Thanks to a couple of testers (pebuaa and Joe), Jeff Cardon patched his make subpage addin to work in section groups.  Update as of 3/12/2009 - the download link is at the end of this blog entry after my signature.  I'm marking the next paragraph NA - winisp is no more...

 

A few people have been having intermittent problems with this domain.  Winisp is a site run by a team here at Microsoft and we get to use the server for free.  We all know there is no such thing as a free lunch, though, and the price we pay is providing feedback for the different configurations the team applies to the server.  And there are some weird problems as well that crop up from time to time.  ZIP files getting "corrupted" is an error I'm still trying to isolate.  For now, using Firefox to download the files seems to work well, but IE sometimes reports they are corrupt.  Embarrassing?  Yes.  Is there something we can do to get around the problem?  Again, yes.  Use Firefox - and file a bug against IE :(  .

 

So here's is what I need to do to get started trying to find this bug.

  1. Use WinXP and Vista to create a set of compressed folders and upload them.  These are the only 2 versions I have used to make the files I upload, and this prevents me from needing to install Windows 2003.  I'll also take a look in depth at my machine configurations to see if there is some long-forgotten addin which may be causing problems.
  2. Install WinZip and use it to create zipped files.  I had version 11.1 installed on one machine for a short period, but did not keep track of whether I used it to create any of the files on the server.
  3. For downloading, I will use Windows XP and Vista, with IE 6 and IE7.  I will also use Winzip to unzip the files as well as the functionality built into Windows to try to narrow the repro.  I'm guessing at this step - while several people have reported problems, details of the system they are using are much harder to get.  Things like installed firewalls, virus checking utilities and download managers could all come into play.  For now, though, I am going to start small and expand.  The "test matrix" can rapidly get very large at this step.
  4. Lastly, I need to contact my ISP and let them know about the problem.  They may already know about it and may be working on a fix at the server level, or this may be the first they heard of it. 

 

We'll see what I can find.  If anyone has experienced problems, details about step 3 would be great!

 

Comments, questions, concerns and criticisms always welcome,

John

 

PS: Quick comment on the Lenovo:  I was just getting ready to turn it into a lab machine for performance testing (at which point the screen behavior, broken latches, etc… are immaterial to the running automation) when the orange battery light started flashing.  Yep, it had one of the recalled batteries.  A coworker had a battery from Dell which got recalled: Dell sent him a replacement and a postage paid envelope to mail the old battery back for free recycling.  Lenovo sent me a new battery in a thrice used box and a letter encouraging me to be responsible and recycle the battery on my own.  My city charges a fee to recycle computer equipment, and I think I'm going to be out $5 if I wanted to handle this myself, or Microsoft will be out $5 if I bother to bring the bad battery to them. 

 

The Gateway is working great!