17. November 2006 11:08 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

ASP.NET AJAX 1.0 Beta 2 (formerly code-named “Atlas”) is now available for download.

ASP.NET AJAX allows creating great responsive interfaces. I think this framework was previously called “Atlas” you might even find a document on the site describing how to migrate your Atlas applications to this release. http://ajax.asp.net/files/Migration_Guide.doc

Recently I reviewed the samples at http://ajax.asp.net/ajaxtoolkit/. These are some of my impressions:


à à



I t allows to add effects to pages, the examples popups a region. You can do a lot more.


This is very simple a common scenario where the combo box values depends of what you select on another combo.


It adds an widget to the panel that allow it to collapse.


Just for the typical are you sure!


Cool!! It lets you create windows that you can drag around.


Add a nice style of menus


Mmm just add a shadow to your panels


:/ it just like a way to generate something in the server with ajax. I really don’t get it a lot.


Client side validations


I think is handly is a way to display additional info for web page element and only show them when needed


I like this!! It really lets the user focus on what you want


Not that sexy but useful in some cases when you have several check boxes options and some contradict the other.


This control avoids entries by automated processes (BOTS)


The name says it all


I have never needed this but looks nice


Nice. It gives feedback to the user indicating if his/her password is good enough


Nice!! It adds popability to any control. You can use it to make data entry easier


Jejeje Starts rating control


Is a list where you can drag the items to reorder them and the datasource will be updated


Great! Resizable images and text containers. I suppose it can be also applied to other things.


:/ not very exciting just adds rounded corners to panels


Slider controls


Displays a message in a textbox before the user enters some text. After he enter the text the message disappears.


Modifies checkboxes to use images


Adds effects to panels things like fade and Collapsing and background changes


Very nice


15. November 2006 18:13 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)


Microsoft has develop the Microsoft Build Engine (MSBuild). This is the new build platform for Microsoft and Visual Studio. It is an XML configuration (very similar to other build tools like ANT) It allows to orchestrate and build products in build lab environments where Visual Studio is not installed.

It is a great aid with other tools like CruiseControl.NET, relation that I will further elaborate in other posts.

The following is very simple MSBuils script

<Project xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/developer/msbuild/2003">


<Target Name="HelloWorld">

<MakeDir Directories= "bin"/>

<Csc Sources="HellWorld.cs" TargetType="exe"

OutputAssembly=".\bin\HelloWorld.exe" />



This sample shows the basic structure of an MSBuild. This is a very basic script maybe not very useful, but general scripts will be made up of Several Targets, Properties and some dependencies between them.


To define properties just define your tags inside a <PropertyGroup> Tag. If you want for example to define an OutputPath property just do something like:


And to use it just reference it as $(OutputPath)

Groups of files

You can specify groups of files with the ItemGroup tag


<File_Image Include="$(OutputPath)\Image.jpg"/>

<cs_source Include=".\*.cs" Exclude=".\Foo1.cs" />


And you will reference them like @(File_Image) and @(cs_source).

Dependencies between Targets

<Target Name="CreateOutputPath" Condition="!Exists('$(OutputPath)')">

<MakeDir Directories= "$(OutputPath)"/>


<Target Name="FooCompilation" DependsOnTargets="CreateOutputPath"

Inputs=" Foo1.cs"



J2EE and .NET Integration

1. November 2006 08:26 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)
   Artinsoft provides means to migrated Java Applications to .NET. However as with many medium size to large applications it could be a complex task.
Sometimes due to cost or time restrictions just a portion of the system is migrated. The migration team analyses the code and determines which are the "connection points" or the areas where both systems are connected and therefore, means must be develop to provide communications between the Java and the .NET world.
There are many alternatives.
If you're facing this problem I will recommend the following references:

 Microsoft .NET and J2EE Interoperability Toolkit  by Simon Guest
He also published an interesting article where he recommends a products like Javena, and JNBridge
You can also check out JIntegra

Coverage Tool for C#

26. October 2006 08:18 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)
I recently checkout NCover  http://www.ncover.org/
NCover is a code coverage analysis tool for .NET applications that gives line-by-line code coverage statistics.

This is an open source tool. It generetes a nice graphical output about the functions used and not used. You can see data like: * how many times a function is called and * start and end line numbers of the functions * unused properties of assembly You can find the beginner level tutorial at, http://blog.dotnetwiki.org/archive/2004/07/15/594.aspx

VB.NET to C# Comparison

25. October 2006 04:04 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

    Usually in .NET you end up writing code either in VB.NET or C# depending on your clients preferences.
   So you usually end up in a situation where you know how to do something in C# but do not remember the syntax in VB.NET or viceversa.
 Well I found the following article and I'm copying it here (I had some problems with the link so I decided to copy it).

I want to make clear that I DID NOT WROTE THIS because I do not want to take credit for other peoples work. and it was taken from http://www.harding.edu/USER/fmccown/WWW/vbnet_csharp_comparison.html

"This is a quick reference guide to highlight some key syntactical differences between VB.NET (version 2) and C#. Hope you find this useful!
Thank you to Tom Shelton, Fergus Cooney, Steven Swafford and others for your contributions. "

VB.NET Program Structure C#
Imports System

Namespace Hello
   Class HelloWorld
      Overloads Shared Sub Main(ByVal args() As String)
         Dim name As String = "VB.NET"

         'See if an argument was passed from the command line
          If args.Length = 1 Then name = args(0)

          Console.WriteLine("Hello, " & name & "!")
      End Sub
   End Class
End Namespace
using System;

namespace Hello {
   public class HelloWorld {
      public static void Main(string[] args) {
         string name = "C#";

         // See if an argument was passed from the command line
         if (args.Length == 1)
            name = args[0];

         Console.WriteLine("Hello, " + name + "!");
VB.NET Comments C#
' Single line only
Rem Single line only

// Single line
/* Multiple
    line  */
/// XML comments on single line
/** XML comments on multiple lines */

VB.NET Data Types C#

Value Types
Char   (example: "A"c)
Short, Integer, Long
Single, Double

Reference Types

Dim x As Integer
Console.WriteLine(x.GetType())          ' Prints System.Int32
Console.WriteLine(GetType(Integer))   ' Prints System.Int32
Console.WriteLine(TypeName(x))        ' Prints Integer

' Type conversion
Dim d As Single = 3.5
Dim i As Integer = CType(d, Integer)   ' set to 4 (Banker's rounding)
i = CInt(d)  ' same result as CType
i = Int(d)    ' set to 3 (Int function truncates the decimal)

Value Types
byte, sbyte
char   (example: 'A')
short, ushort, int, uint, long, ulong
float, double
DateTime   (not a built-in C# type)

Reference Types

int x;
Console.WriteLine(x.GetType());              // Prints System.Int32
Console.WriteLine(typeof(int));               // Prints System.Int32
Console.WriteLine(x.GetType().Name);   // prints Int32

// Type conversion

float d = 3.5f;
int i = (int)d;   // set to 3  (truncates decimal)

VB.NET Constants C#
Const MAX_STUDENTS AsInteger = 25

' Can set to a const or var; may be initialized in a constructor
ReadOnly MIN_DIAMETER As Single = 4.93

constint MAX_STUDENTS = 25;

// Can set to a const or var; may be initialized in a constructor
readonly float MIN_DIAMETER = 4.93f;

VB.NET Enumerations C#
Enum Action
  [Stop]   ' Stop is a reserved word
End Enum

Enum Status
  Flunk = 50
  Pass = 70
  Excel = 90
End Enum

Dim a As Action = Action.Stop
If a <> Action.Start Then _
   Console.WriteLine(a.ToString & " is " & a)     ' Prints "Stop is 1"

Console.WriteLine(Status.Pass)     ' Prints 70
Console.WriteLine(Status.Pass.ToString())     ' Prints Pass
enum Action {Start, Stop, Rewind, Forward};
enum Status {Flunk = 50, Pass = 70, Excel = 90};

Action a = Action.Stop;
if (a != Action.Start)
  Console.WriteLine(a + " is " + (int) a);    // Prints "Stop is 1"

Console.WriteLine((int) Status.Pass);    // Prints 70
Console.WriteLine(Status.Pass);      // Prints Pass
VB.NET Operators C#

=  <  >  <=  >=  <>

+  -  *  /
(integer division)
(raise to a power)

=  +=  -=  *=  /=  \=  ^=  <<=  >>=  &=

And   Or   Not   <<   >>

AndAlso   OrElse   And   Or   Xor   Not

Note: AndAlso and OrElse perform short-circuit logical evaluations

String Concatenation
&   +

==  <  >  <=  >=  !=

+  -  *  /
(integer division if both operands are ints)
Math.Pow(x, y)

=  +=  -=  *=  /=   %=  &=  |=  ^=  <<=  >>=  ++  --

&   |   ^   ~   <<   >>

&&   ||   &   |   ^   !

Note: && and || perform short-circuit logical evaluations

String Concatenation

VB.NET Choices C#

greeting = IIf(age < 20, "What's up?", "Hello")

' One line doesn't require "End If"
If age < 20 Then greeting = "What's up?"
If age < 20 Then greeting = "What's up?" Else greeting = "Hello"

' Use : to put two commands on same line
If x <> 100 And y < 5 Then x *= 5 : y *= 2  

' Preferred
If x <> 100 And y < 5 Then
  x *= 5
  y *= 2
End If

' To break up any long single line use _
If whenYouHaveAReally < longLine And _
  itNeedsToBeBrokenInto2 > Lines Then _

'If x > 5 Then
  x *= y
ElseIf x = 5 Then
  x += y
ElseIf x < 10 Then
  x -= y
  x /= y
End If

Select Case color   ' Must be a primitive data type
  Case "pink", "red"
    r += 1
  Case "blue"
    b += 1
  Case "green"
    g += 1
  Case Else
    other += 1
End Select

greeting = age < 20 ? "What's up?" : "Hello";

if (age < 20)
  greeting = "What's up?";
  greeting = "Hello";

// Multiple statements must be enclosed in {}
if (x != 100 && y < 5) {   
  x *= 5;
  y *= 2;

No need for _ or : since ; is used to terminate each statement.

(x > 5)
  x *= y;
else if (x == 5)
  x += y;
else if (x < 10)
  x -= y;
  x /= y;

// Every case must end with break or goto case
switch (color) {                          // Must be integer or string
  case "pink":
  case "red":    r++;    break;
  case "blue":   b++;   break;
  case "green": g++;   break;
  default:    other++;   break;       // break necessary on default

VB.NET Loops C#
Pre-test Loops:
While c < 10
  c += 1
End While

Do Until c = 10 
  c += 1

Do While c < 10
  c += 1

For c = 2 To 10 Step 2

Post-test Loops:
  c += 1
Loop While c < 10
  c += 1
Loop Until c = 10

'  Array or collection looping
Dim names As String() = {"Fred", "Sue", "Barney"}
For Each s As String In names

' Breaking out of loops
Dim i As Integer = 0
While (True)
  If (i = 5) Then Exit While
  i += 1
End While

' Continue to next iteration
For i = 0 To 4
  If i < 4 Then Continue For
  Console.WriteLine(i)   ' Only prints 4

Pre-test Loops: 

// no "until" keyword
while (c < 10)

for (c = 2; c <= 10; c += 2)

Post-test Loop:

while (c < 10);

// Array or collection looping
string[] names = {"Fred", "Sue", "Barney"};
foreach (string s in names)

// Breaking out of loops
int i = 0;
while (true) {
  if (i == 5)

// Continue to next iteration
for (i = 0; i < 5; i++) {
  if (i < 4)
  Console.WriteLine(i);   // Only prints 4

VB.NET Arrays C#

Dim nums() As Integer = {1, 2, 3} 
For i As Integer = 0 To nums.Length - 1

' 4 is the index of the last element, so it holds 5 elements
Dim names(4) As String
names(0) = "David"
names(5) = "Bobby"  ' Throws System.IndexOutOfRangeException

' Resize the array, keeping the existing values (Preserve is optional)
ReDim Preserve names(6)

Dim twoD(rows-1, cols-1) As Single
twoD(2, 0) = 4.5

Dim jagged()() As Integer = { _
  New Integer(4) {}, New Integer(1) {}, New Integer(2) {} }
jagged(0)(4) = 5

int[] nums = {1, 2, 3};
for (int i = 0; i < nums.Length; i++)

// 5 is the size of the array
string[] names = new string[5];
names[0] = "David";
names[5] = "Bobby";   // Throws System.IndexOutOfRangeException

// C# can't dynamically resize an array.  Just copy into new array.
string[] names2 = new string[7];
Array.Copy(names, names2, names.Length);   // or names.CopyTo(names2, 0); 

float[,] twoD = new float[rows, cols];
twoD[2,0] = 4.5f; 

int[][] jagged = new int[3][] {
  new int[5], new int[2], new int[3] };
jagged[0][4] = 5;

VB.NET Functions C#

' Pass by value (in, default), reference (in/out), and reference (out) 
Sub TestFunc(ByVal x As Integer, ByRef y As Integer, ByRef z As Integer)
  x += 1
  y += 1
  z = 5
End Sub

Dim a = 1, b = 1, c As Integer   ' c set to zero by default 
TestFunc(a, b, c)
Console.WriteLine("{0} {1} {2}", a, b, c)   ' 1 2 5

' Accept variable number of arguments
Function Sum(ByVal ParamArray nums As Integer()) As Integer
  Sum = 0 
  For Each i As Integer In nums
    Sum += i
End Function   ' Or use Return statement like C#

Dim total As Integer = Sum(4, 3, 2, 1)   ' returns 10

' Optional parameters must be listed last and must have a default value
Sub SayHello(ByVal name As String, Optional ByVal prefix As String = "")
  Console.WriteLine("Greetings, " & prefix & " " & name)
End Sub

SayHello("Strangelove", "Dr.")

// Pass by value (in, default), reference (in/out), and reference (out)
void TestFunc(int x, ref int y, out int z) {
  z = 5;

int a = 1, b = 1, c;  // c doesn't need initializing
TestFunc(a, ref b, out c);
Console.WriteLine("{0} {1} {2}", a, b, c);  // 1 2 5

// Accept variable number of arguments
int Sum(params int[] nums) {
  int sum = 0;
  foreach (int i in nums)
    sum += i;
  return sum;

int total = Sum(4, 3, 2, 1);   // returns 10

/* C# doesn't support optional arguments/parameters.  Just create two different versions of the same function. */ 
void SayHello(string name, string prefix) {
  Console.WriteLine("Greetings, " + prefix + " " + name);

void SayHello(string name) {
  SayHello(name, "");

VB.NET Strings C#

Special character constants
vbCrLf, vbCr, vbLf, vbNewLine

' String concatenation (use & or +)
Dim school As String = "Harding" & vbTab
school = school & "University" ' school is "Harding (tab) University"

' Chars
Dim letter As Char = school.Chars(0)   ' letter is H
letter = Convert.ToChar(65)                ' letter is A
letter = Chr(65)                                 ' same thing
Dim word() As Char = school.ToCharArray() ' word holds Harding

' No string literal operator 
Dim msg As String = "File is c:\temp\x.dat" 

' String comparison
Dim mascot As String = "Bisons"
If (mascot = "Bisons") Then   ' true
If (mascot.Equals("Bisons")) Then   ' true
If (mascot.ToUpper().Equals("BISONS")) Then  ' true
If (mascot.CompareTo("Bisons") = 0) Then   ' true

Console.WriteLine(mascot.Substring(2, 3)) ' Prints "son"

' String matching
If ("John 3:16" Like "Jo[Hh]? #:*") Then   'true

Imports System.Text.RegularExpressions   ' More powerful than Like
Dim r As New Regex("Jo[hH]. \d:*")
If (r.Match("John 3:16").Success) Then   'true

' My birthday: Oct 12, 1973
Dim dt As New DateTime(1973, 10, 12)
Dim s As String = "My birthday: " & dt.ToString("MMM dd, yyyy")

' Mutable string
Dim buffer As New System.Text.StringBuilder("two ")
buffer.Append("three ")
buffer.Insert(0, "one ")
buffer.Replace("two", "TWO")
Console.WriteLine(buffer)         ' Prints "one TWO three"

Escape sequences
\n, \r

// String concatenation
string school = "Harding\t";
school = school + "University";   // school is "Harding (tab) University"

// Chars
char letter = school[0];            // letter is H
letter = Convert.ToChar(65);     // letter is A
letter = (char)65;                    // same thing
char[] word = school.ToCharArray();   // word holds Harding

// String literal
string msg = @"File is c:\temp\x.dat";
// same as
string msg = "File is c:\\temp\\x.dat";

// String comparison
string mascot = "Bisons";
if (mascot == "Bisons")    // true
if (mascot.Equals("Bisons"))   // true
if (mascot.ToUpper().Equals("BISONS"))   // true
if (mascot.CompareTo("Bisons") == 0)    // true

Console.WriteLine(mascot.Substring(2, 3));    // Prints "son"

// String matching
// No Like equivalent - use regular expressions

using System.Text.RegularExpressions;
Regex r = new Regex(@"Jo[hH]. \d:*");
if (r.Match("John 3:16").Success)   // true

// My birthday: Oct 12, 1973
DateTime dt = new DateTime(1973, 10, 12);
string s = "My birthday: " + dt.ToString("MMM dd, yyyy");

// Mutable string
System.Text.StringBuilder buffer = new System.Text.StringBuilder("two ");
buffer.Append("three ");
buffer.Insert(0, "one ");
buffer.Replace("two", "TWO");
Console.WriteLine(buffer);     // Prints "one TWO three"

VB.NET Exception Handling C#

' Throw an exception
Dim ex As New Exception("Something is really wrong.")
Throw  ex 

' Catch an exception
  y = 0
  x = 10 / y
Catch ex As Exception When y = 0 ' Argument and When is optional
End Try

' Deprecated unstructured error handling
On Error GoTo MyErrorHandler
MyErrorHandler: Console.WriteLine(Err.Description)

// Throw an exception
Exception up = new Exception("Something is really wrong.");
throw up;  // ha ha

// Catch an exception
  y = 0;
  x = 10 / y;
catch (Exception ex) {   // Argument is optional, no "When" keyword 
finally {
  // Requires reference to the Microsoft.VisualBasic.dll
  // assembly (pre .NET Framework v2.0)


VB.NET Namespaces C#

Namespace Harding.Compsci.Graphics 
End Namespace

' or

Namespace Harding
  Namespace Compsci
    Namespace Graphics 
    End Namespace
  End Namespace
End Namespace

Imports Harding.Compsci.Graphics

namespace Harding.Compsci.Graphics {

// or

namespace Harding {
  namespace Compsci {
    namespace Graphics {

using Harding.Compsci.Graphics;

VB.NET Classes / Interfaces C#

Accessibility keywords
Protected Friend

' Inheritance
Class FootballGame
  Inherits Competition
End Class 

' Interface definition
Interface IAlarmClock 
End Interface

// Extending an interface 
Interface IAlarmClock
  Inherits IClock
End Interface

// Interface implementation
Class WristWatch 
  Implements IAlarmClock, ITimer 
End Class 

Accessibility keywords
protected internal

// Inheritance
class FootballGame : Competition {

// Interface definition

interface IAlarmClock {

// Extending an interface 
interface IAlarmClock : IClock {

// Interface implementation

class WristWatch : IAlarmClock, ITimer {

VB.NET Constructors / Destructors C#
Class SuperHero
  Private _powerLevel As Integer

  Public Sub New()
    _powerLevel = 0
  End Sub

  Public Sub New(ByVal powerLevel As Integer)
    Me._powerLevel = powerLevel
  End Sub

  Protected Overrides Sub Finalize() 
   ' Desctructor code to free unmanaged resources
  End Sub
End Class

class SuperHero {
  private int _powerLevel;

  public SuperHero() {
     _powerLevel = 0;

  public SuperHero(int powerLevel) {
    this._powerLevel= powerLevel; 

  ~SuperHero() {
    // Destructor code to free unmanaged resources.
    // Implicitly creates a Finalize method


VB.NET Using Objects C#

Dim hero As SuperHero = New SuperHero
' or
Dim hero As New SuperHero

With hero
  .Name = "SpamMan"
  .PowerLevel = 3
End With

hero.Defend("Laura Jones")
hero.Rest()     ' Calling Shared method
' or

Dim hero2 As SuperHero = hero  ' Both reference the same object
hero2.Name = "WormWoman"
Console.WriteLine(hero.Name)   ' Prints WormWoman

hero = Nothing    ' Free the object

If hero Is Nothing Then _
  hero = New SuperHero

Dim obj As Object = New SuperHero
If TypeOf obj Is SuperHero Then _
  Console.WriteLine("Is a SuperHero object.")

' Mark object for quick disposal
Using reader As StreamReader = File.OpenText("test.txt")
  Dim line As String = reader.ReadLine()
  While Not line Is Nothing
    line = reader.ReadLine()
  End While
End Using

SuperHero hero = new SuperHero();

// No "With" construct
hero.Name = "SpamMan";
hero.PowerLevel = 3;

hero.Defend("Laura Jones");
SuperHero.Rest();   // Calling static method

SuperHero hero2 = hero;   // Both reference the same object
hero2.Name = "WormWoman";
Console.WriteLine(hero.Name);   // Prints WormWoman

hero = null ;   // Free the object

if (hero == null)
  hero = new SuperHero();

Object obj = new SuperHero(); 
if (obj is SuperHero)
  Console.WriteLine("Is a SuperHero object.");

// Mark object for quick disposal
using (StreamReader reader = File.OpenText("test.txt")) {
  string line;
  while ((line = reader.ReadLine()) != null)
VB.NET Structs C#

Structure StudentRecord
  Public name As String
  Public gpa As Single

  Public Sub New(ByVal name As String, ByVal gpa As Single)
    Me.name = name
    Me.gpa = gpa
  End Sub
End Structure

Dim stu As StudentRecord = New StudentRecord("Bob", 3.5)
Dim stu2 As StudentRecord = stu  

stu2.name = "Sue"
Console.WriteLine(stu.name)    ' Prints Bob
Console.WriteLine(stu2.name)  ' Prints Sue

struct StudentRecord {
  public string name;
  public float gpa;

  public StudentRecord(string name, float gpa) {
    this.name = name;
    this.gpa = gpa;

StudentRecord stu = new StudentRecord("Bob", 3.5f);
StudentRecord stu2 = stu;  

stu2.name = "Sue";
Console.WriteLine(stu.name);    // Prints Bob
Console.WriteLine(stu2.name);   // Prints Sue

VB.NET Properties C#

Private _size As Integer

Public Property Size() As Integer
    Return _size
  End Get
  Set (ByVal Value As Integer)
    If Value < 0 Then
      _size = 0
      _size = Value
    End If
  End Set
End Property

foo.Size += 1

private int _size;

public int Size {
  get {
    return _size;
  set {
    if (value < 0)
      _size = 0;
      _size = value;


VB.NET Delegates / Events C#

Delegate Sub MsgArrivedEventHandler(ByVal message As String)

Event MsgArrivedEvent As MsgArrivedEventHandler

' or to define an event which declares a delegate implicitly
Event MsgArrivedEvent(ByVal message As String)

AddHandler MsgArrivedEvent, AddressOf My_MsgArrivedCallback
' Won't throw an exception if obj is Nothing
RaiseEvent MsgArrivedEvent("Test message")
RemoveHandler MsgArrivedEvent, AddressOf My_MsgArrivedCallback

Imports System.Windows.Forms

Dim WithEvents MyButton As Button   ' WithEvents can't be used on local variable
MyButton = New Button

Private Sub MyButton_Click(ByVal sender As System.Object, _
  ByVal e As System.EventArgs) Handles MyButton.Click
  MessageBox.Show(Me, "Button was clicked", "Info", _
    MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Information)
End Sub

delegate void MsgArrivedEventHandler(string message);

event MsgArrivedEventHandler MsgArrivedEvent;

// Delegates must be used with events in C#

MsgArrivedEvent += new MsgArrivedEventHandler(My_MsgArrivedEventCallback);
MsgArrivedEvent("Test message");    // Throws exception if obj is null
MsgArrivedEvent -= new MsgArrivedEventHandler(My_MsgArrivedEventCallback);

using System.Windows.Forms;

Button MyButton = new Button(); 
MyButton.Click += new System.EventHandler(MyButton_Click);

private void MyButton_Click(object sender, System.EventArgs e) {
  MessageBox.Show(this, "Button was clicked", "Info",
    MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Information);

VB.NET Console I/O C#

Console.Write("What's your name? ")
Dim name As String = Console.ReadLine()
Console.Write("How old are you? ")
Dim age As Integer = Val(Console.ReadLine())
Console.WriteLine("{0} is {1} years old.", name, age) 
' or
Console.WriteLine(name & " is " & age & " years old.")

Dim c As Integer
c = Console.Read()    ' Read single char
Console.WriteLine(c)   ' Prints 65 if user enters "A"

Console.Write("What's your name? ");
string name = Console.ReadLine();
Console.Write("How old are you? ");
int age = Convert.ToInt32(Console.ReadLine());
Console.WriteLine("{0} is {1} years old.", name, age);
// or
Console.WriteLine(name + " is " + age + " years old.");

int c = Console.Read();  // Read single char
Console.WriteLine(c);    // Prints 65 if user enters "A"

VB.NET File I/O C#

Imports System.IO

' Write out to text file
Dim writer As StreamWriter = File.CreateText("c:\myfile.txt")
writer.WriteLine("Out to file.")

' Read all lines from text file
Dim reader As StreamReader = File.OpenText("c:\myfile.txt")
Dim line As String = reader.ReadLine()
While Not line Is Nothing
  line = reader.ReadLine()
End While

' Write out to binary file
Dim str As String = "Text data"
Dim num As Integer = 123
Dim binWriter As New BinaryWriter(File.OpenWrite("c:\myfile.dat")) 

' Read from binary file
Dim binReader As New BinaryReader(File.OpenRead("c:\myfile.dat"))
str = binReader.ReadString()
num = binReader.ReadInt32()

using System.IO;

// Write out to text file
StreamWriter writer = File.CreateText("c:\\myfile.txt");
writer.WriteLine("Out to file.");

// Read all lines from text file
StreamReader reader = File.OpenText("c:\\myfile.txt");
string line = reader.ReadLine();
while (line != null) {
  line = reader.ReadLine();

// Write out to binary file
string str = "Text data";
int num = 123;
BinaryWriter binWriter = new BinaryWriter(File.OpenWrite("c:\\myfile.dat"));

// Read from binary file
BinaryReader binReader = new BinaryReader(File.OpenRead("c:\\myfile.dat"));
str = binReader.ReadString();
num = binReader.ReadInt32();

Win32 APIS to .NET

25. October 2006 03:47 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)
 Migrating C++ code from Win32 to managed code can be quite complex, specially if you have a lot of Win32 code of GUI code.
I copying some links here that will be of help during this task

The following link gives an introduction to managed C++:

Introduction to Managed C++

From that article:

Here are some specific advantages of MC++:

  • The best performance of generated IL code because of both optimizations of the generated IL and less IL generated (as discussed in the previous section). This is specifically because MC++ is the only .NET compiler with a full optimizer back end, which is pretty much the same one that is used by the unmanaged compiler.
  • MC++ is your language of choice if you want full control of the .NET environment:
    • Allows one to use all seven levels of CTS member access. C# allows only six.
    • Allows direct access to interior gc pointers, useful in a whole class of system applications such as system and .NET utilities.
    • Offers explicit control of expensive operations like boxing.
    • Supports multiple indexed properties on a type, unlike C#.
  • MC++ is currently the only managed language that allows you to mix unmanaged and managed code, even in the same file. This leads to several other points:
    • Allows a developer to keep performance-critical portions of the code in native code.
    • Gives seamless access to all unmanaged libraries, such as DLLs, statically-linked libraries, COM objects, template libraries, and more.
    • Leverages existing investments in C++ programming skills and legacy C++ code.
    • Porting unmanaged code to .NET: MC++ allows you to take existing unmanaged code and compile it to managed code (with the /clr compiler switch and IJW).
    • Gives the ability to port code at one's own rate rather than re-write all at once.
    • Provides the easiest way to add .NET support to your existing native C++ Windows applications, by allowing you to bridge the gap between the two environments with as little work on your behalf as possible, and with the lowest performance penalty.
  • MC++ is currently the only language that allows some form of multi-paradigm design and development with full support for generic programming and templates. This can lead to more options and better designs and implementations.

Disadvantages of Managed C++

  • C++ is a more complex language than C# in both its syntax and areas where one could get into trouble. Since MC++ follows the C++ paradigm of "explicit is good", some MC++ constructs may seem really ugly. For simpler types of applications, and with certain types of developers, it may make more sense to use C#.
  • Managed C++ code is non-verifiable, since C++ can perform unsafe operations. The implication of this is that MC++ code may not run in restricted environments that will not run code that is non-verifiable.
  • Some minor features of the .NET platform are not supported yet, such as Jagged Arrays.
  • IDEsupport is currently lacking, compared to other managed languages, since there's little or no designer support (but Everett will change this).
  • "
#using mscorlib.dll;
// required for MC++
void main()
    System::Console::WriteLine(S"Managed C++ Rocks!!");

This other article explains how the different mixes you can make with managed and unmanaged code:
Intro to C++ Managed Code

And this article Microsoft Win32 to Microsoft .NET Framework API Map
Gives a map for your APIs that can be very helpful

Utility to Patch XML

24. October 2006 10:56 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)
Recently I was in the need to PATCH an xml. I had a program that generated an XML that was input to other program.
My problem was that there were some particular changes I needed to do to my XML but they could need to be redone If i regenerated my XML, so how could I automate that. I could not find an easy tool to do that so I built one and here it is:
It uses the XML facilities in .NET and it is a quick and dirty implementation. It allows you to Comment tags, to remove them or to add tags and also attributes

Here is a sample input file

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>

<PatchesInfo xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance" xmlns:xsd="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema">>

 <!-- Sample Patch -->


    <Patch forAttribute="false">



       <![CDATA[  <ADDEDTAG/>]]>




   <!-- Commenting -->

    <Patch forAttribute="false">



        <![CDATA[** This part with be put on top of the comment entry ** ]]>




using System;

using System.IO;

using System.Collections.Generic;

using System.Text;

using System.Xml;

using System.Xml.Serialization;

using System.Diagnostics;


namespace XMLPatcher


    // Set this 'Customer' class as the root node

    // of any XML file its serialized to.

    [XmlRootAttribute("PatchesInfo", Namespace = "", IsNullable = false)]

    public class Patches



        /// <summary>

        /// Default constructor for this class

        /// (required for serialization).

        /// </summary>       

        public Patches()





        public System.Collections.ArrayList patches = new System.Collections.ArrayList();




    public class Patch



        // Set this 'bool' field

        // to be an attribute of the root node.


        public bool forAttribute = false;


        // By NOT specifing any custom

        // Metadata Attributes, fields will be created

        // as an element by default.


        public string Type;


        public string Content;


        public string XPathLocation;




    static class XmlPatcher


        public static void Patch(string patchFilename,string inputFilename,string outputFilename)


            Patches p = new Patches();

            XmlSerializer serializer = new XmlSerializer(typeof(Patches));

            TextReader reader = new StreamReader(patchFilename);

            p = (Patches)serializer.Deserialize(reader);



            XmlDocument doc = new XmlDocument();


            foreach (Patch patch in p.patches)


                if (patch.forAttribute)


                    if (patch.Type.Equals("Change"))


                        XmlAttribute node = doc.SelectSingleNode(patch.XPathLocation) as XmlAttribute;

                        node.Value = patch.Content;



                        if (patch.Type.Equals("Apply"))


                            XmlAttribute node = doc.SelectSingleNode(patch.XPathLocation) as XmlAttribute;

                            XmlDocument temp = new XmlDocument();


                            node.AppendChild(doc.ImportNode(temp.ChildNodes[0], true));




                            if (patch.Type.Equals("ApplyAllElements"))


                                XmlAttribute node = doc.SelectSingleNode(patch.XPathLocation) as XmlAttribute;




                                Debug.Fail("Invalid path type for an attribute");




                    //For elements

                    XmlNodeList elements = doc.SelectNodes(patch.XPathLocation);

                    foreach (XmlElement element in elements)


                        if (patch.Type.Equals("Apply"))


                            XmlDocument temp = new XmlDocument();


                            element.AppendChild(doc.ImportNode(temp.ChildNodes[0], true));


                        else if (patch.Type.Equals("Remove"))




                        else if (patch.Type.Equals("Comment"))


                            XmlComment comment = doc.CreateComment(patch.Content + "\r\n" + element.OuterXml + "\r\n ********");

                            element.ParentNode.ReplaceChild(comment, element);







            Console.WriteLine("File " + inputFilename + " has been patched. Results in " + outputFilename);





    class Program



        /// <summary>

        /// Reads a Patches document. This document has the following form:

        /// <Patches>

        ///   <Patch xpath="...">

        ///     new xml

        ///   </Patch>

        /// </Patches>

        /// </summary>

        /// <param name="args"></param>

        public static void Main(string[] args)



            XmlPatcher.Patch(args[0], args[1], args[2]);

            Console.WriteLine("File " + args[1] + " has been patched. Results in " + args[2]);





Returning cursors in Oracle

17. October 2006 10:07 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

I recenlty had a hard time trying to return some cursos and used them in Excel.

The problem is that Excel does not understand ref cursors. There are a couple of links in Microsoft. In general you have to use a special ODBC query syntax and create a package ????

This is an example, I just copied from Microsoft


       (ssn     NUMBER(9) PRIMARY KEY,
        fname   VARCHAR2(15),
        lname   VARCHAR2(20));

      INSERT INTO DATA1 VALUES(555662222,'Sam','Goodwin');

      INSERT INTO DATA1 VALUES(555882222,'Kent','Clark');

      INSERT INTO DATA1 VALUES(666223333,'Sally','Burnett');


          TYPE tssn is TABLE of  NUMBER(10)
          TYPE tfname is TABLE of VARCHAR2(15)
          TYPE tlname is TABLE of VARCHAR2(20)

        PROCEDURE GetData
              (param1 IN      Date,
               ssn    OUT     tssn,
               fname  OUT     tfname,
               lname  OUT     tlname);
      END packData1;


      PROCEDURE GetData
            (param1  IN    Date,
                   ssn     OUT   tssn,
                   fname   OUT   tfname,
                   lname   OUT   tlname)
        CURSOR data1_cur IS
                   SELECT ssn, fname, lname
                   FROM Data1
                   WHERE param1 < current_date;
           percount NUMBER DEFAULT 1;
           FOR singledata IN data1_cur
                   ssn(percount) := singledata.ssn;
                   fname(percount) := singledata.fname;
                   lname(percount) := singledata.lname;
                   percount := percount + 1;
           END LOOP;
To call it you write in Excel something like {call packdata1.GetData('01-JAN-2005',{resultset 70000, ssn, fname, lname})}      

{call packdata1.GetData(?,{resultset 70000, ssn, fname, lname})}    to use parameters.

The microsoft links are:




Easy way to start developing webparts

12. October 2006 09:09 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)
Recently someone I one told me he was working with WebParts and that he was not happy about it.
Developing WebParts is that hard but is even easier if you are familiar with simple web user controls.
Some people from Reflection IT created a WebPart that allows you to reuse your web user controls. So I think it will very useful for anyone that is just starting with this
Just look for SmartPart

Expading or Shrinking your disks

5. October 2006 06:52 by Mrojas in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)
    If you have been using VMWare for a while you'll end up having space problems.
Either your virtual machine disks are TOO big or TOO small.
To handle that VMWare Workstation has a tool (Notice that VMWare Server does not have it)
Called vmware-vdiskmanager.exe (Virtual Disk Manager you can google it with "Virtual Disk Manager vmware")
you will find it in C:\Program Files\VmWare WorkStation\

to Expand a Disk you just do vmware-vdiskmanager.exe -x 40GB mydisk.vmdsk

To Shrink files there are more steps to take. You must remove all snapshots if you had any. Then start the virtual machine, and install the vmwareTools and once you have installed then you go to the control panel Click in Vmware Tools and use the Shrinking features.

Then you can use the vmware-vdiskmanager.exe -k command.

You can find more details intructions in the VMWare site! Good Luck