Entries for 2008

December 31, 2008

Which Module Package Should You Purchase?

A while back when asking for input on blog postings a very common question was recommended as the topic.  That question was "How do I determine which module package I should purchase?".  Within the DotNetNuke Eco-System there are a number of different purchase options for third-party modules, however, in the end it boils down to two different package types.  Install packages and Source packages.  Which is right for you?  This answer isn't quite as clear as one might expect, and the following blog posting will walk through the different things that need to be considered before making that purchase choice.

December 25, 2008

DotNetNuke 4.9.1 Dashboard Module

As I mentioned in an earlier blog posting one of the big new items in DotNetNukr 4.9.1 is a Dashboad module.  This module was created to help the DotNetNuke Corporation work with the DotNetNuke Professional Edition users, however, there are also big benefits to the rest of us that help support users on DotNetNuke.  The following sections will discuss each of the views included in the Dashboard module, which can be accessed from "Host" -> "Dashboard".

December 22, 2008

Upgrade to DotNetNuke 5.0.0 From 4.6.2 or Later

With the upcoming release of the final DotNetNuke 5.0.0 release it is time to get the most current upgrade guide out there.  Upgrading to DotNetNuke 5.0.0 from 4.6.2 or later will be a very simple process thanks to the streamlined upgrade features added in 4.6.2 and later versions of DotNetNuke.  The following instructions provides the steps needed to upgrade to DotNetNuke 5.0.0 frm 4.6.2 or later.

December 22, 2008

Installing DotNetNuke 5.0.0 On Remote Host

This is my sixth revision of a DotNetNuke remote hosting provider installation tutorial.  This tutorial will provide you the basic overview of how to perform a clean installation of DotNetNuke 5.0.0 on a remote web hosting provider.  Please note at the time of release only the Release Candidate version of DotNetNuke is available, this version is NOT recommended for production usage.  Please be sure to use the proper version for your intended usage.  This guide will work for both the RC and the final DNN 5.0.0 version.  In the article I will try to point out the most common differences between different hosting providers, I will also be providing specific examples regarding the use of the Plesk control panel which is what my preferred hosting provider (3Essentials) uses.  All steps within this tutorial are promised to work with 3Essentials hosting, others are most likely possible, but have not been fully confirmed with the provider.  Additionally this guide is geared towards a manual instlalation at the root of the site, which is not supported by all hosting providers.

December 22, 2008

Installing DotNetNuke 5.0.0 Locally

With the first full release of DotNetNuke 5.0 most likely coming sometime in the very near future I thought it was about time for an update to my standard DotNetNuke installation guides.  This installation guide is geared towards local installation on a Windows XP or Windows Server 2000-2004 server.  Installation on Vista or Server 2008 is slighly different when it comes to the IIS portion of the installation.  This guide is the ninth total revision of my installation tutorials and contains many new updates and recommendations to prevent users from experiencing difficulties when installing.  This tutorial still uses the "Automatic" installation process, this is done to help encourage the creation of a more secured DotNetNuke installation by disabling AutoUpgrade and other features that are not yet configurable via the Installation Wizard.  If enough demand is shown, I can create a tutorial for the installation wizard as well.

December 22, 2008

Creating a DotNetNuke User Account From Code

Just recently an issue was brought to my attention that my External Database Provider module when creating users was making it so that notification e-mails could not be sent when assigning roles. So I started looking into the code, and how I was creating a user. The user creation code was something that I have been using for a long time, some code that was first found on a blog or forum post about 2-3 years ago. Not noticing anything wrong with the code, at least from an obvious point of view I started to look into the database to see if there were any differences at the database level. Looking into the users' information I noticed that they were missing their user profile, and then I found out that a few key elements still needed to be set to "fully" create the user. This posting shows you the "Full Code" to insert a user into a DotNetNuke portal from a C# Codebehind, translation into VB should be very simple.

December 08, 2008

Shared, Virtual Private Server, Dedicated or Cloud Hosting

Recently I have been responding to more and more forum posts and e-mails regarding DotNetNuke and selecting a hosting provider. Back in May I had a blog post Selecting a Hosting Provider Revisited, this article did a great job of outlining the basic consideration points when it comes to selecting a hosting environment for DotNetNuke. However, recent technology changes and other hosting options has created a few more items that need to be considered. This article is designed to specifically address the concerns and questions behind shared, virtual dedicated, dedicated, and cloud hosting options.

November 29, 2008

Openforce 2008 Recap

It is amazing to think that OpenForce ended over two full weeks ago ever since returning home I have been swampped and haven't gotten around to my promised posting regarding the panel discussion that happened at the end of the session.  Although a bit late I thought I would share the notes that I made from the panel discussion on the final day of OpenForce.  The following items are not necessarily in any particular order, just the way they were scribbled into my notebook.

November 24, 2008

Why Dynamically Attached Databases Cause Problems

One item that many people find unusual about my DotNetNuke installation guides is my insistence on NOT using the Database.mdf, dynamically attached database file for the creation of a DotNetNuke database.  In my tutorials I have quickly dismissed the topic by noting that "issues" come up when trying to use a dynamically attached database and I leave it at this.  Well after seeing more questions on this topic recently in the DotNetNuke.com forums I wanted to take a moment to put my $0.02 out there as to WHY I don't like it.  I will do this by discussing quickly what the differences are in the two approaches, then I'll discuss the "downfalls" of each.
November 11, 2008

First OpenForce 2008 Update

Tom Kraak is doing a great job with Live Blogging over at Seablick.com, however, I thought it would be good to put a quick blog post up here about imp...
November 06, 2008

Are you ready for OpenForce?

With OpenForce North America just a little over 3 days away I can feel the excitement building Bill Walker today announced the OpenForce Social event,...
November 01, 2008

SQL Server RANK, ROW_NUMBER, and Partition

Finally getting the opportunity to get back to SQL Server 2005 development, and coming to the conclusion that NOT all of my projects have to support SQL Server 2000 I started looking all of those "fun" new items that we all really wanted. This article is going to go through a scenario that demonstrates how to use Common Table Expressions, Rank() and Partition to get results for a very common data scenario. We will present this information with an introduction to the problem, scripts to setup the problem in a test environment, and lastly the implementation, with a review/summary at the end.
October 23, 2008

My Community Involvement

The other day I was reading Antonio Chagoury's blog and came across one of his recent postings "Just In Case You're Not Keeping Tabs" and it got me thinking. I just got done filling out a few forms where I needed to list my community involvement, and much like Antonio I had a hard time sitting down and really coming up with the list of everything that I do on a volunteer basis. So I though I'd do something similar to what Antonio did and post my list here. I know I'm missing items, so if you know of something I'm leaving out, let me know!

October 21, 2008

Looking for Feedback

As I mentioned yesterday I am starting to put the finishing touches on my "Professional DotNetNuke 5 Module Programming" book.  In talking with t...
October 15, 2008

Limit SQL Server Database List

Recently when working with a client I was asked how in a SQL Server database environment with multiple databases how we can prevent users from seeing all other databases on the server. Permissions are configured to restrict who can actually query the database, but in the end, individuals still can see the names of the other databases on the server, getting potentially an idea of who else you are hosting, or information that you just don't want to share. I have found many blog articles that talk about how to get around this, but all of them were a bit choppy, so I thought I would take a moment to walk through a demo of the process. This article walks through the entire scenario.

October 06, 2008

OpenForce North America

As we can see from the ticker on the right side of my blog here we have about 34 days until OpenForce North America, with OpenForce Europe currently u...
September 24, 2008

Major Set of Releases

Today my business sent out an e-mail to all newsletter subscribers about the most recent set of free module releases. This is my final cross-post of this information here on the blog, if you wish to stay up to date, please visit the IowaComputerGurus Newsletters page to subscribe.

September 15, 2008

Backing up a DNN Site

DotNetNuke site administrators often are tasked with maintaining their sites as well as ensuring that a proper backup/recovery plan is in place.  An important part of this is to have a proper site backup, therefore I am re-visiting my two previous versions of backup guides in this updated article.  I will walk though the items needed for backup, and considerations when creating the backup, specifically if you are looking to migrate a site to a different server.  I will then discuss the process to create a backup in both SQL Server 2000 and SQL Server 2005, and lastly I will quickly touch on the third party options available for performing site backups. 

September 13, 2008

Using the AJAX Control Toolkit in DotNetNuke

I find that web development projects are requiring more and more AJAX functionality. The bells and whistles that come with AJAX are hard things for many people to live without. One of the more common toolsets to use when working with AJAX items in the .NET environment is the ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit. I have found that with VERY minimal effort you can fully implement the toolkit inside a DNN installation and it can even be done WITHOUT modification to the web.config file. This blog entry will provide information on how to incorporate the ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit into your project. I will simply discuss the DNN implementation, I am NOT going to actually discuss the usage of any specific control.

September 12, 2008

Creating Random SQL Server Test Data

Recently I was tasked with the creation of a large database system that consisted of a database table with 5 date columns, and a varchar primary key. This table was to hold upwards of 3.5 million records, and I needed to know exactly how much disk space was going to be needed to store not only the database, but also the index required to facilitate the search requirements. After looking for a number of different ways to do this, and many free third party tools I decided that the most simple way to do this with the tools that I had available was to generate my own method to populate a test database.

September 11, 2008

Installing DotNetNuke 4.9.0 on a Remote Host

This is my fifth revision of a DotNetNuke remote hosting provider installation tutorial.  This tutorial will provide you the basic overview of how to perform a clean installation of DotNetNuke 4.9.0 on a remote web hosting provider.  In the article I will try to point out the most common differences between different hosting providers, I will also be providing specific examples regarding the use of the Plesk control panel which is what my preferred hosting provider (3Essentials) uses.  All steps within this tutorial are promised to work with 3Essentials hosting, others are most likely possible, but have not been fully confirmed with the provider.  Additionally this guide is geared towards a manual instlalation at the root of the site, which is not supported by all hosting providers.

September 11, 2008

Installing DotNetNuke 4.9.0 Locally (Non-Vista)

Installing DotNetNuke can be somewhat difficult at times, therefore I am writing this article to give you a full step by step guide to installing DotNetNuke on a Windows XP Pro system. The instructions are similar for Windows 2000 but might vary slightly, I have tried to note as many differences as possible. Windows Vista installation is similar but requires a few different steps relating to IIS.  This guide is my eighth revision and includes additional steps and information based on feedback from previous versions.  Additionally a few new instructions and notes have been provided for users installing on Windows 2003 Server to address a few common "stumbling blocks" that have prevented successful installations.

September 07, 2008

Why and How I Partner

Over the past few weeks since I announced that my company, IowaComputerGurus Inc. was going to be an exhibitor at OpenForce ’08 this November I have been asked a few questions by the community.  I feel that the answers to these questions are items that should be aired publicly; therefore I am posting this information here for all to see.  The two questions that have been coming up quite a bit recently are; Why are you sharing a booth with Seablick Consulting, and How do you choose your business partners.  I will start by addressing the second question, and returning to answer the first.

September 04, 2008

Upgrade to DNN 4.9.0 from 4.6.2 or Later

I have previously blogged about the streamlined upgrade process that can be used to upgrade sites starting with version 4.6.2 and later.  With the upcoming release of DotNetNuke 4.9.0 (targeted for next week) I thought I would take some time to get all of my installation guides updated, with the most current information to ensure that everyone was ready for the new version as soon as it comes out.  Given the enhancements provided to the core in 4.6.2 the upgrade process from this version and later is VERY simple!  The following two step process will help you upgrade to your site to the most current version.  Instructions are also included regarding items of consideration for users in shared hosting environments.

August 22, 2008

Exposing a Development Installation of DotNetNuke

Recently I have been fielding a number of questions regarding DotNetNuke development environments and the valid URLs associated with them. People that have been setting up local instances of DotNetNuke for testing or development, then trying to expose the site to a larger group for validation. The process to make this work is very simple, however, for individuals unfamiliar with DotNetNuke settings it can be a bit difficult to determine exactly what needs to change. This post investigates the DotNetNuke concept of Portal Aliases and will show an individual how they can be used to solve this specific business need.

August 17, 2008

Active Forums 4.0 - Testing Review

I have recently been given the opportunity to preview the upcoming Active Forums 4.0 release.  In this starter review I will give my first opinions after working with the module for a short time and experimenting with the new features.  A full review of the module will come after it has been released and I am able to test/work with the full edition.

August 12, 2008

No More Google Ads

This is just an update to regular visitors of this site, as of this morning Google AdSense ads have been removed from this site entirely.  Due to...
August 08, 2008

Using the IN Clause With Stored Procedures

Recently I have been working on creating a dynamic reporting engine for use within the DotNetNuke system, a method to allow for the execution of a stored procedure and the proper display of the results. This includes creating a list of parameters, including dynamically loaded lookup systems and more. Well the most complex item that I have had to condition for was how to deal with filter options that require the use of the SQL IN clause, there are many ways of doing this, but I have found a way that appears to work perfect for my needs, this will be explained in this posting.

August 06, 2008

Locating Historical DotNetNuke Releases

With the high amount of usage of the DotNetNuke upgrade and installation guides that I have posted on this site I see one very common question. Where can I obtain DotNetNuke version ____? Once a release is considered non-current, it becomes slightly harder for individuals to locate the older versions, in this article I'll provide a step-by-step look at the process for finding and downloading "legacy releases" of the DotNetNuke Platform.

August 04, 2008

PACKT CMS Awards

Recently on DotNetNuke.com I noticed that PACKT Publishing is running a contest for Overall Winner, Open Source CMS Award<./a>, Best Other Open ...

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