Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thank You Atif and Marc for your insight in reviewing my book

Marc Delisle lead developer of phpMyAdmin provided the help by meticulously going through the draft and made numerous suggestions which helped me to arrange the book for better presentation. Through this post, I would like to salute him. It was truly un travail bien fait. Merci beaucoup monsieur.

Atif Shehzad was a technical reviewer of my book. I sincerely thank him through this post for his DBA insight which added great value to my book thereby helping my readers. آپ کا بہت بہت صاحب کا شکریہ ادا

A lot of credit goes to the reviewers.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Installing Microsoft LightSwitch RTM, Problem & Solution

Microsoft LightSwitch RTM which became available for public download, a 90 day evaluation copy presented an unusual installation problem. It took over a day and half of working on it and finally was solved. 

The problem:

This may not happen on all computers but may happen on some in both x32 as well as x64 bit architectures. The typical message one would get is that the installation will not proceed unless an existing Beta 1 is removed as shown in the next image.

This sounds an unreasonable message as the Beta 1 is removed from these computers; there is no indication of a Beta 1 in the Control Panel | Programs and Features (Windows 7); and no trace of a 'LightSwitch' component in the Registry.

Most of the reported cases, perhaps came from users who had installed Beta 1 some time or another in the past and who had removed it to accommodate Beta2 (which could not be installed if Beta 1 were present). It was a kind of given that if Beta 2 was on a machine, Beta 1 could not have been present. One user who never had Beta 1 just removed Beta 2 and it worked without any problem.

The Solution:

Finally Robert Schoen, a Microsoft Employee suggested among other suggestions to remove the following two keys in the Registry (refer to associated command, Regedit). For details follow this link,

ON x64 machines go to:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\DevDiv\VS\Servicing\10.0\STD and remove this STD key (this will be for Beta1)

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\DevDiv\VS\Servicing\10.0\vslscore and remove this vslscore key (this will be for Beta2)

On x86 machines go to:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DevDiv\VS\Servicing\10.0\STD and remove this STD key (this will be for Beta1)

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DevDiv\VS\Servicing\10.0\vslscore and remove this vslscore key (this will be for Beta2)

This is the one that worked for me, and later many others reported success on both architectures. After deleting these keys, the installation went very smoothly as in the following screen shots.

Compared to Beta 2 only three components seen in the screen shots were downloaded and installed.

Expanding Universe of Microsoft Visual Studio LightSwitch

Microsoft Visual Studio LightSwitch -VSLS for short has come of age with the RTM release yesterday. I tried to install it on my Windows 7 Ultimate (x32) but failed. That will be the subject of another post.

This post is about how this product will evolve in the future and surely it has all the ingredients. Microsoft showcased some of the extensions built by third party and this post is about those extensions.

OLAP for VSLS from

Radial Gauge Control

NetAdvantage for VSLS

This video is cool and shows how much Infragistics has invested on this product and I am sure it is going to pay off. Replacing the vanilla Data Grid in VSLS by Infragistics' DataChart make the whole page come to life.

Of course Infragistics has leveraged their Silverlight controls to customize them for VSLS and there are lots of them. No code is necessary. Isn't that great, putting developers out of work (no kidding!).

First Floor Software

Document Toolkit which enables Viewing Documents and Reports in LightSwitch

Enjoy reporting with XtraReports Suite

This is just the beginning guys!!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Microsoft's Help Library Manager is really cool

I recently installed Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Ultimate and at that time I clicked on the link on the final installation page pointing to documents and it was a nice experience. The Help Library Manager showed up and I downloaded a computer full of documents on most Microsoft software programs including 'Denali' and Windows Azure and a whole lot more.

Here are some screen shots of the Help Library Manager. If you are working on Microsoft products make sure you get this stuff.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The first computer bug

The first computer bug was a real bug (organic as organic can be). Follow this link to see the picture here,

Now you see lots of bugs, but mostly developer created life forms (?).

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Visual Studio LightSwitch Goes RTM

The long awaited event will take place on July 26. Launch date is barely two weeks from now. It has awesome capabilities. Connecting to data is a breeze. Most used business related screens are ready to go needing no more than a click. What is not in the out-of-the box product will be provided by a spate of third party vendors/developers writing extensions. Microsoft Extensibility Framework is the under pinning technology and already third parties have moved in to reap the bonanza ( With built-in capabilities augmented by custom controls leveraging all that is (good and ) invested in Silverlight 3, Silverlight 4, can imagine how far it can go. Extensions will surely take to higher dimensions. What is remarkable about this product is you create an application once and you can deploy to the desktop, or web, or to the  cloud all published from within the IDE. I have watched it go from Beta 1 to Beta 2 and I cannot wait to savor the RTM

Monday, July 04, 2011

Review of my SQL Azure book from a SQL Azure developer

Anton Staykov ( was a frequent visitor to the SQL Azure Forum when SQL Azure appeared on the web. Anthony is a Microsoft MVP from Bulgaria. I was also a frequent visitor trying to learn from others about SQL Azure. Recently, I saw his review of my book ( which described some positive aspects of my book. He was kind enough to permit me to reproduce his review to the visitors of my blog.

Here it follows:
SQL Azure: Enterprise Application Development reviewed
"As I blogged earlier this year, there are two books on Windows Azure from Packt publishing. I was personally involved as technical reviewer with one of them, and now I am sharing my feedback on the second.
Microsoft SQL Azure: Enterprise Application Development, is the second one from the "Azure" series. Published right after the "Microsoft Azure: Enterprise Application Development" the book is the perfect complement to it. Reading Microsoft SQL Azure, you will learn the basics of cloud services (i.e. what is a Cloud, what types of clouds are there and who are the big players). You will, of course catch up with Windows Azure, as it is briefly described, in case you missed the "Microsoft Azure" book.
Focusing on the SQL Azure service it self, the book covers all the steps required for you to leverage a cloud based RDMS. All the information you find there is well structured and accompanied with good number of screenshots and sample SQL statements. You will not miss any of the features delivered from SQL Azure. All the answers are there – what is the security model of SQL Azure; how to connect and execute queries against the cloud (how to use Sql Server Management Studio); how can you use Sql Server Integration Services (a.k.a. SSIS) and what are the limitations; how to sync your cloud data with on-premise data; what are the tools supported by SQL Azure; and more and more questions and answers. I could hardly find a question for SQL Azure that this book does not answer!
I would highly recommend this book as a complement to the "Microsoft Azure: Enterprise Application Development". These two books are the complete guide to develop application for the Microsoft's Cloud! "

It is still not too late you may enter the raffle and win a hard copy or a eBook. Just send a email to with SQL Azure in the subject line. Protection Status