Tab preview for Firefox in Windows 7

While the first beta of Firefox 3.6 did not offer the tab-preview for Windows 7 (you know, those little previews when you hover over running programs in your taskbar, which allow switching direct to a certain tab within Firefox), this feature was removed in the third beta. 🙁

Actually, this feature wasn’t really removed but rather just disabled. In order to re-active this feature you have to open the advanced settings (about:config) and then just enable browser.taskbar.previews.enable.

If you even want to be able to cycle through the browser tabs using [CTRL]+[Tab] you have to enable browser.ctrlTab.previews (you might have to create this settig if it does not yet exist) as well.

Boost Firefox performance

Since version 3.x Firefox is using SQLite-databases to store it’s interal stuff like history, awsome-bar etc. Because the database can get fragmented over time, you might want to do some cleanup once in a while.

To do so, just open up Tools\Error-Console and evaluate this statemant:


This should freeze the UI for a couple of seconds, but after that you’re all set to go.

Scrambled assembly viewer

I just encountered some weird behavior of the windows explorer. I’m used to go to C:\WINDOS\assembly to poke around my GAC, but today the GAC didn’t look like the GAC at all. There where a bunch of folders instead of a list of assemblies. And there was no context-menu offering to install or deinstall assemblies.

It turned out, that someone must have screwed with my server 🙂 after reseting DisableCacheViewer in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Fusion from 1 to 0 everything is behaving like it’s supposed to.

Watch 'em logfiles

It’s always handy to keep a logfile around – you never know when you wanna need one! So just in case … you should keep a spare!

I was just so pissed of by my dev-machine, because it ran out of disk-space – and then it hit me! There was this one app, it’s not even written by myself (which makes it even worse) and it’s write two logfiles (this doesn’t makes sense to me in the first place). One xml and one text based. But also for a released software to be shipped with a log level of debug and the (and this by far the most serious issue): log4net is set to <appendToFile value="true" />. Ok you might have spot it: after two weeks of usae the logfile was consuming 3,5 GB of disk-space!!

Activating the WSPBuilder context menu

Recently WSPBuilder caught my attention, and I started to play a little with the command-line tool. WSPBuilder dramatically eases the creation of WSP-Files to deploy SharePoint solutions.

But even more interesting would be an integration into Visual Studio – and since I’m not the first one to recognize this need there is already an addin.

Unfortunately the menu-extension is not visible on my german installation of Windows (and Visual Studio). So there is some manual work needed:

  • copy the WSPTools.VisualStudio.VSAddIn.AddIn from C:\Dokumente und Einstellungen\All Users\Anwendungsdaten\Microsoft\MSEnvShared\Addins to C:\Dokumente und Einstellungen\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\MSEnvShared\Addins.
  • startup Visual Studio and make sure the addin is being started by checking the appropriate check-box.

Updating a SQL2005 mixed installation

For a pure dev-machine I only have the MS-SQL express edition installed, which is being distributed along with the current Visual Studio release.

Doing also some DBA stuff, I soon figured that I need to have the real management-console (Management Studio) as well. So I tried to install just Management Studio from the “real” SQL Server. This turned out to be quite difficult (with SQL 2008 this turned out to be no burden at all anymore).

So after doing a tremendous amount of tweaking I finally got everything working alright – until the SP2 for SQL 2005 was shipping.

Trying to install the SP2 was a bigger problem than I expected. The update for the Express Edition complained about the installed Management Studio, which created a version mismatch and the standard edition of SQL Server complaint about the mismatching database engine from the express edition.

Fortunately SP3 does a way better job. Just install both updates (for the standard edition and the express edition) and you’re all set. The last issue was an abort during the express edition update. This was somehow the sample issue, which stopped the KB 948109 update from installing. So opening up the registry and going to the key HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\Setup (respectively HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.2005\Setup) and deleting the settings FTSGroups and SQLgroup solved this issue.

The next level of FireFox

So I upgraded recently to the current beta of FireFox (which makes this FireFox 3.1 beta2). Everythings looks really cool, except that you will have to tweak your profile a little to get all the nice extensions working, which are not yeat aware of FF 3.1.

This is just like the move to FF 3.0 … so I did what I already knew about twiggeling FF for extensions.

But still one extensions is just not “behaiving”. That is the Tab Mix Plus extension But fortunatly the new dev-build fixes this issue.

When MOSS is behaving differently

When working with documents in document-libraries the default behavior of MOSS 2007 is to offer whether or not you want to check-out a file. However – this can be disabled.

To check whether this feature is altogether disabled, you need to open up the central-administration, check application management\authenticationprovider\[your zone]\enable clientintegration. When this feature is disabled, checkin/checkout will not be available at all.

Fire in the sky – or what about mobile browsing

Anyone who has used Internet Explorer on Windows Mobile know that this sucks – especially if you have ever played with the mobile edition of Opera know how a good browser should behave.

Well, so there is this new mobile browser coming up, called Skyfire. You can get a beta from their website at, and even though you have to provide your mobile number (assumming you’re an us resident) you can still download the software and install it.

I just did last night, but was kinda disappointed when I first tried to connect to the web using Skyfire. Even though the website appeared just as on my desktop, Skyfire seemed really slow and was not easy to work with … I will leave it on my Windows Mobile for a while and give it a second chance.