Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Writing about DeXter

Well, today I've found an article about DeXter - Borland Developer Studio 2006 - on Nicks blog. He was at the DevCon '05 and got one of those rare preview CDs of DeXter. Read his blog entry and start drooling :-)

Monday, November 21, 2005

Your personal Welcome Page

Well, currently I am toying with different thoughts for the Welcome Page in Borland Delphi and Borland Developer Studio. As announced on the 24 hours on DeXter I plan to offer a free update for it. Is the internal interface had no significant changes I also want to make that update available for both Borland Delphiu 2005 and the upcoming DeXter.

Anyway, if you could have it your way, what features would you like to see in the Welcome Page? How could it be possibly more useful? Let me know, please.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Your opinion is needed

Well, I am thinking of changing the design of my blog. Today, I've spent considerable time working on it. Now, I would like to know what you think about it. Please, feel free to let me know. Either through comments or through email at dwischnewski {at} gmail [dot] com.

New Winter Layout
Winter Layout

New Spring Layout
Spring Layout

New Summer Layout
Summer Layout

New Fall Layout
Winter Fall Layout

Thank you.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Writing CEOs again

Well, I couldn't refrain from writing Tod Nielsen just seven days ago. How could I, he is in charge of Borland now and therefore in charge of the Borland Developer Studio and Delphi itself.

So, what do you write a new CEO? Well, I did not write much, as I believe he will have to do just enough now. I simply welcomed him to Borland and wrote him that I do hope that Borland will target the small developer once again, as well as the big enterprises Borland has targeted during those previous years.

And what do you expect? Yes, he send a short message just this morning (CET)
Thanks for the note. I'm super excited to be here and to get the chance to work with you in the future.

All the best.

- Tod
That got me thinking. Is he already traveling the world or does he still work at 11:30 pm (California time). So I wrote him back the second I got his email asking him which of the two are currently "in charge of him." And to my surprise, less then ten minutes after his first email, he sent me a second one.
Thanks. I'm working late, so you have a good day, while I go get some sleep. Thanks for your support of our products!

Talk to you soon.

- Tod
Well, I hope he has a good nights sleep now, as I am sitting here at my desk and keep promoting the Borland Developer Studio at BMW.

Good night Tod and may a great day be ahead of you!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Interesting Resource Editor for Borland Delphi 2005

Today I came across an interesting resource editor, which plugs tightly into the Borland Delphi 2005 IDE. It allows you to easily manage all resources of your Delphi applications, and create new ones.

The resource editor window plugs into any of the docking areas of the IDE and makes it easier for you to work with your resources. Give it a try. There is a video on the home page of RedEd 1.3.

Sorry, no direct linking possible :-(

ISAPI Filter and Delphi String Handling

Well, my last three weeks have been stressfull. For one thing, the Borland Developer Studio 2006 German version is in full development and all strings have to be checked - as far as this is possible. But it would not be a normal human life, if there would be only one thing to do at the time.

No, at the same time my company is preparing the release of Content ACE v4 Release 3 and I had to hunt down one bug, which was crashing any newer webserver in a matter of minutes. Well, as you can imagine, this would not be a good feature for a milestone release and our customers would be rather angry. While older, slower servers, wouldn't ever surface that particular problem, some high end machines would. So we did need to get one into our offices - and have just done that.

The next two weeks I was stripping down and rebuilding that particular component, just to realise that I could not really get down to the reason of those crashes. The whole deal proved harder, as there was no special one way to reproduce a crash. It just happened at some point, but usually within 10 minutes of rebooting the server.

Short for the technology: to get to the problem, you have to create an ISAPI Filter, which has to be installed into any particular website running on Microsoft IIS on Windows 2003 Server (or XP Professional for testing). A Filter running on Windows 2000 Server or earlier will not have those problems, as those IIS versions use a different threading model.

Well, MS IIS does not promise you do give request submitted to you ISAPI Filter always the same thread, not even for the same basic request. It took some time to narrow down the problem. It is the normal Delphi string handling that causes this trouble. I don't really know why, but somehow those reference counters seems not to be threadsafe when IIS comes accessing those with more than one (or make it ten for easier reproduction) thread at once.

At some point I got the idea to simply include the unit ShareMem into the ISAPI Filters unit clause and redistribute the borlandmm.dll along with it. Now remember, IIS does not know about ShareMem and will not even use it. However, since the problem has vanished and never resurfaced again. The server is running stable since almost 20 hours!

Interesting thought. So I think I'll try to draw up a good test case and let the engineers at Borland work it out :-)

FYI: In this special product, we are using Borland Delphi 7 as development platform, though we will move to Borland Developer Studio 2006 in January 2006! First tests here look very promising in respect to the overall performance of our system with the new memory manger!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

German User Group Meeting

I have mentioned it on the 24 Hours of DeXter BDN Radio event already, now it is official. The next "Delphi-Tage" (Delphi Days) will be coming to Frankfurt/Main, Germany on February 18th, 2006.

The German Delphi User Groups
Delphi-PRAXiS, Delphi-Source, and Entwickler-Ecke are preparing to launch the second all German user group meeting.

Currently, we are preparing for all things related to this event, so keep yourself up-to-date by reading in one of those communities on how we are progressing.

Delphi-PRAXiS News

Thursday, November 10, 2005

.NET, 32 Bit, and 64 Bit in Delphi

While this is not really new anymore, I just feel like I have to write about it again. The longer I think about it, the more excited I do get. Honestly, I can't hardly wait for a native 64 Bit compiler anymore, but we all will have to wait I guess a little longer.

Currently I am listening to the 24 hours of DeXter with Danny Thorpe. Now, looking at the roadmap just published in more detail and the information that accompanied it, that Borland has given green light for a Unicode VCL... Wow! I can't wait anymore...

Since 2000 I am part of a team developing a web content management system, which is totally running Unicode support. Thanks to the browsers that support UTF-8 we did not have to worry much about that side of live. But creating some offline clients... well there are controls and components out there, that are especially targeted for such environments, but we did not want to create a whole part of our system on third-party components on that scale.

Back to Dannys part. He said, that they would like to create a Unicode VCL especially for the 64 bit compiler. There are problems when taking the current VCL applications that do not support Unicode, so they have to find a way around that. So they probably will support the current VCL as-is and have the Unicode VCL for 64 bit applications. Yet, you will be able to take that application and compile it for 32 bit targets. Now, I think that sounds exciting, doesn't it?

Don't forget, Borland has given green light for a Unicode VCL development. Now, I guess they need the resources. Are you willing to get me over there? Helloooo....!

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Delphi Roadmap published in greater Detail

DavidI has published a document on BDN, where he explains the Delphi roadmap for 2005, 2006, and 2007 in much greater detail than ever done before.

Most of you will have heard about BDS 2006, the upcoming releases of Delphi, C++Builder, and C#Builder already. If not, and if you are a little firm in German, or at least in viewing pictures, you may want to take a look at my presentation of it in the latest newsletter of Borland Germany.

While the roadmap is subject to change, Borland better will go as close by it, as in any way possible. Not least, they are a Wall Street traded company, so a roadmap such as this will have affect on their market value.

Now, looking at the roadmap, I am getting excited, a little anyway. The VCL will go on another venture with us and will be brought to CF.NET, which is exciting. Why? Well, for newsters, we work with the VCL since over 10 years and we know it by heart. This way we can go on working with the horse we already have well trained in those years. Further, we will eventually see the Delphi.NET compiler targetting .NET 2.0, not bad either, is it ;-)

Then, there is "Delphi Longhorn" and what do we read there? Managed C++ and ECO für Managed C++. Wow! Avalon, WinFS, ... support from BDS. I think that sounds great, now let's hope it'll happen just this way as well. ;-)

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Oracle Express and MS SQL Express

Well, this time it is not a post directly related to Delphi, but since Delphi is since its first incarnation all about database deployment, well yes, this article relates to Delphi once again ;-)

Some of you will have read it already, I guess, but I still do believe it merrits being said once again. The database market is getting more and more interessting for smaller companies and people interessted in deploying small to medium sized database applications.

A while ago, Microsoft introduced to us the MSDE - Microsoft Developer Edition - of its bigger brother, the MS SQL Server. Now, with .NET 2.0 and MS SQL Server 2005 coming to our development machines Microsoft offers us the
MS SQL Server 2005 Express Edition. Basically it is the same as its larger brothers (or sisters ) with limits of one CPU, one GB RAM usage and 4 GB database size. This version is free for download, development, and redistribution. This version was made available on November 7th, yesterday.

Interesting is the fact, that Microsoft has done this about one week after Oracle has done the same with its
Oracle Database 10g Express Edition. Oracles database has the exact same three basic limits. And a first, die Express Edition of the Oracle database finally is easy to install and wont kill your development machine ;-)

It's getting exiting again, and here we are, getting close to the release of the Borland Developer Studio 2006. Keep out watching for it and get ready - download Oracle and MS SQL Server now!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

BDN Radio with Jason Vokes will start now

I almost forgot to give you the links to get online. Here you go...

Date: Mittoch, der 2. November 2005
Time: 15:00 - 16:30 (CET) / NOW!
Audio Stream: MMS Stream (Windows Media Player)
HTML Chat: HTML Chat Username: Ihr Roomkey: livechat

Have fun!
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