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Tips and Tutorials 997 posts

Get the tips, tricks and in-depth tutorials on Cisco, Microsoft, Linux, and VMware technologies to help you build your on-the-job skills and prepare for your next certification exam.

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How can I become a Microsoft MVP?

By Mike McKeown on April 21, 2014

Do you have what it takes to become a Microsoft MVP? Here are some practical tips to help you guide you along the way.

7 reasons why you should learn PowerShell

By Michael Bender on April 18, 2014

PowerShell gets plenty of pushback, but that doesn’t mean you should write it off. Here are seven solid reasons to begin adding this skill to your toolkit right now.

How to unit test databases

By Dave Green on April 11, 2014

So you already know that you should be unit testing your databases, and now you’re ready to start. But the problem is you aren’t entirely sure how to. Use these answers to common questions about unit testing databases to learn how you can get started with performing them yourself.

How to control Windows Azure with Python

By Richard Conway on April 1, 2014

Linux developers regularly use Python for small pieces of work because you can script situations very easily. It’s become a popular way to enable small tasks of configuration and deployment. Windows Azure, Microsoft’s cloud, is no different. Python is a first class citizen in Windows Azure with the availability of the Python SDK. Let’s take a look at how we can deploy an image from the vmdepot to Windows Azure programmatically using Python with nothing other than a Windows Azure subscription.

How to manage and run CodedUI tests using Microsoft Test Manager

By Marcel de Vries on March 31, 2014

Did you know you can manage and run CodedUI tests without Visual Studio? In an interview I recently did with .Net Rocks, one question that came up is how to manage and run CodedUI tests on demand or as part of a nightly test run without using Visual Studio. You can accomplish this using Microsoft Test Manager.

Reusable async validation for WPF with Prism 4.2

By Brian Noyes on March 7, 2014

WPF has supported validation since the first release in .NET 3.0. That support is built into the binding object and allows you to indicate validation errors through exceptions, an implementation of the IDataErrorInfo interface, or by using WPF ValidationRules. Additional support was added in .NET 4.5 for INotifyDataErrorInfo, an async variant of IDataErrorInfo that was first introduced in Silverlight 4.

5 tips every Unity developer should know

By Alex Zanfir on March 6, 2014

Whether you’re new to developing with Unity or are well-versed in using the tool, we all can appreciate tips that will improve our workflow. With the help of veteran developers who either are or have been part of the official Unity Support Team, I’ve put together a list of great tips that every Unity developer should know and use.

Android Studio 0.4.5 breaks existing builds, here’s the fix

By Jim Wilson on February 20, 2014

I’m a big fan of Android Studio, and I’m fortunate to have had the opportunity to use it extensively ever since its original release. Officially, Android Studio is still considered a preview release, even if it is heavily used. As a preview, Google does not have to guarantee that updates are free of breaking changes. Fortunately most updates do not introduce breaking changes, but breaking changes do sometimes happen. Android 0.4.5 is one of those updates that contains breaking changes.

SEO essentials for web developers: Off-page elements

By Joel Klettke on February 11, 2014

This is it! The final post in our four-part series on SEO basics for web developers. We kicked this whole thing off by showing why it pays (literally!) for web developers to have an understanding of SEO, moved in to explaining key technical and architectural elements, and finally, chatted about the importance of content and other on-page factors. Last but not least, it’s time to look at off-page factors.

Tooling with PowerShell: Keep it simple

By Jim Christopher on February 3, 2014

“In one hour, you’ve replaced three years of unmaintained software tools and given us the ability to resolve every open support issue in the queue. So, thanks for that.” These words came from a client. Their operations queue was long, the engineers cranky and over-worked. They lacked tools necessary to adequately manage an application and its data. So I gave the team “proper” tooling – tools that allow them to address arbitrary problems that users tend to find, as those users find them. And yes it took less than an hour.

Identify code smells with Visual Studio Code Metrics

By Steve Smith on January 16, 2014

When you first start writing code for a new program, the possibilities are endless. There are no bugs, the slate is clean, and there are no issues with organization or complexity to deal with. However, as the software evolves and has to actually do something, parts of it will show signs of design neglect.

Best ways to monetize your app

By Lars Klint on January 14, 2014

Let’s face it. There are over a million apps available for the various platforms out there. While this is awesome for consumers, it’s not so awesome for app developers. Having a ton of apps to compete with makes it more difficult to stand out and earn a bit of money. Not only do you have get your app noticed, but once you do, you have to convince consumers to download and use it, and more importantly, get them to continue using it, then like it enough to get others to try it, too.

SEO essentials for web developers: On-page elements

By Joel Klettke on December 17, 2013

This is the third part in a multi-part series on SEO basics with a web developer slant. In the first installment, I made a case for paying attention to SEO as a developer: the chance to make more while suffering fewer headaches. In the second, we covered off a fairly extensive list of structural and architectural considerations devs need to be aware of as they build out a site. This time, we’re going to tackle on-page factors.

SEO essentials for web developers: Website structure

By Joel Klettke on December 3, 2013

In my last post, we walked through the touchy subject of why knowing SEO is important for web developers and how spending some time digging in to SEO can save you time, earn you dollars and keep you sane. This time, I want to take on some of the specific, basic knowledge surrounding website structure that web developers should make a part of their repertoire.

9 tips to communicate your code: What to do, what not to do

By Dana Gagnon on November 13, 2013

As a developer, you have to speak to a wide variety of people: Your tech pro coworkers, non-technical management, your mom. How do you speak to them all in an effective way? You follow these 9 easy steps.

How to administer Yammer

By Mary Branscombe on November 12, 2013

Users like Yammer because they can just start using it, businesses like it because it’s private — and if you have to look after information you’ll like it because you can control it. Yammer is a private social network. Anyone can start using it without paying anything, but they can only talk to people from the same company (or partners, if they explicitly make an external Yammer network).

Virtualization 101: What you need to know

By Sean Wilkins on September 29, 2013

There has been considerable progress in the virtualization space in the last 15 years, which means there is no shortage of options to choose from. While there are a number of good vendors out there, such as VMware, Oracle, Citrix and Microsoft, it’s helpful to first know the types of solutions you can use before [...]

The how, why and what of ITIL® certifications!

By Lora Beros on September 27, 2013

It may be intimidating to start the ITIL® career path, but instructor and Expert Lowell Amos defines what ITIL® is really about and walks you through the different lifecycles in this easily digestible presentation.

Can these free tools replace System Center for smaller networks?

By Mary Branscombe on September 10, 2013

Do you need to use System Center if you’re working with a smaller network? Not necessarily. We go through some free tools that might do just the trick, without the cost.

How much time can SharePoint 2013 save me?

By Jeff Adkin on September 6, 2013

Save time, money and sanity by automating your tasks with SharePoint 2013. SharePoint expert and instructor Jeff Adkin goes through real life scenarios that can be automated with SharePoint, providing shocking numbers on how much time you can really save.