Thursday, 28 March 2013

How do you resolve the ReferenceManagerPackage failed to load error in Visual Studio?

This is another in a brand new series of videos that I am producing for my new YouTube channel HowDoYouDoStuff.
A channel dedicated to short videos on how to do stuff.


In this video, I am going to show you how to resolve the error "ReferenceManagerPackage failed to load" when trying to add a reference in Visual Studio 2012.


You can read the transcript below.





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In this video, I am going to show you how to resolve the error "ReferenceManagerPackage failed to load" when trying to add a reference in Visual Studio 2012.

This morning, I created a new MVC 4 project in Visual Studio 2012 and was attempting to add a reference to System.Security in order to do a demo on cryptography.

Instead of the usual Add a Reference dialog, I received the 'ReferenceManagerPackage' failed to load error message.

This is one of those errors that you get with Visual Studio from time to time that Microsoft are at a loss to explain. In fact, the consensus on the forums seemed to be to reinstall Visual Studio. Well I wasn't about to do that.

I should also point out that I was using one of 6 computers, each of which had been imaged using ghost and so they had an identical build. I was able to reproduce this error on 3 of those machines.

So the solution.

Well perhaps I should call it a work around.

System.Security is already part of .NET and so therefore, adding a reference doesn't involve moving assemblies around. It simply involves adding a reference somewhere.

In this case, the somewhere is the project file. 

Well, they are easy enough to update manually.

I right-clicked the project in the Solution Explorer window and selected Unload Project.

Now that the project was unloaded, I was able to edit it in Visual Studio by right-clicking on the project again in the Solution Explorer window and selecting Edit projectname.csproj.

It is the ItemGroup section that holds all of the references for the project, so I simply needed to add a Reference element to include "System.Security".

With this done, I saved and closed the project file and then once again, right-clicked on the project in the Solution Explorer window and selected Reload Project.

Once I had done that, I could expand references to reassure myself that I had in fact successfully referenced System.Security in my project.

Clearly. This was a work around. It was effective though.

As for the actual problem. In this case, I had a room full of computers imaged with Ghost so there would be no point in reinstalling Visual Studio. However, if it had been my actual  development machine then I would probably have had to reinstall Visual Studio when I managed to find some time.

There you have it.

In this video, I have shown you how to resolve the error "ReferenceManagerPackage failed to load" when trying to add a reference in Visual Studio 2012.




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Phil Stirpé
"I don't do average!"



Thursday, 21 March 2013

How do you resolve the error 'No signed drivers were found' when trying to install Windows 8?

This another in a brand new series of videos that I am producing for my new YouTube channel HowDoYouDoStuff.
A channel dedicated to short videos on how to do stuff.


In this video, I am going to show you how to resolve the error "No signed drivers were found." when trying to install Windows 8.


You can read the transcript below.





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In this video, I am going to show you how to resolve the error "No signed drivers were found." when trying to install Windows 8.

Yesterday, I attempted to install Windows 8 on my new HP EliteBook  computer.

I intended to dual boot the machine with Windows 7 and Windows 8 and had already installed Windows 7 onto the first partition.

It was when I tried to install Windows 8 that I ran into trouble.

I selected the Custom install option in order to choose the partition to install to and received the error message:

"No signed drivers were found. Make sure that the installation media contains the correct drivers, and then click OK."

Not only did I receive an error, but there were no partitions listed in the window.

Naturally, I searched for the error message online but unfortunately, most of the suggestions had to do with corrupt or dirty installation media. I was pretty sure that my media was fine.

Fortunately, a colleague suggested that it might have to do with the Secure Boot settings in the bios. This is a security requirement for installing Windows 8.

I searched HP for guidance on preparing my computer for Secure Boot and found a page that instructed me to simply download the latest driver for the bios and install it.

I followed the link and downloaded the bios driver for Windows 8.

Once I'd run the driver and rebooted the machine, I tried to install Windows 8 again.

This time when I selected the Custom install, I was presented with the full list of available partitions and was finally able to install Windows 8 without further problems.

There you have it.

In this video, I have shown you how to resolve the error "No signed drivers were found." when trying to install Windows 8.



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Phil Stirpé
"I don't do average!"


Friday, 1 March 2013

Interview with Troy Hunt about the OWASP Top 10

 
I had the pleasure of delivering the first teach of this excellent course last month and it was very well received by those who attended.
 
Two weeks ago, I was delighted to have the chance to interview Troy about the OWASP Top 10 and related topics.

Here is the video.

And if you think I come across a little wooden, that will be because it was my first interview AND that I had to re-record my piece the day after as the laptop running the microphone and camera shutdown twice!
 


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Phil Stirpé
"I don't do average!"




 

How do you download and install the JAVA Development Kit - JDK?

This another in a brand new series of videos that I am producing for my new YouTube channel HowDoYouDoStuff.
A channel dedicated to short videos on how to do stuff.

In this video, I am going to show you how simple it is to download and install the JAVA Development Kit - JDK.

You can read the transcript below.





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In this video, I am going to show you how simple it is to download and install the JAVA Development Kit - JDK.
If you plan to do any JAVA development, you are going to need to install the JDK on your machine.
If all you want to do is run JAVA programs on your machine, then you just need the JAVA Runtime Environment or JRE.
In fact, the JDK includes a copy of the JRE so by installing that, you get both. Allowing you to develop and run JAVA programs on your machine.
To download the Java Development Kit, you need to open up the Java SE Downloads page in your browser. A quick way to find it is simply to search for Java SE Development Kit. The SE stands for Standard Edition. There is also EE which stands for Enterprise edition and you should select the one most suited to your needs.
I do not need Enterprise Edition for the work I will be doing in these videos, so Standard Edition will do fine.
Now this path to the JAVA SE Downloads on the Oracle site is a bit long winded but there is something else that you can try.
If you type java.sun.com into the address bar, this will redirect you to the Oracle developers page where you can click on the Java SE link on the right-hand side.
On the Java SE page we have a link to download the Java JDK. Currently the java 7 update 15.
There is another link to it lower down the page.
In addition you will find some demos and samples to download.
For now though, it is just the JDK that I am interested in, so I'll go ahead and click that link.
That redirects me to the download page where I am prompted to accept the licence agreement. Which of course I do.
I can now select the most appropriate installer. As I am working on a 64bit Windows machine, I need to locate an installer for that. And here is the exe that I need.
The browser now prompts me to either run or save the file.
Well I'm going to save the file so that I can easily reinstall later if I have to.
So I'll select this folder here.
This download is going to take about 4 minutes so I'll cut away otherwise this would just be tedious.
OK. So we're back in time to see the download complete.
Let me go and locate the downloaded file.
Great. There it is.
Now to install the JDK, all I need to do is double click the executable file.
I can just click through the initial stages.
Here I am being asked which components that I require. Well I want all of them so I'll click Next. But before I do, look at where the installer is going to put the JDK. It will be placed in the C:\Program Files\Java folder with a name that includes the JDK version. This version is 7 update 15.
Now this next bit can run on for several minutes whilst the many files are installed so I have trimmed this segment of video.
As I mentioned earlier, the JDK includes a copy of the Java Runtime Environment and so here you can see that the JRE will be placed in the c:\program files\java\jre7 folder.
Here we have another lengthy segment while the JRE files are installed so I have trimmed this segment also.
Once all the files have been installed, I can click Close and we're done.
A registration page will pop up in your browser and if you want to fill that in then go ahead. I'll just close it down.
Let's go and take a look at what has just been installed.
If I navigate the c:\program files\java folder you will see both the JDK and JRE folders.
If I drill down into the JDK folder I will find a number of files and folders. Perhaps the most important for now is the bin folder as this is where the javac.exe file can be located. This is the tool that is used to compile your java code. Alongside it is also java.exe which is needed to execute your compiled programs.
OK. The JDK is installed but we need to set up some environment variables in order to use and test it.
I need the path to the JDK folder so I'll copy it from the address bar here in Windows Explorer.
The quickest way to locate the Environment Variable dialog is to search for it by clicking on the Start Button. Up comes the link and so I'll select that.
The System Properties window appears with the Environment Variables button in the bottom right.
Instead of finding it in that way, you could expand the All Programs menu and right-click on Computer before clicking Properties.
Once this page appears, you can click on the Advanced Settings link in the top left hand corner.
And here we are back in the System Properties window.
Whatever works for you.
So let me click on the Environment Variables button.
I need to create a new variable named JAVA_HOME. This variable name is sought out by tools such as Apache Tomcat and should point to your JDK folder if you have one.
So I will type in the name of JAVA_HOME and then paste in the path that I copied from the JDK folder a few moments ago.
Another thing that I need to do is update the Path environment variable. This is important if you plan to do any work at the command line which I do.
When attempting to compile code at the command line, Windows needs to know where to locate the javac.exe program.
So I'll edit the Path environment variable and append a semi colon to any existing paths and then add the JDK folder name. I then need to append \bin because that is where the javac.exe program resides.
So now that is done, I just need to test that everything is working.
Let me switch to the command line.
As I am not in the JDK folder, I am relying on the Path environment variable to help Windows locate the javac and java programs when I try to execute them.
Let me start with java. I'll enter java followed by the version switch and press enter. As you can see, the program ran and gave me the version. This proves that Windows was able to use my Path environment variable to locate the JDK files.
I'll try the same with javac. I'll type javac followed by the version switch and once again, I get a result.
There you have it.
In this video, I have shown you how easy it is to download and install the JAVA Development Kit - JDK. I downloaded the JDK. Installed it and then created some environment variables to help me use it. Finally, I tested my configuration by executing java and javac from the command line.
 

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Phil Stirpé
"I don't do average!"


How do you zoom in when recording a YouTube video?

This another in a brand new series of videos that I am producing for my new YouTube channel HowDoYouDoStuff.


A channel dedicated to short videos on how to do stuff.


In this video, I am going to show you how simple it is to zoom in when recording a YouTube video.

You can read the transcript below.






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In this video, I am going to show you how simple it is to zoom in when recording a YouTube video.
When recording demos for YouTube videos (or any tutorial video for that matter), it often helps the viewer if you can zoom into the area of the screen that you are working on.
There are a number of techniques to do this and I'm going to show you the one that I use a lot.
It is to use a tool called ZoomIt.
You can download ZoomIt quite easily.
Just fire up your browser and search for "sysinternals zoomit".
The first link is the one that you need.
Sysinternals is a group of tools available from Microsoft for use with Windows.
The latest version is 4.2.
You just click on this link to download it.
My browser is offering to run or save the file.
I'm going to save the file so that I have a copy to use elsewhere.
I'm going to save it to the Desktop because that is where I like to keep Zoomit. This is mainly because I use it when creating tutorials on the Desktop.
It doesn't take long to download and if I drag in this window, you can see that it has been saved to my Desktop.
If I open the zip file, you will see that it contains the Zoomit.exe file. This isn't an installer, it is simply the app so all I have to do is drop this file onto my Desktop and I am good to go.
Now all I have to do is remember to double-click the icon to launch ZoomIt whenever I am about to deliver a demo or record a tutorial.
When zoomit launches, you will see this dialog telling  you about the keyboard shortcuts.
The standard zoom feature is activated by pressing Ctrl-1. This is a simple read only zoom for when you want to show off some small detail.
There is also LiveZoom which is activated by pressing Ctrl-4. This is useful if you want to zoom in on an area but want to continue doing something such as typing some code or adjusting a property.
Let me jump into Expression Blend to simulate a demo.
I have just drawn a Button control and want to set its properties in the XAML code.
Now if I press Ctrl-1, I can zoom in to show you the detail which is great in many situations. You can now read the code more clearly but I am not able to interact with the UI whilst zoomed.
If that's what I need then I need to activate the LiveZoom mode. I'll just press Esc to leave Zoom mode.
Now let's say that I want to update the Content property of the Button control whilst zoomed in. I just need to press Ctrl-4 on the keyboard and ZoomIt zooms in to where my mousepointer is located. Furthermore, you can see the blinking insertion point which means that I am free to type and change this property value to "OK".
Another useful feature when in zoomed mode is to zoom in or out further. There are keyboard short cuts for this too. Ctrl-Up arrow to zoom in more and Ctrl-Down to zoom out again.
When I want to leave the LiveZoom mode, I can't press Esc like before. This time, I must use Ctrl-4 again.
There you have it.
In this video, I have shown you how easy it is to zoom in when recording a YouTube video by using a tool named ZoomIt.
 

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Phil Stirpé
"I don't do average!"