It’s not a book, but it’s slightly closer


TechNet Magazine has picked me up as a columnist, and in their November/December 2005 issue they granted me the great honor of being on the back page. My opening salvo is an IT-ized version of one of my more popular early articles, but future issues will contain never-before-seen random musings on subjects of interest to IT professionals.

And no, I don't get paid to write that column either.

You can learn more from the TechNet Magazine Blog, including how to get a free subscription.

Comments (23)
  1. mschaef says:

    Congratulations!

  2. Derek says:

    Hmm, I was going through the application form for the free subscription, and stopped at the last minute. I’d like to actually get your column, Ramond, but it looks like the magazine is really aimed at a more MIS-type demographic, and that’s not really what I do. I feel kind of like I’d be stealing from Microsoft. (I wonder if the "M$" bashing will start now.)

    Anyway, glad to hear you’re doing a column. Congrats. I wish it was in a magazine aimed more at developers, I’m sure your column will be a wonderful addition to the magazine.

  3. Miles Archer says:

    Sending me a bunch of paper just so I can read a few words from Raymond seems like overkill. Is there an online edition that you can point us to when your articles appear?

  4. Andreas Häber says:

    Raymond: Congratulations with your column :)

    Derek+Miles: See [1] for an online version of the column in the current edition (nov/dec05).

    [1] http://www.microsoft.com/technet/technetmag/issues/2005/11/WindowsConfidential/default.aspx

  5. Cameron says:

    Good thing the online version is free, because the print version is only free to US residents.

    Congrats on the column!

  6. Radix says:

    About the 2003 entry linked to:

    In one of my programs I read the ‘Shell Folders’ key to find the location of ‘Program Files’, and for good reason. The CSIDL_PROGRAM_FILES value for SHGetSpecialFolderLocation needs v5 of the shell. So if you do your "freshly-formatted [windows 95] machine" and try to find program files this way, it fails! In fact, the msdn docs that come with MSVC++ 6 don’t even include CSIDL_PROGRAM_FILES.

    Now i’m sure there aren’t many win95 machines without IE 5 or higher on them in 2005, but at the time I was running win95 and didn’t want to leave ANYONE out. So how else was I to find the program files location?

  7. Radix says:

    Well it’d been almost 5 years since I wrote that code so I forgot part of it. I looked in the shell folders key just now and saw no entry for Program Files there … so I was like ok, where did it get it?

    Looked at the code and it’s HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionProgramFilesDir

    So… is that a no-no registry key too or ok to use that?

  8. Radix: Right, "Shell Folders" was never right (and if you take a look, "Program Files" isn’t even listed there.) "ProgramFilesDir" was the correct documented mechanism for Windows 95.

  9. Radix says:

    All right, but any plans to deprecate this key? Should I add some version checking in the installer to only look there under win95, or is it safe to look there even under longhorn and the future?

    BTW, nice blog, I’ve learned a bunch :-) Recently got rid of a few Sleep(0) calls…

  10. I am not aware of any plans to deprecate the key, but then again, it’s not like everybody at Microsoft tells me their plans.

  11. TC says:

    > you can learn more from the TechNet Magazine Blog, including

    > how to get a free subscription.

    Um, last time I checked, the world comprised more than just the USA.

    (free sub is only in the USA)

  12. J says:

    Um, last time I checked, the world comprised more than just the USA.

    Umm, last time I checked, Raymond said that you could learn HOW to get a free subscription. He didn’t say you COULD get a free subscription, Mr. Snootypants.

  13. Frank says:

    "Raymond Chen has worked in the Microsoft Windows division since 1992 and has seen a lot of things come and go. His Web site blogs.msdn.com/oldnewthing deals with the history of Windows and the dying art of Win32 programming."

    DYING art of Win32 programming?

  14. Derek says:

    Frank, not that many people do raw Win32 programming anymore. They use ATL/WTL or MFC. Or now .NET. As the frameworks have gotten better, it’s gotten hard to justify spending the time to do it the "old fashioned" way. For many things, it’s just not necessary to dip down into the base API.

    TC, get over it. It costs more to ship overseas. It’s not worth it to them to give free subscriptions for overseas. If you want the subscription, just buy it.

  15. Merle says:

    Congrats!

    It always seems weird that the "last page" would be a good place to be. But I do admit that in tech magazines, I look at the last page, even if everything else looks like dreck, just because…

  16. Kelli Zielinski says:

    Congrats; that’s awesome! I concur, good stuff is in the back, and better than getting shuffled in the middle.

    Whoo! I use SHGetFolderPath! That’s my validation for the weekend. ;)

  17. TC says:

    J wrote:

    > Raymond said that you could learn HOW to get a free subscription.

    > He didn’t say you COULD get a free subscription, Mr. Snootypants.

    J, please purchase my new guide: "How To Win Five Trillion Dollars". It comprises a single sentence: "You can’t".

    Well, I said I’d tell you HOW TO win that amount. I didn’t say that you COULD win it!

    When read like that, it really doesn’t make much sense, does it? :-)

  18. J says:

    TC: If that web link merely said "You can’t", I’d accept your analogy. As it stands, however, I reject your analogy wholeheartedly.

  19. Yeesh, can’t a guy write something informally without a bunch of language nitpickers jumping down my throat? Do I really have to write "including information on how some people might be able to get free subscriptions if they meet certain criteria, subject to availability; terms of offer may change at any time without notice; this message does not create a promise of service and confers no rights"?

  20. Anonymous Coward says:

    Yeesh, can’t a guy write something informally without a bunch of language nitpickers jumping down my throat?

    Are you serious? Have you never talked with a geek before? You’re talking to people who think the precision demanded by a compiler is a good way to communicate with human beings as well.

  21. TC says:

    Yeesh, can’t a guy write something informally without

    > a bunch of language nitpickers jumping down my throat?

    The only "jumping down of throats" here, is going from you to me, not me to you. It was a lighthearted exchange – originally.

  22. bw says:

    you’re not getting paid, but they are getting paid from the readers, somehow i think this isn’t fair

  23. K.T. says:

    I always read magazines backwards…so I’m very happy!

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