Jeff Makes Software

The software musings of Jeff Putz

  • The very slow move of POP Forums to .NET Core

    I started to work on migrating POP Forums to the new ASP.NET Core more than a year ago, but as the framework and tooling changed a bunch of times, I kind of got tired of trying to keep up, and I let it just hang out for a long time. As I've been engaged at various levels of deep coding at work (usually 0 or 100 mph, never somewhere in between), so goes the mental bandwidth for my little open source project, which has existed in one form or another for more than 16 years. The progress was in spurts, but there was progress. Heck, I even have a CI build now! Here's the timeline:

  • Adventures in load testing

    I'm at a point now where POP Forums is mostly ported to ASP.NET Core, and I'm super happy with it. I've done some minor tweaks here and there, but mostly it's the "old" code running in the context of the new framework. I mentioned before that my intention is not to really add a ton of features for this release, but I do want to make it capable of scaling out, which is to say run on multiple nodes. I haven't done any real sniffing on SQL performance or anything, but I noticed that I had some free, simple load testing available as part of my free-level Visual Studio Team Services account, so that seemed convenient.

  • No! You don't need to use ASP.NET Identity!

    Going way back to, I think, .NET v3, ASP.NET had this new thing called Membership. Maybe it was a version earlier. I dunno. "Neat," I thought, I can write a provider adhering to this interface and use my existing user and auth structure to plug into this system. Then I saw that the membership and role providers each had about a bazillion (maybe quadbazillion) members to implement, and reality set in that what I already had was working just fine. Some years later, ASP.NET offered Identity, this newer thing that did sort of the same thing. It even made its way into Core.

  • POP Forums roadmap and ASP.NET Core

    The volatility over ASP.NET Core made me pause (twice) since last fall when it came to porting POP Forums to the new platform. Every new release broke things to the point of frustration, and the RC2 reboot was hard. With SignalR falling a bit behind, it made things worse. But alas, that seems to be mostly behind us, and I've started committing stuff to a branch again, a little at a time, to run on the new ASP.NET. It's not at all usable, and every change seems to invite more changes, but I'm starting to see the potential and love for ASP.NET Core.

  • ASP.NET Core middleware to measure request processing time

    One of the things that ASP.NET Core promises is a faster, streamlined processing pipeline. Naturally, you start to wonder how fast your pages render before being spit out into the tubes. With the fantastic ability to chain middleware in the pipeline (think HttpModules and HttpHandlers, only without the bazillion events), it's super easy to wrap most of the processing in a timer.

  • Collaborate and contribute vs. order taking and kingdom guarding

    I was chatting with a coworker yesterday about the various kinds of IT work environments that we've been in. It was largely in the context of the kind of influence we have, depending on our career stage. I was making the point that it's easier to "sneak in" the right things when you get further along, a perk that I've enjoyed a bit in recent years. There is definitely a difference in the flavor of environments that are out there, ranging from the full-on IT-as-innovator shop to the stodgy old heads-down status quo.

  • Developers: You have to share and mentor others, for the sake of our profession

    Again this year, I did a couple of talks at Orlando Code Camp, the amazingly awesome free mini-conference that our local user group, ONETUG, has been putting on for a decade now. I am again fascinated by the vibrancy of our community, and all of the people who volunteer their time to share knowledge. It's humbling and amazing. (My decks are on GitHub, by the way. I won't rehash the mentoring and career development stuff here.)

  • EF7 RC, navigation properties and lazy loading

    Jumping into the brave new world of .NET as open source has been an experience, to say the least. The feedback loop is tight, things change quickly, and it's definitely a different world than the days of big bang releases. I think it's a great thing, but admittedly, it makes the early adoption thing a lot harder. Sometimes I find myself disappointed (as with the deferred release of SignalR 3, for example). Still, the scope of the frameworks and the number of people working on them is impressive, and I look forward to this new world.