Visual Studio 2008 RTM - and Holiday Chili Recipe

"The kind of pictures they're making today, I'll stick with toilet paper" -- Dick Wilson (Mr. Whipple, R.I.P.)

Well, it's Monday AM Nov 19th and the good news is that VS 2008 RTM is available for download by MSDN subscribers. The bad news is that the traffic jam has long since started, so it's not likely too many people will be able to get their copy today. (Oops - spoke too soon, just got an FTM going at 8:50 AM)!

Also available is the Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Training kit. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7602397 (120MB). This includes presentations, hands-on labs and demos -- and is designed to help you learn how to utilize the Visual Studio 2008 features and a variety of framework technologies including LINQ, C# 3.0, Visual Basic 9, WCF, WF, WPF, ASP.NET AJAX, VSTO, CardSpace, SilverLight, Mobile and Application Lifecycle Management.

There are some very specific instructions on what to do if you have pre-release versions of VS or any related programs:


For best results, Visual Studio 2008 should be installed on a computer with no pre-release (Tech Preview, Beta, or CTP) versions of Visual Studio 2008/Codename Orcas, or supporting components.
If your computer has any of the pre-release (Tech Preview, Beta, or CTP) versions on it, they must be removed in the correct order BEFORE you begin installing the release version. This process is not officially supported. It is recommended that you run uninstall of the main product first (Microsoft Visual Studio 2008/Codename Orcas). In most cases this will remove majority of other optional pre-release components installed with it.
Go to the Control Panel and launch Add/Remove Programs
Remove all instances of Visual Studio 2008/Codename Orcas products
Remove any remaining supporting products in the specified order.
Remove "MSDN Library for Visual Studio 2008 Beta"
Remove "Microsoft SQL Server Compact Edition 3.5"
Remove "Microsoft SQL Server Compact Edition 3.5 Design Tools"
Remove "Microsoft SQL Server Compact Edition 3.5 for Devices"
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio Performance Collection Tools"
Remove "Windows Mobile 5.0 SDK R2 for Pocket PC"
Remove "Windows Mobile 5.0 SDK R2 for Smartphone"
Remove "Crystal Reports 2007"
Remove "Visual Studio Asset System"
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio Web Authoring Component / Microsoft Web Designer Tools"
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Tools for the 2007 Microsoft Office System Runtime"
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Tools for the 2007 Microsoft Office System Runtime Language Pack" (non-English editions only)
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio Tools for Office Runtime 3.0"
Remove "Microsoft Document Explorer"
Remove "Microsoft Document Explorer 2005 Language Pack" (non-English editions only)
Remove "Microsoft Device Emulator 3.0"
Remove "Microsoft .NET Compact Framework 3.5"
Remove "Microsoft .NET Compact Framework 2.0 SP1"
Remove ".NET Framework 2.0 SDK"
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio Codename Orcas Remote Debugger"
Remove "Microsoft Visual Studio 64bit Prerequisites Beta" (64-bit platforms only)
Remove "Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5"
Install the Visual Studio 2008 edition you wish to use


So, the best advice is always "RTFM". Don't complain if you didn't! You also need to "use your noodle" with these instructions- for example, one item in the above list says "Microsoft .NET Compact Framework SP1". If you have "SP2" - you still need to uninstall it!

NOTE: Visual Studio 2008 Solution (.sln) files are NOT backward-compatible with VS 2005 Solution files, but the project (e.g. .csproj) files are compatible. So if you need to be able to work on Solutions that you've migrated up to Visual Studio 2008 in Visual Studio 2005, all you should need to do is save a copy of the original Visual Studio 2005 .sln file, say as "mySolution2005.sln". You will have two Solution files, one for 2005, and one for 2008. As long as your solution doesn't use .NET 3.5 namespaces that aren't present in 2005, you should be "good to go". Jon Skeet has an excellent post that explores this in it's various iterations. His conclusions:

  • It's possible to share project files but not solution files between VS2005 and VS2008.
  • If you upgrade a solution file by mistake, it's very easy to fix it by hand.
  • If you decide to maintain different solution files, if there are big changes in one it may be easiest to just make them in one solution, then upgrade again.
  • Creating a project in VS2005 and then importing it into VS2008 is seamless; the other way round has slight issues which are fixable by hand.
  • I don't know of a way of forcing VS2008 to only use C# 2 while at the same time maintaining VS2005 compatibility.

NOTE2: During installation, some users may see dialogs that inform you to kill certain processes and a cryptic number is shown. This is the PID of the process. If you go into Task Manager and enable the PID column, you will see the PID represents "Setup.exe". You may safely ignore this and choose the option that lets you "continue" or "skip". Unfortunately, Setup halts until you make a decision on this dialog, so if you were planning to go get a nice spaghetti dinner with some wine, you'll need to bring it home to eat in front of your computer...

DO I STILL NEED 2005?: If you decide you are happy with Visual Studio 2008, there is really no need to keep Visual Studio 2005 around any longer -- 2008 can target the build runtime back to Framework 2.0. Aside from the Solution file issue addressed above, you can safely consider Visual Studio 2005 history! Users that need to maintain Visual Studio 2003 projects that target Framework 1.1 may not be as lucky - but somebody will probably come up with a simple converter app to keep solutions and project files in sync. One thing I'll say is this: there are a lot of bug fixes and performance enhancements in Visual Studio 2008 - and when I click the icon to start it, that sucker comes up ONE HELL of a lot faster than VS 2005 does!

On my system, the uninstallation of all the BETA 2 2008 "Stuff" that I had on there, and installation of Visual Studio 2008 RTM did not interfere with the operation of the existing Visual Studio 2005 installation in any way.

Finally, if you want to know where to go for help, try the Visual Studio Installation Forum on MSDN.

Now here is something fun for the holidays while you are waiting for your downloads to complete (or, er, to start):

Pete's Real Jewish Nuclear Bomb Vegetarian Chili [Beta 3 Version]

In the spirit of the Holidays, I thought it would be a nice gesture to post once again my secret family recipe for Vegetarian Chili that's been handed down over several thousand years by members of the Bromberg Tribe. This is great food for programmers, all the endorphins released into your brain by the cayenne and other pepper - type ingredients will enable you to solve virtually any programming challenge in near- record time! Wishing you a happy and productive 2008!

Pete's Real Jewish Nuclear Bomb Vegetarian Chili petechili

* Six large tomatoes, cut up in chunks
* One large can stewed tomatoes, DRAINED
* One large Onion, sliced
* Two large Green peppers, sliced
* One large Red pepper, sliced
* Two large cans black beans
* Two large cans dark red kidney beans
* Six large roasted jalapeno peppers, diced (canned is OK)
* Plenty of Mexene chili powder (you decide how much by taste)
* Fresh cilantro, chopped (about 20 stalks should be right)
* One large can tomato sauce
* One can tomato paste
* One 16 oz can beer (or about 8 oz good Vodka)
* 2 squares unsweetened Baker*s chocolate
* Three or four large cloves of fresh Elephant Garlic, diced
* Coriander seed (optional)
* Cayenne Pepper (optional)
* Cumin Powder (optional)
* A cup of raisins (optional)
* Six tablespoons extra-virgin Olive Oil

Throw a VERY BIG pot on the stove, turn up the flame, and throw in the Olive oil, the garlic, and the onions. Stir so as not to burn until the garlic and onions have started turning brown.

Throw in the green and red peppers and continue to cook until they are nice and soft. Now throw in the chopped tomatoes and cook some more.

Throw in the tomato sauce and some of the tomato paste, and the chopped jalapeno peppers. Throw in the cilantro. Stir it all up good, you don't want it to burn. Throw in the stewed tomatoes.

If it's starting to look like its getting cooked (about 20 - 30 minutes), then throw in all the beans, some of the beer, and the chocolate and as much of the Mexene chili powder as you dare (a good start would be six heaping tablespoons [I did say 'Nuclear Bomb', didn't I?] , unless you plan on using the optional cayenne, coriander and cumin).

You want to cook this so it looks like it's almost ready to boil,'(but not so high that the bottom layer burns) stirring it up good from the bottom every two minutes.' You want it to thicken up so it really looks like it has meat in it (believe me, when you tell people this is NO FAT VEGETARIAN, they won't believe you). If it's too watery you can add the rest of the tomato paste, or even throw in a whole new can of paste.'' If you've really screwed up and its still too watery, you can throw in some cornstarch. But --don't worry! It always comes out right!

If it's too thick, throw in more beer. If it's not NUCLEAR HOT, then throw in more chili powder, jalapenos, cayenne, coriander, etc.' I even put Louisiana Garlic Hot Sauce in mine, gives it a unique 'winey' taste. Don't forget to throw in your raisins last. You can even throw in some chopped nuts, gives it a nice crunch. Walnuts or Pecans are great. Now, if you aren't a beer lover, about 6 ounces of your favorite Vodka will give it a nice flavor. Don't worry about the alcohol, it all burns off during the cooking.

After this stuff has cooked about 45 minutes to an hour, turn off the heat. You are done.

Serve PETE'S NUCLEAR BOMB CHILI with some grated cheese and / or sour cream dolloped on top and bread or garlic bread on the side.' If people complain it's too hot, then serve some over rice for them. This goes down great with ice cold beer. You can eat two big bowls of this, and you'll wake up the next morning feeling like a million bucks. This stores great in a covered plastic thingy in the Fridge, and people tell me it actually tastes better on the second and third day after being reheated. Feeds six or more, its a whole meal.

RoundHouse Kick Politics Department

I see where Mike Huckabee has a campaign TV ad featuring Chuck Norris. Oh boy. I told you this Presidential Campaign may go down in history as being the most unremarkable ever. But wait! I just heard Hillary, not to be outdone, is getting one ready with Michael Moore!