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§ Visual C# Express is really limited

I tried using Visual C# Express 2008 to write a program, and wow... it was more limited than I imagined:

Here's the funny part. You can work around the first one by installing XNA Game Studio... or you can work around all of them by installing Visual C++ Express, which can do all of the above and comes on the same disc image. It can even debug C# applications, if you open the executable.

I know that Express editions are supposedly built for a simplified experience and they're free, but this seems a bit silly (and a little worrying, since Standard Edition is going away in VS2010). Visual C++ Express has enough that developing an application at least as complex as VirtualDub is doable; I'm not sure that C# Express is up to the same task.

(Read more....)

§ When you ask for help, try not to ask in the most inconvenient way possible

I just received a bug report by email which had a 6MB attachment. This meant that I couldn't preview it with my mail monitor program, which meant I had to wait until I could launch my regular email client and download the email to decode the attachment.

When I opened it, it turned out to have a PDF file in it, which then contained a 1920x1080 image of the person's entire desktop, in which the only thing interesting to me was VirtualDub's tiny crash dialog in the center -- which says to attach the diagnostic text file instead, because the dialog itself doesn't contain detailed crash information.

Please, folks, when you're asking other people for help, try to be sensible. There are already enough reasons why your email might not be answered; you don't need to give the person another one.

(Read more....)

§ The dreaded "application configuration is incorrect" error

Periodically, I get asked the following question:

"When I build my program with Visual C++, it runs fine on my own machine, but whenever other people try running it they get an 'application configuration in incorrect' error. How do I fix this?"

...after which I groan and ask the person if they're doing anything else for the rest of the day, because this'll take a while to explain, and probably a lot longer to fix.

This error usually means that your program is set up to use the Visual C++ runtime library (CRT) in DLL mode, and the operating system can't find the versions that your program references. Should be simple -- find the right DLLs and include with the program? Well, no, it's a lot more complicated than that.

(Read more....)