Rory Primrose

Learn from my mistakes, you don't have time to make them yourself

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TechEd - Morning of Day 2

After my session was finished, I went over to see Payam do his Windows Communication Foundation: Building Secure Services session. I was a little late to this one, but it was a great overview of what you can do with WCF and security.

Given that I haven’t had a lot to do with certificates etc, that part of the session was interesting. It’s good so see that in WCF there are a lot of security options available. I like the fact that you can encrypt parts of a message rather than taking the hammer approach and encrypting everything.

I think it was good that Payam make a clear distinction between scenarios where you want either no security, want to ensure that the message hasn’t been tampered with or where you don’t want someone to read part or all of a message. I suspect that most people put message tampering and encryption into the same box but they really are different levels of security.

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Can the success of a conference be measured by the quality and quantity of coffee? Perhaps not, but it certainly helps.

Firstly, it has to sit up and bark. This was my after-session coffee.

Having 5 of these carts around the exhibition hall was a good move,

but sometimes it was a painful wait though.

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TechEd - Developing Manageable WCF Services

Chris and I got to the presentation room early in the morning so we could setup and make sure everything was sorted. We then went out to have a relaxed breakfast at a cafe on Darling Harbour before the session started at 8:30.

I really enjoyed the experience of presenting and just had a blast. There were 135 people registered for the session, but it is hard to know exactly how many came through the door, but we had a full room with some people having to stand. Ashman (Ashley), the technical guy for the room, was really helpful and all the gear in the room as well as the VPC server worked perfectly.

I only got hit with the demo gods once. From memory, I think something wasn’t being written to the trace/message logs in one of the demos, but that was fairly minor. From a technical point of view, all the other demos went well albeit a little rushed.

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TechEd - Afternoon of Day 1

This afternoon I was going to go to a WF session, but I bailed so that I could spend some time on my session, making sure that the demos were going to behave themselves.

Oh, forgot to mention. I got to meet Berno this morning which was really good.

In the evening, Chris and I were a little late to ‘Ask the experts’ because we were able to get access to the room we will give our session in. It was helpful to be able to see the room and check that the VPC works from the main VPC server using my laptop as the client. The Connected Systems area of ‘Ask the experts’ was a little quiet which is unfortunate, but other areas seemed to get a lot of people asking questions.

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TechEd - Morning of Day 1

I had a early start this morning, leaving Canberra at 4:30am in the vain hope of making it to the keynote address at TechEd in Sydney this year. My perfect plan was foiled by traffic on the M5 making me get to the conference at 9:30 rather than the intended 8:30.

After checking in, I headed over to my first two sessions. Introduction to the .NET Framework 3.0 and Windows Communication Foundation: Introduction, both of which were presented by Payam Shodjai. These were fantastic sessions and gave a great overview (including several code demos) of these up and coming releases.

Intro to .Net 3.0 (now called NetFX3) covered CardSpace, WCF, WF and WPF. This session gave great coverage of NetFX for all types of people (managers, developers etc). CardSpace I am finding really interesting because it should (over time), change the way we authenticate with many web sites which will provide a much more secure and user friendly internet. The explanation of WCF and its demos was a good opportunity for me to see how other presenters are showing off WCF. My WCF session will cover some of the same points, but my implementation is quite different. The thing that really hit home for me was the easy way to create a WF application with its designer and how you can step though a debug session in the designer. Very cool! Lastly, but certainly not least is WPF which I am excited about. I hope that WPF will bring about a UI revolution to the desktop application like browser rendering has done with internet applications.

Intro to WCF was an extended version of Intro to .Net 3.0 which went into a lot more detail and explanation. I am looking forward to Payam’s WCF security session tomorrow.

I would post some photos, but I don’t have any. I keep forgetting to bring my camera in. Maybe later…

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Do they ever look like you thought?

I was doing a few things with a local radio station when I was a teenager and I saw a comic in the broadcast room. I was displaying a child being comforted by his mother after finding out what the radio announcer looked like. I never thought about it until then, but it is interesting how we create some kind of mental picture or impression regarding what well known people look like when we have never seen them before.

I am looking forward to meeting Scott Guthrie at TechEd, but do I know what he looks like? Nope, at least not until last night. Here is a photo that I nicked from Nigel Parker’s blog.

Scott Guthrie

I didn’t really think too much about what Scott would look like, but it’s great to be able to put a face to the blog though.

Oh, and hopefully his prior experience doesn’t happen to me this week. :)

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There was a VirtualPC attempt on my presentation

Late last week I putting together another VPC build for my TechEd session. I had XP installed and fully patched, a minimal VS2005 up and running and the minimum WinFX Beta 2 bits thrown in. After a couple of hours installing the software on my base VPC XP drive I had finally got the build I needed for the session.

I wanted to move the VPC machine settings file to the same location as its hard drive (I stuffed up the original directory paths). After I moved the settings file, I double clicked it to make sure it would run.

Yeah… not good. I don’t know what happened, or who to blame (other than myself), but both my VPC hard drive and the machine settings files got deleted. Poof! Gone. No more, and not the recycle bin type deleted, where talking the end of the line. The files were no longer on the drive. Stupidly, I didn’t think about getting one of those drive utilities to undelete the files. Nope, I took the easy way out and rebuilt the VPC again from my XP base drive. Two hours later, I was again ready for WCF world domination.

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EDM in ADO.Net vNext

I just read this post from the ADO.Net team. Looks like there is going support for entity creation (Entity Data Model - EDM) based on a database schema in the next ADO.Net release.

There is nothing more tedious than manually building entities from a schema. Although there are lots of O/R mapping tools around to do this for you, I haven’t been happy with the freeware applications available. It is great news that this should find its way into Visual Studio and the framework.

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