November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving America!

Filed under: General — Tags: — Darrin Maidlow @ 5:43 pm

To all my American friends, colleagues and readers – please have a safe and happy holiday weekend surrounded with family and friends!

November 3, 2012

A big welcome to Arne–our newest contributing author

Filed under: General — Tags: — Darrin Maidlow @ 9:32 pm

welcome to the big leagues arnePlease join me in welcoming our newest contributing author !  Arne is has been my colleague at for several years and has had a diverse fifteen year career spanning the world.  

We’re always interested in hearing from talented folks that might like to contribute to – if you’d like to become a contributing author please feel free to .

It’s a boy!

Filed under: General — Tags: — Darrin Maidlow @ 6:37 pm

Hey everyone!

Another day another baby!   On November 2nd at 1am exactly our son, Ozzy Ash Pawliuk-Maidlow was born.  Yup, Ozzy as in =]  Weighing in Ozzy Ash Pawliu-Maidlowat a hefty 6 lbs 5 oz (as opposed to our who was 4 lbs 7 oz).  Mom and baby are doing great.  As I hoped this time around was a LOT easier.  Much better when you have some idea what you’re getting into.  The only thing I wasn’t prepared for was the lack of sleep.  Staring blankly at a screaming baby on maybe 2 hours of sleep trying to remember how to change the diaper on a newborn.  The last time I did an all nighter was when our daughter was born.  Before that it had been many years =)

Fortunately the little guy looks great in pink : )

November 2, 2012

Visual Studio running slow? Check your Anti-virus

Filed under: Development — Tags: , , — Darrin Maidlow @ 8:00 am

TurtleFor several weeks now I’ve been suffering a slow painful agony at work,  has been unusably slow.  The editor takes forever to display WPF views and don’t even get me started on builds.  I’ve got what I would consider to be a pretty decent pooter – Alienware M17xR3 with an Intel i7-2720QM 2.2Ghz, 16GB ram with SSD drives.   The machine is still generally pretty quick.  It boots in a matter of seconds.  A quick test of the disks using shows that disks are running within the expected ranges.

Visual Studio seems to be the only thing really running slowly

I tried the usual suspects.  Disabling all plugins and addins.  is a very powerful tool – but it can also come with a cost creating all of its metadata.  It was conceivable that as our solution grew (it’s at 40+ projects) some bug may have been exposed in R#.  I  also and that were rumored to help deal with slowness.

There’s no bad ideas when you’re brainstorming

That header there was for those of you with toddlers and TV’s glued to the Disney channel.  Yes, its true… I have kids TV show songs like stuck in my head most o f the time now.  Oh the joys of being a parent =)  In all seriousness though after sitting back and thinking about the systems involved it dawned on me.  Real time anti-virus scanning.  Visual Studio is constantly writing temporary files during use.  Builds are especially disk intensive.  Builds are also usually building and copying around exes and dlls that real time anti-virus engines love to scan.  This may not be immediately apparent on smaller solutions which would explain why this seems to have been a progressing problem.  As more and more code and projects were added to the solution – Visual Studio got slower and slower.   To test this theory I just disabled and ran a build.  Hurray it was fast again!

Add some scanning exceptions

Thankfully due to our strict rules on source control all of our solutions exist within one of two folders – one for and one for .  This allowed me to create a handful of exceptions under the AVG real-time scanner settings that excluded my source control repositories.  Suddenly now my designers as well as my builds are quick once more!

Set it and forget it is great – except when you set something up years ago and forget about it when its causing you problems.  =)

October 8, 2012

Extract list of Oracle schema names from dump file

Filed under: Oracle — Tags: , , , — Darrin Maidlow @ 8:00 am

Recently I was tasked with extracting some data from an server and converting it to 2008.   I could not get very much information about the Oracle server other than a sys password and the location of the nightly backup dump files.  The server was serving two applications with very little vendor support – but they were working.   The icing on the cake was that the the Oracle EM web app was not working – so I was also running a little blind.  I didn’t want to break anything so I opted to leave the EM non-functional and I decided to import a recent dump into a fresh scratch Oracle instance.  I would do my export to SQL server from there – zero risk of an oops.

The dumps were full system dumps and were tens of GB in size.  I needed to know the names of the schemas being backed up so I could selectively restore the schemas to my new Oracle instance.   In my messing around I accidentally loaded one of the dumps into a text editor (that was smart enough to deal with large files) and noticed it was mostly text. Keep Reading

September 6, 2012

Amazingly detailed craftsmanship – three wooden replicas of heavy equipment

Filed under: General — Tags: — Darrin Maidlow @ 1:14 pm

The team has been working onsite at the head office of a trade union for the year or so.  One the very first day I started onsite my partner Arne (who had been there for a few months) met me outside.  One of the first things he pointed out to me as he led me to our office were these machines.  One of the members had built these amazing wooden replicas of three big machines.   Click on the pictures to get a larger more detailed image.  Amazing!  See the pics

August 13, 2012

Unique number counter system using SQL Server identity fields and Fluent NHibernate

Filed under: Development,NHibernate,SQL Server — Tags: , , — Darrin Maidlow @ 6:00 am

**UPDATE – As we moved forward with our project this method turned out to be a little less awesome than I thought when I put it together.   I’ve left this post here though as I am not ashamed of my failures! There is also some neat stuff in here with setting up the identity fields using nHibernate.

Recently I needed to create a generic re-usable system to generate system wide unique counters using SQL server tables and identity fields to handle the number generation.  One of the key requirements was to be able to specify the identity seed, but in a re-usable way of course.

Generic Class and Class Map

So lets start this off with a base class to define the counter object:

(more…)

August 6, 2012

Crane on a mountain top

Filed under: General — Tags: — Darrin Maidlow @ 10:30 am

My wife and I recently took a mini vacation and spent a few nights in Banff, Alberta.  Man I’ve missed that town…  We took the gondola up to the top of Suplhur mountain and there amongst the clouds at the end of the top of the mountain hike I found this large hunk of rock near the edge of a cliff.  Being a P90X/2 junky I felt compelled to on top of this rock, 7350 feet above sea level, near the edge of the cliff and share it with the world. 

SAM_1621

Keep Reading

June 13, 2012

Boo to you MadisonSeating

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — Darrin Maidlow @ 12:56 pm

I would like to send a big thumbs down and a boo to madison seating for misleading advertising.  They sent me an e-mail yesterday advertising their big sale on Aeron chairs.  My current Aeron is almost a decade old and squeaks / creaks / groans when I sit down -  so I figured this would be a great time to get a new one!  I jump on their site configure the chair and place my order for a couple chairs.

Look – free shipping, ships to Canada and a great price!

Keep Reading

June 4, 2012

FLAMEd

Filed under: General — Tags: — Darrin Maidlow @ 10:25 pm

The hackers that made the FLAME virus have published a secret login console on flamer.com. It’s top secret but maybe you already know the login and password…. http://www.flamer.com

But seriously folks.  I have not been in a place to write much this year.  We’ve been insanely busy improving workforce productivity with automation over at ChasmX – .  I’ve also been helping my wife launch her new CPR instruction business .  On top of that our daughter has become mobile and is keeping us on our toes.  That said – I’ve got a half dozen cool topics in the works.  I’m hoping to get some good posts laid down here in the coming weeks.

Talk soon! ;)

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