Bookmark spring cleaning

Monday, 13 April 2009

Over the years I’ve managed to accrue quite a collection of bookmarks – 643 to be exact. I try to maintain a logical filing hierarchy by using folders, though it is interesting that some of those folders are not used as much as they use to.

Also I’ve found that the new features in Firefox 3 mean that I more often just start typing in the address bar and rely on the intelligent completion to list matches from my bookmarks (as well as from recent browsing history) rather than using the mouse to navigate down to the right bookmark menu item.

I use the XMarks Firefox extension (formerly Foxmarks) to synchronise my bookmarks between home, work (and anywhere else I choose). This is a great way to populate my bookmarks on a new machine too.

I also use the Bookmark Duplicate Detector extension to ensure I don’t try to add a bookmark for a site I’ve already got (probably not quite as likely with the extra icons Firefox 3 displays).

But even with all this, I know there are lots of bookmarks that are no longer valid. Some tools to validate your bookmarks include:


I first tried AM-DeadLink and it worked quite well. I then installed CheckPlaces and it also worked as expected.

If you just use Firefox, then CheckPlaces would probably be all you need. For those who use IE or Opera then AM-Deadlink is worth a look.

SQL Server 2008 SP1

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

The first service pack for Microsoft SQL Server 2008 is now available. The list of bug fixes is in KB 968369.

There’s also update for the Feature Pack and Express Edition too.

Fiddler plugin – neXpert performance analysis

Friday, 3 April 2009

An interesting add-in for Fiddler - Microsoft neXpert. It “automates the classic performance best practice checks and produces a HTML report on the issues found in a Fiddler capture”.

Visual Studio 2008 at 100% CPU scrolling text

Tuesday, 31 March 2009

The Visual Studio text editor has been feeling very sluggish. It finally got so annoying, when just holding down the down arrow to scroll down was taking 1 second per line (and devenv.exe would peak in CPU % Task Manager), that I decided I needed to figure out what the problem was.

Running devenv.exe with the /safemode option resulted in a well-performing editor, so the next step was to isolate which add-in(s) was the culprit..

  1. Resharper 4.5 nightly build..
  2. TestDriven.NET
  3. Gallio
  4. CAT.NET
  5. Spelling add-in
  6. VisualSVN
  7. Visual Studio SDK
  8. WiX

And that did the trick. Looks like this bug has been identified in WiX, so hopefully the next public build will resolve the problem. In the meantime, the workaround is to unload any WiX projects in your solution.

Now to re-install everything again :-)

SAS and typeperf

Monday, 30 March 2009

It’s nice to learn new things.

For instance at last week’s Adelaide SQL User Group, as part of Dan Grecu’s talk on how he manages his SQL Server infrastructure, he showed a script that uses typeperf.exe. That was new to me, even though it’s been around since at least Windows NT 4.0. It records the values of specified performance counters to the command window or a file.

Then this morning on the bus I was listening to RunAs Radio episode 101, where Alan Sugano mentioned SCSI, SATA and SAS. I’d heard of the first two, but not the third. Fortunately Richard asked Alan to define them. So SAS uses SCSI but rather than having 8 or 16 devices all sharing the same bus, each device is on its own connection, so they don’t have to wait their turn to send or receive data. For this reason it sounds like it’s becoming quite popular, particularly for servers.