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Application Development

Visual Studio 2010 Tips

A few weeks ago our company decided to buy some tools for our department. I’m obviously not talking about hammers or screwdrivers here, but computer work tools. Even though I am sometimes tempted to use a real hammer on my computer, especially when it takes a long time to compile 200 lines of code! Anyways, without getting too sidetracked, most of my co-workers decided to go for ReSharper which I personally think is a great option.

Timing with the Stopwatch class

Timing the performance of a particular piece of code is a task that I find myself doing frequently and I suspect most developers do as well. Perhaps it's the load time for a web page, the execution of a stored procedure, calling a web service, or any number of other timings. In .NET I've often used the DateTime class to calculate the elapsed time with code similar to this.

IE Blocking Downloads Triggered by a Script

A client of ours recently ran into an issue with browser permissions while remotely testing a product in our development environment. There are four places the user can click a link to stream a .pdf  to their browser, but the download was being blocked in two of them. While this would normally be solved by adjusting settings in IE, this was not something the tester was permitted to do, nor could he choose to download the file from the IE Information Bar, as the bar was not being shown.

CSS Issue: 100% Height on a Div Tag

Here at Topline, I personally tend to spend most of my time writing C# code and T-SQL. In the last year or two, however, in a game of tag that I didn't realize I was playing, I have become "it" when it comes to UI design. As a result, I have spent a lot of evenings learning CSS, and, contrary to what I supposed at the outset, I have grown to enjoy quite a bit. That being said, I am still learning and from time to time I encounter new and earth-shattering principles off CSS design that I have somehow missed before.

M-Soft ups its office suite cloud game with Office 365

“For a small business, Office 365 is a perfect way to start,” said Rob Nichols, chief technology officer of Allovus Design, a graphic design firm and member of Microsoft’s Customer Advisory Board for Office 365. “It has all the features we need, and we can come out of the gate with the same tools the big guys have — on day one.”

Comparing Schema Information

During a recent purge/archive project I needed to compare two tables in different SQL Server databases to see if the schemas were the same. Basically, I was moving data from a production database to an archive database and if new fields were added or changed to any of the production tables, I needed to know and sync those changes to the related archive tables. Below are two stored procedures that I created initially in the master database to simplify the process and to allow the stored procedures to be executed from any database.

Common Table Expression T-SQL

Common table expressions, a feature introduced by Microsoft SQL Server 2005, are a very powerful feature that may be used in lieu of temporary tables. They may be thought of as a temporary result set that is defined within the execution scope of a query. Using a common table expression you are able to create a reference to itself, which exposes a recursive ability that is very helpful for identifying a hierarchy amongst table elements. For our example we will use NorthWind's employee table.

ACID Rules

A few days ago, I had to look for some information regarding the ACID rules and I didn’t really find anything relevant that helped me understand the topic very well. I even checked many SQL Books because I thought I would be able to find good information in them, but even though they were supposed to be “good books” , I still found nothing good . So I decided to put together all the information I found and a little bit about the topic. First of all we need to understand what the letters A.C.I.D. stand for and what the idea behind it is. The A.C.I.D.

Netmask Quick Reference

Because you never know when you might need one...

What's a netmask?

All devices on a local network have a unique IP address, but each address is inherently divided into two parts, a shared network part, and a unique host part, and this information is used by the TCP/IP stack for routing. When sending traffic to a machine with a different network part, it must be sent through a router for final delivery.

SQL 2005: sp_change_users_login Not Finding Orphaned Users

Most anyone who has moved a database from one server to another is familiar with orphaned users and the steps necessary to map them to a login. MSDN has a great article at in which the sp_change_users_login stored procedure is used to resolve this issue. While the steps listed in the article work 99.9% of the time, there's still that .01% that can drive a developer a little crazy.