How to Disable Password Checking for Certificates in IE7 when Strong Private Key Protection is Enabled

September 23, 2007

One of the projects that I’m currently working on requires the use of soft-certificates in order to confirm identity and for doing authorization. Since the application that is being written only needs to have support for Internet Explorer 7, I imported my PKCS #12 certificate through Internet Explorer (Internet Options -> Content -> Certificates -> Personal -> Import).

As I was importing it, there was a page where I needed to provide a password that the CA had given me. On the same page there is an option to “Enable strong private key protection”. It was followed by the sentence “You will be prompted every time the private key is used by an application if you enable this option”. Since I favored security over convenience, I happily selected this option and provided my new password. Just in case I needed to move to another computer, I also marked the key as being exportable.

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MinneBar 2007

April 22, 2007

Yesterday I went to my first ever MinneBar which was pretty exciting. I did not find out about it until earlier this week, but I’m glad I was able to attend and present.

Apparently this year’s MinneBar was the 2nd largest BarCamp in history with almost 400 registered people. From what I was told, the largest BarCamp was in Bangalore with over 500 attendees.

Some of the presentations which I seen parts of were:

  1. A Highly Kinetic Semi Dangerous Exposition – Bill Gurstelle
  2. Ruby on Rails Q&A – David Heinemeier Hansson
  3. Introduction to Natural Language Processing – Frank Schilder & Gary Berosik
  4. JRuby 0.99 Q&A – Charles Nutter and Thomas Enebo.
  5. Functional Languages and Agile Development – Robert Fischer

In the morning I gave a presentation with Ben Edwards from Refactr entitled Selling Agile to the Enterprise. We had pretty good attendance with people spilling out into the hallway. The presentation can be found here.


Monitoring Ant Build Execution Times

March 9, 2007

I recently received an email from someone asking about an open source tool I wrote some time ago called Antomology. Since its been a while since I thought about it, why not blog about it.

(Ripped from the README.txt)

Antomology, besides being a word play on Entomology, is an Ant analysis tool suite. The current suite offering is:

StatisticsListener – an Ant BuildListener which can be used to gather statistics while an Ant build is executed. Statistics on the targets and tasks executed are written to the console after the build completes. Some of the statistics captured are:

  1. the number of times a target / task is called
  2. the average processing time spent on a target / task
  3. the total processing time spent on a target / task
  4. the total processing time spent on a target / task expressed as a percentage

The tool isn’t too amazing and the current suite offering is meager, but it served its purpose well on a past project that I was on. I was hoping to take it to the next level by providing support for historical graphing and analysis, but I have not been able to find the time to do it (as of yet).

The Continuous Integration solution at Codehaus isn’t publishing the Antomology jar yet, but the code in the Subversion repository is more current (and tested).


A Comparison of Continuous Integration Tools for Ruby on Rails

February 28, 2007

Yesterday I gave a talk at the Ruby Users of Minnesota (RUM) meeting where I presented some slides and gave a demo on some of the current Continuous Integration (CI) tools that are available for Ruby and Ruby on Rails.

The technologies reviewed were Continuous Builder, Cerberus, CruiseControl, and CruiseControl.rb. I also compiled and presented a comparison matrix much like Aslak Hellesoy has done on the DamageControl web site.

All the artifacts that I used for the demo can be found on the Docs page.


Recovering Deleted Posts When Using WordPress

January 31, 2007

This morning I was having some technical problems with my “Learning Ruby – TDD Style!” Parts 1 and 2 blog posts, specifically how pings were handled when linking posts to each other on update. A side effect of a post update meant a comment would be automatically created in the blog post that it referred to. Since I was adding and will continue to add “navigation” functionality for the different post-parts in order to make life easier for the readers, the present set up was not adequate.

When writing or updating a post in WordPress, there is a box on the right hand side of the screen entitled Discussion with an item for allowing pings. The solution was simple enough: All I needed to do was update each page, uncheck Allow Pings, save and delete any lingering ping comments. Simple enough. Somewhere along deleting the ping comments in my early morning haze, I accidentally deleted one of my blog entries!

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Learning Ruby – TDD Style! (Part 2)

January 31, 2007

start | previous | next | finish

In order to do Test Driven Development (TDD), we need to become intimately familiar with assertions. In my last blog entry, we started to look at the assert method. Lets consider the contract of this method:

assert(boolean, message=nil)
– Asserts that boolean is not false or nil.

When testing this method I’m making the conscious decision not to test assert using the other methods that Test::Unit::Assertions offers. Although it’ll make things more difficult at first, it will force us to learn aspects of the Ruby language that we would not be able to see if we used one “assert” to test another “assert”.

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Learning Ruby – TDD Style! (Part 1)

January 13, 2007

start | previous | next | finish

I’m starting to take a serious look at Ruby, and like many people who are new to a programming language, it’s difficult to know where to start. Sure I have the “pickaxe” book in hand and my bookmarks are overflowing with Ruby links, but where ever and however I start I would like to be able to see immediate results and I would like to prove to myself that I’m understanding the syntax.

How about testing what I already know? Well, right now I don’t know too much. However, that should make things easier since it will prevent me from wanting to take on too much at once and keeping myself focused on small obtainable goals.

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