windows Store Apps

Developers who are writing Windows Store apps using C# and XAML might find some of the support for Model-View-ViewModel (MVVM) lacking. Both WPF and Silverlight provided specific interfaces that enabled you to store validation context about fields on a context and even supported asynchronous validation. Although there are some existing frameworks that provide this support,…

Introducing WintellectNOW

Last week, we introduced WintellectNOW, a new on-demand learning service designed to make the same training content that we provide to Microsoft and other large customers available anywhere, any time. Jeffrey Richter and a team of talented people at Wintellect designed and wrote the software, which we’re continuing to improve on a daily basis. We’ve…

Single Sign On with OAuth in Windows Store Apps

Various providers often provide documentation and even SDKs that make it easier to connect with and authenticate to their service. The problem is that most scenarios assume a web-based application or specific mobile clients. The process in general looks something like this: How can you take protocol modeled for the web and make it work…

Quick Tip: Processing HTML Content in Windows Store Apps

The WebView control allows you to display content from sites in your app using a small window that renders the HTML using the same rendering engine as Internet Explorer. It does have some limitations and most likely if you are providing content in your app, your goal is to augment your app with fresh data…

A Fluent Approach to Windows Store Tiles

Windows Store apps have a variety of tricks up their sleeve for engaging the user even when they are not running. Tiles are a perfect example because they provide at-a-glance information to the user from the start screen. Tiles can provide images, text, or a combination of both and support queuing multiple notifications. Tiles are…

Custom Layout Controls for Windows Store Apps

One of the things I enjoy doing most is teaching developers how to write Windows Store apps using XAML and C#. I’ve been doing a lot of that lately, both for Microsoft and for other customers as well. But it has become clear to me as I teach these classes that in a typical class,…

Visual Studio vs. the PowerShell Command Line

Numerous times in the last month I’ve been working with different teams and when I whip out my PowerShell window and start doing all the magic, especially with Visual Studio command line tools, the young kids go crazy. The mix of command line development tools and PowerShell is a powerful aphrodisiac. Too bad that Visual…

Proceed with Caution – Windows Phone 8 App Lifecycle Events vs Async Methods

“We are on the path to Windows and Windows Phone Convergence” (//Build 2012 – How to Leverage your Code Across WP8 and Win8, Slide 6) I often hear people saying the phrase “Windows 8 Phone” when they are talking/asking about “Windows Phone 8”.  Throughout presentations that I’ve given and other discussions I’ve had over the…