Extract files from .msi files using Universal Extractor

by Aboo Bolaky 22. February 2009 10:31

I needed an application that could peek into .msi installation files and extract some content out of it.  As the author outlines, it will not replace any commercial archiving program. However, I do feel that this program rocks and worked even when other commercial apps failed or crashed.

It nicely integrates in the context menu and I'd certainly give it a 5 out of 5 !!

Universal Extractor can be download from here.

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Freebies

Listview losing viewstate on postback in Sitecore V6

by Aboo Bolaky 21. February 2009 08:23

This post will most probably apply to the GridView and LoginView controls as well.

The Problem

Lets assume that you've successfully bound a listview to your datasource and configured all the properties on the listview to display the Select/Edit/Delete links. You then have the task to write the logic in the appropriate events of the usercontrol/sublayout. While I was implementing the Edit functionality, I implemented the OnItemCommand event of the Listview to display an Edit Panel with the data populated from the selected row. I was a bit suprised to see that the end result wasn't what I was expecting:

The Edit Panel shows up but the Listview has left the party.!!

The Frustration 

It dawned on me that, at some point, I must have messed up somewhere in the code.So, I began putting "EnableViewState=true" to every control.. (this shows how desperate I was!!). I also reverted to "AutoEventFireUp=false" (Originally, I was manually hooking up the events..).I tried databinding on every possible method I could lay my hands on!!. I lost confidence on the fact that this was a really easy task and yet, it was taking me hours to get to the bottom of the problem. I completely lost my mind....I began googling on the issue ["postback..losing viewstate"], I started to watch a few videos that demonstrate the functionality of the ListView..I even got the point where I created another item in Sitecore, assigned the same sublayout to the item's presentation and accessed the item using the url.. I ended up in the same situation.... I surrendered...I left the battlefield...wounded..!!![White flag..Sealed].

The Solution

I finally blamed it on Sitecore!! Who knows, maybe it was a known issue in one of their releases or maybe I just needed to upgrade to the latest stable release(090120). Out of desperation, I tried searching on the Forums and found that I wasn't the only one experiencing this issue.I came across this forum post. Thanks to Mark Cassidy, I eventually finished my task (It had taken me almost a day...and that had messed up (big time) on my initial estimate!!!)

The solution, as Mark outlined, is to add the type of the control (in my case, System.Web.UI.WebControls.ListView) to the typesThatShouldNotBeExpanded element in the web.config. Presumably, for the sake of consistency, you might also append the System.Web.UI.WebControls.Gridview to the list (in case your website makes use of one!!). From what I've read so far, no one knows about the purpose of the typesThatShouldNotBeExpanded element .!! {Sigh...Sitecore!! What did you do that to me????}

In hindsight, only laughs...Good Days...Good Times...

I hope this helps someone!!!

Back to Sitecore  ......

Tags:

.Net | Applications | Sitecore | Tips & Tricks

The AddAspxExtension property in Sitecore V6

by Aboo Bolaky 11. February 2009 07:53

In Sitecore 6.0, a new Link Manager class has been added. In the web.config, a few properties affect the functionality of the Link Manager. I've already posted on the EncodeNames property (fyi, default value : false).

The AddAspxExtension Property

On the surface, I can clearly relate to the functionality of this property. If this is set to false, we are instructing Sitecore to render links (i.e via <sc:link>) without any extensions. This is (alledgedly) GREAT NEWS for SEO experts. If you leverage this functionality with some Url Rewriting (either via Helicon Isapi Rewrite Lite (free)  or UrlRewriter.Net ), you must be thinking that you will have a Sitecore front-end website without any extensions.

The Glitch...

If you spent most of your time in implementing regular expressions to rewrite (under the hood) those extensionless links to .aspx and feed them back to Sitecore, Well...I'm afraid you have wasted your precious time (no matter how cool your regex expressions are!!). The moment you try to access the Content Editor in the CMS, you  simply receive some weird error messages. Sometimes, it's the dreaded YSOD (Object Reference not set to an instance of an object) or occasionally a 404 page welcomes you. With the AddAspxExtension property set to false, you might end up with a fancy looking frontend and NO backend support at all. Not very usefull... Did a bit of research on SDN5, turns out that the symptoms are correct

This has led me to believe that, in the midst of tackling problems that vary in programming complexity and requirements , always take a step back and test both the front end and back end when dealing with "unchanted territories".

And then...

The search to build an SEO friendly website in Sitecore continues.. Surely, I'll get the better of this (it's just a matter of time...why not build up the suspense?)  and will let you know how I did it !!!! 

Back to Sitecore now....

Tags:

.Net | Applications | Sitecore | Tips & Tricks

How to change Logon Screen in Windows Vista

by Aboo Bolaky 11. February 2009 07:33

This may be known to some of you but today, I came across this fancy application :LogonStudio Vista (by Stardock).

This application allows you to change the logon screen of Windows Vista to a wallpaper of your choice.

It's available for download on CNET. As a side note, I do recommend you to have a go at other applications that Stardock have built...who knows..you might  like one of them :P

PS: Flavours include Windows XP for XP edition,  Windows Vista 32-bit/64-bit for Vista edition

 

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OS | Freebies

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