Caution when using custom Bookmarks Location

In my previous post Firefox Bookmarks Location and Moving it I mentioned about browser.bookmarks.file in about:config to save your bookmarks in a different location.

I just wanted a short mention of a caveat that if by any chance you have it pointed to a removable disk (eg. external hard drive/disk) and being careless you could loose those bookmarks [more]

1. you open Firefox before with the disk disconnected

2. you plugin the removable disk

3. then you close Firefox

it will overwrite your bookmarks.html with whatever bookmarks you had since step1. Since it was not able to load your bookmarks.html from the removable disk at part1, they will be lost when you close the browser at step three. That is during step2, despite you plugging in the removable disk it will not reload its bookmark list. There probably is a reason for this (to complicated to implement autodetection) so will not consider it as a bug (nevertheless will find time to report to Mozilla later) but just a little warning.

If you have to been on step1 or step2 already and you realize your in this situation just disconnect your removable disk before step. In that way the bookmarks fille not be overwritten and FF will not throw an error even if it doesn't see the custom bookmarks location (it will likely save to its known default).

And also worth noting that I've been using Google Bookmarks too if I run into this. That is if I run into this situation, I remove the disk but also want to make pages ive opened since step1 so I save them to Google Bookmarks (I have Google Toolbar installed so it's convenient as clicking a button) then I may or may not open it later and save to my Firefox bookmarks if I already have the bookmarks from the removable disk loaded.

For the extra careful, it's always a good idea to backup your bookmarks.html too. 


Personal: VPC, XPC and Offline for hours – but I survived

I was trying out Microsoft Business Intelligence VPC Release5.1 on my "poor" XPC machine yesterday (for those into MSFT BI see following links) [more] 

Part 1

Part 2

It's running Core Duo with 1GB and I think XPC is an impressive setup considering the price but for some reason I've managed to damage the hard disk last time. I got a new Seagate SATA HD, had the previous one as secondary storage and added another 1GB DDR2 (Transcend – not sure if this is good but got it anyway). And then yesterday a lot of things messed up again. Running the VPC @ 256MB freezes among other things. So I decided to get a memory upgrade and a new HD as I'm suspecting that the old drive though secondary is dragging me down. When I got it all setup and started, the memory was ok but the disk cannot be detected. Sad. So I checked the connection and started again. This time the monitor doesnt seem to accept any data anymore. Bad. So I looked inside again and checked everything and removed the DDR I added. Booted, yey…. But after the Windows loading splashscreen, restarted and the next time it displayed something in the monitor it had gardbage text on it, the screen was full of 1's and 0's (which reminded me of Turbo C/C++ programming in the past). And after many checks and reboots no luck and I gave up.

For a number of hours, it felt very uneasy knowing that the PC is not working and not being able to do somethings I was looking forward to (research and all). I have more than enough books around me but it was different. Funny and stupid but it's as is you lost something very valuable even just for a few hours. I could always come to the office to work but it's still feels different.

So got the PC store hours ago, turned out that the video card was failing and affected some other modules and after some hours of wait I'm here with a newly revived machine with the added 1GB and HD working as expected. I hope for good.

I think I type and click relatively too fast but I believe I'm not careless especially when it comes to coding nor do I have a lot of typos of clicking the incorrect folder or button. But lately it makes me wonder whether I just really need a good machine to keep up with me or I have to go easy on the machine a little bit. I don't leave this ON unless I have to do something and I do take care of it so probably it's either just bound to fail or was just unlucky.

Bottomline is here are things that this event made me think about, learned (or at least will start learning):

  1. not to get too attached as not to feel very uneasy when you can't get to do something because your PC is broken
    1. a.k.a. "get a life away from the keyboard"
  2. backup as much as possible
    1. (yes I actually did this and didn't loose any valuable data even from the 1st HD failure but a good reminder)
  3. don't overwork your PC (with the added benefit of saving the environment when conserving energy and doing yourself a favor by having a break)
  4. what you can do now, don't wait for tomorrow. Note that it says "what you can do now", it doesn't mean "don't sleep until say you get a 1week long task done for straight hours without sleep)
    1. Not guilty of the former (sometimes guilty of the later) but just glad I always have files checked in when I should (in addition to backup

So that's it for now and as much as I would like to post a lot of other things, have to get back to work now and save the research and post hopefully after a few hours.

For those I'm suppose to do something for, at least I'd just have to link you this post for a little justification. I'll get to them asa i can.


SQL Server 2008 – All For You Sweepstakes

For those of you not subscribed to MSDN Magazine blog but viewing this, I just found this SQL Server 2008 "All For You" SweepStakes

All you have to do is download SQL Server 2008 CTP (you have to be signed in with your Live ID for identification) and you get to win these:

Grand Prize: One Massive Media Makeover, including: [more]

    * One 52” SONY BRAVIA HDTV valued at U.S.$3,999
    * One Dell™ XPS M1530 valued at U.S.$4,954
    * One Dell XPS 720 Windows Vista® Home Premium valued at U.S.$8,623
    * One Xbox 360® Elite bundle valued at U.S.$499.99
    * One Call of Duty® 4: Modern Warfare™ Xbox 360 game valued at U.S.$59.99. Rated M (Mature) Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language
    * One Halo® 3 Xbox 360 game valued at U.S.$59.99. Rated M (Mature) Blood and Gore, Mild Language, Violence

Second Prize: One prize pack, including:

    * One Dell XPS M1530 valued at U.S.$4,954
    * One Xbox 360 Elite bundle valued at U.S.$499.99
    * One Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Xbox 360 game valued at U.S.$59.99
    * One Halo 3 Xbox 360 game valued at U.S.$59.99

THERE IS ONE BIG CATCH: No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. Open to legal residents
of the United States (excluding Puerto Rico)
, 18 years of age or older.
Game ends June 30, 2008. See the Web site for full rules. Sponsored by
Microsoft Corporation, Dell Inc., and CMP Media LLC.

So for those not from the US (excluding Puerto Rico) including me, we can just wonder why it exclusive and probably you could get someone you know in the US and "live through them" or if they love you enough, let them get it for you.

Personal Web Starter Kit Timeout Expired

I was getting some annoying intermittent timeout exception on my personal site (see My Site in top nav)

timeout expired.png (56.21 kb) (screenshot of the error) 

As I didn't have time I figured it must have been something in my hosting setup but it became pretty annoying that I figured I should have a short look.

Turns out the [more] Random Photo feature was accessing a stored procedure which needed only the PhotoID, AlbumID, Caption but included the image content in the result set. Since multiple rows where returned (and randomization is made on C# code, it was one big chunk of unnecessary data being retrieved from the database).

So if you're running into a similiar issue then this is likely the culprit.

Uploading a SQL script containing added stored procedures to fix the issue and my modified PhotoManager.cs

PhotoManager.cs (9.88 kb)

PWSCode.sql (1.67 kb)

It's relatively simple and we could think of a few more improvements but this would be enough at least for me for now.

My home page loads faster than before now and no more annoying timeout exception so hope this helps someone out there too.

Ruby and C# equivalents

Ruby has been gaining a lot of popularity lately (if not even months/year ago) but as I can't even get myself full of .NET I never really given it some look until now.

It looks like the advantage of Ruby over other languages is [more]the expression of the developer's intent along with shorter code. It seems that this is a common of dynamic vs static language (in terms of type checking – dynamic @runtime, static @compile time).

These are fairly old posts but as I've said, .NET has more than enough to keep us busy. Nevertheless, here are some interesting points on this

Programmer Intent or What you're not getting about Ruby and why it's the tits by Scott Hanselman

Channeling Ruby in C# – C# equivalents for some common scenario where Ruby is perceived to be better by Derek Slager

Looks like C# is catching up with it's new features but then again if I have a chance then I would definitely learn another language (Ruby sounds nice). I'd have to agree, learning a new language is fun (that is if you can find time for it).

12 Reasons Why a Geek Will Steal Your Girlfriend in 2008

I was wandering around the net while I had the chance to look for a new good description for my blog with keywords .net and geek and came across this.

This is funny but true. I don't pass all the criteria but I think I count as one and I know a lot who does. Go read and enjoy (or be worried if you're not one of us..  LOLZ)! 

Subscribed to Feedburner which by the way was acquired by Google

I just subscribed to FeedBurner and as you will see, the "Subscribe to My Feed" now points to my feedburner address.

The cool thing with using FeedBurner is you get a lot of functionality out of the box. They have support for a number of readers and I'm sure they will add more. And even delivery thru email.

I don't get much readers (if any at all) but hey incase there will be, FeedBurner will tell me how many subscribers I have and I can even show it here via a script/html.

I haven't known FeedBurner for sometime but I just knew they were acquired by Google. Wow, google has been busy

My Site’s Performance

This is currently hosted in GoDaddy (yes, you bet it's the price with SQL and AJAX I'd have to say it's a good one).

But either there is just something messy in my setup of BlogEngine.NET or Personal Web Starter Kit or this cheap hosting is really slow. I'm using SQL storage for both applications which is likely faster than file based but it's taking longer than what I expect. I haven't done modifications that could affect performance of the said applications out of the box so I guess it would be the latter.

But well, GoDaddy for now. Move it later when someone actually gets something from these posts Smile

New Programming Stereotypes

I've enjoyed reading (and I think most of you two) this one from Scott Hanselman so posting it here.

the funny descriptions it makes us think where we fit in and somehow
understand why that guy in the corner of the office behaves the way he
does and yes one of the reasons why I decided I would blog (i will post
the other reasons next time).