I am in the Ft. Lauderdale airport waiting on my plane (they have free wireless at the Cruzan Rum Bar just outside TSA security), on my way home from the Florida .NET Code Camp. Man, that was a blast.
I talked about WSE 2.0, and ended up doing demos of the HOLs available on the web services spoke with a few minor tweaks. Then I got to go to a lot of other sessions.
My favorite session, hands down, was Tim Walton’s “Tales from the Server Side.” He effectively explained threads, processes, debuggers, and showed how to use WinDbg for CSI investigation of apps. I have seen WinDbg and even used it once, but wasn’t aware of just what it was capable of. You can load the symbols for any Microsoft PE file format (DLLs and EXEs) and they are all provided online. From there, you can effectively see exactly what was being called at a snapshot in time and find out definitively what the problem is with an application. He jumped into a badly behaving ASP application and found a call to VBScript that called a VB6.0 component that called GetPrivateProfileString in the API and threw an exception. He also showed how using exceptions for flow control effectively halts the entire OS as an interrupt message event and this is a horribly expensive operation (which reminds me… do not use exceptions for flow control.. you now have proof).
My favorite quote of Tim’s: “If this were a real CSI episode, you can see that it would be a really short-lived thing. It would be, ‘let’s investigate the crime scene… oops! A photograph, he did it! Guilty! The end!”.
I got to see some old friends (Rob Zelt, Jason Beres, Joe Healy), some new friends (I got to talk to Stan Schultes, I have always wanted to meet him and talk with him), and some guys I see all the time (Keith Rome and Paul Lockwood from Atlanta flew down there! You guys need a support group for all the support groups you go to!)
What a fun time. I am looking forward to the Atlanta version of Code Camp, and even more to the upcoming Communications Sector regional Expo events.