Can You Spot the Bug?

Ouch.  I hate mistakes like this.I decided over the weekend to take a step back and do some performance monitoring of my site.  I've noticed the performance has slowly been degrading over the months, and I wanted to see why.  In truth, with shared hosting (which is what I'm on) there is only so much you can do, but there are always optimizations to be made.  I have my own analytics engine that makes both a performance chart and a traffic chart.  In looking at the charts, the perform... [More]

Install Fests Have Ended!

The Visual Studio 2008 Install Fests have come to an end in North and South Carolina!  About 350 copies were installed, and I'd like to thank the Raleigh, Charlotte, Florence, Greenville, Greensboro, and Columbia user groups for participating!  (For the user groups I couldn't make it to, I'm sorry!  I'll be sure to make it up to you all somehow!)(Picture from the Greensboro Install Fest -- thanks to Ashton for the cake -- how cool is that?!)

Silverlight Beta Site: Download Center

I just noticed we released a beta Silverlight site for the Microsoft Download Center -- very cool!  The reason I like this site so much:  you won't instantly realize it's a Silverlight site.  No HD movies, no pictures flying around -- just a nice, streamlined interface.  Check it out here (you need Silverlight installed, of course!):http://www.microsoft.com/beta/downloads/Default.aspxLet me know what you think...

Network Error?

Every time I connect to the corporate network, I get the following error:What's funny about it is that I don't understand the value in limiting my connection nearly a year from now ... not exactly a motivator for immediate action!The problem is likely a missing beta patch, but because I'm running x64, it could be some specific version isn't available yet -- I'm not sure.  I'm not surprised or trying to be critical here -- frankly, if you see how much beta stuff and developer tools we're often running, ... [More]

Chris Love: MVP

A somewhat belated congrats to Chris Love for getting his MVP in ASP.NET!  Chris has been real active in the community, helping to organize events, speaking at various events including the recent MSDN Event in Greensboro, and has also recently finished a book.  Next time you see him (he's based in Raleigh) be sure to congratulate him!

Road Warrior Setup: OpenVPN

I've finally settled on using a VPN technology, and my choice was OpenVPN.   OpenVPN is an open source, cross platform, SSL-based VPN solution, and thus far, is extremely flexible, NAT friendly, and capable of filling a wide variety of requirements.  Although some may say otherwise, setting it up is much more difficult than other solutions (particularly, PPTP and SSH); however, much of this is simply a learning curve and once you're up and running, it's all self explanatory and very little "m... [More]

Road Warrior Setup: PPTP

Although SSH is pretty useful for occasional connectivity, it's not intended to be a VPN and it's a bit limiting for doing file shares and more advanced connectivity.  I decided to look into setting up a VPN on a Windows Server running on my home network, however, several firmware versions out there support PPTP, such as DD-WRT.  Scott Hanselman has a blog post about that here.Before I dive into the details of this post, I want to point out that I'm not interested -- at least in these posts -- of ... [More]

Road Warrior Setup: SSH

As I said in my previous post, I wanted to create a secure way to connect to my home network when on the road.  One of the things to realize is that there is no one right way to do this, as individual needs vary and depending on where you are connecting from, the abilities of the network may vary.One great way to connect to your home network in a pseudo-VPN way is via SSH (or Secure Shell).  Strictly speaking, creating an SSH session with a server is not a VPN, however, we can leverage the protoco... [More]

Road Warrior Setup

Connecting to the internet from the road is a necessity for me, but it's one that isn't without its perils.  Much of the time, internet hotspots are unencrypted -- which means your wireless data, unless otherwise encrypted, is just flying around out in the open.   That's a bit unnerving.   But even if there wasn't the potential of someone easily eavesdropping on my packets, how much do you trust the hotspot provider?  True, many applications have built in security.  For example... [More]

Zune vs iPod (8 GB)

We recently had some family over for the holidays.  My sister took it upon herself to recharge her 8gb iPod on my desktop, so when I came into my office one morning, I saw it sitting next to my Zune.  I figured I'd play around with both devices a little and blog my findings.First impressions: size.  Both devices are pretty similarly sized, the iPod a bit wider, but the Zune is both taller/thicker.  Overall, I'd guess the Zune's volume is a tad larger, but I imagine this wouldn't make muc... [More]

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