June, 2006

Doug Mahugh

Microsoft Interoperability Team
  • Doug Mahugh

    Vista Includes Debug!

    <friday evening rant while waiting for traffic to die down> I have a favorite utility program, a piece of software that has been included with every shipping Microsoft operating system since the earliest versions of DOS. I'm talking about Debug, of course, the DDT of MS-DOS. (DDT, or Dynamic Debugging Tool, was a Debug-like programmer for CP/M, the operating system DOS was largely based upon.) With all the focus on security in Vista, I thought Debug would be long gone. In fact, geek that...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Dual-boot Vista/XP

    Last night I took a flying leap into the world of Vista. I've meant to install it for a while, but was a bit afraid of losing the ability to run all my old XP applications -- I didn't want to get in a situation where I had to fight with some not-ready-for-Vista piece of software in order to get my job done. But thanks to Vista's hassle-free installation that lets you put it on a secondary drive for a multi-boot scenario, I now have a setup that gives me the best of all worlds. I have Vista and...
  • Doug Mahugh

    CreateDOCX Sample Program

    This post covers a very simple program for creating an Office Open XML word-processing document. The source code for this program is included in the attachment, or you can download it here . The syntax for using the CreateDOCX program is shown to the right. It's a command-line program that takes two arguments: a filename to be created, and some text to put in the file. That's all there is to it -- the program then creates the output file using the .NET packaging API. The resulting document can...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Adding Custom XML Parts from the Word Object Model

    There are several different ways to insert a custom XML part in an Office Open XML documents: you can manually add the part and set the necessary relationships ( here's an example of that on OpenXmlDeveloper.org ), you can use the .NET 3.0 packaging API, or you can use the Office object models from within your C#, VB, or VBA code. If you're using that last option, you'll probably want to create an empty custom XML part and then fill it with some content, something like this example in C#: ...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Creating Open XML Documents

    The packaging API in the .NET 3.0 framework (formerly known as WinFX) provides low-level support for reading and writing Open XML documents. And now that Office 2007 Beta 2 is out, more developers are starting to ramp up on how to work with the packaging API. (If you've not seen the new packaging API, you can download the WinFX February CTP to check it out.) Over the next couple of weeks, I'm going to be writing some simple programs that will serve as learning tools for working with the packaging...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Google's Spreadsheet: Excel It Ain't

    Google has decided to enter the spreadsheet business, and starting today they're taking applications for participation in the beta. It will be some type of web application, with an HTML-based thin-client UI, but most of the details haven't been announced yet. You can take an extremely simple tour here , but it's just three screenshots and a few bulleted items describing bare-bones spreadsheet functionality. The press is describing this as a competitor to Excel, which is a stretch. Google's offering...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Code Snippets for Open XML Development

    The Open XML code snippets are out! These are a well-organized set of snippets that do the basic things every developer needs to do when working with Open XML documents. They're free, and all of the snippets come in C# and VB versions. Download them here. Here's the complete list of what you'll find in these snippets: Open XML: Get OfficeDocument Part Excel: Add Custom UI Excel: Delete Comments by a specific User Excel: Delete Worksheet Excel: Delete Excel 4.0 Macro sheets ...
  • Doug Mahugh

    BI and Data Warehousing Webcasts

    Office 2007 will deliver a wide array of new BI capabilities, especially when combined with the BI and data warehousing features of SQL Server 2005. If you're new to BI and DW, or just new to SQL 2005, there are four info-packed TechNet webcasts coming in the weeks ahead that you'll want to check out. You can learn about SQL Server's BI and DW now, and be ready to build on that knowledge with Microsoft Office Sharepoint Server 2007 when it's released later this year. Here are the details, with...
  • Doug Mahugh

    BDC Metadata Generator

    If you're wondering where to start in learning to create BDC( Business Data Catalog) connectors to back-end relational data sources, here's a tool that can save you time: Jonah Burke's Database Metadata Generator . It's a Codeplex project, so anyone can download it and use it, or download the source code to see how it works. The generated metadata is pretty simple for now and doesn't support all of the options that the BDC provides for, but it's a great learning tool and its capabilities will...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Adbobe Picks a File-Format Fight

    The last two weeks have seen a big increase in the amount of press coverage and blog discussions of file-format issues. Working draft 1.3 of the Open XML spec is out , Office 2007 Beta 2 was released, and now Adobe is threatening legal action regarding Office's built-in support for the PDF and XPS formats. My colleague Don Campbell forwarded me some information about the Wall Street Journal piece that broke the story this morning, but if you're not an WSJ subscriber you can also read the story...
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