Geeks With Blogs

Lance's TextBox .Net There are 213 entries for the tag .Net
Our Wedding and Honeymoon
Our (me and my wife, Lauren) wedding was June 18th, 2011 at Rock of Ages Winery in Hurdle Mills, NC. The story of our wedding and honeymoon is quite an interesting one, in my opinion. This is the whole story, with more detail than my average reader will be interested in, so I put the highlights in bold for those who want to skim! Lauren spent months preparing for the wedding. I can't possibly list all the work she did here, but to skim the surface, she ordered the invitations, made directions and ......

Posted On Sunday, July 10, 2011 7:59 PM

ADO.NET Entity Framework – Code First Development Pattern
Here’s a quick start introduction to the ADO.NET Entity Framework Code First Development Pattern. For a more complete (but still intro) walkthrough, check out ScottGu’s blog. At the time of this writing, you’ll need the EF 4.1 Release Candidate. After EF 4.1 is released you’ll no doubt be able to find it on the ADO.NET team blog. 1. Create a new empty ASP.NET MVC2 Web Application, add a reference to System.Data.Entity. If using the EF4.1 RC - add a reference to the EntityFramework dll that comes ......

Posted On Thursday, April 14, 2011 3:42 AM

Creating Team Foundation Work Items With PowerShell
Here is the simple function I added to my powershell profile: function create-tfstask ($desc) { tfpt workitem /new $workItemType /collection:$serverUrl /fields:"Title=$($desc);Ass... To=$assignee;AreaId=$areaId... } To find the AreaId and IterationId for your project/versions, just look at a bug you know is setup correctly: PS C:\> tfpt query /collection:http://3bs001vs... /wiql:"select AreaId,IterationId from workitems where ID = 879" Next I hooked this into ......

Posted On Wednesday, January 26, 2011 10:58 AM

How do I rollback a TFS check-in?
I can never remember how to rollback a check-in, and there all kinds of mess in search results about this (change between different versions of TFS etc), so I thought I’d just put this here so I won’t forget anymore. :) Thanks to @manningj, TFS genius. Just drop to the command line and use tf.exe. Example: tf rollback /changeset:12345 For more on the tf.exe commands: tf help Technorati Tags: Visual Studio,Team Foundation,Rollback ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 21, 2010 11:24 AM

Home Improvements
I had my house on the market for a few months last year – no sale though. I just switched to a new real estate agent who is very proactive, I like her a lot. She gave me some staging advice and then hired a professional photographer to shoot the house. There were so many huge differences in the look of the house (after just a few days of work) before and after – I just had to show them here. THE DINING ROOM First of all - LIGHT. Don't take pictures of real estate at night! The natural light in these ......

Posted On Friday, December 10, 2010 6:00 PM

Quick PowerShell “Todo” Gmail Emailer
I put the following function in my PowerShell profile so that I can just bring up my PowerShell console and type myself a quick “todo” note that automatically gets emailed to me for later. There are several things of note in this tiny script: 1. Note the use of the $args variable to effectively allow the user to enter $msg parameter without quotes even if it contains whitespace. 2. In this particular example I’m sending the email through Gmail., port 587, SSL and authentication required. ......

Posted On Tuesday, October 26, 2010 1:27 PM

FourSquare Checkin with CSharp
Here’s how to automatically check-in to FourSquare from C#. Yes, I did cheat with this for about a week. Apparently people were wondering how I was checkin in and defending my mayorships while I was out of the country. Haha. Anyway, here you go: static void Checkin(string venueid, double latitude, double longitude) { string result = HttpPost("http://api.foursq... "vid=" + venueid + "&private=0&geolat=" + Scatter(latitude) + "&geolong=" + Scatter(longitude), "myuser", ......

Posted On Monday, September 27, 2010 12:39 PM

Gettin’ Hitched
What’s new with you? So yeah, I have been quiet lately. As you may remember, I left /n software in March and joined a new startup company in Chapel Hill called 3Birds Marketing. What have I been doing since? Lots! First and foremost, I got engaged to the wonderful and beautiful Lauren Briggs. Yep, I’m gettin’ hitched. I’m a lucky man because #1 she’s awesome, #2 she’s smart as hell, #3 she’s hot, #4 she’s fun, and #5 she kicks ass. Seriously. Don’t mess with her or she will beat you up. Life at 3Birds ......

Posted On Friday, August 13, 2010 6:44 PM

Automatic NUnit Test Generation with PowerShell + XML
First, I’ll describe a process I’ve been using for the last couple years to manage integration testing. After that, I’ll talk about a new requirement for integration and unit testing, and how I altered things to accommodate the new requirements. The Last Two Years For the last two years I had a small set of Powershell scripts that allowed me to make sure my integration tests are using the latest libraries compiled with the latest source, and using the latest nunit test code. Testing_profile.ps1 – ......

Posted On Friday, February 26, 2010 3:59 PM

Exception setting "ThreadOptions" in SharePoint 2010 Management Shell
Right after you install SP2010 (Foundation or Server), even on a completely updated Windows Server 2008 SP2, when you go to start the SharePoint 2010 Management Shell (the recommended PowerShell interface for working with SharePoint), you get a real ugly looking error: Exception setting "ThreadOptions": "This property cannot be changed after the Runspace has been opened." At C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\CONF IG\POWERSHELL\Registration\... char:48 ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 17, 2010 1:56 PM

Changing Page Layout with SharePoint Designer 2010
Don't like one of your page layouts on your SharePoint Site? No problem, you can solve this problem quickly and easily using the free SharePoint Designer. It doesn't take any programming, just a couple minor HTML tweaks. Note: This is different from modifying the master page, which will effect every page on the site. Instead, we'll be detaching the page from the master page, therefore making it unique on the site. This obviously has its cons when its comes to long-term site style. Here's how a site ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 17, 2010 9:09 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #10
This post is the tenth and last in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #10 - Keep Your SharePoint Calendar Synced with Google The following is one way you can use to keep your SharePoint Calendar(s) synced up with your Google Calendar. This particular example only syncs in one direction: from Google to SharePoint. It could go the opposite direction, ......

Posted On Wednesday, January 13, 2010 1:19 PM

GeeksWithBlogs and SubText Bloggers: Input string was not in a correct format and other SubText Users: If you are trying to create a new blog post, and you get the following error: Input string was not in a correct format. at System.Text.StringBuilder.F... at System.Text.StringBuilder.A... provider, String format, Object[] args) at Subtext.Framework.Util.KeyW... source, String oldValue, String newValue, Boolean isFormat, Boolean onlyFirstMatch) at Subtext.Framework.Util.KeyW... entry) at Subtext.Framework.Data.Data... ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 29, 2009 4:42 AM

PowerShell: Smart Parameter Expressions
A while back I posted about how to mark a script parameter as required in PowerShell. Shortly afterwards, there was some chatter on it that I think makes it worthwhile to add another post on the subject of PowerShell script parameters. Let’s say you have the question: “Can I do <X> with a parameter?” The answer is probably “Yes”. :) Jim and an anonymous emailer both asked: Is there any way you can specify a parameter based on the value of another parameter? The answer is yes. You can put pretty ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 8, 2009 1:49 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #9
This post is the ninth in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #9 – Microsoft Dynamics CRM The credit for this particular web part template goes to one of my co-workers Shannon Prue. I asked him if he could put together a MS CRM template example for me, and a few minutes later I had in my inbox a 10 line example template! In the past, integrating ......

Posted On Monday, November 9, 2009 10:13 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #8
This post is the eighth in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #8 – Twitter Many times since I originally posted about it months ago, I’ve been asked for more details about including Twitter searches and streams inside their SharePoint pages. Thanks to the Twitter API and feeds, this is very simple to do, and to change from showing searches, ......

Posted On Friday, October 30, 2009 3:35 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #7
This post is the seventh in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #7 – Search Email History One of my good friends here recently asked me to give him an easy way to quickly bring up a list of email correspondence to and from a particular email address over the past 6 months. This way, if he is assisting someone on the telephone or email, he can ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 21, 2009 5:07 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #6
This post is the sixth in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #6 – Shipment Tracking Web Part! I’ve been holding on to this one for a while. Until recently it was just a FedEx shipment tracker, but now the UPS and USPS Connectors have been published at so this can be what I wanted it to be. This sample will allow the user to input ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 22, 2009 4:02 AM

Adding Tweet Button to ActiveModules’ ActiveForums
Here is how to add a “Tweet” button to your ActiveForums threads, using John Resig’s (@jeresig) “Easy Retweet Button”. I added a “Tweet” button to the header of each post, right next to the existing quote/reply buttons. First, modified the default styling of John’s retweet.js so that the tweet button matches ActiveForums. I modified retweet in the following ways: Set the link_text to just “&nbsp;Tweet”. I killed the click count by setting count_type to “none”. Completely deleted the “styling:” ......

Posted On Thursday, September 17, 2009 9:20 AM

How to embed Excel in a .NET WinForms App
Download and install owc11. Run AxImp on OWC11.dll, which will have been installed in the microsoft shared\web components directory (ie C:\Program Files\Common Files\microsoft shared\Web Components\11\). AxImp.exe can be found in the Windows SDK (ie, C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v6.0A\Bin\AxIm... In Visual Studio project, drag OWC11.dll to a toolbox tab and drop the Excel component on form. Voila. When it comes deployment time, you’ll need the AxInterop.OWC11.dll. Some sample code: ......

Posted On Thursday, September 17, 2009 9:19 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #5
This post is the fifth in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #5 – QuickBooks Web Part! I accidently overwrote the original post. Sorry about that. Below are the steps for the QuickBooks webpart. If there are other QB searches you need to do, I can help with that. The RSSBus QBOps Connector has a ton of functionality. Step one is to make sure ......

Posted On Monday, August 24, 2009 3:06 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #4
This post is the fourth in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #4 – List Active Directory Groups and Users This web part will list each user group and its members, as defined in your Active Directory (or other LDAP server) installation. Step one is to make sure you have the RSSBus Web Part installed. See here for instructions. Step two, make ......

Posted On Thursday, July 30, 2009 6:57 AM

Screencast: RSSBus SharePoint Web Part Intro
Here is a screencast showing the absolute basics of how to use the RSSBus SharePoint Web Part. The screencast does not go over installation, but all that requires is that you download and run the setup on your SharePoint machine. Technorati Tags: SharePoint, RSSBus ......

Posted On Wednesday, July 29, 2009 6:36 AM

Twitter Button to GeekswithBlogs/SubText Skin
I’ve always wished I could customize the skin on my blog at GeeksWithBlogs.Net. GeeksWithBlogs is built on SubText, and of course its just a skin, but since GWB is hosting my blog and I don’t have control over the skin files myself I am limited to what I can do with it. Well, today I finally did it, after some inspiration from John Resig (@jeresig) and his “Easy Retweet Button”. I added a “Tweet This!” button to the footer of each post. First, I modified the default styling of John’s retweet.js so ......

Posted On Thursday, July 23, 2009 9:03 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #3
This post is the third in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #3 – Custom SQL Queries This web part will perform a custom SQL query, and allow you to display them however you like. Unlike previous examples, this one won’t be just cut and paste, since you’ll have to provide your own SQL connection string and query, and make replacements inside ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 14, 2009 9:30 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #2
This post is the second in a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. #2 – List Document Libraries and Documents For this example, we’ll make a web part that displays a list of the most recently modified document libraries/documents on the site. Lots of SharePoint sites contain many libraries, each containing dozens or even hundreds of documents. Often ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 7, 2009 3:22 AM

Free Web Part (limited time!)
RSSBus (@rssbus) is promoting a "limited time offer - one per company" free 10-user site license for the RSSBus SharePoint Web Part. I don't know how long it will be available, but here is the link. The timing of this offer is quite nice for me since I have started the blog post series "10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts". Tags: SharePoint, RSSBus, WebPart ......

Posted On Tuesday, June 30, 2009 5:26 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts #1
This post marks the beginning of a series of postings, containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. After that intro you’re probably already wondering what the catch is, and yep, there is one. These examples will require the use of the highly acclaimed RSSBus SharePoint WebPart. To read all posts in this series, or to get started with the RSSBus WebPart, go here. And now…let’s get on with it! #1 – SharePoint Image Rotator Step one is to make sure you have the ......

Posted On Tuesday, June 30, 2009 3:00 AM

10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts
10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts 10 DIY SharePoint Web Parts is a series of postings containing examples of SharePoint WebParts that anybody can build all by themselves. These examples will require the use of the highly acclaimed RSSBus SharePoint WebPart. The RSSBus SharePoint Web Part isn’t like most others – it cannot be called a uni-tasker. It is the most exciting thing I’ve had the pleasure to work with in quite a while... its just a thing of beauty. What does it do? It lets you expose data to SharePoint ......

Posted On Monday, June 29, 2009 3:44 AM

Stop Unfair Beer Taxation In North Carolina
I got the email below yesterday from the folks at "All About Beer" magazine - those that host the yearly Beer Festival in Raleigh and Durham. I don't know about you - but I don't want to my favorite small micro-breweries knocked out of business due to unfair taxation. We're already paying enough taxes on beer and wine. If you are a citizen of North Carolina, I would ask that you take a minute to do the two quick things suggested in the email. Thanks! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~... ......

Posted On Saturday, June 27, 2009 6:13 AM

New Release of IMAP ACL Manager
An update to the IMAP ACL Manager has been published. Release Information June 4th, 2009 - Release V2.5: Added check/un-check all box Verify through UI that permission change applies to subfolders Added status bar and "busy" indicators Bug fix: logoff and re logging on resulted in folder tree not showing. Bug fix: avoid "busy performing current action" errors ......

Posted On Thursday, June 4, 2009 5:29 PM

Smarter SharePoint Alerts – IM and Text
Many people configure email alerts in SharePoint through SharePoint Designer Workflows. The process is simple and useful, here it is outlined at End User SharePoint. In a nutshell, you create a workflow that sends out an alert, attach the workflow to a document library or list in SharePoint, tell SharePoint to run the workflow whenever the library/list changes. The options for sending the alert in SharePoint out of the box are limited to sending a plain email. I want more. Enter the /n software SharePoint ......

Posted On Tuesday, June 2, 2009 1:09 PM

Troubleshooting FTP connections with PowerShell
I find that helping people troubleshoot FTP connectivity issues is much easier if they have PowerShell installed. I can just have them run the NetCmdlets ftp cmdlets with the –debug switch, which displays a trail of information about the communication over the wire. In this way you can see every command send to the server and every response coming back from the server, including what ports a server is attempting to use for ftp data connections. Very often ftp transfer connectivity errors are the ......

Posted On Thursday, May 21, 2009 1:22 PM

PowerShellRSS Automatically Converts PSObjects to RSS Items
In a previous post, I talked about how PowerShellASP can be used to generate an RSS feed with PowerShell. Now I’ll show how the same feed can be generated more easily with PowerShellRSS. Again, the dir command in PowerShell (get-childitem) is used to get a listing of files to use as enclosures in the feed. # This example demonstrates how to generate an RSS feed from a call to the Get-ChildItem cmdlet (dir). # To tailor to your specific needs, set the following values: $mediadir = 'C:\Testing\media';$virtual... ......

Posted On Tuesday, May 5, 2009 5:42 PM

New Toys for PowerShell!
At, you’ll find a bunch of new toys for PowerShell, including the first full release of PowerShellASP + free community license. The new toys? PowerShellADO, PowerShellPanel, PowerShellWebPart, and PowerShellRSS. Here’s a brief description of each, in my own words. For the official description and examples, check out PowerShellASP – write ASP pages with PowerShell scripting instead of vbscript. PowerShellADO – execute PowerShell cmdlets and return the results ......

Posted On Monday, May 4, 2009 5:00 PM

Tweets in SharePoint – Part 3
In part 1, I showed how to add Twitter Search to SharePoint using the RSSBus WebPart. In part 2, I added input properties to the script so that the web part was controlled by the properties in the property editor. Now, I can hook this up with a regular input textbox to let the user drive the search. Now my RSSBus WebPart script looks like this: <rsb:info title="My Custom Search"> <input name="query" description="A default query" default="SharePoint" /> </rsb:info> <div align="center" ......

Posted On Thursday, April 23, 2009 1:45 PM

Tweets in SharePoint – Part 2
In an earlier post I showed how I use the RSSBus SharePoint WebPart to show a list of Twitter search results in your SharePoint pages. Now I’ll expand on that a bit to show how to make the WebPart a bit more dynamic. The script of the webpart itself gives a ton of power to the webpart user. As shown before, each tweet can be formatted however you like. But we can do so much more, like specifying webpart input properties. Starting with the same script from last time, here’s how I can make the search ......

Posted On Wednesday, April 22, 2009 11:33 AM

Tweets In SharePoint
I saw Michael @Gannotti’s Tweets Wiki and thought it was pretty handy. It made me think of @jazzychad’s TweetGrid and how that would be nice inside SharePoint. So I combined these two into my own little twitter search page in SharePoint, and here’s how: Tools I used: RSSBus SharePoint WebPart. Installed and activated the RSSBus SharePoint WebPart, added the webpart to my SharePoint page. I went to, and did a search for “PowerShell”. The results page includes the RSS feed for the ......

Posted On Tuesday, April 21, 2009 12:57 PM

Get-Ldap NetCmdlet in PowerShell
I saw Jeff Hicks’ great Get-LocalMember post this morning, in which he has extensive demonstration of retrieving information about AD group members. I thought it might be a good time to show some of the power of the get-ldap cmdlet. Yes, using the get-ldap cmdlet does require familiarity with the LDAP protocol itself, so in this way it is for more advanced users who just need to do quick LDAP operations without a lot of required coding and with just one universal cmdlet. So, how do I list the group ......

Posted On Thursday, April 9, 2009 11:29 AM

Twitter Search Web Part for SharePoint
1. I installed and activated the RSSBus Web Part for SharePoint, which allows me as a SharePoint owner or member to create a customized web part from one of dozens of RSSBus connectors or any RSS/Atom feed I like, such as a Twitter Search RSS feed. 2. I added the RSSBus Web Part to my SharePoint page, and edited its content using the Source Editor. I am using the following template to format the results of my RSS result: <rsb:call op= ......

Posted On Friday, February 20, 2009 11:00 AM

SharePoint Admins – You Dont Want to Miss This
The RSSBus SharePoint Web Part might just be the most exciting thing I’ve had the pleasure to work with in quite a while. RSSBus is an amazingly powerful product, but the RSSBus SharePoint Web Part…its just a thing of beauty. What the web part does: it lets you expose data from just about anywhere inside SharePoint. The simplest example is to show an RSS feed like Google News or Yahoo News. I tweeted about that last week. I put together two more simple examples. One is using my Twitter Search RSS ......

Posted On Friday, February 6, 2009 5:04 PM

Amazon SimpleDB Developer Tools
According to a recent Amazon survey, “Developer Tools” were the most requested improvement for SimpleDB. /n software’s Amazon Integrator fits the bill for developers building in .NET, ASP.NET, .NETCF, Java, JSP, C++, C++ Builder, Delphi, VB6 (ActiveX), and even classic ASP. You can download a free trial version, which includes demos and API documentation for the SimpleDB component as well as the included AWS, EC2, S3, and SQS components. Technorati Tags: Amazon, AWS, SimpleDB ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 3, 2009 9:46 AM

New nsoftware Releases for SharePoint, BizTalk, SSIS
Today /n software announced new versions of three more toolkits today: SharePoint Extensions V3 BizTalk Adapters V3 SSIS Tasks V3 I have been involved in building these products, so if you have any questions feel free to let me know. Technorati Tags: BizTalk, SharePoint, SSIS ......

Posted On Friday, January 9, 2009 3:38 PM

Amazon EC2 developer component
/n software’s new Amazon Integrator toolkit is now available (it was just released today!) for software developers: Amazon Integrator V3 with EC2 & SimpleDB Now Shipping! Integrate popular Amazon Web Services, including S3, SQS, SimpleDB, AWS, and EC2 with your applications. All Editions Now Shipping: .NET, Java, C++, ActiveX, Delphi, & C++ Builder! Technorati Tags: Amazon, AWS, nsoftware ......

Posted On Friday, January 9, 2009 3:25 PM

PowerShell Server v2 vs PowerShell v2 Remoting via WinRM
A lot of people have asked me to explain the differences in the PowerShell Server v2 product with the obvious alternative: PowerShell v2 Remoting via WinRM. PowerShell Server The nutshell is that with the PowerShell Server, you are not limited to Windows machines and you don’t need WinRM or any other software other than the PowerShell Server itself and any old SSH client. This means that the “client” machine, where the commands are being sent from, can be anything – a Linux machine, a handheld device ......

Posted On Friday, January 9, 2009 3:16 PM

Executing PowerShell commands from iPhone and Linux?
Update: Here is how I did it, with the published version of PowerShell Server: I was talking to Richard Giles at Idera today and he made me realize that I’d never blogged about running PowerShell commands from my secondary Linux desktop, and from the iPhone. Here are the pictures, I posted them on Flickr a while back. This is done by using /nsoftware’s PowerShell Server (currently awaiting v2 release ......

Posted On Wednesday, November 19, 2008 3:01 PM

My plan for revenge against the cable company – part 1
Part 1 can be found here.

Posted On Thursday, November 6, 2008 10:14 AM

Non-Techie Guide to Free HD TV
I have been free of my monstrous cable tv bill for many months now, and I love it! Woooo! A while back I posted about how I want to get revenge on Cable companies by helping as many people as I can kill their cable service in favor of free HD tv over the air and over the Internet. You can read about that here. There are other “free TV” guides on the Internet – but they suck because they are too generic, too technical, or not technical enough. Hopefully this one doesn’t suck. Let me know if you have ......

Posted On Thursday, November 6, 2008 10:12 AM

93x faster .NET Image Loading

I was looking around for how to load images faster than the .NET System.Drawing.Image class and found this awesome finding from Omar Shahine.  The .NET 1.1 SP1 update included a new signature for System.Drawing.Image.FromStream that takes a boolean “validateImageData”.  If you set this to true, the loading time is *much* faster.  Does anybody know what validation is actually performed when this parameter is true?

Posted On Friday, September 19, 2008 4:29 PM

PowerScripting Podcast
If you’re into PowerShell at all and you haven’t listened to the PowerScripting Podcast, you should definitely check it out. I know you’ve seen me write about the show before, but I also know that alot of us don’t have time to listen. Try downloading a copy and burning it onto a cd for your drive home, or copy it onto your mp3 player. The show is done by Hal Rottenberg and Jonathan Walz, two great guys who are a big part of the PowerShell community and who work hard putting together a great show. ......

Posted On Friday, September 19, 2008 10:08 AM

PowerShell: ESPN-Download
“Quintas" was another of the winners of the PowerScripting Podcast’s NetCmdlets scripting contest. Quintas submitted an espn-download script, which retrieves podcast feeds from and downloads the mp3 files for later listening. Here is Quintas’ script: # ESPN-Download param($DownloadDir=$(throw "Usage: ESPN-Download.ps1 DownloadDirectory Show LatestorAllDownloaded`nShow... Mike & Mike`n2. PTI`n3. Around The Horn`n`n[L] for latestshow or [ A ] for All shows`n"), [string]$ESPNShow=$(Read-Host ......

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2008 4:46 PM

PowerShell NetCmdlets -debug
Its easy to forget about the –debug parameter, but a lot of times it can be very helpful, especially with NetCmdlets where in many cases –debug will output the protocol interface (the “PITrail” as we call it at /n software) of the connection. The PITrail includes a trail of communication between the cmdlet and the remote host it is talking to. Rob emailed me to ask for help diagnosing a 425 error he was getting when using the NetCmdlets get-ftp cmdlet. As I described to Rob, in a nutshell the 425 ......

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2008 4:41 PM

PowerShell: tweet-im
Mark Schill was another of the winners of the PowerScripting Podcast’s NetCmdlets scripting contest. Mark submitted a tweet-im script, which sends an instant message about new tweets found in the Twitter RSS feed. They explained on the podcast that Twitter used to have an IM-bot feature which went away, so Mark created this script himself to meet this need. The script simply sits and fetches your Twitter friends timeline feed every x seconds, checks to see if the items it finds are newer than the ......

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2008 10:56 AM

Building Enterprise Mashups using RSSBus
Microsoft MVP Richard Seroter started a series of posts on building enterprise mashups using RSSBus. Part 1, and Part 2. A few weeks ago our Executive Director / Chief Architect / Technology Overlord recently asked me to build a real, live enterprise mashup application to demonstrate for our IT leadership group. Our goal was to show that RSSBus could be used to quickly and efficiently aggregate data in compelling new ways. In the next few posts, I’m going to walk through our use case, and how I built ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 9, 2008 10:09 AM

PowerShell – Base64 Encode/Decode a string
An easy way to convert data to/from base64 (or uuencode/uudecode, quoted-printable, url encode/url decode, JIS, Yenc, hex, or even creating md5 or sha1 hashes) is to use the NetCmdlets convert-data cmdlet. To encode: PS C:\> convert-data -data "Hello, World!" -to base64 Data Size Format ---- ---- ------ SGVsbG8sIFdvcmxkIQ== 20 base64 To decode: PS C:\> convert-data -data $encoded.Data data -from base64 Data Size Format ---- ---- ------ Hello, World! 13 Plain Technorati Tags: PowerShell, NetCmdlets, ......

Posted On Friday, August 29, 2008 1:24 PM

TwitterMinder and Flickr->Twitter scripts
If you’re an RSSBus user who is using my Google Calendar –> Twitter or Flickr –> Twitter services, you might notice a minor change to both. I changed Twitterminder so that tweets resulting from Google Calendar entries are prepended with “GCal: “. I did the same thing with the Flickr->Twitter script, it will now prepend “Flickr: “. Related: How to call these services from your own applications. Related: How I converted TwitterMinder into Flickr->Twitter by changing 4 lines of code ......

Posted On Thursday, August 28, 2008 1:58 PM

Dear RIAA (aka GrooveShark and Pandora Rock)
Dear RIAA, Please address your thank-you note to Pandora Radio. Pandora is where I was able to listen to a bunch of songs by Rehab, and where I then proceeded to purchase the Rehab album "Graffiti The World" (through Amazon MP3 of course, where I purchase all my DRM free music). Matt Miller brought it to my attention that Pandora may be on the way out because our the members of the Copyright Royalty Board have their eyes wide shut (just to be a little bit overly dramatic, there is no doubt in my ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 20, 2008 2:57 PM

IMAP backup service accepting beta testers
ImapBack: ImapBack makes a complete copy of your emails, on any IMAP server, from Gmail to Google Apps, to your own custom IMAP server located anywhere in the world! These backups can be stored on another IMAP server, on our servers, or on your local hard drive. You can schedule any interval of backups (Daily, Hourly, Weekly, Monthly) as well as creating a backup on-demand. On a related note, if you need an easy way to view and control IMAP access control, check out my IMAP ACL Manager application. ......

Posted On Monday, August 18, 2008 4:44 PM

Why is configuring Net-snmp so painful?
This incomplete tutorial gets a person started, but then bails on the second half of the process of configuring actual users. Instead it points you to the man page, which is basically useless and conflicts with directions mentioned in the snmp.conf man page! Ugh! This page is a little bit better, it helps me get an authNoPriv user up and going. From there, I was able to add my authPriv users too: As described in the first tutorial mentioned above, run snmpconf –g basic_setup and then copy over the ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 13, 2008 3:20 PM

NetCmdlets Invoke-Telnet?! And other PowerShell madness.
On last week’s PowerScripting Podcast, Jonathan Walz and Hal Rottenberg interview /n software’s Eric Madariaga about NetCmdlets and PowerShellToys (PowerShellASP). My favorite part was when Hal was shocked to hear that a telnet cmdlet was added to the v2 beta. Hahaha. I completely agree – who uses telnet anymore? But that was actually the biggest request we got from people who were using v1 of NetCmdlets! We already had cmdlets for executing commands over ssh…but people really wanted telnet. This ......

Posted On Monday, August 11, 2008 4:57 PM

New Stuff on the Home Front
On the home front: I’m planning on trying some triathlon events, although I really would prefer to try some adventure racing instead. First I’m going to start with a tiny little super sprint triathlon, where the distances are very short. First I have to wait for my ankle to get healed though, but the swimming part will be the only tough leg for me so I can train for that even with the injury (for those who don’t know, I took a bad sprain playing volleyball about 5 weeks ago). I’m also planning on ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 22, 2008 12:30 PM

New Stuff on the Work Front
From the work front: What have I been doing at work lately? I’ve been spending a lot of time at work playing with SharePoint, the PowerShellToys’ PowerShellASP which lets you create ASP.NET apps with PowerShell script, and I set myself up with a brand new openSUSE 11 (this is a great distro) machine where I’ve been spending a lot of time in MonoDevelop. Speaking of PowerShell and ASP.NET – check out PoshBoard [at CodePlex], Antoine Habert’s PowerShell driven ajax portal. Antoine has a nice little ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 22, 2008 12:27 PM

NetCmdlets SFTP - Public Key Authentication in PowerShell
In the past I gave examples of using the get-ftp and send-ftp cmdlets for PowerShell, but recently a user pointed out that I didn’t show any examples of public key authentication using the cmdlets. Of course the –ssh flag tells the get-ftp and send-ftp cmdlets to use SSH (instead of plain text FTP, or an SSL connection which is turned on with the –ssl flag). For SSH connections, the AuthMode parameter determines what type of SSH authentication to perform – in this case that will be “publickey”. The ......

Posted On Wednesday, June 25, 2008 10:29 AM

IMAP ACL Manager v2
I uploaded a new version of the IMAP Access Control List Manager today. This new version adds support for SSL/TLS implicit and explicit connections, CRAM-MD5 and NTLM authentication, an IMAP communication log, and a few other minor and cosmetic changes. Technorati Tags: IMAP, IMAP ACL, ACL ......

Posted On Tuesday, June 24, 2008 1:41 PM

A Letter to Audible about DRM
I still haven't found a very convenient way to listen to Audible books. I don't want to go out and buy a new phone or a new mp3 player just so that it will work with Audible's unnecessary restrictions. Burning to CD's is a bad option because at a minimum of 14+ cd's per book, its just wasteful. CDRW's are out because the cd player in my car can't read them. Audible's software players are decent, but they are only supported on the desktop (I don't want to listen to books on my desktop) and specific ......

Posted On Thursday, June 5, 2008 11:33 AM

View WireShark Payload Data as Byte Arrays
A customer was having a problem receiving an SNMP trap with a 64 bit timestamp in it. In order to test, I wanted to send the exact same trap the customer was sending, using the basic UDPPort component of IP*Works! INSTEAD of the SendTrap or SendSecureTrap methods that are included in IPWorks SSNMP's SNMPAgent component. It turns out WireShark gives me an extremely easy way to do this in my code. I opened the Wireshark cap file sent to me by the customer, which only included the SNMP trap (important, ......

Posted On Tuesday, June 3, 2008 12:37 PM

Remixing data from Google Docs & Spreadsheets
Right after Google Spreadsheets came out, I got a ton of downloads from a little class library I wrote for interacting with it over HTTP. Problem is, Google didn't provide a true API - the solution was to use HTTP to manually perform the gets and posts required to manage each spreadsheet. Now its much easier thanks to RSSBus! Here is a sample Google spreadsheet, it looks like this: A B C D 1 Name Hours Items IPM 2 Bingley 10 2 0.0033 3 Captain Carter 200 75360 6.28 4 Dawson 200 100000 8.3333 5 Colonel ......

Posted On Thursday, May 15, 2008 12:34 PM

RSSBus: Simple Ways to Connect Data
I just uploaded a new YouTube video for RSSBus. Some of it is hard to see, but soon it will be published at as a high quality flash video. RSSBus can be used to securely serve custom feeds over the Internet or on the local host. This video shows examples of very basic feeds that can be created with RSSBus with just a few mouse clicks, and more complex piped feeds. Near the end, the video shows some ways in which RSSBus can be integrated into real world solutions. Obviously, RSSBus can ......

Posted On Tuesday, May 6, 2008 2:57 PM

ASP.Net Medium Trust and IPWorks/IBiz ASP.Net Editions
This great MSDN article: "How To: Use Medium Trust in ASP.NET 2.0" will probably answer nearly all of your questions about how to work in medium trust and how to customize medium trust permissions. Here are a few extracts from this document that serve as a sort of "quick start" to medium trust. By default, ASP.NET 2.0 Web applications and Web services run with full trust and applications can perform privileged operations and access resources subject only to operating system security and Windows access ......

Posted On Thursday, February 21, 2008 1:58 PM

My Rat Terrier Anna Says "Hi!"
This is Anna, my 8 year old Rat Terrier. She doesn't howl very much, so I thought this was really funny. I think my favorite part is right near the end, after the alarm stops, she just freezes. She's so frozen that it almost looks like the video is over, but its not ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 19, 2008 5:22 PM

Radiohead Meets "Family Guy"
My friend James loves Radiohead, and he introduced me to their music. I like it because its really chill and relaxing. But when I told him that one of the songs from their latest "In Rainbows" album (particularly the songs "Reckoner" and "Nude") reminded me of the old guy from Family Guy, James said, "I'm gonna be angry with you if that image sticks". you go James: ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 13, 2008 5:56 PM

FTP error 425, "Can't open data connection."
One of the most common questions I get about FTP has to do with error 425, "Can't open data connection." This is indeed a protocol level error that is defined in the RFC. Its meaning is obvious: the data connection (for a directory listing, upload, or download) was unable to be established. First - the most common solution: change the active/passive mode settings. But that might not work, and if it does its only a band-aid covering up the real problem. As I've mentioned in the past, one of the most ......

Posted On Thursday, January 24, 2008 4:11 PM

Step Up Your E-Commerce Transactions: Get Better Rates and Prevent Fraud
Online merchants - by taking advantage of available cardholder authentication services on your e-commerce transactions, you can get improved rates, prevent fraud, and even get charge-back protection so that if a fraud related charge-back does occur - you may not be financially responsible*. The cardholder authentication services I'm talking about? Verified By Visa, MasterCard SecureCode, and JCB J/Secure. All of these services are built on Visa's 3-D Secure protocol. For more in formation about how ......

Posted On Tuesday, January 15, 2008 3:21 PM

NewsGator client apps are now free
Yesterday, NewsGator announced that it is making all if its RSS reader applications free. That includes FeedDemon (which I love and have been using for years), NetNewsWire, NewsGator Go, NewsGator Online, and NewsGator Inbox. Individual downloads ......

Posted On Wednesday, January 9, 2008 2:12 PM

IP*Works! SSL v8 and IP*Works! SSH v8 released!
Following the release of IP*Works! v8 last October, /n software announced to release of IP*Works SSL v8 and IP*Works SSH v8 (.Net and Java Editions) just before Christmas! Keep up with other /n software releases by following the official RSS feed. Technorati Tags: IPWorks, SSL, SSH ......

Posted On Friday, January 4, 2008 10:27 AM

IMAP ACL Manager
Download Here Email me IMAP ACL Manager V2 Features Connect to IMAP servers and manage access control for any folder. Choose between lookup, read, keep, write, insert, post, create, delete, and administer rights. Add and remove rights for any user. Server port is now configurable. Support for SSL/TLS implicit and explicit connections. Support for classic User/Password authentication, as well as CRAM-MD5 and NTLM. IMAP communication log available for viewing. Requirements Windows 2000, XP, or later. ......

Posted On Monday, December 31, 2007 11:24 AM

Generate an RSS feed of Outlook Calendar Entries
Recently I was asked how one could get an RSS feed of appointments from their Outlook Calendar. Having posted previously about Google Calendar RSSBus feeds before, I thought this would be a good topic for a blog post. There is an OutlookOps connector for RSSBus, and one of the operations it contains is for listing appointments, which is useful in the free Desktop version of RSSBus. I can include a call to this operation, along with a call to the feedSearch operation, to create a sorted feed of Outlook ......

Posted On Friday, December 14, 2007 5:20 PM

Catch GDException

This is an email I just got (click to enlarge):


Don't you hate those instances of GDException?

Posted On Friday, October 19, 2007 12:20 PM

Tag Unions
Jon Udell is asking for a service to deliver a feed containing the union of tagged items from various services. I've been doing this for a while (though not for astronomy) using RSSBus. Here's my script: <rsb:set attr="feed#1" value=" /><rsb:set attr="feed#2" value="http://feeds.technor... /><rsb:set attr="feed#3" value=" /><rsb:set ......

Posted On Thursday, October 11, 2007 3:25 PM

RSSBus and Atom
Sam Ruby pointed out some of the changes that would be required for Feed Validator to support the new RSS Profile. The RSS Profile is the result of checking popular feed reader capabilities in order to put together a "best practices" document for feed publishers. I haven't gotten to read through the entire profile yet, but here are some interesting things I noticed while reading through Sam's validator changes: Encoding - the profile says to use hexadecimal entity encoding (ie, &#x26; instead ......

Posted On Thursday, October 11, 2007 2:27 PM

Rock on! IPWorks v8 Released!
Wow, I can have a V8! Thanks to the hard work of some very talented developers, who I saw working late hours coding and testing, the next version of IPWorks is here! Yep, /n software announced today the release of IP*Works! V8 .Net and Java Editions. I got to work a lot with IPWorks v8 during its beta period, and my favorite thing about this version update is the new custom types and collections. I used the new Atom and Rest components, which are useful and easy to use. Other new features that I ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 3, 2007 5:25 PM

IJabber Instant Messaging Client
Download Here Email me IJabber The IJabber XMPP IM Client, built with IP*Works! Features SSL Support (implicit or explicit SSL connections). Works with Google Talk, Wildfire/Openfire, eJabberd, etc. Multi-User Conferencing. Source code provided (requires license of IPWorks and IPWorks SSL in order to recompile). Requirements Windows 2000, XP, or later. Microsoft .Net Framework v1.1. Origin This project was started as a simple demo for the IPWorks XMPP component. Over the years it has morphed to provide ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 11, 2007 4:45 PM

NetCmdlets Cheat Sheet - again

Of course the day after I posted the NetCmdlets Cheat Sheet for PowerShell and then went on Vacation to the Outer Banks, the website where the cheat sheet was hosted went down.  Doh!  Its back up now!

Posted On Monday, September 10, 2007 5:41 PM

Cry Laughing

A friend of mine recently reminded me of the Inexperienced Chili Taster story.  He told me that if wife read it, and loved it.  I told him that I literally cried the first time I read it.  So did she, he said.

Posted On Friday, August 31, 2007 8:23 PM

How to Retrieve Remote MAC Address Programmatically
The question often comes up, how do you find out the MAC address of a remote machine, given its IP address? There are a few ways to do it, but here are two: The first way is to use SNMP. Use whatever SNMP library you like, or create your own. Here are the steps you'll need to take, as well as an example showing how to implement these steps using IP*Works! or IPWorks Secure SNMP. Get the number of interfaces on the device (ifEntryNum - For each interface, get the MAC address (ifPhysAddress ......

Posted On Monday, August 20, 2007 5:26 PM

Synching My Blog with Twitter
Continuing on with RSSBus scripts showing how to pipe Google Calendar to Twitter and Flickr to Twitter, here's my last Twitter RSBScript. Here's a script to pipe any existing RSS feed to Twitter. I wanted to sync my blog with my twitter, so now everytime I post a new blog entry, it will be added to my Twitter status. Here's the url: blog_url=http%3A%2F%2Ffeeds... &twitter_password=mypas... &twitter_user=mytwitter... ......

Posted On Monday, August 13, 2007 3:19 PM

TwitterMinder - Google Calendar to Twitter
UPDATE: For full TwitterMinder documentation, see this TwitterMinder article. In my last two posts I mentioned my recent introduction to Twitter (after having watched so many people blab about it for the past few months). So today I went ahead and published my Google Calendar to Twitter RSBScript, and gave it the name TwitterMinder: TwitterMinder will check your Google Calendar for events that are occuring in the next hour, and if it finds any, they will be automatically submitted to your Twitter ......

Posted On Thursday, August 9, 2007 12:38 PM

Google Calendar to Twitter
A few months ago, Charlie pointed out how it might be useful to have a script that would automatically post Google Calendar events on Twitter. Then he found someone that had already done it. Well, at the time I filed a note to do this with RSSBus - but then I got busy and never got to it - until today! :) Let me say that I did the RSSBus script first, and then I looked at how the other guy did it (he used a 200 line php script + Yahoo Pipes). Here's my roughly 20 line RSB script (using the RSSBus ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 8, 2007 4:26 PM

Winsock Error 10054
Winsock error 10054 is "Connection reset by peer", or "An existing connection was forcibly closed by the remote host". The error means exactly what it says - the remote host closed the connection unexpectedly. This happens when a connection is aborted, and there is no tcp disconnection handshake (fin, fin ack, ack) , but instead a rst (reset) flag is sent. A reset flag aborts the connection, and can be sent when: - The device is suddenly stopped, rebooted, or loses its network connection. - The device ......

Posted On Tuesday, August 7, 2007 12:18 PM

LDAP - Change Group Membership
In my previous posts about LDAP group membership, I've talked about how to get a list of groups, how to search for a particular groups members, and how to search for what groups a particular user belongs to. Up next: how to change group membership. To add or remove a user from a group, you need to modify the "member" attribute of the group itself. To do this we'll use the set-ldap cmdlet of NetCmdlets. Add a user to a group: To add a user to a group, set the DN parameter of set-ldap to the DN of ......

Posted On Monday, August 6, 2007 10:22 AM

LDAP - Search for What Groups a Particular User Belongs to
In the last LDAP series post, I mentioned how to search for the members of a group. Now the opposite, here's how to search for what groups a particular user is a part of: To do this search, all I do is form a search filter that is searching for all groups that has a particular member in it. So really this is a slight alteration of the search for all groups. PS C:\> get-ldap -server testboy -cred $mycred -dn dc=JUNGLE -searchscope wholesubtree -search "(&(member=CN=Lance Robinson,CN=Users,DC=JUNGLE... ......

Posted On Friday, August 3, 2007 12:51 PM

EDI AS2 Adapter for BizTalk Tutorial
Spencer Brown published a tutorial, "AS2 Adapter for Microsoft BizTalk" that walks through installing the /n software BizTalk Adapters and configuring send and receive ports for the included AS2 adapter. Technorati Tags: EDI, AS2, BizTalk Share this post : digg it ......

Posted On Thursday, August 2, 2007 5:12 PM

LDAP - Search for Group Members
More with the ldap cmdlets in NetCmdlets, here's how to list the members of a particular group. I used the get-ldap command shown in the last post to get a list of all my admin groups, and save it in a $groups collection: PS C:\> $groups = get-ldap -server myserver -cred $mycred -dn dc=JUNGLE -searchscope wholesubtree -search "(&(objectclass=group)(... PS C:\> $groups Host DN ---- -- testboy CN=Administrators,CN=Builti... testboy CN=Schema Admins,CN=Users,DC=JUNGLE testboy ......

Posted On Thursday, August 2, 2007 9:31 AM

/n software announces new IPWorks betas
Here they are, new v8 beta's of various IPWorks products! Share this post : Technorati Tags: IPWorks, nsoftware ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 24, 2007 9:44 AM

Shipping APIs - FedEx

an introduction to adding FedEx shipping to your desktop and web applications using the IBiz FedEx Integrator

Posted On Wednesday, July 18, 2007 1:49 PM

Shipping APIs - USPS and FedEx

How to to automate and manage shipping through USPS and FedEx.

Posted On Wednesday, June 27, 2007 12:45 PM

"The operation has timed out" error on Vista x64
For a long time now I've never been able to use several applications, including Windows Live Writer (which is hugely improved over its initial beta release, btw), FeedGhost, FireFox (after it updated itself one day), and even the new beta of Safari for Windows. I always got the error "The operation has timed out" from these applications. I was never able to reproduce it myself in C#, nor did any other network related appliations or the IPWorks components that I work with so often produce the problem. ......

Posted On Friday, June 15, 2007 6:33 PM

RSS data feeds - RSS is not just for blogs
Randy Charles Morin doesn't know why anyone would want to use RSS to transmit OFX data. I find his confusion odd: ... why do you need RSS as an envelop for financial data in the first place. We have OFX, which predates RSS and works just fine. RSS can't be expected to do everything. Not that it can't. You can also use RSS as an envelope for OFX, but why not just use OFX? I don't expect my dishwasher to do the laundry, even if it can. RSS can be expected to do what it is best at - syndicating data ......

Posted On Thursday, June 14, 2007 12:52 PM

Secure, Personal RSS Feeds
I was reading an old post on Scott Hanselman's blog about accessing private feeds via RSS. The discussion turned toward comparing RSS reader requests to OFX requests that applications like Microsoft Money make to banks. A comment from "Jordan": No CTO wants to have his face on the cover of the Wall Street Journal because his site provided an RSS feed to Bloglines and Bloglines has a security breach that exposes all that information. I have several private RSS feeds that I would not trust a third ......

Posted On Thursday, June 14, 2007 12:32 PM

Impressions from TechEd 2007
Dale Churchward is impressed by NetCmdlets, which he found after David Aiken posted about the NetCmdlets stickers being given away at TechEd. Harry Pierson liked the PowerShell skinned XBox that /n software had at the NetCmdlets booth. Did you get your PowerShell sticker yet and enter the drawing for the XBox? If not, do it now! Jeffrey Snover keeps on doing "snoopy dances" about PowerShell. Who can blame him ......

Posted On Friday, June 8, 2007 3:44 PM

My kinda tunes
The 9513 has a story on Wendy Newcomer (her myspace music page), who I was lucky enough to hear in Greensboro at the Blind Tiger last weekend. Speaking of great music: O.A.R. is coming to Raleigh July 22nd. John Prine will be in Cary with Patty Griffin August 17th. I already have tickets to this one. Honestly I'm more excited about Patty, but John is great too! Austin City Limits Music Festival happens in September! Anybody want to join me there ......

Posted On Friday, May 25, 2007 10:33 PM

RSSBus as a mashup tool
Raymond Yee wants to know how well RSSBus works as a mashup tool. While its true that RSSBus offers a lot of connectors that make it easy to mashup data coming from sources like Flickr, Amazon, and pre-existing RSS feeds - its also important to know that RSSBus is not only valuable as a mashup creation tool. One of its biggest uses is on the flip side of the coin - helping sources expose data in the first place. Without companies like Flickr and Amazon exposing their data in structured formats like ......

Posted On Friday, May 25, 2007 10:00 AM

Adding support for credit card/paypal to your website/application
In the latest installment of MSDN Magazine "Toolbox", Scott Mitchell wrote a few paragraphs about how a developer can add to his applications/websites the ability to accept online credit card payments. The process does seem complex and a bit intimidating at first, but with the right tools it can be pretty easy. Scott points his readers to Authorize.Net (Internet payment gateway through which one can process the charges), and also mentions the availability of some third-party shopping cart products ......

Posted On Friday, May 11, 2007 12:55 PM

Flickr Contacts' Favorites - Simplified
Here's an example of creating a feed of your Flickr contacts' favorite photos using RSSBus, which makes complex feed parsing/manipulation tasks easy. In my next post after this one I'll talk about how you can use RSSBus caching so that you can control which items are returned in the actual feed (for those with large numbers of contacts or favorited photos). For example, if this feed results in 400 photos for you, successive requests for the feed will not continue to return 400 photos - but only the ......

Posted On Friday, May 11, 2007 12:08 PM

IT Conversations: Really Simple Services
In the latest installation of Jon Udell's "Interviews With Innovators" series at IT Conversations, Jon speaks with Gent Hito, the CEO of /n software about RSSBus. A couple of highlights I picked out: The RSS in RSSBus: Many people have asked us, "why RSS"? Our reply is that the format doesn't matter. Whether it be RSS, Atom, JSON, or an Excel spreadsheet - its about the data - just name value pairs. The RSS in RSSBus is "Really Simple Services". By default these really simple services happen to be ......

Posted On Monday, May 7, 2007 1:10 PM

Tip: How to Deploy RSSBus Feeds on Shared Hosting Servers
There are two ways to deploye feeds created with RSSBus to shared hosting web servers, both of which I will describe below. If you need more details on either of these please do not hesitate to contact me. To publish a live, dynamic feed:- In order to do this you'll need to make sure the file extensions .rsb and .rst are mapped to ASP.NET. If not, just ask your hosting company and they should be able to do this for you very quickly without any fuss.- Copy the .rsb and/or .rst file(s) to your host. ......

Posted On Friday, April 20, 2007 12:45 PM

RSSBus new beta - rsb:pipe
A minor beta update has been announced on the RSSBus blog (read about it here). Last summer I talked about how RSSBus gives you the ability to pipe together feeds and items from feeds. One of the really cool features of this new beta update is a new RSSBus script keyword: <rsb:pipe>. This new keyword simplifies the piping of feeds. I no longer have to use nested <rsb:call>'s, instead I can just put a series of calls inside the pipe and they are automatically connected and what comes out ......

Posted On Friday, March 23, 2007 4:11 PM

PowerShell cmdlet for SNMP (part 2: sysUpTime)
Brandon updated his get-uptime script to output a custom object. Brandon's script works with the LastBootUpTime property returned from WMI Win32_OperatingSytem. I already talked briefly about the get-snmp, set-snmp, get-trap, and send-trap cmdlets that are included in NetCmdlets. Here's how you can use get-snmp to get the sysUpTime from any SNMP-enabled device. Note: sysUpTime is defined as the time since the last re-initialization (ie, boot) of the device, in 100ths of a second. get-snmp -agent ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 27, 2007 3:26 PM

Using PSCredentials without a prompt
You cannot use get-credential without some type of prompt (although you can do it without the pop-up dialog), however you can save your securestring password to a file, reload it for later, and manually create a credential without a prompt. Of course the problem with this is that your password will be exposed to anyone with access to the file, so do this at your own risk. First, choose your password and write it to a file: PS C:\> read-host -assecurestring | convertfrom-securestring | out-file ......

Posted On Friday, February 16, 2007 1:21 PM

RSS emitting API
Jeremy Zawodny wants to see RSS-emitting APIs for every widget out there. Ding! That's how my AmzWish widget (you can see an example on my blog or on the AmzWish generator page) was created: simply making calls to AmazonOps exposed by RSSBus (which outputs RSS feeds). Basically AmzWish is just some html mixed in with an RSS feed. You can make your own or view the source here. The same thing could easily be done for Yahoo! Shopping - maybe I should put together some operations for the RSSBus yahooOps ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 13, 2007 2:02 PM

Slicing and Dicing web data
Yesterday Jon Udell wrote about slicing and dicing, and then rewiring the web. Reusing websites as data sources is great - and Yahoo Pipes provides several such "sources" in Yahoo Search, Yahoo Local, Flickr, Google Base, and the basic URL Fetch. All these are great and provide interconnectivity and the ability to slice and dice certain parts of the web. But why stop there? The beauty of this annotating, slicing, and dicing, is in the reusability of this data - not just for reading blogs - but for ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 13, 2007 11:55 AM

PowerShell remote exec and secure shell
This is not a post about .Net remoting. And its not a post about accessing PowerShell through ssh. Here I'm talking about sending remote executions through rexec, rshell, and secure shell connections. Rexec and Rshell (rsh.exe) already exist as command line applications, but they do not exists in the PowerShell world (that is, they do not return objects). NetCmdlets send-rexec and send-rshell cmdlets take care of this problem. Each remote execution returns a collection of objects that contain the ......

Posted On Wednesday, January 24, 2007 1:46 PM

PowerShell console buffer to html
Adrian at soapyfrog posted a function recently for grabbing the contents of the PowerShell console buffer and pushing them out as html. I saved it and finally got around to using it today. Very useful, added to my profile. Thanks Adrian! PS C:\> (get-nntp -server -newsgroup -list 5) | sort From Number : 7804 Subject : Re: Quirk From : "/\\/\\o\\/\\/ [MVP]" Date : Tue, 23 Jan 2007 19:53:16 +0100 Size : 2610 References : <9eo6r256msnc3cvm527hm62... ......

Posted On Tuesday, January 23, 2007 2:19 PM

iPhone: get real
Several people have made comments to me about the newly announced Apple iPhone because they know how I felt about the iPod when it first came out ( see my post, "Convert Your Pocket PC to an IPod"). I must say, it looks really nice. The tech specs are impressive. But can we all please get real for a second here? Really, its about damn time the iPhone happened. Really, this is not a new idea. One thing about the iPhone announcement that annoyed me is the way Steve Jobs and Apple make it seem like ......

Posted On Wednesday, January 10, 2007 6:01 PM

Using AmzWish on
Visit the AmzWish home. Find your Amazon Wishlist Id, and paste it in the "My Wishlist Id" textbox on the AmzWish home page. Click the Generate HTML button and copy the selected code. Login to your GeeksWithBlogs admin page, and go to Options->Configure. Paste the html into the "Static News/Announcement" box. Secret tips for geeks with blogs and Amazon Associates accounts: In the generated HTML, you'll find a link to By default, it contains ......

Posted On Tuesday, January 9, 2007 3:00 PM

AmzWish is Amazon's ECS App of the Week
For the last few weeks, AmzWish (digg it), my little widget that displays your Amazon wishlist and lets people buy things for you while letting you make money from their purchases at the same time, has been one of the featured widgets at Widgetbox. Now, AmzWish is Amazon's ECS App of the week! Thanks to Amazon ECS and RSSBus, AmzWish was created in just a few minutes by doing nothing by combining a few RSSBus calls to RSSBus' AmazonOps with simple HTML. Technorati : amazon, amazon ecs, amzwish, ecs, ......

Posted On Monday, January 8, 2007 12:31 PM

Change Active Directory password with NetCmdlets
Here's how you can change your active directory (or other ldap server) password with the set-ldap cmdlet in /n software NetCmdlets. Also, recently I also showed how to this using the IP*Works! SSL LdapS dev component. PS C:\> set-ldap -server myserver -binddn Domain\Administrator -password admin -dn "cn=BillyBob,ou=Employees,d... -newpassword mynewpassword -ssl implicit Update: the -password parameter is now a secure string. There is also a -credential parameter. So the cmd to change the ......

Posted On Wednesday, December 27, 2006 1:33 PM

NetCmdlets Part 3: PowerShell and Active Directory using /n software's LDAP cmdlet
MOW's "PowerShelled" blog is another awesome PowerShell resource. Of particular interest to me was MOWs series on PowerShell and Active Directory. He used the .Net System.DirectoryServices classes to do all the work. here is how you can use /n software's LDAP cmdlet to manage directory servers like AD. The LDAP cmdlet supports plain connections as well as secure SSL connections. The LDAP cmdlet will work with any directory server, including AD, ADAM, OpenLDAP, Novell, etc. The LDAP cmdlet uses its ......

Posted On Wednesday, December 27, 2006 1:25 PM

How to change your active directory password
Last year I posted the rules about how to remotely change your LDAP password. Its not very obvious because of the fact that the procedure depends on what server you're using (Active Directory, OpenLDAP, Novell, etc), and even then how your server is configured. Here is how you would change your password using the LDAPS component of IP*Works!! SSL (note, an SSL connection is required in order to change your password remotely if you are an Active Directory user. Otherwise you can do this with the LDAP ......

Posted On Tuesday, November 28, 2006 3:19 PM
Featured on Programmable Web a couple weeks ago was an API from the Institude On Money in State Politics that allows you to track campaign contributions for candidates. It is pretty neat, and should come in quite handily in 2008. Here is their a view of their data for North Carolina. A while back I posted about Project Vote Smart, and the news that they are planning to make an API available "well before the 2008 elections". With the massive amount of information available at Project Vote Smart, this ......

Posted On Thursday, November 9, 2006 4:23 PM

RSSBus SLE feed example: stock quotes
As it turns out, a lot of the operations provided by RSSBus work great as lists using Microsoft's Simple List Extensions (see previous post if you aren't familiar with SLE). As an example, consider the yahooStockQuotes operation. If you only wanted to be able to track the latest quote of your favorite stock(s), a list would work perfectly. No need to store historical items about previous quotes in your feed reader. If your reader is smart enough to analyze historical data and give you charts and ......

Posted On Thursday, November 2, 2006 2:40 PM

RSSBus and Simple List Extensions
One of the changes in beta 3 of RSSBus is that by default all feeds produced use Microsoft's Simple List Extensions. For anyone who's not familiar with SLE, the cool thing about it is that it can tell the feed reader to treat an RSS feed as a LIST rather than a regular feed. One effect of this in your feed reader is that when you subscribe to a LIST, the reader knows that it shouldn't accumulate all of the items in the RSS feed forever. Instead, it will only maintain whatever is provided in the current ......

Posted On Thursday, November 2, 2006 2:22 PM

RSSBus Beta 3 Available
The new beta 3 of RSSBus was announced last week: "We have spent the past couple of months hardening the RSSBus Engine and preparing it for production. You will notice significant performance improvements, better error handling, better integration with ASP.NET, and a better security infrastructure." Read the full announcement. Technorati : feeds, rss, rssbus ......

Posted On Thursday, November 2, 2006 12:09 PM

AmzWish widget parameters
The Amazon Wishlist widget that I created last week is now at Widgetbox, a widget directory. Their site is quite nice. It allows users to browse widgets and use them in their webpages. For developers, Widgetbox provides a nice interface for submitting your own widget. When I put AmzWish on Widgetbox I exposed some querystring parameters for it: wishlistid - An Amazon assigned Id for a particular wishlist to use (required). maxitems - The number of items to display in the widget (optional, defaults ......

Posted On Friday, October 6, 2006 12:38 PM

Generating KML with RSSBus
RSSBus is good for more than just generating RSS feeds or helping you easily create an API for your data or services. Its also useful in easily outputting other formats as well, such as KML (an XML format for Google Earth). For example, recently Tim posted an example of using XmlTextWriter to generate KML. For most of ius, its not rocket science, but compare his code and the ease of writing it with how it can be done with RSSBus. With RSSBus you can just literally write the XML and plug-in the values ......

Posted On Monday, October 2, 2006 9:23 AM

Top 10 most useful extensions to use in syndication feeds
In August, the Google Reader Blog posted a list of the most commonly used extensions in feeds. Here is my list of the top 10 most useful extensions for syndication: 10. iTunes This one really shouldn't even be on this list, but I include it because it did make a big splash when it was released. It also generated a lot of frustration and anger amoung podcast producers. The iTunes namespace extension was created to allow podcast feed producers to integrate their feeds with Apple's iTunes music player. ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 26, 2006 3:26 PM

Feeds are APIs
Nick Bradbury, in his post Feed My Attention, says he views feeds as an "alert system" and that we should demand more feeds from the services we use. Nick is trying to make the point that feeds are for more than just blog reading, but he fails to make this point fully because he is restricting his ideas to typical feed reading applications like his own FeedDemon. Not only are feeds for more than just blog reading, but they're for more than just the simple "retrieve and display" feed readers of today ......

Posted On Monday, September 25, 2006 9:10 AM

Data feeds: Beyond blogging
Niall Kennedy wants to talk about data that can be delivered over syndication standards like RSS and Atom. His point is that feeds are not just for blogs. Niall points out a few examples of "data feeds" offered by Gmail, Netflix, and the US Geological Survey. I use the Netflix New Releases feed (although they offer many feeds, this is the only one I have subscribed to) in my own feedreader. The problem with the Netflix feeds is the same as the problem with other feeds that I've mentioned recently: ......

Posted On Monday, September 18, 2006 2:25 PM

Easy API creation
There is all kinda of data that I wish were made available through some API, such as the congressional voting data that I mentioned previously. There are lots of businesses and organizations that have data, but not necessarily the resources to create an API. This is another great use of RSSBus. You can create RSSBus scripts that can take advantage of things like SqlOps and OracleOps, ExcelOps, CcOps, QbOps, FileOps, S3Ops, etc. Through these scripts you can expose an API for your data that is stored ......

Posted On Wednesday, September 13, 2006 7:18 AM

VoteSmart API
In a recent post, I commented how it would be awesome if there was an API for the United States Congress. I spoke to Lisa Coligan, National Director at Project Vote Smart, and asked her if they had any plans for an open API. Somewhat surprisingly, her answer was yes! Lisa says that does "not currently have API but we're planning to in the future. We won't have it in time for 2006 elections but we hope to have it up and in place well before the 2008 elections." Now that would be really ......

Posted On Friday, September 8, 2006 4:10 PM

8 mashup creation tools
Dion Hinchcliffe, who blogs about "Enterprise Web 2.0", described a set of 8 interesting and promising mashup tools. Included amoung them is RSSBus. Maybe the US Senate and House will take advantage of one of these (yeah, right, like they would do something for the people). Technorati : atom, mashup, rss, rssbus ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 5, 2006 7:28 AM

What is the deal with Bloglines?
Bloglines is arguably one of the best feed aggregators available. Good reputation. Upcoming new beta (where's my invite?). Excellent speed and reliability. But many times do I have to comment on how odd it is that such an application has no RSS feed? So I noticed today that they DO have an RSS feed now - in fact they have several. Even better - they've started using the link tag in their webpages to tell browsers about their feeds. Woohoo! Somebody gets an A in catch-up-to-the-rest-of-us ......

Posted On Friday, September 1, 2006 12:43 PM

Why should apps take advantage of syndication extensions?
I made some comments about how Feed Crier should understand syndication extensions. In that post, Adam Kalsey (doesn't he kinda look like a younger version of John Travolta in that photo on his blog?) was kind enough to comment: > Maybe Adam Kalsey will make Feed Crier understand>some of the common syndication extensionsPerhaps, but I'm not convinced of their value to Feed Crier. Right now I'm just >trying to make it the best way to get instant update notifications. As I watch how it's used, ......

Posted On Friday, August 25, 2006 12:19 PM

Technorati struggling to keep up with the new A list.
The good news is, I'm no longer the 1,420,445th ranked blog at Technorati. Of course, the bad news is, Technorati obviously did not get the memo. But...since I joined the A-list (contribute to the cause: link to me, subscribe to me), and Technorati has discovered that I haven't actually been missing for the last 6 months, my Technorati ranking has moved up from 1,420,445 to 237,441. Woohoo! Party over here! James, I'll join you in that beer. Of course, in reality this ranking means nothing. Just ......

Posted On Friday, August 25, 2006 9:02 AM RSSBus Ops
As I've mentioned a couple times in the past, already provides a useful set of RSS feeds. On top of this, they also have a great REST API. Here's a list of "cool third-party applications" that use the api. Their RSS feeds are useful only if I know the metro code. For Raleigh, NC it is 99. So the full feed URL is It would be nice if I could easily piece together this URL without knowing anything other than my state and city, ie: ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 23, 2006 3:39 PM

Great music at Lincoln Theatre this weekend
I just heard about an awesome show this weekend, Saturday August 26, at Lincoln Theatre in Raleigh. Far Too Jones is doing a reunion show. Glorydrive is opening for them. Two great bands. Far Too Jones was one of my favorites back in the mid-late nineties, they were local but very well known around the whole southeast. I remember that time they played at Alive After 5 and I got totally...I mean...uh...I had a blast. :) Technorati : music, north carolina, raleigh ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 23, 2006 8:47 AM

Where are Tim, Jeff, John, and Joseph?
Jeff, John, Joseph, and Tim are going to South Carolina Code Camp 2.0. No word on whether Waldo is going or not. These guys want to do something nerdy along the way. Great idea, and I'm always up for nerdy games. :) We can easily create one RSS feed that shows their real-time location (using Where's Tim), the weather they are experiencing (yahoo weather), local events happening in the area that day (, and area restaurants in case they are hungry (yahooLocal). I don't know anything about ......

Posted On Tuesday, August 22, 2006 12:33 PM

Tim called me a bad word
Tim thinks I might be an RSSBus whore. :) It would have been much better if Time (as in the magazine) called me a whore though, then I would get a lot more exposure. Of course, I don't really need it since I'm on the A-list now. If you haven't checked out Where's Tim, you should. Its really cool and you can get real time track your whereabouts. Truth is, I don't care what you call me, as long as you call me. Wait...that really does make more a whore doesn't it? Oopsey. But no, whore is not the right ......

Posted On Monday, August 21, 2006 1:16 PM

New service: receive feed alerts in your IM client
I've seen several people (Michael Arrington, Jeff Barr's links, Postbubble) talking about Feed Crier, a new service that lets you receive alerts in your IM client for when your favorite RSS feeds (craigslist, news, blogs) are updated. I'm surprised by this, because this is not some new mind blowing technology. But ok. I think this service is fine and dandy. Do I see someone using it to be alerted to Sam Ruby's latest Atom comments? Nope. No offense, Sam - I wouldn't use this to subscribe to alerts ......

Posted On Monday, August 21, 2006 12:06 PM

News feeds vs Data feeds (and Yahoo)
Some feeds have no use, at least for the majority of us, outside of a regular feed reader like Bloglines or FeedDemon. I call these "news feeds" whether they are feeds of world news from or Shelley Powers' personal blog postings. Perhaps "news feeds" is not the best name and I should change this habit. Now that I'm an a-lister I should be more precise, maybe. ;) I don't like to just use the word "feeds" to describe them all, because I think feeds that have more granular data in them need ......

Posted On Monday, August 21, 2006 10:29 AM

Joining the A-list of bloggers
Since the A-list is open, I'm just going to go ahead and join. Please be sure to pass the word along and link to me. Then you may as well go ahead and subscribe to me so that you won't miss any of my gems. For those who say an A-list doesn't exist, ok fine, I will start it right now. :) Hah. Currently, Technorati says that my blog is ranked 1,420,445 out of 51,400,000. Thats pretty funny, especially since I don't believe that there are really 51,400,000 blogs (although there might be nearly that ......

Posted On Friday, August 18, 2006 3:29 PM

Yahoo feeds could be more useful
Hey Jeremy Zawodny, since you are working so hard to improve the Yahoo! Developer Network, how about making feeds that are useful to software developers? Right now, if you look at the big list of Yahoo! RSS feeds, you've got a lot of things that are interesting for me to subscribe to in my feed reader. For example, I can subscribe to someone's delicious links, or flickr photos, or the Yahoo! Finance feed for a particular company. All great for me to read when I have time. So whats my problem? My ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 16, 2006 8:04 AM

Output any feed as JSON
In my last post, I explained how RSSBus can be instructed to output JSON instead of RSS items. This means that RSSBus can be used to output ANY feeds items in JSON, simply by creating a 3 line RSSBus Script that calls the target feed. As an example, here's how I can get the latest technology topics in JSON: 1. Create a new RSSBus Script that looks like so: <rsb:call op=" <rsb:push /> <rsb:call> 2. Hit the url http://localhost:1110/digg.... ......

Posted On Friday, August 11, 2006 10:32 AM

WS-* - aka WS-deathstar
I just saw this picture in David Johnson's slides from his Triangle .Net Users Group presentation last night:

(original source is David Heinemeier Hansson).

Posted On Thursday, August 10, 2006 7:39 AM

A little fun for my boring blog
My friend Holly says that my blog is boring lately. So here's a little Google Maps/Flight sim mashup that I saw somewhere today. This is entertaining for at least 45 seconds, but not much more than that. Sorry I guess thats the best I can do. Of course you could just do the same thing in Google Maps or Google Earth or MSN Virtual Earth - just without the little plane and the potential explosions. Here's a funny Flickr post from somebody in the Raleigh Flickr Group. Apparently there are more goat-eating ......

Posted On Monday, August 7, 2006 2:08 PM

How to get your own Zune NOW
Here's a project for those of you who dislike functionality love iPods want a Zune, but are cursed with PocketPC ownership. You can convert your Pocket PC into an iPod a Zune in just a few simple steps. I am going to walk you through it. Introduction: Convenience, mobility, and function. Nice, but unnecessary. You know, there are times when you just don't need bluetooth. There are times when you don't need wifi. There are times when you don't need a phone. After all, these features are really just ......

Posted On Monday, July 24, 2006 7:25 AM

There are no bloggers at
Just an observation.  But I do like geekswithblogs.

Posted On Wednesday, July 19, 2006 1:26 PM

Buzzword soup: web 2.0, hype, and other random thoughts
Today I pieced together some random thoughts on web 2.0. Here they are, sloppily weaved together. Calcanis "gets it". His blog post about paying digg diggers was digged, flickr'd,'d, and even TechCrunch'd (hey, even bad publicity is still good publicity). Before its all over with, this will probably be IT Conversation'd (or should I say GigaVoxed? Conversation Networked? I'm not sure which it is these days) by Doug Kaye and PodTech'd by Robert Scoble (or John Furrier) too. Bloggers, vloggers, ......

Posted On Wednesday, July 19, 2006 12:15 PM

The Internet is bigger in Texas


Maybe Ted Stevens could speed up the Internet in Alaska if he offloaded some of the clogged Internet tubes and piggy-backed the data on the oil pipelines.

Perhaps there is room for Ted's Internets in Texas.  I hear everything's bigger in Texas, maybe even the Internet tubes.

Posted On Wednesday, July 19, 2006 7:52 AM

"Enterprise mashup maker"
Sam Ruby points to this demonstration of "situational mashups" using IBM's DB2 v9. DB2 v9, aka "Viper", supports XPath and XQuery, and even Atom syndication. Interesting to watch, because the demonstration is done in QEDWiki, which the speaker calls an "enterprise mashup maker". This is similar to RSSBus, in that you can easily wire together feeds and data to create customized views of data. I like the modularity of RSSBus, in that there is no end to the potential number of operations available to ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 18, 2006 12:43 PM

RSS pubDates in the future
Dave Winer points out why RSS dates in the future are possible. Does the pubDate always have to refer to the moment that a particular item was added to the feed? Consider that the pubDate in an RSS feed could represent the time that such an item becomes important? Items in a feed don't have to be news stories or blog entries - consider a feed in which the items are television episodes that will be on television tonight. The pubDate might make more sense as the date and time that the show will air. ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 11, 2006 3:10 PM

Will Microsoft follow my step-by-step for converting Pocket PC to iPod?
Dave Winer pointed out this NY Times article, which clearly shows that Microsoft has stolen my plans to convert a Pocket PC to an iPod in 7 easy steps.Technorati tags: microsoft pocketpc ipod ......

Posted On Thursday, July 6, 2006 7:35 AM

Feeds with rich data
DeWitt Clinton of A9 has been talking about RSS vs Atom, and is recommending that developers use Atom. Robert Scoble responded by asking "where's the Atom publishing tool and aggregator that demonstrates Atom's superiority?" Dewitt is calling for these apps: "We should start embedding addresses, calendars, products, and contact information in our syndicated feeds. And we should start expecting our feed reader applications to notice this rich data and automatically open address books and maps and ......

Posted On Wednesday, July 5, 2006 11:28 AM

RSSBus Template to output Virtual Earth Maps
I've mentioned before how you can generate Google Earth KML using RSSBus. The current beta of RSSBus already comes with a yahooMaps operation that will generate an RSS feed that contains a Yahoo Map of a particular location. Virtual Earth, you say? The LoadMap function of Virtual Earth takes a latitude and longitude coordinate as input, so here is some RSSBus Template code that will call the RSSBus yahooGeocode operation and use its lat/long output to generate a Virtual Earth map. The first step ......

Posted On Wednesday, June 21, 2006 12:52 PM

Where's Tim's Lunch?
In my last post I showed how I can create an RSSBus template to take the Where's Tim RSS feed and output it as a Google Earth KML format. This time I'll create an RSSBus script to take Tim's most recent location and output an RSS feed of pizza restaurants that he might eat lunch at today. I'll do this by “pipelining“ together Tim's feed with another restaurant feed. What's the difference in an RSSBus script and an RSSBus template? Not much. A script outputs an RSS feed, and a template outputs any ......

Posted On Thursday, June 15, 2006 11:19 AM

Race For The Cure Results
This past Saturday was the Race For the Cure (5k). My goal was to finish in 26:30, but I did not quite meet it. Close, but no cigar. My time was 26:56, but I'm happy with that. I was in the recreational race, so I was not chip timed but did my own timing with a stopwatch. My friend Andi participated in the competitive race (chip-timed), and finished in 1052nd place. It sounds bad, but out of over 1700 people in that race and a finishing time of 27:17 - awesome! From what I heard that day, over 19 ......

Posted On Monday, June 12, 2006 6:37 AM

Google Spreadsheets API: Library and Demo
Ready for some feedback. Download the library and let me know what you think. There is a csharp winforms demo included that shows how to use the GSheet class that is contained in the dll. Contents of the zip: csharpDemo - Folder containing the csharp source code of the demo GoogleSpreadsheetsAPI.dll - Library containing the GSheet class. nsoftware.IPWorksSSL.dll - IP*Works! SSL library for communications code Update: Download it here, source included. Update 2: The library is no longer available. ......

Posted On Thursday, June 8, 2006 2:14 PM

Google Spreadsheets API
Lots of people are talking about Google Spreadsheets. Yesterday I wrote some c# code to enable me to access my Spreadsheets account from my .net applications: a Google Spreadsheets API. So far I can authenticate, list all my existing spreadsheets, create a new spreadsheet, edit individual cells, delete a spreadsheet, rename a spreadsheet, import from a local XLS file, and export to a local XLS or CSV file. I will post some code later today. properties: string Email string Password string CurrentSheetKey ......

Posted On Thursday, June 8, 2006 7:05 AM

New bloglines version in closed beta?

In the referrer logs of my recent post about Bloglines, I see that apparently there are improvements under way after all.  Anybody have access to  I want to see!

Technorati tags:  

Posted On Wednesday, June 7, 2006 7:19 PM

Secure email adapter for Biztalk
Jay Kinker outlines the simple steps to configure the SMTP adapter in Biztalk.  If you need security (SSL), consider the /n software Secure Email adapter which support secure SMTPS (as well as POPS and IMAPS for securely retrieving mails).

Posted On Thursday, May 25, 2006 7:22 AM

RSSBus: visualize the multi-search
Yesterday I talked about using RSSBus script to easily combine multiple feeds into one. The result of the script was a single RSS feed. RSSBus also has the ability to let me easily expose the data contained in this feed in other formats, such as plain text, HTML, ATOM, etc. We do this through RSBTemplates, which are nothing more than script (such as that in the post from yesterday) intermixed with non-script (like plain text, HTML, etc). As an example, I will build on yesterdays script. I'll start ......

Posted On Tuesday, May 16, 2006 1:54 PM

Subscribed to 8104 blogs?

That's just ridiculous. 

Dimitar Vesselinov is the most prolific subscriber at

According to Dimitar's blog, he tracks 8101 RSS feeds, 811 Orkut communities, 490 groups, 547 MySpace groups, 2605 bookmarks and many other sources.

Yeah.  Ok.

Posted On Thursday, May 11, 2006 8:54 AM

Jabber Chat Demo - upgraded to VS2005
Greg asked me to upgrade the VB.Net source project to Visual Studio 2005.  Here it is (source and binary).  Read more about the project here.

Posted On Wednesday, May 10, 2006 6:46 AM

Don't let congress sell your internet rights away

Save the Internet

Contact Your Rep

Posted On Wednesday, May 3, 2006 6:48 AM

The coolest web advertising ever
Visual Steel

Posted On Tuesday, March 28, 2006 9:14 AM

BizTalk SFTP Adapter: Server Host Key
A common question that we get about the SFTP Adapter is: “What do I put in the 'SSH Accept Server Host Key' property?“. If the person asking the question is new to the adapters, or SFTP in general, I recommend to them that they start out by using “ANY“ or “ALL“ for this property setting. This tells the SFTP adapter to accept any server host key. Of course, you don't want to just accept any server host key in production, so before you go to production you should ......

Posted On Thursday, February 16, 2006 1:31 PM

Three new "/n software Tips and Tutorials" items: SFTP Biztalk Adapter walkthrough, Commerce Starter Kit payment provider, Certificates
AnyGatewayPaymentProvider for the ASP.NET 2.0 Commerce Starter Kit - A Multi-Gateway payment provider for the ASP.NET 2.0 Starter Kit using IBiz E-Payment Integrator [more..] SFTP Adapters for Microsoft BizTalk - Introduction to the /n software SFTP Adapters for Microsoft BizTalk [more..] An Application Security Overview. Part I: A Certificate Introduction - An Overview of Digital Certificate Concepts using the CertMgr Component [more..] ......

Posted On Monday, February 6, 2006 9:40 AM

New self-extracting zip component
/n software has updated its .Net Zip toolkit with a new component: ZipSFX. The ZipSFX component can be used to easily create your own self extracting archives. Use of the component is straightforward and uncomplicated, in fact its possible to create your self extracting executable in only two lines of code! zipsfx1.SourceDirectory = somedirectorytozip; zipsfx1.CreateSFX(); Of course there are other properties of the component you can set to customize your archive, such as banner text, the title of ......

Posted On Tuesday, January 24, 2006 11:07 AM

Convert your Pocket PC into an iPod in seven easy steps

Here's a project for those of you who love iPods, but are cursed with PocketPC ownership. You can convert your Pocket PC into an iPod in just a few simple steps. I am going to walk you through it.

Posted On Tuesday, January 24, 2006 7:52 AM

Primetime Podcast Receiver
Download Here Email me Other Popular Posts 10 DIY SharePoint WebParts Guide to Free HDTV IMAP ACL Manager 100+ more ways to use RSS Custom SharePoint RSS Feeds FTP Error 425 FTPS Through NAT LDAP Password Changing Pocket PC to IPod USPS and FedEx APIs Primetime Podcast Receiver Features Automatically import subscriptions from OPML format. Integration with Windows Media Player and/or Apple iTunes Playlists. Manages your subscriptions, automatically updating feed locations if they change. Allows you ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 13, 2005 8:34 AM

Borland Developer Studio 2006
After being forced to install .Net 1.1 SP1 (ok), .Net Framework SDK v1.1 (fine), and even J# .Net 1.1 redistributable (no!), MSXML v4.0 SP2 (uh...)... I was finally able to begin installation of BDS2006. This includes support for Borland Delphi for .Net, Delphi for Win32, C# Builder, and a C++ Builder "preview". Also included are lots of extras, like components, an obfuscator, db tools, a UML designer, etc. Update: So far I'm very impressed. This seems to be much faster than BDS2005, although it ......

Posted On Monday, December 12, 2005 6:55 AM

IPWorks VS2005 Update
The VS2005 updates for the IP*Works! and IBiz component suites from /n software are now available! The changes include: VS2005 demos Separate ASP.Net Edition with new WebControl dll and .Net 2.0 web solutions VS2005 toolbox integration VS2005 dynamic help support ......

Posted On Friday, December 2, 2005 6:22 AM

WM5.0 Emulator Networking
Using networking in the device emulators in VS2005 is not as nice as it should be. The first time you try to use the network in the emulator you'll probably get this error: "Failed to open the VPC Network Driver. Verify that the driver is installed, or install the driver from the Web download location at Or if the first time you try to use the network is with the IP*Works! .Net CF Edition components, you'll get an even uglier error saying: "A socket ......

Posted On Friday, November 11, 2005 6:08 AM

DevConnections Dessert
Tonight was the keynote (Scott Guthrie) at DevConnections, followed by the dessert reception in the expo hall. Cakes of all types...mmmmm, yummy. Nothing like cake and beer together! When the expo hall doors opened a massive swarm of developers came marching towards the exhibition booths looking for stamps (to qualify for the Harley giveaway) and all the pamphlets, cd's, and toys they could hold in one hand while eating cake with the other. There were a lot of fellow North Carolinians there, and ......

Posted On Tuesday, November 8, 2005 12:50 AM

EDI AS2 Connector screencast
My co-worker James put together this great screencast (WMV or Flash) about the IP*Works! EDI AS2 Connector application. This is an eBusinessReady certified .net web app that makes it really easy to get setup and transact with your trading partner. Technorati tags: screencast EDI AS2 ......

Posted On Friday, October 28, 2005 11:35 AM

IPWorks LDAP auth tutorial - classic ASP version
This article on ASP Alliance explains how to use the IP*Works! .Net LDAP component in an ASP.Net web application. A lot of people have emailed me asking about how to do this in classic ASP. For those people, here is the same information told from the perspective of the classic ASP developer, using the Ldap component from IPWorks ASP Edition ......

Posted On Friday, October 28, 2005 10:41 AM

IPWorks LDAP auth tutorial - classic ASP version
This article on ASP Alliance explains how to use the IP*Works! .Net LDAP component in an ASP.Net web application. A lot of people have emailed me asking about how to do this in classic ASP. For those people, here is the same information told from the perspective of the classic ASP developer, using the Ldap component from IPWorks ASP Edition. Performing Web Authentication and Administration with LDAP Providing a login interface for a website, as well as an administrator interface for maintaining a ......

Posted On Friday, October 28, 2005 10:40 AM

Adding multi-user chat capability to my custom jabber client
Adding multi-user chat to my jabber app The XMPP component provides extensibility by providing the developer with the capability of sending custom commands as well as overseeing all incoming messages so that you can add custom handlers for them. For example, there is a jabber extension proposal to provide a means for multi-user chat capabilities. Multi-user chat for Jabber is defined in JEP-0045. To add chat capabilities to my own jabber client is fairly simple and straight-forward. First, I added ......

Posted On Thursday, October 27, 2005 2:07 PM

EDI AS2 Connector
/n software has made available in PRERELEASE form the IP*Works! EDI AS2 Connector. It is completely free for 1 trading partner. The software itself is a .Net application with an embedded web server, which allows you to configure trading partners to exchange EDI documents with over AS2. Technorati tag: EDITechnorati tag: AS2Update: EDI AS2 Connector screencast (WMV or Flash) ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 26, 2005 3:01 PM

MS WSYP: We Share Your Pain
A must watch video introduction to WSYP.

Posted On Monday, October 24, 2005 7:23 AM

This is great: Joel On Web 2.0 and the like
Joel Spolsky rants about some of the technobabble that has become somewhat overutilized and annoying lately. Web 3.14 blah blah.

While I enjoy listening to the InfoTalk series of podcasts from, it does become annoying when John Furrier says "web 2.0" about every 5 minutes.

Posted On Friday, October 21, 2005 8:11 AM

My ultimate tool list
Here are some ultimate tools that Scott Hanselman missed: For developers: Ethereal, the network sinffer. Secure Tunnel, add SSL to any insecure server, very useful for logging and debugging tcp apps. REST. Ok, so its not an application. But its still a useful tool. :) For everyone: Windows Remote Desktop. Yeah, I know - but it is very useful. Camtasia Studio, good for recording video & audio from your desktop. Bloglines, etc., for reading and searching blogs of course. VS.Net Command Prompt. ......

Posted On Thursday, October 6, 2005 8:25 PM

Desktop vs Online Aggregators
Scott thinks that desktop aggregators have no future. I have to agree. I used to be a FeedDemon user. FeedDemon is a great piece of software, and Nick is smart enough to allow owners to install it on multiple machines - however I found it annoying having to maintain new and removed subscriptions between my work and home installations. Since FeedDemon was purchased by NewsGator I haven't tried the new beta's - for all I know they provide a method of synching subscriptions between installations now, ......

Posted On Thursday, October 6, 2005 8:43 AM

Infragistics is blogging
News from Devin Rader that Infragistics is blogging. Check our the Infragistics bloggers at (RSS).

Posted On Wednesday, October 5, 2005 7:48 AM

Browser PA
Daan from Matirsoft pointed me to their Browser PA product. Developed in .Net, this thing has so many features its amazing. While it won't tear me away from Bloglines, this is one neat and feature packed tool: Multi-engine web search (including blog, print, and video searches) Read RSS feeds IE Favorites and History organizers (much better than the one that comes with IE) System tools like IPConfig, DNS query, etc. Explorer-style interfaces for folder browsing and tasks ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 5, 2005 6:44 AM

.Net CF Developers: The real meaning of "Could not find resource assembly"
Straight from the .Net Compact Framework Team blog, what does Could not find resource assembly really mean?

Technorati tag:

Posted On Tuesday, October 4, 2005 2:51 PM

Google Talk and IP*Works! - updated
I've updated the Jabber demo that was the result of this Create Your Own Jabber Client With IP*Works! tutorial, so that it now uses SSL so that it is compatible with Google Talk and other Jabber servers that support SSL and SASL/Plain authentication. Here is the updated demo. If Microsoft supported Jabber on Messenger, I would not have to ask all my MSN contacts to move to Google Talk. Same for AIM. Oh well. See ya MSN. See ya AIM. No more multi-IM client on my machines! Technorati tag: jabber Update: ......

Posted On Monday, October 3, 2005 1:26 PM is now using Google Maps uses Google maps to attempt to pinpoint the location of your IP address. Pretty neat!

Posted On Thursday, September 29, 2005 3:06 PM

Other reasons for HTTP component requests being rejected
Besides servers sometimes rejecting HTTP requests because of the user-agent header, there are other reasons that servers will (sometimes mistakenly) reject requests or provide unexpected responses. Amoung these: Accept header (the content-types allowed by the requesting client) Accept-Encoding header (the content-encoding allowed by the requesting client, this is where you would specify deflate or gzip http compression) HTTP version (IPWorks default is HTTP 1.1, but this can be set to 1.0 if necessary) ......

Posted On Thursday, September 29, 2005 9:11 AM

Brad Sucks
The "one man band with no fans", Brad Sucks, sure has a lot of fans. While he's been pointed to by a lot of bloggers for a long time, apparently he got pounded this week by a link from Boing Boing. Check out his music via free download (he provides a bittorrent link on his site). Buy his CD if you like his music, I did!

Posted On Tuesday, September 27, 2005 3:10 PM

Adwords Campaign service demo (uses IPWorks SSL)
Yesterday I mentioned that I revisited an old Google Adwords demo that I worked on a while back. Here's the tutorial explaining that demo. I've updated the demo, which previously was a VB6 app that was basically just a list of functions, to a more functional app. If you're interested, you can download the demo app here (source and compiled executable). This could be easily translated into .Net, ASP, Delphi, BCB, C++, Java, PHP, etc. Just let me know if you're interested ......

Posted On Wednesday, August 24, 2005 7:49 AM

LDAP Browser
Here is a sample LDAP Browser with csharp source code. This was built using the IP*Works! LDAP component.  This zip includes the .net exe, but not that if you actually want to compile you will need to download and install IPWorks.

Posted On Friday, August 19, 2005 3:30 PM

LDAP Authentication and Password Management
Using LDAP to authenticate users is common, fast, and easy way to do. A while back I wrote a tutorial about how this can be done in a web app using the IP*Works! LDAP component. This particular article was written using VB.Net code samples. Some people ask me for classic ASP code samples, here you go. Lots of people ask about how to change an Active Directory (orADAM) user password over LDAP. With Novell, SunOne, and OpenLdap, its not so difficult as long as you have the administrator permissions ......

Posted On Friday, August 19, 2005 3:27 PM

New version of NukeSyndicate released (DNN Podcasting Module)
Scott Schecter has released a new version of NukeSyndicate, the DNN 3 podcast feed module. Its open source, supports RSS 2.0, and looks great.

Posted On Monday, August 15, 2005 11:13 AM

I am considering opening an account with Does anyone have any experience with them? Anyone have any other advice? I need a good Windows hosting company where I can be use ASPNET apps like DNN or dasBlog without any issues. Update: I did go with Webhost4life, and they were great at the beginning. Their support was friendly and helpful, and my site was fast. That was then, this is now. It seems in this short time, they have gone to absolute crap. Their support appears to be all non-technical ......

Posted On Saturday, July 30, 2005 4:57 PM

Flickr Checkr
Flickr Checkr is a free Windows application written in C# that will let you see photos that your Flickr contacts have uploaded as soon as they come online, without getting in the way of your work. Flickr Checkr will silently poll the Flickr web service for recent photos from your contacts. If any new photos are found, you'll be discretely notified by a small thumbnail version of the new photo appearing in the corner of your screen. This thumbnail will not steal focus, and so will not interfere with ......

Posted On Thursday, July 28, 2005 2:56 PM

Automatically serve all pages in your .Net web apps using HTTP compression
You can automatically serve all pages in your .Net web apps using HTTP compression by creating a simple HTTPModule and referencing it in your web.config. This particular implementation uses IPWorksZip ZipStream component. To create the module, just inherit from IHttpModule. In the IHttpModule.Init function, add an event handler for context.BeginRequest. Inside this event, check the Request object to see if encoding is accepted, and if so - use the Zipstream component to create a compression stream ......

Posted On Friday, July 22, 2005 12:18 PM

Winsock error 10053: Part 2
Last month I mentioned winsock error 10053, "Software caused connection abort" (basically, the error means that something on the localhost caused the connection to be closed), and how it is so often caused by virus scanners. I pointed out that this is not always the case, and sometimes the problem is very difficult to troubleshoot. But don't worry, this is pretty common and it is most likely not a bug in your code, just something that needs to be considered when implementing error handling. Besides ......

Posted On Wednesday, July 20, 2005 7:52 AM

Compact framework internet development components
The .Net CF Team has posted an updated list of .Net CF applications and libraries. The list includes /n software IP*Works .Net CF. It does not include the many other .Net CF developer toolkits available from /n software, including SSl, SSH, ZIP, Secure SNMP, Quickbooks Integrator, and credit card payment components! Here is a list of all the .Net and .Net CF toolkits available from /n software ......

Posted On Thursday, July 14, 2005 6:42 PM

OFX (Open Financial Exchange) is a standard for electronic exchange of financial data
OFX (Open Financial Exchange) is a standard for electronic exchange of financial data. This standard is what many software applications use to monitor and perform financial transactions right on your PC desktop. /n software's IBiz OFX Integrator is a suite of components, which gives .Net and Java developers the power of OFX in a simple API. Jeremy has a list of OFX FI Data. This contains an index of thousands of financial institutions, and separate xml files with the individual FI details. Before ......

Posted On Monday, July 11, 2005 6:52 AM

Quick screen capture utliity
Last month, Scott Hanselman posted his Ultimate Developer and Power Users Tool List. I checked out some of the things I'd not heard of before. One of these was Brian Scott's Cropper, a little .Net utility for quickly and conveniently creating screen captures. This little app is great! Brian, a suggestion: when I take a shot - how about copying the resultant file to the clipboard ......

Posted On Friday, July 8, 2005 8:13 AM

MSN Messenger has a big bug!
Harish recommends MSN Messenger 7.0. No, no, no, no, no. And if you recommend AOL IM? No, no, no, no, no. Can these two IM clients throw everything at you except the kitchen sink, or what? Good grief! Some products will get so bloated, and be completely blind to the features that are really important. If I use MSN Messenger as my only IM client, that means I can only talk to other people who use MSN Messenger. If I want to chat with my friends who use AOL IM, I have to install that and run it as ......

Posted On Tuesday, July 5, 2005 2:17 PM

I saw two movies this week
Saw, a slightly disturbing horror movie - actually one of the best horror flix I've seen in a while. It seems like good horror movies are few and far between, but this one is definitely worth checking out. Hell's Angels, the Howard Hughes classic. After watching The Aviator a few weeks ago, I stuck this into my Netflix queue. Honestly I don't normally enjoy older movies, but this was really good. The acting was a bit over the top at times, which I find to be true with a lot of older films, but the ......

Posted On Saturday, July 2, 2005 12:16 AM

Microsoft Including AJAX Libraries in VS2005 reports that "Microsoft gets hip to AJAX". "Microsoft's Atlas is a "Web client framework" designed to make the job of building AJAX-style applications simpler". Atlas will be supported in VS2005 and ASP.Net 2.0, though it is not clear exactly when Scott Guthrie says that the Atlas project will be available as a developer preview in September ......

Posted On Tuesday, June 28, 2005 12:21 PM

Audible Announces RSS Delivery
This press release from Audible details plan to offer secure RSS feeds. Audible made the announcement today at Gnomedex.

Posted On Friday, June 24, 2005 9:27 AM

Scott Hanselman's 2005 Ultimate Developer and Power Users Tool List

Update: some ultimate tools that are missing from Scott's list.

Posted On Monday, June 20, 2005 11:06 AM

DNN Blog Module That Supports Enclosures
Scott Schecter has released NukeSyndicate, a blogging module for DotNetNuke that supports enclosures.

Posted On Wednesday, June 15, 2005 9:42 PM

Drinking on the job?
Christian Weyer found an interesting AD attribute. What is your favorite drink?

Posted On Tuesday, June 14, 2005 10:27 AM

IT Conversations
Fellow NC State wolfpacker Dr. James Goodnight of SAS Institude, Rob Glaser of Real Networks, and more new goodies this week at IT Conversations. A couple of my favorite installments from the IT Conversations archives: Steve Wozniak Wil Wheaton - also check ......

Posted On Monday, June 13, 2005 10:42 AM

Generate RSS in ASP.Net
There are a lot of quick and easy way to generate RSS in your applications, here is one way using the IP*Works! RSS component. This particular sample is in an ASP.Net app: nsoftware.IPWorks.Rss rss1 = new nsoftware.IPWorks.Rss(); rss1.ChannelTitle = "My RSS"; rss1.ChannelDescription = "How to generatete RSS"; rss1.ChannelLink = "http://lance.geekswithblog... rss1.AddItem("Title 1", "Description 1", "http://server/link1.aspx"); rss1.AddItem("Title 2", "Description 2", "http://server/link2.aspx"); ......

Posted On Monday, June 13, 2005 9:26 AM

Mind Mapping Software
A lot of people have been talking about Mindjet's MindManager software for visual process management. I downloaded it and gave the 21 day trial a good workout. This really is a handy piece of software. The only thing that bothered me is that it is very slow. I went searching for some alternatives to MindManager, and found a nice project at sourceforge called FreeMind. FreeMind is faster, more compact (less features, but it has everything I need), and is very useful for helping organize projects and ......

Posted On Thursday, June 9, 2005 1:15 PM

Blogging Client
I've just created a quick and dirty blogging client - using the metawebblog api. None of the existing clients I tried had the features I want (posting to multiple blogs at once and auto-emailing copies of the post to specified addresses). To create the client, I just use an HTTP component to send metaWeblog.newPost XMLRPC to each of x selected blogs. Then I use an HTMLMailer component to email a copy to myself for secondary archival. UPDATE: I posted a link to my app here: ......

Posted On Thursday, June 9, 2005 12:56 PM

About Lance
My resume Email me here Technologies I am interested in and like to play with at work and in my spare time: Software development - mainly C#, but in the past I've worked with VB.NET/VB6/ASP/DelphiPowerS... Blogging, TwitterI am the author of one of the first podcasting applications available (PPR) and the first to be integrated with a media player and offer bookmarking. Note that it has been out of development since iTunes entered the market. I am the author of TextBox1, a site offering ......

Posted On Wednesday, June 8, 2005 8:46 PM

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