Say goodbye to TFS 2008

by jhagal 15. April 2011 17:53
"But wait," I hear you say, "Visual Studio 2008 is still necessary for some types of development." 
 First step, assuming you haven't already, which you probably have, install Visual Studio 2008 Team Explorer, then, and this is vital, reinstall the VS2008 SP1. Again, you've probably already done this. After that install the Visual Studio Team System 2008 Service Pack 1 Forward Compatibility Update for Team Foundation Server 2010 which allows you to connect to TFS 2010. But you're not done yet.
 When you try to add the server, it'll complain because you have to add http://[servername]:8080/tfs/collection to the Servers list in TFS. And when you try that, it says, no. Something, something, no slashes, something. Anyway, long story short, no. However, you CAN add the server more directly, via regedt32! Edit your registry, and go to
From here, you can add a string value that is your tfs server, something like http://[servername]:8080/tfs/

So, to sum up the six easy steps are:

  1. Check to see if you've already got Visual Studio 2008 Team Explorer - if you do skip to step 4.
  2. Install Visual Studio 2008 Team Explorer
  3. Install/Reinstall Visual Studio 2008 SP1
  4. Install VSTS2008SP1FCUTFS2010
  5. Add servers via Registry
  6. Say hello to the future - flying cars and TFS 2010.

Forward Engineering with Visio 2010

by luisp 15. April 2011 14:35


Many of us by now are familiar with Visio and its Reverse Engineer capability, where you point Visio to a data source and it can generate a somewhat decent database model of the said database. It’s a pretty handy tool to get you started. But what about taking a database diagram and "forward engineering" it? 

Last week I had and project where I needed to normalize a database. The first thing I did was open up Visio and reverse-engineer the existing db. Once I had made all the changes that I wanted to make I downloaded a handy tool from Codeplex that allowed me to "forward engineer" my diagram and generate a script to create the new and improved objects including indexes as well as primary and foreign keys. It is an add-in to Visio and ends up adding a tab to the ribbon for all your Forward Engineering needs. 



After I ran that script on a blank database all I had to do then was run a delta comparison using (SQL Delta) of the new database with the new objects against the old database. That gave me an update script to run on the old database. Once that was done the old database was up to date and was fully normalized to the specs of my Visio diagram.


by estherc 15. April 2011 09:27

Everyone loves Fridays. It’s the end of the work week and the start of the weekend but now there’s another added benefit to it being Friday. According to a recent article from Mashable, social media engagement is higher towards the end of the week. It also mentions that social media updates after business hours will get more traffic.  

I find this really interesting and would like to see if more marketers begin to implement this strategy. Click here to read the article for more details. 

Marketing to Millennials

by estherc 14. April 2011 14:13


I found this study by Pamela Marsh and Erin Bilezikjian-Johnson regarding marketing to millennials insightful and also surprising. As much as technology has made us into smart shoppers being able to check prices right on our phones, we still rely on our traditional methods such as TV.

57% of the study participants stated that they hear about new products from TV. Traditional advertising isn’t dead and should still be considered as a channel. Click here to read the full article from AdAge. 

Effective Ad Buying...

by BryanB 14. April 2011 11:54

I spent this week at MIX in Vegas and WP7 + Silverlight + HTML5 + Azure was all the rage.

In the WP7 spirit, I thought I'd write this post about marketing spend and advertising.  Media buys are expensive and having them meet your need in the most effective way is critical.  I found amusing this screen from the homepage not just 1 WP7 advertisement, but 2 and directly on top of each other.  Hopefully they got some sort of discount, because I certainly can't imagine if the user didn't want to click on the first ad, that they're going to click on the second just becuase its there.  In addition, given that people measure success based on Click-thru-rates... does this directly go against this metric and basically throw it out the window since it would be directly 1/2.  I certainly couldn't imagine a user clicking on both of the ads.

You would imagine that the ad networks would run the ads in a smarter way, hopefully they will in the future if their customers start to demand it.

Plus it looks sort of goofy.  :)




Quickstart Guide to Social Media for Businesses from

by Brian Besand 8. April 2011 11:15

Check out this straightforward and actionable guide to your first social media campaign from Click through for the hi-res version with additional text. I think there's a fundamental truth here that resonates well beyond social media:

1. Think

2. Act

3. Evaluate

4. Repeat

5. Profit

Everyone have a great weekend!

Infographic – Quickstart Guide to Social Media for Business

Facebook Pilots Flash Deal Program

by Brian Besand 7. April 2011 10:08

Facebook Deals Places Geo-Targeted Offers in Users’ Newsfeeds
I get a lot of email. Not that I’m super important or anything; we all do. But as a result, I regularly cull my subscriptions from the various brands that I follow, causes that I support, and taco joints that I frequent. Sometimes, I get a little over aggressive and cut things that might actually be useful. That’s the price I pay for a tidy inbox, but I’m willing to begrudgingly accept it.

Among these victims of my ecommerce isolationism are daily-deal offerings like Groupon and Living Social. Sorry, but I can’t afford to pay ten dollars for twenty dollars’ worth of Nuevo-American faire every day, nor do I want the offers clogging up my inbox.

What is Facebook Deals
Seizing an opportunity to further grow their profit model, Facebook has introduced a similar “flash deal” style service that allows business to make special offers directly to customers in their geographic area. When you subscribe to Facebook Deals, offers from local business will appear in your newsfeed along with pictures of your cousin’s wedding and updates about your BFF’s tasty breakfast treats. This is in addition to Facebook's existing location-based program that allows users to unlock deals by “checking in” at businesses.

Why It’s Brilliant
Facebook Deals drastically lowers the burden of subscription by putting business in a place where users have already chosen to consume a massive amount of content. Instead of expecting users to open and click through an email, they've put their brief, actionable offer on a page that a user WANTS to read. Facebook Deals is essentially a vehicle for opt-in, geo-targeted banner ads backed by an industry leading site with more than 500 million users. Subscribers will also be able to “Share” a deal with their friends, further extending impressions for a deal placement. The overall reach, brand recognition, and social nature of Facebook should give serious pause to flash deal heavyweights like Groupon and Living Social.

The Limitations
Facebook Deals is currently in a limited rollout, with service to Atlanta, Austin, Dallas, San Diego, and San Francisco. No word yet on when and where the next waves are expected, but I’ve already enrolled for the Seattle metro area. This is a big step for me.

Follow Up
Do you plan to sign up for Facebook deals, or are you already using it in a pilot city? Do you think that Facebook Deals will have a serious impact on other flash deal sites? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and I’ll be sure to respond.

Three Good Reasons to Start a Company Blog

by johnv 5. April 2011 16:30

Considering starting a company blog? According to a recent study by HubSpot this would be a smart move. HubSpot surveyed over 1,500 companies, and they found that blogs had notable benefits for a company. Based on their findings, here are three compelling reasons to launch a company blog:

1. You will improve SEO
  • A company with an active blog has 434% more indexed pages in search engine results compared to a company that does not have a blog.
  • When you combine SEO and social media together, you will get 97% more links, and this will help you rank higher in search results.
2. You will drive more traffic
  • If you have a blog, you will get 55% more visitors to your company website on average.
  • The study also showed that companies that combined a blog with social media had 79% more Twitter followers.
3. You will have a more interesting social media presence
  • You can effortlessly push your blog content to social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, and by doing so you're regularly keeping your status updates engaging and fresh.

30 Second Lessons on Relationship Marketing

by Erin Piazza 5. April 2011 11:08

Fast Company is one of my favorite publications; they expertly deliver information on three of my favorite topics: design, technology and leadership. Just over a year ago, Fast Co. started a series of interviews called 30 Second MBA, a video series on topics like leadership, technology, connectivity, team work, customer relationships, and more. They have interviewed professionals from all industries and careers: musicians, artists, marketers, vice presidents, CEO’s; from GE to indie marketing shops.
Fast Co. says this about 30 Second MBA, “The great lament of any reporter is what to do with the jewels that routinely get left on the cutting room floor after a really great interview. Enter the 30-Second MBA, an ongoing video “curriculum” of really good advice from the trenches, directly from people who are making business happen.”
These videos are just that—30 second interviews with thought leaders on a variety of topics as mentioned above.
Relative to my interests as a [mainly] digital marketer, I’ve chosen three interviews that are immediately applicable to my projects at Exsilio, and to my peers on our marketing team—and hopefully to you:

Professor: Gayle Weiswasser, Vice President of Social Media Communications, Discovery Communications
Topic: How to develop a social media strategy

Professor: Linda Boff, Global Director, Marketing Communications and Digital, GE
Topic: How do you strengthen your brand without going overboard?

Professor: Ernst Lieb, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA
Topic: The Customer Is the Boss of You

In all, the consistent theme in these “courses,” is that effective marketing means having real relationships with your customers by listening to them and putting money and resources in to learning more about them in order to earn their loyalty.

SharePoint Deployment/Development Tips

by wenyuz 1. April 2011 17:15

When developing against SharePoint, sometimes you will encounter issues at deployment. Here is some info and tips that I found quite helpful.

  1. Always try to reset your IIS first. A lot of times, simply resetting IIS would resolve a lot of issues at deployment.
  2. If you are encountering error while doing a wsp deployment. Make sure that the SharePoint Administration service is running. You should probably set it as auto start.
  3. If you are getting the error stating that a deployment or retraction is already under way and it is not allowing you to redeploy. Most likely your previous deployment is hung, and you can cancel the job and re-deploy your solution by getting to the stsadm in your command line and then run the following two commands. Stsadm is located in The GUID JobID is provided by the first step.
    1. stsadm -o enumdeployments
    2. stsadm -o canceldeployment –id “GUID jobid”
  4. If you are seeing the general SharePoint error and not giving you any specifics on what the issue that you are having, and you do have access to the SharePoint site as admin. You can turn it off by going to web.config. Of course if you are in a production environment. Make sure to change it back after debugging.
    1. Debug=”true” instead of the default of Debug=”false”
    2. CallStack=”true” instead of the default of CallStack=”false”
    3. CustomErrors=”Off” instead of the default of CustomErrors=”On”
  5. At deployment, your usercontrols are deployed to C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\TEMPLATE\CONTROLTEMPLATES, so you can always double check to ensure that the deployment of your usercontrols are done correct. However, they are all read only, and cannot be updated unless by a new deployment.

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