Know Your User: Elvis, Bean, Hedy

While working on Project Moab, we encountered a really interesting, and nuanced problem that led us to expand our thinking and ultimately guide how multiple parts of the system operated. It also gave us a fun tool that I’m applying to other projects as well: Elvis, Bean, and Hedy.

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20 Years of Code

Sometime around now, some 20 years back, I had my first gig as a “professional” coder. A friend of mine put me in contact with somebody who wanted to allow those that had coding certifications (like a Microsoft MVP) to build a basic profile, upload the all important “badge” image they received, and have a nice looking single page “resume” to share and connect. Maybe I built the first LinkedIn, but I won’t necessarily claim that [:: smiles ::]. However, I did learn the most important lesson that sticks with me today. It has also been a wild ride in software…

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How to create dynamic environment sequencing columns in .Net Core EF migrations with PostgreSQL / Npgsql

Recently I’ve been building out a .Net Core WebAPI microservice that talks to a PostgreSQL database. We’re diving into the world of HATEOS so we want to have a Url parameter that correlates to the Id of the record once it is created. Additionally, we’re using Docker to better manage our deployments, so we want to be able to have this URL change when building the database in each environment as part of our Entity Framework migrations process.

It’s a bit tricky, but doable. Here’s how you get your “ducks in a row” in order to make this happen.

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Quick Tip – How to use a custom domain for your Angular app running in Docker

So you’ve used one of the default templates out there to build and deploy your Angular app using Docker. Fabulous! Now let’s wire it up so that way you can use something more meaningful than localhost…

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Bootstrap Your App for Free Part 3: Security and Naming

In my last few entries, I have outlined how I was able to build my Bookmarkinator app for free thanks to a variety of tools and platforms out there (no credit card or limited time demo software either!). I followed it up with some resources that you could host your app for free as well (no credit card either!). That takes us to the final step which helps polish our app and make it look bonafide: security and domain names.

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Bootstrap Your App for Free Part 2: Hosting

In my last entry, I outlined how I was able to build my Bookmarkinator app for free thanks to a variety of tools and platforms out there (no credit card or limited time demo software either!). Now that you’ve built your app, then next step is to get it hosted out in the wild. Here are some of my “go to” places that are free for the life of the project (or until a service changes).

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Bootstrap Your App for Free Part 1: Tools and Resources

Last year, as a means of doing a deeper dive into .Net Core and to fill a personal need, I built the Bookmarkinator. Simple, fun, and super helpful (at least for me). One of the requirements for this was that I could build a full-fledged app available to the public that cost me nothing (minus some elbow grease). It was a success, and I want to share the tools and resources that I used so that you can bootstrap your own app for free as well.

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Fixed: Building Android 23 Apps with Gradle in Jenkins Pipeline

I’m working with a team who is building a mobile app using React Native. Everything builds nicely in our local environments (both Mac and PC) and now we’ve been working on setting up our Jenkins pipeline to create a fresh build with each merge request, and publish that out to a location that allows our dev teams to install at anytime. Everything was working great for this… until it wasn’t Continue reading “Fixed: Building Android 23 Apps with Gradle in Jenkins Pipeline”

Dynamically Updating Environment Variables in Postman

If you haven’t used Postman yet for your general development needs while building or consuming a REST (or SOAP!) API, go get this amazing tool NOW and then keep reading. Otherwise, here’s a quick tip to make to help when dealing with frequently changing environment variables, such as session IDs or JWT tokens.

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Quick Tip: Manually Run EF Migrations on External Databases

Entity Framework migrations are a great thing. They’ve made my development life a LOT easier. Automated migrations can cause problems, especially on a project with multiple developers involved. For that, we use manual migrations through the Package Manager Console.

But how do you manually run these migrations against your test (or live) server when your deployment tool doesn’t run them? If you have access to the database in question, you can add the ConnectionString and ProviderName parameters at the Package Manager Console prompt and make life a lot easier:

Update-Database -ConnectionString "MY_CONNECTION_STRING" -ConnectionProviderName "System.Data.SqlClient"

You can pull your connection string direct from your web.config transform, no special “magic” needed.

Enjoy! Continue reading “Quick Tip: Manually Run EF Migrations on External Databases”