Jason N. Gaylord
from Northeast PA
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Hello, I'm  jasongaylord Jason

I live with my family in the rolling hills of Northeastern Pennsylvania. I'm a web developer by trade, but have broad experience in various business areas. Want to know more about me?

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Velocity Podcast

Want to learn more about Microsoft Velocity and how this distributed caching system can improve your web applications? Then you’d better check out the new Velocity podcast at ASP.NET Podcast. You can download the MP3 at http://www.aspnetpodcast.com/PodcastFiles/ASPNETPodcast20080820-Velocity.mp3.

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How to Override Cassini's Virtual Path in Visual Studio

On one of the email lists that I’m on, someone had posted a question about running a website using the root path “/” or a different virtual path than the project name that is populated by default. James Crowley pointed out a blog entry from Scott Guthrie where Scott walks through this process in 4 easy steps. To check it out, visit http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2006/12/19/tip-trick-how-to-run-a-root-site-with-the-local-web-server-using-vs-2005-sp1.aspx.

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Windows 7 at the PDC?

Sounds like Windows 7 might be previewed at the PDC. If not, significant details will surely be shared. No, I didn’t escape one of the Microsoft buildings with their business plan but rather came across the team’s new blog at http://blogs.msdn.com/e7/. The first posts were yesterday (August 14th) and I’m sure more posts will be coming soon. Be sure to check it out!

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Known Issues with Service Pack 1 in ASP.NET 3.5

Scott Galloway from the Microsoft DevDiv team has posted a couple of known issues with Service Pack 1 in ASP.NET 3.5 on the ASP.NET forums at http://forums.asp.net/t/1305800.aspx. The issues he currently has on the post are:

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Use LINQ to XML to Generate Excel Documents

I was looking for a quick and easy solution to export data from SQL into an Excel format from within my ASP.NET application. I came across a great video posted by Beth Massi on the asp.net website (Video #7 at the bottom at http://www.asp.net/learn/linq-videos/). Beth steps through creating the LINQ to XML and how you can populate your Excel document. When I used this in an ASP.NET application, I added the XML declaration to the Response.Write so that Excel could understand the document. In ASP.NET, the XMLDocument type has a tendency to drop the XML declaration when writing out the document using .ToString.

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ASP.NET 3.5 SP1 (Formerly "ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions") Released

ASP.NET 3.5 Service Pack 1, which was formerly called the ASP.NET 3.5 extensions, has been released. The NetFX update was available as part of the SQL Server 2008 download available on Friday. Now it is available as a separate download. There are quite a few enhancements in 3.5 including Dynamic Data, the Entity Framework, the AJAX History control, better Silverlight support and more! Be sure to download it today at http://www.asp.net/downloads/3.5-sp1/.

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Known Postback Issue with AJAX Controls

I came across a postback issue while using the CascadingDropDown AJAX control. I had a web page with 3 DropDownList controls. The data for these controls was populated from the CascadingDropDown which would bind the data at runtime. The issue with this is that when data is being bound at runtime, it cannot be validated during postback unless each value is registered with the page.  In most cases, this wouldn’t make sense. So, we have to fall back to turning off EventValidation at an application level in the web.config (attribute is found on the pages element) or at the page level (attribute is added to the page directive). It’s best to turn off the EventValidation at the page level. There is no way to turn this off at the control level unless you are building your own control that does not contain the SupportsEventValidation attribute.

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Tip: Set the SelectedValue on a DropDownList that is populated by a CascadingDropDown

When using a DropDownList, you can set the selected item by using the SelectedIndex property. However, if your DropDownList is being populated by the CascadingDropDown control (from the ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit), that doesn’t work. Instead, you must use the SelectedValue property on the CascadingDropDown control.

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Clearspring Widgets Don't Work on 64-Bit Platform

Unless you are using IE 32-bit, don’t expect the Clearspring widgets to work. Clearspring is one of the leaders in building widgets for social networks and Vista. The reason their widgets do not work is because Flash is not yet supported on 64-bit platforms. By default, the Vista Sidebar on a 64-bit system displays widgets by using IE 64-bit.

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Visual Studio Fonts and Colors

For quite some time I’ve been working with a modified version of Scott Hanselman’s “Dark Theme” for Visual Studio. The reason for my modifications is that the HTML and CSS settings were very difficult to read. Here is the complete list of changes I’ve made in Tools > Options > Environment > Fonts and Colors:

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