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Article: Diagnosing failures within Azure applications with Fluent Diagnostics

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By Andy Cross Diagnostics in complex systems are the entry point for investigating the inner workings of a system; the data and metadata regarding the current state of the system. In a computer system they may be the state of nodes, the throughput of data, the capacity of limited resources or specific data regarding the actions undertaken by custom software. For everyone who has written or architected software solutions, it is a known truth that nothing goes without fault forever. The smoothest application deployment can have its performance degraded by the build-up of data in a database, its configuration altered by
a misguided engineer or its operations made obsolete by temporal considerations. The role of diagnostics is to provide the low level, fine granularity data regarding the operation of a system that enables the inspector to determine the cause of performance, functional or behavioural problems within the system. Without diagnostics, the inspector is at the mercy of trying to determine operation by its output; to diagnose a problem solely by its symptoms as exposed by a user interface. In remote systems, such as those that run within a Windows Azure datacentre, these concerns are even more apparent given the closed nature of...(Read whole news on source site)

Article: Deployment options for Windows Azure: A short walk through Service Management with Cerebrata Powershell CmdLets and the Azure Fluent Management API

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By Richard Conway Many people start their Windows Azure journey with a simple web role deployed through the integrated Visual Studio tools. They soon learn that Windows Azure is a rich ecosystem of interconnecting parts and services which can be used to smoothly replace or augment an on-premise system. Service Management is one key part of that infrastructure. I want to paraphrase some material that I normally speak or write about in a short piece on how to manage services and what to use. Two products we’ll focus on are Cerebrata CmdLets and our own Azure Fluent Management library. The first is
a paid product which will make your life considerably easier and is a must for using in any Continuous Integration process. It gives you a phenomenal abstraction to your deployment and thus simplifies it considerably allowing you to spend more time coding. Cerebrata CmdLets are available through their website (http://www.cerebrata.com/products/AzureManagementCmdlets/). They have become one of the Azure industry staples. They are a Powershell set of scripts so eminently malleable. I’m now going to decompose a script using Cerebrata CmdLets to deploy an application to Windows Azure. It’s worth noting that the 3 steps that are apparent here are actually 5...(Read whole news on source site)

The Morning Brew #1123

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Information What you need to know about developing for Windows on ARM (WOA) - Jason Zander gives the low down on all the key things you need to know about developing Windows 8 Applications to run on ARM based hardware, ranging from getting started with the code, through debugging, and performance profiling and testing. Deployment in Visual [...]

NDepend 4 – First Steps

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Introduction Thanks to Patrick Smacchia I had the chance to test NDepend 4. I can only say: awesome! This will be the first of a series of posts on NDepend, where I will talk about my discoveries. Keep in mind that I am just starting to use it, so more experienced users may find these too basic, I just hope I don’t say anything foolish! I must say that I am in no way affiliated with NDepend and I never actually met Patrick. Installation No installation program – a curious
decision, I’m not against it -, just unzip the files to a folder and run the executable. It will optionally register itself with Visual Studio 2008, 2010 and 11 as well as RedGate’s Reflector; also, it automatically looks for updates. NDepend can either be used as a stand-alone program (with or without a GUI) or from within Visual Studio or Reflector. Getting Started One thing that really pleases me is the Getting Started section of the stand-alone, with links to pages on NDepend’s web site, featuring detailed explanations, which usually include screenshots and small videos (<5 ...(Read whole news on source site)

New Pluralsight Course: HTML5 Canvas Fundamentals

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  I just finished up a new course for Pluralsight titled HTML5 Canvas Fundamentals that I had a blast putting together. It’s all about the client and involves a lot of pixel manipulation and graphics creation which is challenging and fun at the same time. The goal of the course is to walk you through the fundamentals, start a gradual jog into the API functions, and then start sprinting as you learn how to build a business chart canvas application from scratch that uses many of the available APIs . It’s fun stuff and very
useful in a variety of scenarios including Web (desktop or mobile) and even Windows 8 Metro applications. Here’s a sample video from the course that talks about building a simple bar chart using the HTML5 Canvas:  
Additional details about the course are shown next.   HTML5 Canvas Fundamentals The HTML5 Canvas provides a powerful way to render graphics, charts, and other types of visual data without relying on plugins such as Flash...(Read whole news on source site)

Question of the month June 2012 - Explain the result of Date+Date

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My friend asked me to come up with very triky interview question which is not usually asked. I myself asked this question to some of candidates while interviewing. It is possible to to apply arithmetic operators + and - on date columns like Date+2, Date-5 etc. Have you ever used Date+Date to know what it returns? Consider the following exampledeclare @date datetime set @date='20000101' select @date+@date as result When I asked what it would return, candidates gave many answers. Some of them are 1 40000202
2 40000101
3 40000102

I guessed that all they thought was it was like addition on numbers. But the answer is
2099-12-31 00:00:00.000

Ok. Here is the question. What is the logic used behind that answer?

Note : Also replace 20000101 by 19000101 to confirm if you are correct....(Read whole news on source site)

TechEd 2012: MVVM In XAML

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Paul Sheriff was a real character at the start of his MVVM in XAML session.  There was a lot of sarcasm and self deprecation going on prior to the .  That is never a bad way to get things rolling right after lunch.  Then things got semi-serious. The presentation itself had a number of surprises, but not all of them had to do with XAML.  When he flipped over his company’s code generation tool it took me off guard.  I am used to generator that create code for a whole project, but his tools were able to create different
types of constructs on demand.  It also made it easier to follow what he was doing than some of the other demos I have seen this week where people were using code snippets. Getting to the heart of the topic I found myself thinking that I may have found my utopia for application development in MVVM.  Yes, I know there is no such thing, but this comes closer than any other pattern I have learned about.  This pattern allows the application to have better separation of concerns than I have seen before.  This is especially true since you can...(Read whole news on source site)

Using Apache Cassandra with .NET - Part 2

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One major difference between Cassandra and a traditional relational database is that Cassandra supports a variable amount of columns per rows in any given column family. In this post we will insert a column to the column family, "Tweets" The tweet column family is of contains one row with the text “sample tweet text1”. We will also see the test case for a null value insert exception.

[TestMethod]
public voidInsertOnSubmitInsertsANewValueToTheColumnFamily()
{
    var key = "1".ToCassandraByte();
    const stringcolumnName = "text";
    const string value = "sample tweet text 1";

    using (var context = new CassandraContext("localhost", 9160, "Twitter"))
    {
        context.Column.DeleteOnSubmit(x => x.ColumnFamily ==
"Tweets" && x.Key == key);
        context.SubmitChanges();

        var column = new Column().SetNameValue(columnName, value);
        context.InsertOnSubmit("Tweets", key, column);

        context.SubmitChanges();

        var tweet = (from x in context.ColumnList
                        .Where(x => x.ColumnFamily == "Tweets"&& x.Key == key)
                    select x.ToObject()).FirstOrDefault();

        Assert.AreEqual(value, tweet.text);

        context.Column.DeleteOnSubmit(x => x.ColumnFamily == "Tweets" && x.Key == key);
        context.SubmitChanges();
    }
}

[TestMethod]
[ExpectedException(typeof(Thrift.TApplicationException))]
public voidInsertNullValueTest()
{
    var key = "1".ToCassandraByte();
    const stringcolumnName = "text";

    using (var context = new CassandraContext("localhost", 9160, "Twitter"))
    {
        var column = new Column()
            .SetNameValue(columnName, null);
        context.InsertOnSubmit("Tweet", key, column);

        context.SubmitChanges();
    }
}

...(Read whole news on source site)

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