A new centralised location for Microsoft training events, camps & conferences

TL;DR I have created a new Meetup.com group to curate and aggregate the important Microsoft events happening in Australia. Join it to keep up to date on what is happening in your area. http://www.meetup.com/Microsoft-events-in-Australia

The situation

I have been involved in the Australian developer community for 10+ years now. While there is a lot of talent and passion in the community, there has always been the issue of event discoverability. While there is an issue on a per user group level (I will tackle this in a future blog post), no where has this fragmentation been worse than with Microsoft.

I like to think of myself as a very informed dev community member, and I try to keep up with what major events are going on but too often there are big events that slip by without being aware it was even on. I am a Microsoft MVP, I was a Technical Evangelist for Infragistics which required that I keep abreast of events that are happening, I am signed up to countless newsletters, websites, groups, I am frequently asked to speak at some of these events and I am still missing things.

To give an idea of just the Microsoft news sources I subscribe to in Australia:

Long story short there are so many silos of event information, I’m subscribed to as many as I can and I still miss out on events and can’t find information on events that *I* am speaking at so I know the events exist.

Stop complaining, do something about it

I have brought this up multiple times without any resolution. So I decided to step up and create a curated list of Microsoft training events, web camps, conferences and any other big events (like DDD Melbourne/Sydney/Brisbane).

http://www.meetup.com/Microsoft-events-in-Australia

While there may be other ways to solve this, I decided to go with Meetup.com as it is the single best thing that has happened to user groups. Newsletters and blog posts can be tricky to send out and maintain, and on the consumer side they can take time to parse and get the information out. Meetup quickly lists out each event and the date. Simple at a glance summary of events.

So go, sign up. Spread the word to your twitter followers, coworkers, etc. The more involvement we can get in these events, the more frequent and larger the events can be!

Connecting Team City to Visual Studio Online using Git source control

I was on a client project that was using Team City for their builds. I migrated their source control from SVN to using Visual Studio Online (as they had less than 5 users it was free). But I had issues trying to find any documentation on how to successfully connect Team City to Visual Studio when you are using Git for the source control. Hopefully these steps will help someone else in the future.

Where I was going wrong was trying to treat it like it was a TFS project, instead I should have been treating it like a standard Git repository.

For this blog post I am using the TFS team project I created during a live demo I gave for the Windows Azure web camp.

Step 1: Enable alternate authentication credentials

You will need to tell Visual Studio Online to enable other tools (such as command line Git tools & Team City) to be able to log in using a username & password.

  • Load your team portal, then in the top right click “My Profile”.
  • Go to the credentials tab and click “Enable alternate credentials”

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Step 2: Obtain the URL for your Git repository

The easiest way I’ve found to get the URL for your git repository is to open a Git command prompt and list the remote origin

  • In Visual Studio go to the changes section in the Team Explorer tab.
  • Click “Actions” and select “Open Command Prompt”
  • In the command prompt type
    git remote show origin

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Step 3: Enter details into Team City

This is the part that confused me, as I kept trying to connect with the TFS plugin. The secret is to just treat it as a Git repository.

  • In your team city project, click to add a “New VCS Root”
  • Type of VCS: Leave as <guess from repository URL>
  • Repository URL: Enter the Git repository URL obtained from the command prompt (in this example it would have been https://ausazurewebcamp.visualstudio.com/defaultcollection/_git/MelbourneSoftdrink
  • Username: Enter your Visual Studio Online username
  • Password: Enter the password you created when enabling Alternate Credentials.

 

Once it has connected you should be able to just click “Auto-Detect build steps” and have Team City download your source code, and automatically find your .sln file.

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Build 2014 – Day 1 keynote

For the last couple years it has been a tradition that I capture a stream of consciousness as I watch the big Microsoft keynote announcements at Build, PDC, TechEd North America. I enjoy doing it so that my work colleagues are able to catch up on the news as soon as they wake up in Australia, and for anyone else that wants an overview of the keynote without needing to dedicate hours watching it.

As I am live blogging it, the post is a stream of text and screen captures as they happened in real time. I have added additional links and a summary below as the highlights:

Highlights

The entire conference & screenshots are continued below

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