Brian Johnson's Startup Developer Blog

November, 2004


    Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 from the Command Prompt

    I was getting a ton of questions from students who wanted to get started with the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003, but who weren't sure how to begin. To answer the question I wrote a little article that explains how to create and compile a Hello World app from the command line using the toolkit. This article is obviously not for most of the readers of the Visual C++ Developer Center, but it provides a starting point for those people who are very new to the language and to command line tools. If you're new to programming and you have any ideas for how I can make using the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 easier, please drop me a note.
    Using Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 from the Command Prompt
    In this article, Brian Johnson describes how to use the Microsoft Visual C++ compiler that ships with the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 from the command line. This article is for beginners who've never used a command line compiler before.

    Happy Birthday Marines

    Today, US Marines around the world celebrate the 229th birthday of the Corps. Today my family is thinking about all those men and women in harm's way.
    Here's a picture of my dad and me in our Marine photos. Our Marine careers were seperated by about 35 years, but we both went to bootcamp in San Diego. :)

    Here's a link to the Marines web page. They've got a lot of news written by guys doing the job I used to do.


    Halo 2 vs. Half-Life 2


    Well, it's not really like that, but Steve posted that he's tempted to get an Xbox simply to play Halo 2. I'm having similar pains over Half-Life 2. My beautiful wife picked up a copy of Halo 2 for me this morning at Target. On my home PC, I've got a ready to activate copy of Half-Life 2. The problem is, after playing the source beta for Counter-Strike 2, I find that my video card isn't quite up to snuff for the HL2 release. So my conundrum is, do I buy a new video card so that I can play HL2, or do I save myself 250 bucks and just get some of the other great new Xbox games that are coming out this fall? The mind reels...

    Update: I'm going to get a new video card and at get the game.(Eventually) I didn't mean to start a Vi vs. Emacs war, my only point was that I don't have to screw with the console games at all. I can just pop a disk in and play it. The PC is a little tougher, as I want to play wide screen and I want it to run well. I love playing Counter-Strike, so there was never really a question that I would get the software. I'm also looking forward to playing with the source code and maybe building a level or two. :)


    New MSN Direct Movie Channel

    I added this last night, but you can get movie listings on your SPOT watch now. I added the channel last night and I just remembered to take a look at it today. It works really well. Very easy to read. You look at the list of movies and choose from there, or you can pick your favorite theater and get the list of movies. I'm going to be using this feature all the time.
    Stay up to date with the latest from Hollywood! Add Movies to your channel lineup and get:
    A list of the current movies showing in your area with show times A list of your local theaters that includes each movie playing and its show time

    So I picked up a Smartphone too...

    I bought a Microsoft Smartphone device a couple of weeks ago. I had to get one because Scoble kept raving about it. :) (I also wanted to do a little dev work with it.) I didn't take the normal path of getting my phone through my phone service (T-Mobile), rather I bought an unlocked phone through Expansys. I gotta say, I'm loving this phone. I was using a Nokia 3650, which is really a nice device, but the 8080 is faster, it does e-mail better, and it has a much better browser. The pictures aren't quite as clear, but they're acceptable. The reason I went with the unlocked device was that I've got my whole family on T-Mobile's family plan and we're on the phone with somebody in either New York or Florida most of the day.

    The phone is the Qtek 8080 and it's running the Microsoft Windows Powered Smartphone 2003 os. I would recommend this phone to anybody who wants to get a good deal on a Smartphone (~ $300) and who can't get one through their service provider.

    TechNet Magazine Security Watch

    I've been going through the premiere issue of TechNet Magazine and this is one awesome resource. I'll headline a few of the stories on the Security Developer Center over the next few weeks. For now, check out this piece by Kai Axford on free security tools:
    Security Watch
    Six Free Microsoft Security Resources

    Free? Just hearing that word on the radio or TV makes me cringe. Like you, I'm an IT professional. I'd be interested if one of the big hardware vendors decided to pass out free 20,000 RPM SCSI drives along with a fiber channel SAN, but that's about it.

    So why in the world am I telling you about free stuff in this column? Well, because at Microsoft, we've got some amazing free security tools and whitepapers. If you fail to check them out, you're going to kick yourself just like you would if you missed out on a free SCSI drive. I do a lot of presentations and webcasts, and I've noticed that many IT pros have never heard of these tools. To be honest with you, that's a travesty.

    Visual C++ Getting Started Page Updated

    We've updated the Visual C++ Developer Center Getting Started page. It now has links to a number of different examples to get you started with Visual C++. Take a look and let me know if there's anything else you'd like to see in this area.
    Visual C++ Getting Started Page
    I've had a number of requests for some step by step instructions for using the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 download to build C++ applications. I'll try to get a little notepad tutorial posted for how to do that in the next week or so.
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