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GeekPost Weekly Newsletter Volume 1 Issue 10

By James Hippolite, in , posted: 21-Dec-2009 16:43

Geek Post

Volume 1 Issue 10

Friday 18 December 2009

Hippolite Musings

Tena Koutou Katoa,

A delayed posting, sorry, because:

  • In Auckland Thursday and Friday for post-BAT review of one of my projects;
  • At Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed movie at Paramount Theatre on Friday evening;
  • House maintenance on Saturday morning/arvo;
  • Watched Star Trek on HD Blu-Ray DVD at a friends house on Saturday evening;
  • Attended two Christmas Productions on Sunday.
  • Played a challenging game of squash on Sunday afternoon.


Developer News

Another tricky piece of integration.

This time, allowing an end-user to initiate a secure FTP upload from SQL Server to Mainframe

The first step is initiated by User click of a button:

  • Which calls a stored procedure (via DAL via ORM), which runs in the context of the connection string, which by convention is a least-privilege dedicated web account.

      public static bool Process()
          StoredProcedure sp1 = DAL.SPs.ProcessDFSpotExtract();
              return true;
          catch (Exception ex)
              throw new ApplicationException(ex.Message,ex.InnerException);
              return false;

  • The stored proc executes an Agent Job.

      EXEC msdb.dbo.sp_start_job @job_name='Extract DF SPOTS'

  • The Agent Job consists of two steps:
    • Execute SSIS Package
      • Type: SQL Server Integration Services Package
      • Run as: SQL Server Agent Service Account
      • Package source: File system
      • Package: D:\SSIS Process\ProjectName\PackageName.dtsx
    • Transfer to SFTP Server
      • Type: Operating System (CmdExec)
      • Run as: SQL Server Agent Service Account
      • Command: "C:\Program Files\WinSCP\WinSCP.exe" /console /script="D:\SSIS Process\ProjectName\Script.txt"
        rem /log="D:\SSIS Process\ProjectName\Log\WinSCP.log"
    • The Script.txt file consists of:

        # Automatically answer all prompts negatively not to stall
        # the script on errors
        option batch on
        # Disable overwrite confirmations that conflict with the previous
        option confirm off
        # Connect using a password
        # open
        # Connect
        open spplnld@ -hostkey="ssh-rsa 1024 fa:b2:3e:b0:3d:18:cf:0e:97:9f:2c:e3:4f:4f:ac:9e"
        # Force binary mode transfer
        option transfer binary
        # Download file to the local directory d:\
        put -delete "D:\SSIS Process\ProjectName\ETL\*.csv" /appl/xfr/spplnld/
        # Disconnect
        # Exit WinSCP

  • Notes:
    • As per last week, the SSIS Package extract job must be edited in SQL Server 2005, in order to not lose it's format for the server.
    • The D:\SSIS Process\ProjectName\ETL\ folder is where the SSIS Package stores the data extract file (*.CSV).
    • In order for the Script file to work, I must have logged onto the server as the SQL Server Agent Service Account name, in order to set up in that profile, a setting for the spplnld@a72.23.126.23 connection.  The Hex keys are the random keys that were generated for me, in order that the DSA key-pair public and private key files load correctly.  When running WinSCP and setting up the connection for the first time, you are given the option to store the credential in a public/private key-pair file.  These should be stored under D:\SSIS Process\ProjectName\Key\ folder.
  • That's it!

Telecom News

XT went down

But then got fixed.  Apologies were made; reparations have been promised.

I had nothing to do with it.  It sounds to me like an episode straight out of Stargate: SG1 (probably because I'm currently watching through the entire 10-year DVD series - thanks Martin!): a software upgrade caused a cascading failure on subsequent, adjacent towers.

That's all I know.

Product News

Get Plugged In!  Find a Windows Azure Platform Program That is Right for You

In order to help our partners gain the most out of their experience on the Windows Azure Platform we are fully integrated into the partner enablement-focused programs across the company.  Learn more about these programs and find the ones that are right for you, and then join to get inside information on the Windows Azure Platform, in-depth training, and marketing collateral to help sell to your customers. Front Runner

Created for U.S.-based Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), Front Runner is a program that helps get your applications compatible with the latest Microsoft technologies. Front Runner offers direct access to technical experts from Microsoft who know the technology inside and out. From online training resources courses to troubleshooting via e-mail and phone, you'll have the support to help your application succeed. Green Light

Created for non-U.S.-based Independent Software Vendors, Green Light for the Windows Azure Platform provides you a comprehensive set of training, development, marketing, and support resources to quickly build, deploy, and promote your Windows Azure application to customers. BizSpark

BizSpark is perfect for venture-funded and Web 2.0 start-ups. It enables software startups to run cloud-based businesses for up to 3 years. And if you're a developer or content provider .check out Microsoft's Codename 'Dallas'

With the power and scale of the Windows Azure platform (Windows Azure and the SQL Azure Database), Dallas provides developers the ability to build and manage innovative applications across the desktop and mobile devices by bringing together disparate sets of private and public data, both on-premises and in the cloud.  Via a single marketplace, Dallas enables developers to access complex data sets to build entirely new analytic and reporting scenarios.  Content providers are able to expose their data to millions of developers on a global level, thus enabling new growth and revenue opportunities.  

Dallas provides content providers the ability to reach new markets, data provisioning, a flexible billing model, increased storage, and compute power with their data running on Dallas.  In addition, partners get not only developer productivity through automatically generated APIs and client side libraries, but also the ability to expose this content easily within Microsoft Office and SQL Server assets.

For the full Dallas story and Dallas developer resources - including Hands-On Labs - go to:

Partner News

Exchange 2010 Course discount for Microsoft Partners

In early 2010 Auldhouse are running five day instructor led courses on configuring, managing, and troubleshooting Microsoft Exchange Server 2010. This course helps prepare students for Exam 70-662 (TS: Configuring Microsoft Exchange Server 2010).

As a special deal exclusively for Microsoft Partners Auldhouse are offering this course for $1995+GST, a $1000 discount on the normal price.

Dates:Auckland 8-12 February
Wellington 22-26 February

For more information and to register click here. Make use of CRM licenses included as part of your Partner Network Membership

Microsoft Dynamics CRM helps to build customer loyalty and drive repeat business through effective customer management.Many partners are unaware of the CRM licenses available to them as part of their membership to the Microsoft Partner Network or subscription to the Action Pack.

CRM Server and CAL's are a part of the software benefits for Certified Partners, Gold Certified Partners, and Action Pack subscribers. For a breakdown of CRM software available as part of a Certified or Gold membership click here, and for software available as part of an action pack subscription click here. SharePoint 2010 Ignite Training

SharePoint 2010 Ignite is technical training for SharePoint 2007 professionals who are looking to upgrade their skills to SharePoint 2010. There are two Ignite offerings, Ignite for the IT Pro and Ignite for the Developer. Each track will cover 5 days/40 hours of technical training and cost $1650 per attendee.

Ignite for IT Pros: This training is designed to assist SharePoint 2007 Professionals in their preparation to implement SharePoint 2010 projects.

Dates: Jan 25-29 (Auckland only)

Ignite for Developers:Training will show partners how to build custom applications with SharePoint 2010.

Dates: Jan 18-22 (Auckland), Jan 25-29 (Wellington)

To register for one of these Ignite courses either call Avenues on 0800 832 433, email or register online. Whitepaper: Windows 7 delivers business value

This whitepaper discusses how you can provide new, high value solutions that address critical customer challenges. Download now. Office 2010 Beta downloads

Beta downloads of Office 2010, SharePoint 2010, Project, and Visio 2010 are now available through the partner portal. This is a great opportunity to familiarise yourself with this new wave of products and the enhancements they provide. Download now.

Situations Vacant

Sr WPF Developer. Hiring Immediately!

Posted by Chris Farrington, National Technical Recruiter at Sapphire Technologies

URGENT NEED for .NET Software Engineers to join our Henderson, Nevada office

Posted by Greg Levithan, Executive Search Consultant at SBR .NET web developer social media campagnes

Posted by John van der Stelt, Owner, Schepnet B.V.

Training News

Dear MCTs,

We are pleased to offer you a lot of new content on our MCT Readiness portal this month!

What's new?

We have added the following sessions that you can access/download now:

  • Third Thursday Sessions in November
  • EMEA Bus Tour presentations
  • Day Zero (TechEd Europe) recordings
  • Windows Server 2008 TTT
Join us LIVE

Please join us at December's Third Thursday session. We are excited to announce a 2 hour special on Office 2010 Beta. As an MCT, you will likely have already downloaded the beta and you are probably eager to see the new features in action. Students and colleagues will start asking you about the new edition; become an expert, start by joining this session where we dive into the Office 2010 Beta

We have had a great response to our Soft Skills Track which continues to grow; please join Shelia Ochoa who will present this month's Soft Skills session 'Exploring Delivery Methods and Media'.

We hope to see you at our Third Thursday LiveMeeting next week, stay tuned for details on January's edition which is already looking very promising!

How to join the Third Thursday session:

Simply add the sessions you wish to attend to your Outlook calendar by clicking the links below. At the time of the meeting, follow the links that you will find in the Outlook invitation. 

Agenda Live Meetings December 17th 2009
  • 1st Session: Information Worker, Start Time: 3 PM (GMT) / 7 AM (PST)
    Office 2010 Beta presented by Debbie Collins
    ? save this session to your Outlook calendar
    To add directly into your calendar, click on the link and choose open the item to save
  • 2nd Session: Soft Skills, Start Time: 5 PM (GMT) / 9 AM (PST)
    Exploring Delivery Methods and Media presented by Shelia Ochoa
    ? save this session to your Outlook calendar
    To add directly into your calendar, click on the link and choose open the item to save
To attend the Live Meetings Login to the Virtual Event Application with your MCP ID.

The live sessions will be presented using Microsoft Office LiveMeeting 2007.
Please make sure to install the console in time on your computer (the download can take up to 20 minutes).

Installation and Testing

Important: to receive audio and video install the windows based console, as the web based version does not support these functionalities.
We are looking forward to seeing you online for these exciting sessions!

Kind regards,
MCT Community Event Management Team

Trainer News

Practice Exam 70-561 Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 - ADO.NET Application Framework Objective 5: Working with Disconnected Data

Score: 26/34 = 76%

For Further Study:

  1. N-Tier Data Application Overview
  2. ChildViews and Relations (ADO.NET)
  3. Overview of Client and Server Synchronization
  4. Walkthrough: Deploying an Occasionally Connected Client Application with the Local Database
  5. Preparing Your Application to Receive Data
  6. Sorting and Filtering Data (ADO.NET)
  7. How to: Configure Data Synchronization to Use SQL Server Change Tracking
  8. Editing Data in a DataTable (ADO.NET)
Objective 6: Object Relational Mapping by Using the Entity Framework

Score: 14/24 = 58%

For Further Study:

  1. Entity SQL Quick Reference
  2. OFTYPE (Entity SQL)
  3. Walkthrough: Mapping Inheritance - Table-per-Type
  4. Object Services (Entity Framework)
  5. EntityClient Provider for the Entity Framework
  6. Walkthrough: Mapping an Entity to Multiple Tables
  7. ADO.NET Entity Framework
  8. Managing Connections in Object Services (Entity Framework)


Your 2010 Goals?

By Andy Warren

It's December already? 2009 seems to have gone by altogether too fast. As I had some time to reflect about the year, it's been a mixed 12 months for me. I've accomplished most of my goals, missed a few, and endured the still slow economy. Yet, somehow there's that nagging feeling that I could have done more - ever feel like that?
I like goals rather than resolutions. Only one difference between them. There isn't much accountability for resolutions! It's easy to set goals; the hard part is setting goals that require you to work hard and stay focused but are also doable. Set too many or set them too high, and you can end the year feeling like a loser. Set them too low, and you might end up feeling like you could have done more. Read more.

Metrics to the Max!

By Kevin Kline

November 2009 would have been the 100th birthday of famed management guru Peter Drucker, were he alive today. For those of you who don't know the name, Peter Drucker was no mere guru or simple pundit. He was the father of management and universally acclaimed as the world's greatest management thinker. Anyone who's taken a business class, studied for an MBA, or had to deal with an IT project to build a management dashboard has been touched by Peter Drucker. If you have a spare moment, add Drucker's Concept of the Corporation to your library. Read more.

Events Schedule

In this section, I highlight dates, times and venues of events either I am presenting at, or of interest to METTLE.  I'm available for bookings.

Date Event Venue Speaker
18-Dec-09 Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed Paramount Theatre, Wellington Ben Stein
25-Dec-09 Christmas Day All Over The World None
11-Jan-2010 First day back at work Telecom Wellington James
19-Jan-2010 Exam 70-561 Auldhouse, Wellington James
25-29 Jan 2010 SharePoint 2010 Ignite for Developers Microsoft, Wellington Wayne Ewington
22-26 Feb 2010 Exchange 2010 Training Auldhouse, Wellington ?
22-Mar-10 Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Launch All Over The World Various
21-23 April 2010 PASS European Conference Neuss, Germany Various
18-May-10 NZ SharePoint Conference Bay of Plenty Lots


Father Murphy walked into a pub in Donegal, and said to the first man he meets, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
The man said, "I do Father."
The priest said, "Then leave this pub right now!" and approached a second man. "Do you want to got to heaven?"
"Certainly, Father," was the man's reply.
"Then leave this den of Satan," said the priest, as he walked up to O'Toole.
"Do you want to go to heaven?"
"No, I don't Father," O'Toole replied.
The priest looked him right in the eye, and said, "You mean to tell me that when you die you don't want to go to heaven?"
O'Toole smiled, "Oh, when I die, yes, Father. I tort you were getting a group together to go right now."

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JamesHip's profile

James Hippolite
New Zealand

Welcome to my technical blog. 

Here, I attempt to distill the Microsoft Certified Professional Developer knowledge I have accumulated since first qualifying MCP in 1996.  This blog started on 13 September 2007 as an off-shoot from my mixed up personal blog.  But it took a shot in the arm from Scott Hanselman's talk at TechEd New Zealand 08 "32 Ways To Make Your Blog Suck Less".