alex in a nutshell

September 23, 2009

.Net 4, Azure SDK and WCF HTTP Activation

Filed under: — Alex Salamakha @ 10:33 AM

Azure SDK requires WCF HTTP Activation to be installed. However, WCF HTTP Activation won’t install if you have installed .Net 4 prior to that. Here is why:

when you install the .Net 4.0 beta, for some reason it also overwrites at least one of your .Net 3.0 (WCF) files, at least on 64bit systems, namely

c:\windows\\framework64\v3.0\Windows Communication Foundation\SMConfigInstaller.EXE“.

So the bad part is, with this new version in place you cannot longer enable the “WCF HTTP Activation” Feature of Vista and Win7 and even worse, uninstalling .Net 4 beta does not restore the original version.

So if you’re building a new system, make sure you install WCF HTTP Activation prior to .Net 4.

If you have screwed up like I did, install Windows 7/Vista on a VM, copy SMConfigInstaller.EXE file back, restart your machine and enjoy.

September 19, 2009

Microsoft TechEd Australia 2009

Filed under: — Alex Salamakha @ 4:55 AM

It’s been fantastic to get away from the office and spend few days at sunny Gold Coast.

Every paid TechEd delegate received an awesome package from Microsoft and HP:


Now I have a little carry-around-meetings netbook, HP Mini 2140. Despite being a bit too sluggish for development in Visual Studio 2010 and not having Bluetooth it is a really nice machine which has proven itself for the job.

Back to the conference. There were quite a few interesting sessions. Here is my top 5:

  • Chris Auld from Intergen, NZ presenting on Azure platform. Great overview and comparison of all cloud platforms (Session ARC201).
  • Jim Webber, Thoughtworks’ Global Head of Architecture, presenting on architecturing REST-based systems and hypermedia. Jim is a fantastic and passionate presenter, I enjoyed both of his sessions (SOA321 and ARC305) immensely.
  • Joel Pobar presenting on F# and its application in applications. It was a very interesting session (DEV450) indeed, one of those sessions that any developer should love –  playing with new cool stuff  with new technology. I’ll be catching up with Joel during his upcoming Sydney visit to talk more about F#.
  • Nick Randolph on interconnectivity between clients (including mobile) and Azure services, queues, etc viagra vs cialis. Full of practical stuff on Azure (Session SOA341).
  • Rob Farley from LobsterPot Solutions presenting a hands-on session on SQL Azure (Session SQL305).

And, as usual, TechEd is a place where you meet interesting people and get inspiring ideas. It was great to catch up with ex-colleagues from ediCargoWise who now run their own company, EnvoyAT.

Looking forward to TechEd 2010, it’s going to be great to spend few full on technical days at Gold Coast this time next year.

September 18, 2009

Apple and treatment of iPhone OS beta testers

Filed under: — Alex Salamakha @ 8:50 PM

I was boarding a flight to New Zealand few weeks ago and was about text my wife when my iPhone switched to its emergency screen. I quickly connected my laptop straight after take off only to see  iTunes error message about my OS version is too old.  That’s Apple’s way of telling a beta tester that he needs to upgrade his beta to a new one, which was released on the same day. No warnings, no nagging, just shut down the bloody thing. There goes my in-flight entertainment. FAIL!

Accident? Well, it’s a beta after all, however, you can’t downgrade back to a stable version even if you are prepared to wipe the entire phone off. FAIL! Well, technically you can downgrade but jailbraking it first, but it’s another story.

Got to hotel, spent 2 hours downloading new beta over both ridiculously slow and expensive Internet connection.

Yesterday it happened again. Right in the middle of a busy day iPhone OS 3.1 beta 4 decided to switch itself off. That’s how I found out about final release of 3.1. FAIL!

Companies should treat its beta testers with respect.  In contrast, Microsoft released Windows 7 RC due to expire early next year, few months after the planned release. Not only that, users get plenty of warnings on when their beta will expire, enough to plan ahead for an upgrade.

I fail to see any logic behind Apple’s decision to treat its customers like shit,  blocking any ability to use the phone except for emergency calls until the upgrade. If you really want me to upgrade, tell me in a form of a message. I may need phone now, but in few hours I’ll do it. Nah, why bother? FAIL!!! FAIL!!! FAIL!!!

I will never try Apple beta software again. This experience wasn’t good’ enough. And HTC Hero on Android platform looks exceptionally good.

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