Chris Rathjen

Warning: May be "Jab myself in the eye with a pencil" geeky.

Blog - About

About Chris Rathjen

I'm an "SDET" (usually Software Design Engineer In Test) for Microsoft. I work on Team Foundation - the server component to Visual Studio Team System. I am a geek.

  • Chris Rathjen

    Computer Science != Software Engineering

    • 6 Comments
    I like to think the title of this blog post is common knowledge, but I still see places where the terms are used interchangeably all too often. As Dijkstra is often quoted, "Computer Science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes...
  • Chris Rathjen

    What's in an exit code?

    • 1 Comments
    Can you trust the meaning of an exit code from an app of which you have no specific knowledge? I wouldn’t recommend it. But what James and I are wondering is, can you at least trust an application to only return zero if nothing bad happened? Version Control...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Rant: Cell phone drivers are a SOLVEABLE PROBLEM!

    • 10 Comments
    So, I got to watch some of the spectacular side effects of driving while cradling a cell phone on the way home yesterday. You know, the mile-long backup from a trivial accident, and the countless near misses behind it as drivers with cell phones change...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Shelving vs. Branching/Merging vs. Labeling: Which should I use?

    • 1 Comments
    Of course I'll go with the default answer to all computing questions: "It depends." I've seen this question, or a variation of it, come up several times lately. The most recent variation I saw was a forum post , to which Buck provided a pretty complete...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Security Push: Home Stretch

    • 1 Comments
    We're into the last week of our Security Push effort for Visual Studio Team System. We've reviewed lots of code, found a few bugs (thankfully, only a few scary bugs), verified our capabilities while operating in a hardened environment, and are wrapping...
  • Chris Rathjen

    To catch a cracker...

    • 5 Comments
    ...you must be able to think like one. Actually, I'm more interested in deterring and thwarting than I am in catching one (though the latter makes a better movie, no doubt). But, all of these goals benefit from the ability to adopt the mindset, goals...
  • Chris Rathjen

    FAQ: Is shelving just a fancy word for branching?

    • 13 Comments
    I've had some feedback from various sources lately about shelving, and how some people are perceiving it. Some think we're just putting a new name on an old concept - that shelving is just a form of branching. Others seem to think we're just giving you...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Team Foundation vs. Subversion: Shelving

    • 5 Comments
    We found an article online recently, where one of the Subversion guys is talking about shelving . First, despite the title, we're not against each other (at least, not exactly) - we have a couple Subversion fans in our own office, for that matter. But...
  • Chris Rathjen

    The Merge Wizard is Wonderful, but not of Oz

    • 0 Comments
    I was going to take some advice from the comments in my last post, and do a more ViSual version of my merge examples. However, I got a little ways into it and realized it was going to be even longer and complicated (read: BORING) than the last one, even...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Anyone? Bueller?

    • 9 Comments
    So, I posted some example uses of the merge command a while back, but didn't get any feedback. I'm just curious - was the post too long? Too complex? Poorly constructed? Just plain boring? :)
  • Chris Rathjen

    Branching, Merging, Shelving

    • 0 Comments
    An excellent overview of Branching, Merging, and Shelving in Team Foundation was just posted on the Team Foundation Blog, by Buck . It's a good read and has some nice screenshots.
  • Chris Rathjen

    To magically fix all of your problems, type 'Resolve'

    • 10 Comments
    Ok, I probably can't quite deliver on a promise like that (instead, I suggest you simply buy an easy button ). But, when it comes to the various things that can go wrong in your Version Control workspace, "resolve" is the command that's responsible for...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Workspace Version

    • 5 Comments
    We're having something of a debate about the use and precise meaning of the tem "workspace version". I'm interested in what people's reaction to the term is. As before, TF commands are in bold, and output from the server is in italics (and may not be...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Some more merge examples

    • 1 Comments
    Buck had a post awhile back on the basics of branch and merge . I wanted to give a few more examples of what you can do with the merge feature from the command line. The version control commands are in bold text, and the output from the server in italics...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Shelving primer

    • 0 Comments
    Buck posted a howto on shelving from the command line . For those of you out there with the December CTP, you have a chance to get an early look at how one of my favorite features in Team Foundation Version Control. It's also one of the areas I'm responsible...
  • Chris Rathjen

    I need a subtitle!

    • 5 Comments
    I'm going to borrow a page out of Korby 's playbook. I talk about a somewhat scattered variety of topics - lots of areas within Hatteras, security (not a whole lot so far but more as I go, hopefully), and (rarely) my possibly compulsive level of familiarity...
  • Chris Rathjen

    </hiatus>

    • 4 Comments
    I've been entirely negligent about my Blogging lately, and for that I apologize. It's a sad but almost unavoidable tradeoff that, as the amount of things we're doing increases, the amount of time available to talk about them decreases, but that's a poor...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Hatteras, Currituck, Ocracoke

    • 1 Comments
    Some of you have no doubt heard of these projects, all part of the upcoming Visual Studio Team System. Some of you may also recognize the origin of these names: All three are lighthouses on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. I took a "mini" vacation last...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Running As Normal User

    • 4 Comments
    As most of you probably know, Microsoft is a land of acronyms. We mostly prefer the 3-letter variety here (TLAs), but I've been spending a lot of time lately thinking about one of the 4-letter ones: RANU. RunAs Normal User. Just to be clear about what...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Addressing comments from other posts

    • 6 Comments
    Calvin raised a few questions in an earlier post that I wanted to answer in a new post (the comment chain on that post was getting pretty long). You can read his last two comments here . I doubt installing the SQL2005 beta side-by-side with SQL 2000 is...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Branching

    • 14 Comments
    I know one of the areas people find lacking in Source Safe has been in its branching features. We've put a lot of thought and effort into Hatteras to be more capable and more flexible when it comes to branching and merging (remember, we're building Hatteras...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Just because you're paranoid...

    • 9 Comments
    ...doesn't mean they're not out to get you -- more on that in a minute. First, I apologize to the zero or more regular readers of my blog - it's been quite some time since I posted anything. This hasn't been for lack of things to talk or ask about, more...
  • Chris Rathjen

    XP SP2 available - sort of

    • 3 Comments
    As Buck mentioned , there's a version of SP2 for Windows XP available. But it's ~266 megs, while the version that will be up on Windows Update in a few days could be considerably smaller. I'm sort of scratching my head over this one. While it makes...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Branching project and solution files

    • 4 Comments
    In the comments of an earlier post, Pier asked: “When you branch (share and branch) an entire solution you make a 1:1 copy of the files in it, .sln file too! inside .sln file there are absolute sourcesafe paths of the projects in it and .sln...
  • Chris Rathjen

    Ultimate!

    • 1 Comments
    A friend asked me to pick up with his ultimate team for a tournament this weekend - go SugarBuzz! It was a blast - it's the first “travel to” tournament I'd been to in years - somewhere between Asheville and Hendersonville, a good 4+ hours...
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