.NET

[NPM Tip] Rewriting the default protocol for GitHub package references

May 9, 2018 JavaScript, Javascript Development, OpenSource, TypeScript, Web, Web Development No comments

Some times as a Modern Web Developer you will face some “npm install” as some of the packages would be referring to git/ssh protocol to reference private packages from Git Hub.

This would fail when you are behind a corporate proxy.

Rewriting the default protocol for GitHub, run the following snippet in your command line snippets:

git config --global url."https://github.com/".insteadOf git@github.com
git config --global url."https://".insteadOf git://

Blazer – The new experimental web framework from Microsoft

May 2, 2018 .NET, .NET Core, .NET Core 2.0, C#.NET, Emerging Technologies, Microsoft, Razor No comments

In this world of multiple Web frameworks Microsoft would not want to stop experimenting with new frameworks for Web development. Innovation is a key to Microsoft, doesn’t matter the start later than the React(Facebook) and Angular(Google) , but Microsoft has proven most of the times they are good in developing cutting edge frameworks.  That’s how Blazer has born.

Blazer = Browser + Razer

As a ASP.net MVC developer I always loved Razer syntax that was shipped with ASP.NET MVC 3.0. Since then Microsoft has improved the Razor framework with async/await patterns and fluent syntaxes etc.

Concept is simple, use .NET for building browser based apps. Your familiar C# and Razor syntax can add lots of improvements in the way you build browser apps as a modern day web developer.

Why use .NET?

To simplify this question, quoting an excerpt  from Microsoft ASP.NET team blog:  “Web development has improved in many ways over the years but building modern web applications still poses challenges. Using .NET in the browser offers many advantages that can help make web development easier and more productive:

  • Stable and consistent: .NET offers standard APIs, tools, and build infrastructure across all .NET platforms that are stable, feature rich, and easy to use.
  • Modern innovative languages: .NET languages like C# and F# make programming a joy and keep getting better with innovative new language features.
  • Industry leading tools: The Visual Studio product family provides a great .NET development experience on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Fast and scalable: .NET has a long history of performance, reliability, and security for web development on the server. Using .NET as a full-stack solution makes it easier to build fast, reliable and secure applications.

Blazor will have all the features of a modern web framework including:

  • A component model for building composable UI
  • Routing
  • Layouts
  • Forms and validation
  • Dependency injection
  • JavaScript interop
  • Live reloading in the browser during development
  • Server-side rendering
  • Full .NET debugging both in browsers and in the IDE
  • Rich IntelliSense and tooling
  • Ability to run on older (non-WebAssembly) browsers via asm.js
  • Publishing and app size trimming

Now the usual question arises? How is that possible? Running .NET in a Browser?

It is all started with WebAssembly, a new web standard for a “portable, size- and load-time-efficient format suitable for compilation to the web.

  • WebAssembly enables fundamentally new ways to write web apps. Code compiled to WebAssembly can run in any browser at native speeds.
  • WebAssembly is the foundational framework needed to build a .NET runtime that can run in the browser.
  • No plugins or extensions required.

Getting Started with Blazer:

Latest version of blazer framework available is 0.3.0 released on 02/05/2018.

Steps to setup Blazor 0.3.0:

  1. Install the .NET Core 2.1 SDK (2.1.300-preview2-008533 or later).
  2. Install Visual Studio 2017 (15.7 Preview 5 or later) with the ASP.NET and web development workload selected.
  3. Install the latest Blazor Language Services extension from the Visual Studio Marketplace.

Install the Blazor templates using command-line:

dotnet new -i Microsoft.AspNetCore.Blazor.Templates

Additional References:

Setting up Local NPM repository to Speedup Dev/CI Builds

April 29, 2018 Emerging Technologies, JavaScript, JavaScript, Modern Web Development, TypeScript, Web No comments , , ,

As a modern day JavaScript developer working with Node.js and NPM, it has been always any developer’s case to clean up local node modules sometimes when local build is broken. It is a tedious tasks to cleanup %appData%\npm-cache  to do a fresh install of all the modules again. Depending on the number of modules your project have, you will get stuck up for few minutes to hours to complete npm module installation depending on your Internet bandwidth.

Another scenario we can think of it on a build server or CI server, where we need to cleanup the entire modules during each build process, and ‘npm install’ would be like a fresh start, would take longer time to have your build complete.

What if we have a simple way of caching these packages locally, so that we do not have to download again from Internet every-time.  I will help you with a simple solution, that once setup will resolve some of these problems effectively.

Introducing Local-NPM


local-npm is a Node server that acts as a local npm registry. It serves modules, caches them, and updates them whenever they change. Basically it’s a local mirror, but without having to replicate the entire npm registry.

This allows your npm install commands to (mostly) work off-line. Also, your NPM modules  get faster and faster over time, as commonly-installed modules are aggressively cached.

local-npm acts as a proxy between you and the main npm registry. You run npm install commands like normal, but under the hood, all requests are sent through the local server.

 

Getting Started with Local-NPM:

Step 1: Install the module ‘local-npm’

$ npm install –g local-npm

Step 2: launch local-npm  and this will start the local npm server

$ local-npm

This will start the local npm server at localhost:5080.

http://127.0.0.1:5080

PS: Please note that, this step would take some time as this module tried to replicate the entire NPM repository remote skimdb to the local couchdb instance for efficient caching. But it will not eat up your disk space, as it caches modules based on usage only, it will not replicate the entire NPM repository.

Step 3: Validate the local-NPM registry

There is a basic NPMJS like UI to browse through local packages which can be accessed through.

http://localhost:5080/_browse.

Step 4: Then set npm to point to the local server:

$ npm set registry http://127.0.0.1:5080

Step 5: run  “npm install” of your modules and you can see that local-NPM caches these modules that you regularly use.

Incase, to switch back to default NPMJS registry, you can do:

$ npm set registry https://registry.npmjs.org

How it works?

npm is built on top of Apache CouchDB (a No-SQL db), so local-npm works by replicating the full “skimdb” database to a local PouchDB Server.

You can inspect the running database at http://127.0.0.1:16984/_utils.

References

To understand more on local-NPM and documentation visit the module repository in github@https://github.com/local-npm/local-npm

Getting Started with Azure Functions App

June 25, 2017 .NET, .NET Framework, App Service, Azure, C#.NET, Emerging Technologies, Functions App, JavaScript, Microsoft, Windows Azure Development, Windowz Azure No comments

In my previous article I gave you an overview of Azure Functions and discussed about the benefits of the Azure Functions. With this session I will cover you with necessary steps to create an initial basic functions app.

Getting Started:

Login to Azure Portal, you will see Function Apps section in the left menu. This is where all your Function Apps will be listed, once you login.

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Let us start by creating a new Function app. Type Functions

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Select Function App from Web + Mobile category, and Click on Create Button.

Fill In details:

  1. App Name,
  2. Select Subscription
  3. Select Resource Group (new if you want to create new resource group) or select existing
  4. Select Hosting Plan
  5. Specify Storage
  6. Click on Create

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You will see deployment in progress message.

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Once you explore further selecting the Function App instance you will be able view the URL and left side  menu you will see the options to configure:

  1. Functions
  2. Proxies (Preview Feature)
  3. Slots (Preview Feature)

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Getting Started – create first Function App

Now since we have new instance ready. Let us create our first Function.

We have to choose by :

1.)  Choose a scenario:

  1. Webhook + API
  2. Time
  3. Data Processing

2.)  Choose a language:

  1. JavaScript
  2. CSharp
  3. FSharp
  4. For PowerShell, Python and Batch processing, you create your own custom function

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For the demo sake I am creating a Timer Scenario and selected CSharp as the language.

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I created a simple trigger code  and Click on Save and Run

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Job has completed within speculated delay we put through on the Thread.Sleep:

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Code Sample:

 
using System;
using System.Threading;

public static void Run(TimerInfo myTimer, TraceWriter log)
{
    log.Info($"C# Timer trigger function executing at: {DateTime.Now}");

    RunTest(log);

    log.Info($"C# Timer trigger function completed at: {DateTime.Now}");
}


public static void RunTest(TraceWriter log)
{
    for(int i=0; i< 100; i++)
    {
       log.Info($"C# Timer trigger function executing at thread: {i}"); 
       
        Thread.Sleep(1000);

        log.Info($"C# Timer trigger function completed at thread: {i}"); 
    }
}

Using the Functions –> Integrate section we can configure Input, Output parameters and Schedule Timers, to make it available as a WebAPI methods. You can call this functional logic from another application to invoke as a web API call by passing necessary inputs, to start another functional process.

One example for this scenario would be to invoke a Database record archival  call after completion of an order. This is will be applicable in case we choose the scenario WebHook + API during the creation of your functional logic.

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That’s all for now for this topic.  I will cover more details about WebHook + API in next series.

Please share your comments and rate this article to help me understand areas of improvement.

Additional Refs:

Microsoft Build Tour – Hyderabad, 21,22 June 2017

May 30, 2017 .NET, Community, Dev Community, General, Microsoft, TechNet, Windows Azure Development 2 comments

The Microsoft Build Tour brings the best of Microsoft Build right to you. Developers building Line of Business or consumer applications using Cloud or traditional desktop technologies will hear firsthand from Microsoft experts about the latest technical news and updates from the Microsoft Build conference.

Date & Timings:
· DAY1 – Wednesday, June 21, 2017 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM
· DAY2 – Thursday, June 22, 2017 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM (Developer Hackathon)

Venue:
Trident Hyderabad
Survey No.64,
Hitech City Main Road,
HITECH City,
Near Cyber Towers,
Madhapur, Hyderabad,
Telangana 500081

AGENDA DAY 1
08:30 – 09:00 Registration
09:00 – 09:50 Opening keynote shares the future of Microsoft’s Cloud, AI, and Windows technologies.
10:00 – 12:30 Morning sessions dive deep into the latest Cloud tech including serverless, containers, AI, bots, Web, .NET, and cross-platform development.
12:30 – 14:00 Lunch Break
14:00 – 14:25 Technical discussion from your local Microsoft Experts. More details to come!
14:30 – 16:00 Afternoon sessions bring in-depth discussions and demos of Windows 10 features, UWP, Windows Store, and the latest devices.
16:00 – 17:30 Q&A Session with Microsoft Experts and Developers
AGENDA DAY 2
08:30 – 09:00 Registration / Team Assignments / Breakfast
09:00 – 09:30 Introduction
09:30 – 16:00 Hacking
16:00 – 17:00 Presentations & Closing

REGISTRATION LINKS: DAY1 SESSIONS | DAY2 DEVELOPER HACKATHON

Getting Started local development with Azure Cosmos DB services – Part 2

May 29, 2017 .NET, .NET Core 1.0, .NET Core 1.0.1, .NET Framework, ASP.NET, Azure, Azure SDK Tools, Azure Tools, Cloud Computing, CodeSnippets, CosmosDB, Document DB, Microsoft, PaaS, SaaS, Visual Studio 2015, Visual Studio 2015 Update 3, Visual Studio 2017, VisualStudio, VS2015, VS2017, Windows, Windows 10, Windows Azure Development, Windowz Azure No comments

In my previous article we discussed about setting local development environment using Cosmos DB Emulator for Windows. With this part 2 of the article, we will cover developing, debugging and integration related aspects of using Cosmos DB Emulator.

Developing with Cosmos DB Emulator

Once you have Cosmos DB emulator installed and running on your machine, you can use any supported Cosmos DB SDK or Cosmos DB REST API to interact with emulator. This process is same as you are using a Cosmos DB cloud service.

Cosmos DB Emulator also provides a build-in visual explorer through which you can view,create and edit collections and documents.

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Before you integrate Cosmos DB SDK or Cosmos DB REST API you would need to generate master key for authentication. Unlike cloud service, Cosmos DB emulator only support single fixed account and master key.  You would not be able to communicate with Emulator without this master key.

Default Master Key:

Account name: localhost:<port>

Account key: C2y6yDjf5/R+ob0N8A7Cgv30VRDJIWEHLM+4QDU5DE2nQ9nDuVTqobD4b8mGGyPMbIZnqyMsEcaGQy67XIw/Jw==

PS: This key is only to be used in Emulator. You cannot use the same key for Production(Cosmos DB Cloud Service).

Furthermore, if you want to set your own key. You can go to command line references and run DocumentDB.Emulator.exe with sufficient command switch to set your own key. Remember it should meet the key security requirements. See command-line tool reference for more information.

The Azure Cosmos DB Emulator is installed by default to the C:\Program Files\Azure Cosmos DB Emulator  or C:\Program Files\DocumentDB Emulator  directory.

Once you have account name and key, you are good to go with development and debugging using Azure Cosmos DB emulator.

Let us start looking at how to use CosmosDB SDK. Once you add Cosmos DB SDK for .NET from NUGET sources. You would need to import the following namespaces to reference necessary classes.

 using Microsoft.Azure.Documents;
   
 using Microsoft.Azure.Documents.Client;
   
 using Microsoft.Azure.Documents.Linq;

Simple code to establish connection:

// Connect to the Azure Cosmos DB Emulator running locally use DocumentClient class in : 
DocumentClient client = new DocumentClient(
    new Uri("https://localhost:8081"), 
    "C2y6yDjf5/R+ob0N8A7Cgv30VRDJIWEHLM+4QDU5DE2nQ9nDuVTqobD4b8mGGyPMbIZnqyMsEcaGQy67XIw/Jw==");

In the above code block we are directly embedding endpoint, key in the source code.But as a suggested approch keeping in mind to easily point to production service would be maintain the key in Web.config appSettings.

   <add value="https://localhost:8081/" key="endpoint"/>
    <add value="C2y6yDjf5/R+ob0N8A7Cgv30VRDJIWEHLM+4QDU5DE2nQ9nDuVTqobD4b8mGGyPMbIZnqyMsEcaGQy67XIw/Jw==" key="authKey"/>
 

Add NuGet reference to Microsoft.Azure.DocumentDB  (always use the latest version of the library)

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For the ease of this article, I am going to use the existing ToDoList sample from DocumentDB Samples provided by Microsoft. You can originally find the same source from C:\Program Files\DocumentDB Emulator\Packages\DataExplorer\quickstart.

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Copy and Unzip DocumentDB-Quickstart-DotNet.zip and open todo.sln in Visual Studio 2017 and your solution structure will look like below:

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Now run the application in your Visual Studio.

1. You will see an initial screen:

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2. Click on Create New:

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3. New record will be added to your Azure Cosmos DB Emulator:

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4. To verify in Cosmos DB emulator now open Cosmos DB explorer, click on Collections and Select ToDoList

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5.Expand Documents and select item with id:da305da3-c1dc-4e34-94d9-fd7f82d26c58

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Hope this article was helpful for you with initial development.  Share your feedback through comments and share this to your friends and colleagues.

Useful Links: