Maarten Balliauw {blog}

ASP.NET, ASP.NET MVC, Windows Azure, PHP, ...


Developer & IT Pro days - Ghent - Day 2

Just got back from the second and last day at the DevDays. It's all more exhausting than I thought it would be. First of all: driving from Antwerp to Ghent and arrive there in time means to get up early. Second, a lot of information and understanding needs to be processed and absorbed.

Today, I've attended a session on C#3.0 and what's next by Raj Pai. Interesting material, seems to me that C# will evolve into something more declarative and flexible than it already is.

Ingo Rammer did a session on Windows Workflow Foundation (WF), very clear and interesting. I've played with it a little in the past, but this talk surely gave me a push into WF's direction (which means I'll be trying this out some more and sleeping a little less ). Make sure you visit his company's website and download his demo code.

And here's a little hint for everyone who needs entertainment ánd interesting talks: attend a session by Roy Osherove! Roy did a talk on continuous integration with and without Team System. Things like CruiseControl (which I like) also got touched, not only the Microsoft-related stuff. His sessions always seem to end in a song (with live guitars) which serves as a catchy summary of his talk.

Conclusion of the past two days: contact Joris and make sure he puts me on our company's DevDays attendants list for next year 8-)

Developer & IT Pro Days - Ghent - Day 1

Day one of the Belgium Developer & IT Pro days is finished. I've been attending some inspiring sessions. First of all, Jelle Druyts showed us a quick overview of the Guidance Automation Toolkit. Interesting, and usable in many situations as standard Visual Studio templates do not always fulfill all your needs.

Afterwards, Jeff Prosise spoke on using background threads in ASP.NET web sites, and how this can speed things up (a lot!).

Another session was given by Doug Mahugh on OpenXML. Funny to notice my Prague co-developer also attended his session earlier this week.

Apache and IIS on same host, port 80, Windows XP

Yesterday, I decided to install an Apache web server on my development machine, next to IIS. Unfortunately, both use port 80, and I did not want to set one of the 2 servers to another port. Luckily, I remembered that IIS can be configured to only listen on one IP, and Apache on another. Easy: 2 IP addresses for my PC, and another server on each one.

Some configuration steps later, I fired up the Apache service, and afterwards: the ISI service. Big error! IIS not starting, complaining about ports in use. Seems IIS on Windows XP ignores IP listening settings made using the control panel... Searching on Google, I found the answer: httpcfg, a command-line utility for configuring HTTP services. But only on Windows 2003... Some searches later, I found a Windows XP version too on the Microsoft site. Make sure you install this toolkit completely, not just the basic install.

Easy to configure IIS now. I'll be running IIS on, Apache on The following commands should be given on a DOS prompt:

>httpcfg delete iplisten -i
>httpcfg delete iplisten -i
>httpcfg set iplisten -i
>net stop http
>net start http
>cd C:\InetPub\AdminScripts
>net stop http
>net start http

New screen, Samsung is great!

Yesterday, I bought myself a Samsung SyncMaster 940BW wide screen TFT. My old screen, a IIyama 17 inch monster weighing CRT, needed a replacement. Not because of it's age, but because I really started hating this huge block on my desk.

The SyncMaster is a great screen. Not the newest, not the most feature-loaded, but it delivers a 1440 x 900 resolution (nice if you are used to 1024 x 768!) and DVI. Photo's, regular use, ... all is really sharp on screen. If you're looking for a cheap wide screen TFT, this one's great!

Something off-topic: PHPExcel has already been downloaded more than 700 times! The first version once got 36 downloads...