Installing Rails 2.3.2 on Mac OS X 10.5

Recently, I needed to update my local installation of Ruby and Rails to versions 1.8.7 and 2.3.2 respectively on an iMac at home. I am bit rusty on some of my *nix skills since I have been working in predominantly Microsoft based environment for a significant amount of time. Thankfully, I found a great step-by-step how-to blog post that walked me through the process flawlessly.

Rails Resources

Sometimes, I have a bit of free time. Over the last few months, I have spent a few moments on some old projects of mine that have been essentially abandoned. These projects (which I may mention at some later date since they are not complete at this time) use some open source technologies since I can’t afford to personally purchase licensing for most of the technologies that I use professionally. In any case, I have spent some time getting reacquainted with Ruby on Rails. During this learning journey, I have come across a plethora of information (some good, some bad) that have helped me get familiar with this technology again. And now I will share these resources with you…

  • Ruby on Rails – The official web site has tons of goodies such as downloads, documentation, guides. This is a great place to get started.
  • Railscasts – The best source I found with free Ruby on Rails screen-casts.

The Vendor Client Relationship

A colleauge of mine recently pointed me to this video and it is great. The funny thing is I can relate to it from both ends. As a consultant, I usualy play the role of a vendor. However, out side of work I am usually a client. Either way, it’s a fun video to watch and it’s work safe. Enjoy!

Come and Get It! SP2 for MOSS 2007 and WSS 3.0 Is Here

Service Pack 2 for Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 have been officially annouced and are available for download from the Microsoft Download Center. I ran across the annoucement on the Microsoft SharePoint Team Blog where you can find links to the knowledgebase articles, downloads, and other resources including installation instructions. Below are quick links for the downloads:

SP2 for WSS 3.0:

SP2 for MOSS 2007:

SharePoint Test Driven Development

[Via Joel Oleson]

I love finding a good and useful blog post and this morning I did just that. The post from Joel Oleson regading SharePoint test driven development is great. It has a quick exerpt from his twitter conversation with other SharePoint pros regarding this topic, a summary of what he learned, and list of useful resources with descriptions. If you follow or practice test driven development (TDD) and are involved with SharePoint development, then this post will be a good resource for you too.

Microsoft Office SharePoint Designer 2007 or Not

SharePoint Designer (SPD) is a nifty tool to use to customize SharePoint sites. It is very powerful and allows us to quickly make style, organizational, functional, and content changes quickly and easily. Today, I ran across a post from Joel Oleseon where he shared his professional opinion in response to another post about the tool from Mark Rackley which was motivated in response to Microsoft’s announcement to make the tool available for free. There really is nothing new about the debate as it deals with the advantages and disadvantages of empowering an end user with all of the power the tool has to offer. It has just resurfaced since the tool will be freely available.

So… if the debate is not new, what’s all the fuss about?

Regardless of the stance that you take about allowing SPD to be used in a production SharePoint deployment or not, the real cause of concern is how SPD can impact production environment when used by untrained/uninformed users with appropriate rights. This reminds me of the quote – with great power comes great responsibility… or something like that. I don’t see the need for huge concern. That is assuming people with those rights have already been trained and informed. For the most part, people with contributor or higher permission role assignments can already do plenty of damage to a production environment with only the web browser at hand. Hence, the need and argument for appropriate training, content approval (and publishing) planning and enforcement, and governance plans (especially in Extranet/Internet facing deployments).

Okay… so what should we do?

There shouldn’t be too much to do (assuming training, content approval, governance, etc. has already been addressed). Professionally, I will be making sure to emphasize the role of SPD in SharePoint projects. I will also make sure to encourage the inclusion or addition of SPD training for existing and new SharePoint users (especially “power” users), administrators, and developers.

Joel Oleson’s Recommendations for SharePoint Application Pool Settings

I have used Joel Oleson’s recommenations to tweak many IIS application pools for countless SharePoint sites. The nice things about his recommendations is that he explains his logic behind them. This lets you decide whether or not to follow each recommendation based on the effect you are trying to acheive.