Monday, 19 October 2009

I've just written a Windows Shell extension for XP that gives some of the functionality that 'Copy as Path' provides on Vista/7/2008. If your like me and unlucky enough to still be using XP at work maybe you should check it out on codeplex. Please leave any feedback on codeplex and I'll try and incorporate it into future builds if at all possible.

Although not needed since Vista I'll try and maintain builds of this for newer versions of Windows as the Application code is very simple and the code could therefore be useful to anyone else learning to write shell extensions.

posted on Monday, 19 October 2009 19:20:40 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Add Comment | Comments [0]
 Saturday, 17 October 2009

If you want to learn more about PowerShell Dr. Tobias Weltner has published Mastering PowerShell and is giving it away as a free download from This is well worth getting, just look at the table of contents and you'll agree.

  1. The PowerShell Console
  2. Interactive PowerShell
  3. Variables
  4. Arrays and Hashtables
  5. The PowerShell Pipeline
  6. Using Objects
  7. Conditions
  8. Loops
  9. Functions
  10. Scripts
  11. Finding and Avoiding Errors
  12. Command Discovery and Scriptblocks
  13. Text and Regular Expressions
  14. XML
  15. The File System
  16. The Registry
  17. Processes, Services, Event Logs
  18. Windows Management Instrumentation
  19. User Management
  20. Your Own Cmdlets and Extensions

I'm a convert to PowerShell for awhile now and use PowerShell script as often as I can to automate tasks that I just couldn't bear doing time and time again. Recently I've used it along with PSake to generate build scripts and to write other scripts that make setting up the developer environment a breeze. Trust me you'll never write a batch file again. This would also be a technology I'd recommend learning as it'll probably start showing up on hot skill lists soon.

Get the eBook here:

posted on Saturday, 17 October 2009 13:54:49 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Add Comment | Comments [0]
 Friday, 16 October 2009

I applied the update a while ago to office that causes the 'Office Live Workspace' dialog to show at start-up but the tick box to stop dialog from showing every time has never OfficeLineWorkSpacesworked and tonight has been the  first night I've needed to use Office in a while so I thought I see if I could fix this annoyance. 

After a quick search it turns out the problem is the installer for the update only sets up the registry for the current user and as I always set up an admin account separate form my day to day user account my registry didn't have the necessary keys and thus the dialog would  always appear. There is another update that solves this problem and it can be downloaded from Microsoft. There is a Aaron Rykhus has a TechNet blog post that explains everything in more detail if you want to check it out.

posted on Friday, 16 October 2009 19:08:29 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Add Comment | Comments [0]
 Saturday, 26 September 2009

A problem that I often have is trying to get the UNC path for a mapped drive so that I can pass it to somebody or that they can pass the UNC path to me. My ideal solution would be to execute a command passing the drive letter as an argument and having the UNC path copied to the clipboard so that I can then paste the UNC path in an email or instant message, so I wrote the following script using PowerShell and the PowerShell community extensions (PSCX).

If you don't already have them installed install the following:

Then save my script to a folder on your computer and run it as follows

.\DrivePath z

Where 'z' is the drive letter for the mapped drive, the UNC path will then be on your clipboard and you can then paste it wherever you like.

    [Parameter(position=0, Mandatory=$true)]
    [string] $Drive = "Z:"

# ensure the supplied param ends with ':' 
$Drive = $Drive.ToUpper().ToCharArray()[0] + ":"

$logicalDisk = Gwmi Win32_LogicalDisk -filter "DriveType = 4 AND DeviceID = '$Drive'"

out-clipboard $logicalDisk.ProviderName


Download script:

posted on Saturday, 26 September 2009 22:27:29 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Add Comment | Comments [0]
 Wednesday, 02 September 2009

IEEE Career Watch is running with an article that talks about the most sought after skills at the moment and it looks good for .NET developer as Microsoft .NET and Ajax are some of the hottest skills at the moment. With the Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer carrying the highest pay premium for developer certificates. Check out the full report here.

posted on Wednesday, 02 September 2009 18:19:51 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Add Comment | Comments [0]