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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

APress Deal of the Day 26/Nov/2014 - Pro WF 4.5

Today’s $10 Deal of the Day from APress at is Pro WF 4.5.

“In Pro WF 4.5, you'll find the insight and direction for understanding how to build workflows using WF 4.5 and host them as long-running services using Microsoft’s Windows Server, for on-premises work, and Azure AppFabric, for hosting workflows in the cloud. ”

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Cyber Monday Offer from APress!

On Cyber Monday 1st December from 00:00:00 to 23:59:59 EST, APress are offering every APress eBook (including Alpha books) at $15 each and every Springer eBook on at $30 each. Make a date in your diary!

The latest twist of the spammers!

As a blogger one has to put up with a lot of spam – so unimaginative that it gets quite boring. However there is a new twist, send a message in another language. The message could get mistaken for a legitimate name however run it by and the meaning soon becomes clear!

The term “Spam” comes from the famous Monty Python Sketch – details at

O’Reilly Half-Price Deals of the Day 25/Nov/2014

Today O’Reilly are offering two excellent half-price Deals of the Day

Learning Agile

“Agile has revolutionized the way teams approach software development, but with dozens of agile methodologies to choose from, the decision to "go agile" can be tricky. This practical book helps you sort it out, first by grounding you in agile’s underlying principles, then by describing four specific—and well-used—agile methods: Scrum, extreme programming (XP), Lean, and Kanban.  Each method focuses on a different area of development, but they all aim to change your team’s mindset—from individuals who simply follow a plan to a cohesive group that makes decisions together. Whether you’re considering agile for the first time, or trying it again, you’ll learn how to choose a method that best fits your team and your company.”

Automating Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Services

“Get valuable tips and techniques for automating your cloud deployments with Azure PowerShell cmdlets, and learn how to provision Azure services on the fly. In this hands-on guide, Microsoft cloud technology expert Michael Washam shows you how to automate various management tasks and deploy solutions that are both complex and at scale.  By combining the native automation capabilities of PowerShell with Azure Infrastructure Services, these powerful cmdlets enable you to create and configure virtual machines with ease. You’ll learn how to take advantage of these technologies to build complete virtual networks. If you have experience with PowerShell and Azure, you’re ready to get started.”

Sunday, November 23, 2014

APress Deal of the Day 23/November/2014 - Windows 8 MVVM Patterns Revealed

Today’s $10 Deal of the Day from APress at is Windows 8 MVVM Patterns Revealed.

"The Model-View-View-Model (MVVM) pattern is held in high regard by many developers as an excellent way of creating sophisticated modern applications. It's clear seperation of presentation and business logic produces a clean implementation that promotes speed, scalability and code reuse in applications with a complex UI. These strengths have found it favor with WPF and Silverlight developers. It is now increasingly being employed for Windows 8 apps, a purpose to which it is ideally suited as this book will show."

"In this brief, information-rich, guide we will show you how MVVM works with both XAML (C#) and HTML5 (JavaScript) flavors of Windows 8. Beginning with a brief recap of MVVM concepts under .NET - to provide a common frame of reference - we will then delve into the details of how MVVM can best be implemented in Metro-style apps for Windows 8 and show a working application framework in each case."

Saturday, November 22, 2014

APress Deal of the Day 22/Nov/2014 - Pro Exchange Server 2013 Administration

Today's $10 Deal of the Day from APress at is Pro Exchange Server 2013 Administration.

Pro Exchange Server 2013 Administration starts with what’s new, leads you through deployment, presents configuration and management best practices, and ends with real world troubleshooting tips.”

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Visual Studio 2015 Preview available

Microsoft have made available a preview of Visual Studio 2015 together with .Net 4.6 at

This preview should only be installed on a virtual machine or other machine that can be readily re-formatted.

Visual Studio 2013 – Update 4 now available

Update 4 for Visual Studio 2013 is now available. If you use Web Essentials, you will also need to install Web Essentials 4 as Web Essentials 3 will unload when update 4 is applied.

If you need to load the new Release Management for Visual Studio 2013, then you will need to start Visual Studio by ‘Run As Administrator’.

A new open source solution – CommonWindows

To allow certain currently unused functions to be removed from the CommonData and related solutions, I have created a new project on CodePlex -

A New Open Source Solution–CommonServiceCS

I have loaded to CodePlex a C# sample Windows Service project. The URL of the solution is

The windows service calls an action function is a separate class project.  This separation of responsibility is necessary to facilitate testing of the action. The downloads page at includes a help file with full instructions for configuring and installing this sample windows service. An NUnit test project is provided.

The action is a simple page scrape controlled by the database in respect of:

  • Use of a custom event log to record exceptions.
  • Recording a “heartbeat” into a date-time parameters.
  • On/Off action from a Boolean parameter file, thus allowed a duly authenticated user to switch the action on and off without requiring administrative access.


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