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28 | 07 | 2017
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Family guy, geek, entrepreneur, software craftsman: Visual FoxPro, C#, SQL Server, MySQL, Linux consultant, conference speaker

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Good to know: Sender Policy Framework
User Rating:★★☆☆☆ / 7
Friday, 12 December 2014 21:03

Sender Policy FrameworkToday, I ran into a "funny" situation where I got caught by my own mail server and DNS configuration. Actually, I'm referring to the Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and it disallowed that an email would have been delivered on my behalf.

Delivery Status Notification

Earlier on I wanted to share a document on OneDrive with my client, and was surprised that he didn't get any invitation by email within the usual 5 to 10 minutes. Well, it turned out that the email had been declined with a Delivery Status Notification (SMTP 550): 

Reporting-MTA: dns;
Received-From-MTA: dns;DUB131-DS14
Arrival-Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2014 03:22:13 -0800

Final-Recipient: rfc822; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Action: failed
Status: 5.7.1
Diagnostic-Code: smtp;550 5.7.1 < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >: Recipient address rejected: Please see;id=....

That's good!

SPF is configured via DNS

Although SPF is used for mail transfers it is configured in the DNS records of a domain. There you should specify an SPF record, or at least a TXT record with similar content to this:

v=spf1 a mx -all

The explanation of the various mechanisms for the configuration of an outbound mail server is available in the Sender Policy Framework Record Syntax. And it is actually not too hard to learn and apply.

Rather be safe than sorry

In case that you didn't configure SPF for your domain(s) yet. Please, go ahead and do yourself and mainly other internauts a favour and set-up your DNS records accordingly. It doesn't take that much time but improves your reputation as an outbound mail host.

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Microsoft and innovation: IIF() method
Sunday, 06 October 2013 17:10

This Saturday I was watching a couple of eLearning videos from TrainSignal (thanks to the subscription I have with Pluralsight) on Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (exam 70-461).

'Innovation' by Microsoft

I kept myself busy learning 'new' things about Microsoft SQL Server 2012 and some best practices. It was incredible 'innovative' to see that there is an additional logic function called IIF() available now:

Returns one of two values depending on the value of a logical expression.

IIF(lExpression, eExpression1, eExpression2)

Ups, my bad... That's actually taken from the syntax page of Visual FoxPro 9.0 SP 2. And tada, at least seven (7+) years later, there's the recent IIF() Transact-SQL version of that function:

Returns one of two values, depending on whether the Boolean expression evaluates to true or false in SQL Server 2012.

IIF ( boolean_expression, true_value, false_value )

Now, that's what I call innovation! But we all know what happened to Visual FoxPro... It has been reincarnated in form of Visual Studio LightSwitch (and SQL Server).

Enough ranting... Happy coding!

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Resume on 30 Days of SharePoint
User Rating:★★★★☆ / 2
Monday, 30 September 2013 12:10

Microsoft SharePointDear readers, as you might have noticed... It was an organisational desaster on my end!

Even though I continued my studies and research on Microsoft SharePoint 2013 during the last 30 days, I wasn't able to write an article a day to keep you posted on my progress. Nonetheless, I gathered a good number of additional blogs, mainly SharePoint MVP sites, and online forums which will be helpful in the next couple of weeks while I'm actually going to develop a C#-based client which will enable an existing 'legacy' application to SharePoint as a document management system (DMS) besides other already existing solutions.

Finding excuses

Well, no. Not really. I simply didn't block any or enough time every day to write down my progress during my own challenge. My log book on learning about SharePoint stands at 41 hours and 15 minutes during this month. Which means that I spent an average of more than 1 hour per day on getting into SharePoint. I know that might sound a little bit low but also keep in mind that I went for the challenge on top of my daily job and private responsibilities. During the same period there had been two priority 0 incidents from clients - external root cause - which took presedence over this leisure project.

More to come

Anyway, it was a first trial and despite the low level of reporting on my blog, I'm confident about what I learned during the last 30 days, and I'm ready to implement the client's requirements. At least, I would say that I have a better understanding about the road map or the path to walk during the next month. As time and secrecy allows I'm going to note down some bits and pieces...

During the process of development, I'm going to 'cheat' on the challenge summary article and add links to those new entries. Just for the sake of completeness.

Next challenge?

Hmm, there had been ideas during the last meetup of the Mauritius Software Craftsmanship Community (MSCC) regarding certifications in IT and eventually we might organise some kind of a study group for specific exams, most probably Microsoft exams towards MCSD Web Developer or Windows Developer.

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Exploring various SharePoint blogs
Thursday, 05 September 2013 09:26

Microsoft SharePointQuick summary on the activities I did yesterday - aka Day 4. Actually, it wasn't too much but I went through a number of articles on various blogs and online forums. Just for general purpose and to see whether my collection is going to have more entries. Well, so far I have to admit that the resources are good. Unfortunately, the blog of Doerfler is a little bit scarce. I went through it completely and there wasn't too much interesting information (yet) but this particular entry is worth mentioning:

Taking into consideration that there haven't been any new entries since November 2012 I would say that the blog is dormant. It would be great to have new entries in the future...

My first (baby) steps in the following SharePoint communities are only scratching the surface, and I'm really looking forward to dig deeper. There seems to be a lot of valuable information available:

I think that I already found a true gem over there which is going to give me some extra time: How to begin learning SharePoint (for beginners) - Great overview and link collection Mark Jones. Interestingly, I already discovered a couple of his entries, like the video tutorials by Andrew Connell.

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SharePoint 2013 Developer Ramp-Up - Part 2
Tuesday, 03 September 2013 18:38

Microsoft SharePointAs stated already yesterday, today I continued with the available course material on Pluralsight. For sure interesting topics in the second part of the series but not the field of operation I'm going to work in later. During the course you get a lot of information about how to create and deploy SharePoint Solutions and hosted SharePoint Apps.

Today's resource(s)

Apart from some blog articles I watched in the following course today:

Not thrilling but still two solid hours to go.


One of the coolest aspects I figured out today is that SharePoint development can be done easily in JavaScript and C# - just as you like or prefer. It's actually pretty cool to see that you could integrate external JS libraries like datajs, knockout,js and so forth in order to implement your solution.

And that you should be very familiar with Microsoft PowerShell. Not only to simplify some repetitive work but also to do be able to get things going in SharePoint. Having a decent background knowledge in Linux, I find this pretty amusing and remember the initial baby steps when PowerShell was introduced some years back (Note: German language). The outcry as well as the hype was too funny.

Honestly, I have kind of mixed feelings about today's progress. Surely, there was interesting information about developing extensions directly for and in SharePoint... Hm, I'll leave that one for now and probably it might be helpful someday.

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