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Using HttpContext Safely After Async in ASP.NET MVC Applications

Another day, another Entity Framework (and ASP.NET MVC 5) async problem, and another solution for you!  Actually, today I have two solutions for you!  This time, I ran into a problem with HttpContext's Items collection losing my IoC container when execution resumed after an await.  The fix is simple once you understand what's going on. More...

Painless Workstation Setup with Boxstarter

I recently used Boxstarter to set my development machine back up after a format.  Boxstarter is a game-changer for Windows.  I create a simple Powershell script, ran a simple command, then walked away as my machine spent the next several hours downloading, installing, and rebooting, all without me lifting another finger.  When the dust settled, I had a Windows 8.1 machine with my tools and utilities installed, updated, and ready to rock. More...

A Better Way to Configure AutoMapper for ASP.NET MVC (Video)

AutoMapper is one of the essential tools in my ASP.NET MVC toolbelt.  I use it on every MVC project I do.  It's saved me countless lines of code over the years.  And yet, there's always been one thing that bugged me about it: it violates the idea of "common closure."  I've built a better way to handle this, but as my friends have accused reminded me, I might have forgotten to share this approach publicly.  Until now. More...

SpecsFor and SpecsFor.Mvc Roadmap

Today, I took the first steps in laying out a roadmap for future work on both SpecsFor and SpecsFor.Mvc.  More...

Making TransactionScope Work with async/await in .NET 4.5

I ran into a frustrating little problem today.  I'm getting started with Entity Framework 6 and its async features on a new project, and my SpecsFor integration tests were bombing out unexpectedly.  In turns out the problem was caused by TransactionScope and async work together out of the box.  Or rather, how they don't work together. More...

Source Code for “Build Your Own Application Framework” Course Online

If you do a quick Google for Fail Tracker, the sample project I used in my Pluralsight course, you will end up at a Github project page for Fail Tracker that I set up back in 2011.  That’s when I first used “Fail Tracker” in a demo (at CodeStock!), and until today, it has hosted only the very old, obsolete version of this application.  I corrected that problem a few moments ago, so the project page now contains the same version of the application that I used in my Pluralsight course.  Enjoy!

Looking For Help with SpecsFor!

With all the things I’ve got going on these days, it’s tough for me to devote time to SpecsFor and SpecsFor.Mvc.  There’s a ton of things to do.  Aside from the periodic bug reports, there are new features I’d love to implement.  There’s also the woefully inadequate documentation that needs some love.  I need some help.  Any help.  If you’re interested in contributing at any level, please ping me.  Specifically, here are the needs I see right now: More cooks in the kitchen. Right now, most of what is in SpecsFor and SpecsFor.Mvc are things I’ve come up wi... [More]

I’m Now Officially a Pluralsight Author!

Yesterday I officially became a Pluralsight author as my first course went live.  It was a lot of work to get here, and I’m very thankful to my friends and family for their support along the way (and to the fine folks at Pluralsight that gave me this opportunity!) I’ll be blogging more about the overall experience of becoming an author in the future.   In the meantime, I invite you to check out my course, “Build Your Own Application Framework with ASP.NET MVC 5.”  I’ll show you how to go beyond the basics of ASP.NET MVC; to bend it to better-meet your needs; to make it int... [More]

Git Tips & Tricks, Part 9–Find That Bug with Bisect!

Have you ever found a bug in your application, but been unable to find exactly *where* that bug was in your code?  Without this important bit of knowledge, it’s difficult to properly shame the developer that introduced the bug fix the bug.  It can be a bit like finding a needle in a haystack.   In this post, I’ll show you how to significantly shrink the size of the haystack and find bugs more quickly by using ‘git bisect.’ More...

SpecsFor.Mvc 3.0.0 Final Released

I just published the final version of SpecsFor.Mvc 3.0.0.  As I mentioned previously, this update adds support for MVC 5.0, drops the dependency on MVCContrib and Rhino Mocks, and includes a handful of other fixes.  Next on the SpecsFor.Mvc agenda is improving the initial setup experience and eliminating pain around lingering IIS Express and Selenium processes.  In the meantime, please let me know if you run into any problems with SpecsFor.Mvc via the Github project page.