Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
CoolCommands 3.0 for Visual Studio 2005In short, the tool provides access to some everyday tasks that you might do within VS, such as collapse all projects. Great time saver. Check it out at: http://weblogs.asp.net/gmilano/archive/2006/05/10/446010.aspx or directly download it from : http://downloads.deklarit.com/files/gmilano/CoolCommands30.msi
Managed Stack Explorer is a lightweight tool that allows you to do just this. Simply copy the executable anywhere and start monitoring your stack traces today.
Monday, August 21, 2006
VS2005 - Forms Designer exception: Unable to load one or more of the requested types. Retrieve the LoaderExceptions property for mo
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Saturday, August 19, 2006
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
When problems occur when installing, repairing or patching, or uninstalling a product using Windows Installer technology, you need to be able to figure out what happened and why it happened. Dialogs that occur when the user interface is displayed can be helpful sometimes, but many times you need to look at a log to determine the exact cause of the problem.
The first step in diagnosing a problem using the log is to, of course, enable logging. When performing any actions with an installation package or patch always be sure to pass
Now that verbose logging is enabled when an error occurs you can search for "value 3" and in most cases find the return code from a failed standard or custom action. Note that this is not the only indication that a standard or custom action did not run perhaps as expected. An installation that returned prematurely but that did not return an error code from the process would have returned
You should see a line like the following listing the action that returned the error value:
Action ended 12:00:00: MyCustomAction. Return value 3.
Now that you've located the error in the log you must determine what really happened since the return value isn't really adequate for determining the cause of the problem. If your custom action failed hopefully you've logged enough information to determine the cause right away. If you used the
MSI (s) (AC:14) [12:00:00:000]: Note: 1: 1601 2: C: 3: 4096 4: 1024
The first line lists the error in field 1 as 1601. If you look up the error in Windows Installer Error Messages you will see Windows Installer error 1601 has the English text of "Out of disk space -- Volume: ''; required space:  KB; available space:  KB". Plus the values of the fields in the first line into that message and you'll end up with the second line in the log. This will give you a much better indication of what error occurred. If the error value isn't in the Windows Installer Error Messages table, be sure to look in the Error table itself since this may be a custom error. Custom errors should be in the range from 25000 to 30000 according to the documentation for the Error table, but this isn't always the case.
In Logging of Action Return Values return codes from msiexec.exe are paired with error codes returned from custom actions, but msiexec.exe may return other error codes as documented in Error Codes, such as
Create a text file named fusionLog.reg
Edit it with notepad and add the following content:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
create a folder c:\log\fusion
double click the fusionLog.reg file and accept adding info in the registry
Each time an assembly fails to load, a log file is created in c:\log\fusion folder
In order to also see successes, change ForceLog to 1
Sunday, August 13, 2006
Saturday, August 12, 2006
Friday, August 11, 2006
So many ways to launch programs. A good launcher doesn't just launch, it also auto-completes paths for you, starts your search engine or browser and generally saves you 15 minutes a day. No need to learn all the hotkeys like those Keyboard wonks who try to guilt you. Just learn ONE and make it do everything.
Given these offerings, if you open your Start Menu at all, at any point in the day, you're doing something wrong. Try them all, pick one, and save 15 min * 5 days * 52 weeks = 65 hours a year you'd have spent futzing around in your Start Menu*. * These numbers came straight out of my butt.
- Slickrun - still the sexy favorite, this little floating magic bar keeps me moving fast, launching programs, macros and explorer with it's shiny simplicity. Tell them I sent you. ;)
- SmartStartMenu - Shaun Harrington has created this elegant little application that lives in the task bar and automatically indexes the list of items in your Start Menu for quick access with the speed of AutoComplete. It will take system commands, paths to launch explorer, even UNC paths. Launch anything on your system with less than 4 keystrokes. It also adds new context menus to Explorer like CopyPath and Open in DOS box to Explorer.
Martin Plante, hot off his gig at Xceed has created slimKEYS, a "universal hotkey manager" with a simple .NET plugin architecture. If you've got ideas or thoughts, visit the slimCODE Forums. Have you ever wanted to bind something to Shift-Ctrl-Alt-Window-Q but didn't know how to grab a global hotkey? This will launch programs, watch folders, and find files. It has great potential as more and more plugins appear. The current version already comes with the following built-in plug-ins:
- slimSIZE: Change the current window's position, size or monitor location to any area of your choice.
- slimLAUNCH: Open applications, documents or folders by typing a few letters from their name.
- slimVOLUME: Display the volume level when you use your keyboard's volume control.
- Colibri - The closest thing so far, IMHO, to Quicksilver on Windows, although this little gem has a slow startup time, it runs fast! It's being actively developed and promises integration with a dozen third party programs. It also formally supports "Portable Mode" for those of you who like to carry your apps around on a USB key.
- Launchy - Another do it all application, this one Open Source and written
entirely in .NET, Launchy binds to Alt-Space by default. This app also has the potential to be Quicksilver like if it start including support for stringing together verb-noun combos. It's pretty as hell and totally skinnable (there's TWO Quicksilver skins included!)
- AppRocket -this little bar sits at the top of your screen, popping down an active list of Bookmarks, Programs, Music, Web Queries and more. It's unclear if this tool is being enhanced for future versions as folks have reported not hearing from the company in a while.
- ActiveWords - Arguably the most minimal of these launchers (as it can have no UI at all if you like!), but the most configurable. ActiveWords watches everything you type, in every application, so anything you've just typed could potentially be used by you to launch a program, a macro, send email, or give you Auto-Correct in any application. Check out their screencast/demos and their scripting language. It also is the only launcher (I've seen) with explicit support for the Tablet PC and allows ink to trigger an "Active Word."
UPDATE: I forgot a few that were totally worth mentioning. My bad.
- Google Desktop -
Google Desktop has an option that let's you use it as a quick program launcher along with fantastic search abilities by tapping Ctrl-Ctrl.
- Find and Run Robot - Lightweight, small, quiet until you need it. This little application allows for tuneable heuristics to make it work like you think. Demo Screencast here.