Blogengine.NET Textile Extension

An extension to add Textile support to Blogengine.NET, directly derived from the Markdown extension by Alexander Schuc (who I thank a lot).

To download it click here.

Lightweight Microsoft.NET Process Debugging in Production Environments

Everyone is aware of the problem of discovering the causes of a bug when it’s only present in one environment and, if it’s Production, the problem is even bigger, even if you have a solid error logging system in place.

Recently we faced this same situation and we didn’t have any clues to help us, only that the w3wp process was dying and the ASP.NET session remained locked. After some thought, we arrived at the conclusion that there was an infinite loop somewhere, and we had a vague idea of the “zone” of code where this was happening, but we couldn’t reproduce it in any other environment even after several hours of testing.

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Bilingual Support

From today my blog supports more than a language, English and Italian.

The reason behind this addition is that I felt a bit uncomfortable writing only in English some posts that I would like to be read also in my language, to support the diffusion of technologies and ideas that I think about as important in the country were I live and work.

The preferred language can be choosen selecting it in the top right of the home page. I added the multilingual support to WordPress installing the qTranslate plugin, very well done even if it has some small defects.

So have a good reading!

A Case of Architectural Refactoring

Some weeks ago one of my customers decided that one of its biggest ASP.NET web intranet projects needed a sort of architectural revision, mainly to support better its customers with built-in fault tolerance but also to unchain development of the various sub-projects through better separation between software modules.

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The analysis phase: time to grow up?

When small software companies get bigger they embark on what can be a bumpy ride of change. One of those changes will probably be to do with the way they tackle the analysis phase of the software development life-cycle (SDL). Just to be clear, when I say “analysis phase”, I mean the part before coding starts i.e. requirements elicitation, analysis and system specification.

Typically (although I am sure that there are plenty of shining examples where this is not the case) small software companies with a handful of developers, where the entire SDL for a project is covered by one or two developers, tend not to have a formalised analysis phase. Why is that?

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Clouds Evolve: Dealing with Infrastructure Complexity

As expected, at least by me, Amazon EC2 is evolving in a more “concrete” platform good for web hosting; in fact, some time ago I received a mail from AWS announcing two new features: Elastic IP Addresses and Availability Zones (you read for sure the news also on Slashdot: Amazon EC2 Now More Ready for Application Hosting, isn’t it?)

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Amazon EC2 will get persistent storage

Only a small note to let you know that Amazon is hearing us and added a new feature to EC2: persistent storage.

As a subscriber of AWS services yesterday I received an email in which Amazon announces that we “will be able to create volumes ranging in size from 1 GB to 1 TB, and will be able to attach multiple volumes to a single instance. Volumes are designed for high throughput, low latency access from Amazon EC2, and can be attached to any running EC2 instance where they will show up as a device inside of the instance…“.

The mail ends saying that the new functionality “will be publicly available later this year” and offers a link to request to join the private beta program; I subscribed it and will let you now as soon as I’ll put my hands on it.

More on the [Computing] Clouds

Recently I stumbled upon a couple of articles1,2 and, remembering my experience with EC2, I discovered that utility computing was not what I was searching for: I was searching for something that helped me without adding complexity, but I was not happy with simple web hosting offers, I wanted also complete control over my infrastructure to have the technical freedom that I could need and because, when I think about my customers’ data, I trust no one.

Continue reading More on the [Computing] Clouds