Random Thoughts on Visual Studio 2008 SP1

As the world knows, Visual Studio 2008 SP1 is out so start your download engines. I’ve installed it on one machine so far and I thought I’d mention a few things I found interesting. The install took exactly an hour for me and was far better than the Visual Studio 2005 SP1 torture. After the…

Silverlight Controls and the Visual State Manager

If you’re interested in writing custom controls for Silverlight but need a step-by-step tutorial to get you started, check out my latest column in MSDN Magazine: Craft Custom Controls for Silverlight 2. I had a load of fun writing this one and wrote it because there is so precious little information out there about Silverlight…

Just Where Did Those Performance Counters Go?

On a particular Vista machine, I was setting up a PerfMon view to monitor the .NET memory performance of an application and ran into a problem. The.NET Memory # Bytes in All Heaps Performance Counter wasn’t in the list of performance counters. That was quite odd so I checked if that Performance Counter was there…

Me Meme

Charles Petzold tagged me and challenged me to answer the following questions as part of a software development meme that’s going around. How old were you when you first started programming?I had a couple of programming courses in college, but I didn’t really start programming until I got out of school and bought my first computer…

Paraffin 1.04 – A New Switch and Easier Updates

If you’re using WiX 2.0, my Paraffin tool can help you automate some of your setup chores. To read more about Paraffin, see the three part article, Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Thanks to Matthew Goos who sent me the patch, there’s a new –dirref when creating the initial .WXS file. That allows…

Microsoft, Open Source, and the Meaning of Life

Jeff Atwood wrote a great blog post about why Microsoft can’t use open source in their products. Jon Galloway wrote a complementary post providing some specifics from a Microsoft insider explaining why Microsoft can’t use open source. One of Jon’s salient points is as follows: Let’s say Microsoft took my advice and shipped Paint.NET as…

In Defense of Vista and the Challenges Facing Windows 7

Perception is everything. That applies to everything in life and certainly applies to Vista. It doesn’t take much web searching to find plenty of commentary indicating that Vista has not been well received and is often downright hated. In a lot of ways, I think Vista’s been given a bad rap, and my opinion is…

Software Development Meme

So Charles Petzold tagged me for this Software Development Meme and did that hurt. Just kidding. J It’s the first time I’ve been tagged since I was like five years old. Anyway, here goes: How old were you when you first started programming? Yes, I was a really late bloomer. In fact, that’s positively decrepit…

Hear My Interview on Debugging

Craig Shoemaker recently interviewed me about my favorite topic, debugging, of course, for Pixel 8. We had a great time on the interview and I even got to tell one of my favorite debugging war stories. We also talked about all the parts of .NET that every developer should know. Head on over to Pixel…

More on Regular Expressions

The always enjoyable Jeff Atwood wrote an excellent discussion about regular expressions that everyone should read. Having seen many times where a developer will write a full blown parser instead of a regular expression, it’s critical every developer spend a little time learning regular expressions. It goes without saying that the more code you write…

Lightning Strike, Silverlight 2 Beta 2, and Winamac

You may have noticed that our blog was down for a couple of days last week. Lightning struck our server and our IT folks worked around the clock to get wintellect.com back online. Most of the site is back to normal now and we’re working on the last 2% or so. A few blog entries…