Rick Strahl's Weblog  

Wind, waves, code and everything in between...
.NET • C# • Markdown • JavaScript • Angular
Contact   •   Articles   •   Products   •   Support   •   Search
Ad-free experience sponsored by:
ASPOSE - the market leader of .NET and Java APIs for file formats – natively work with DOCX, XLSX, PPT, PDF, images and more

Markdown Monster 2.0 is here


It's been a long slow road but Markdown Monster 2.0 is finally here. This update features a number of internal updates to facilitate future development improvements. In this post I go over some of the changes in the new release and some of the challenges that had to be worked through to get here.

Read more...

Thoughts on Async/Await Conversion in a Desktop App


I spent the last month or so working through Markdown Monster's code to switch from mostly sync code to async code. This change was forced on me by an Async Cascade triggered by a third party dependency of a component (the WebView2 control) and ended up requiring massive changes throughout the app. In this post I go over some of the issues I ran into converting from sync to async along with some thoughts on the pitfalls.

Read more...

Locked Files When Publishing .NET Core Apps to IIS with WebDeploy


When using Visual Studio's Publish Web Site feature with ASP.NET Core you may get frustrating errors when publishing to already running sites as files on the server are locked and can't be updated until the site is shutdown. Turns out the default settings don't unload the application before publising, but there's a simple solution to unload before publishing and the restart the application.

Read more...

Running .NET Core Apps on a Framework other than Compiled Version?


I get asked frequently about whether a lower version of .NET Core will run on a machine that only has a more recent version of the .NET Core runtime installed. The short answer is 'No it won't run' but there are a few nuances to this simple answer.

Read more...

WebView2 Home and End Key Problems inside of WPF TabControl Containers


Another day another WebView2 quirk to work around: This time running into issues with the WebView2 not processing Home and End keys properly as they are being hijacked by a parent TabControl and its TabNavigation keystroke handling.

Read more...

Async/Await Calls Gotcha with the CSharp ? Null Propagator


Null propagation in C# allows for short circuiting of void method calls, but when using result-less `await` async calls, this behavior works decidedly different, resulting in null exception runtime errors. While this behavior makes sense when you break down the command, it's certainly not obvious. In this post I break down the how and why of the failure and how to work around it.

Read more...

Taking down the Markdown Monster Source Code


With a heavy heart and a lot of hand wringing, I decided last week to take down the Markdown Monster source code from the public GitHub repository due to rampant abuse of the code to get around licensing restrictions. In this post I give some insight on why I made this decision and provide some general thoughts around the state of software development for software tools.

Read more...

WebView2: Forwarding Alt Keys to a Host WPF Window


I've been puzzling over how to reliably integrate keyboard forwarding from the WebView2 control into WPF host forms. Unlike the IE WebBrowser control the WebView2 doesn't automatically forward Alt keys to the host form so special handling is required. In this post I describe why this is a problem and show the workaround to make this work.

Read more...

LiveReloadServer - A Generic Local Static Web Server with Live Reload based on .NET


I've released v1.0 of my LiveReload Web Server which is a local static file Web server that includes support for LiveReload, plus some optional dynamic features for rendering self-contained RazorPages and Markdown content. This Dotnet Tool is fast, easy to use and includes a host of convenience features that try to make the process of working with local Web content quicker and easier.

Read more...

Role based JWT Tokens in ASP.NET Core APIs


ASP.NET Core Authentication and Authorization continues to be the most filddly part of the ASP.NET Core eco system and today I ran into a problem to properly configure JWT Tokens with Roles. As I had a hard time finding the information I needed in one place and instead ended up with some outdated information, I'm writing up a post to hopefully put all the basic bits into this single post.

Read more...

Opening an Admin Windows Terminal from Visual Studio


Opening Windows Terminal from another application is a bit of a pain. In particular I wanted to open Windows Terminal as an External Tool from Visual Studio and found it wasn't as easy as referencing the `wt.exe` executable. Opening as an Administrator adds additional complexity. In this post I'll talk about the use case of an External Tools and the settings to launch both a regular and admin Windows Terminal instance from External Tools.

Read more...

Chromium WebView2 Control and .NET to JavaScript Interop - Part 2


In part 2 of this post series I take a look at how to use the new Chromium WebView2 to interact with the DOM document and interoperate between .NET and JavaScript, both calling into JavaScript from .NET, and calling into .NET from Javascript

Read more...

Taking the new Chromium WebView2 Control for a Spin in .NET - Part 1


This is Part 1 of a two part article that gives an overview of the new WebView2 Web browser control that is based on Edge Chromium. In Part 1 I look at the basics of what's needed to run the control using the WebView runtime, and how to get the control embedded and configured to use for basic HTML tasks. In Part 2 I look at interaction between the .NET application and WebBrowser and Javascript.

Read more...

Blank Zero Values in .NET Number Format Strings


Recently needed a way to display a set of numbers in a WPF List display that required that values with a value of `0` display blank - using no explicit code or model changes. I learnt something new today: There's actually a way to use C# format strings to format numbers separately for positive, negative and zero values. Here's how that works.

Read more...

Watch out for .NET Core Runtime Bitness for IIS Installs


I recently ran into a snag with one of the my Windows Server installs of an upgraded .NET Core 5.0 application. It turns out I didn't install .NET Core 5.0 correctly because I made some bad assumptions of what I needed to install to run my application, even though it previously ran on .NET Core 3.1. Here's more detail on what the failure looks like and how to properly install .NET Core 5.0.

Read more...

Upgrading several of my Applications and Libraries to .NET 5.0


Over the last week I spent some time upgrading several .NET Core Web applications and libraries from .NET Core 3.1 to .NET 5.0. I'm happy to say that this was always a non-event as the process went very smooth for once. In this post I'll talk about what I found and also offer some commentary why we should celebrate this update and push Microsoft to continue along this path.

Read more...

PC and Mac with single Mouse and Keyboard Setup on Dual 4k Screens


A little while back I posted a couple of pictures of my new desk setup using both a Windows Laptop (a 2019 Dell XPS) and a Macbook Pro (2016) along with two 4k displays. I'm also using a single Logitech Mouse and Keyboard combination to control both machines and quite a few people were asking about how this works. So I decided to write a quick review of my setup here to give a few more details that are hard to give in a Twitter conversation.

Read more...

Window Activation Headaches in WPF


Ran into a problem with properly activating a WPF when launching from Explorer and indirectly trying to activate an already running instance 'from within itself'. It seems simple, but windows focus-stealing restrictions can cause problems with actually getting focus into an application window. Here's how.

Read more...

Creating Custom .NET Project Types with .NET CLI Project Templates


Custom project templates can be extremely useful in quickly creating new projects especially for extensible applications. They're also great for creating specialized setups to make it quicker to hit the ground running. With the .NET SDK tooling new project templates are now easy to create and this post takes you through the process.

Read more...

Wrestling with Clipboard Images in WPF


Retrieving images from the clipboard with WPF seems so simple, but once you get into it you'll find that there are lots of problems with reliable image retrieval that works for all images. In this post I talk about the different issues you're likely to run into and one hacky but flexible solution to better image support by selectively sniffing image formats and using different clipboard retrievals based on the image format.

Read more...

Don't get burned by missing await Calls for Async Code in ASP.NET Core Middleware


I recently got burned in an upgraded ASP.NET Core server application where a missing `await` statement caused wildly inconsistent and puzzling output failures. While a simple thing to avoid, once introduced it's possible to live with this error for some time before it manifests. In this post I show a scenario where a missing `await` was causing infrequent HTTP response errors, even though the client apparently receives a valid response.

Read more...

Using .NET Core Tools to Create Reusable and Shareable Tools & Apps


Dotnet Tools offer a simple way to create, publish and consume what are essentially .NET Core applications that can be published and shared using the existing NuGet infrastructure for packaging and distribution. It's y quick and easy to build tools that you can share either publicly or privately. In this article I make a case for why you might use or build a Dotnet Tool and show how create, build, publish and consume Dotnet tools as well as showing some examples of useful tools I've build and published.

Read more...

Using the brightness() CSS Filter to generically highlight Content


Filters are not new in CSS, but their often overlooked for providing some useful generic behaviors for things like hover styling or nice background effects. In this post I discuss how to use the brightness() filter to create a generic button hover behavior and also briefly discuss the newish `backdrop-filter` property.

Read more...

Excluding Files and Folders in Visual Studio Web Site Project


I still use Web Site projects frequently for purely static Web sites that don't require a proper build process where 'DevOps' of any kind is overkill. Invariably when using Web site projects though, I end up requiring that 1 or 2 files are excluded on publishing and every time I do I spent a while trying to find the information how to do that in the `.pubxml` file. Well no more - I'm writing it down this time.

Read more...

Handling SPA Fallback Paths in a Generic ASP.NET Core Server


When building ASP.NET Core backends for SPA applications one thing that you have to worry about is how to handle client side routes that end up being fired against the server through external or reloaded links. While ASp.NET Core has built-in support for this if you build a generic Web server, you might need a little more control on how to handle the Fallback routing functionality. Here's how.

Read more...