‘ Routine Work Tasks ’ category archive

How to Create a Branch in Subversion

December 08, 10 by admin
Tortoise SVN

Subversion Client for Windows

I recently came across the need to create a new branch for my Subversion repository.  Below are my notes on how to perform this task using the SVN command-line under Unix/Windows and also instructions for performing the same task using TortoiseSVN (a windows GUI interface and client for Subversion). I hope this information is helpful for others needing to branch their own source repository.

1)    Checkout at the top-most level (above the trunk) into a working folder

$ svn checkout http://svn.servername.com/repos/reponame mybranch

2)    Create a copy of the project in the repository using SVN COPY command

$ cd mybranch
$ svn copy trunk branches/my-development-branch

$ svn status

A  +   branches/my-development-branch

3)    Commit the newly added branch to the repository

$ svn commit -m “Adding a new branch of /reponame/trunk.”
Adding         branches/my-development-branch

Committed revision 255.

4)    An easier method combining all of the three steps above!

$ svn copy http://svn.servername.com/repos/reponame/trunk \
http://svn.servername.com/repos/reponame/branches/my-development-branch \
-m “Creating a private branch of /reponame/trunk.”

Committed revision 255.

Of course if you are using the TortoiseSVN for Windows, you can simply perform the following steps:

  1. Right click on the main repository folder, under “TortoiseSVN” select the menu item: “Branch/tag…”
  2. Under “create copy in the repository from:”, select “HEAD revision in the repository”.
  3. Enter the new URL for the branch folder like “http://svn.servername.com/repos/reponame/branches/my-development-branch”
  4. Enter a comment for your new branch like “Creating a new branch of the repository”

That’s it, your branch has been created and you can check out this new branch into a new working folder using the normal SVN checkout procedure.  Just make sure to specify the new branch URL that you entered in step #3 above.  Good

Can’t this Report Run Any Faster?

August 16, 06 by kenrich

So my boss just came to me and told me we needed to speed up the reporting feature on one area of the website. He was trying to pull up a report consisting of 40 applications. There are about 10 columns of data for each application. Each column of the report is compiled dynamically by performing a sub-select in the database.

What this means is that for each statistic displayed, you have to run a complex query on a sizable database. When combining all the records and columns together this makes for a time consuming process. So how should we go about fixing this problem? The only solution that I could see is to pre-compile these statistics into a temporary table so that the sub-selects don’t have to be run each time a report is generated.

Do you ever get the feeling that you are just optimizing the software to deal with limitations in hardware performance? I could really go on-and-on about how cheap my company is. But it really wouldn’t do me any good… management has heard the arguments time-and-time again. I guess I had better get back to work – I have to modify our software so that we have the appearance of having fast software.

All-Out Assault for Entrepreneurs

March 16, 06 by kenrich

Today, President Bush launched an all-out attack against Iragi insurgents in the Northern part of the country. Wouldn’t it be nice if we, as entrepreneurs could launch a similar type of assault to meet our business goals.

I am currently in the process of finishing up an online site which needs a lot of work done. It doesn’t need a lot of work done to get launched, because I’m going to launch by the end of this week. It could use tons of enhancements and lots of marketing and press releases. Creating a web startup involves a lot of work.

Over the years, I’ve learned how to optimize this process, but it still takes a long time to produce a quality website that is easily accessible and looks good (stylistically.) I’ve launched dozens of web sites over the years and many of them have fallen by the wayside. You get to a point where you realize you’re trying to do too much. It takes one full-time person 8 hours-per-day just to run and maintain a medium-size web site.

My goal is to focus my energies on two main websites. Both of these are websites running under the Unix environment. I’m planning on migrating our core business focus to Unix (for financial and stability reasons.) Once I have put in the coding time to get the two sites to a stable point, I can once again turn my focus to marketing and support. You may think this sounds like a one-man show – well you wouldn’t be too far off in that assumption!

Blood Donation Today

February 10, 06 by kenrich

So I went to donate blood today because my company had the bloodmobile stop by our work. I guess I fent a little guilty because the American Red Cross kept calling me and asking me to come in to donate blood. Unfortunately, this was the San Diego Blood Bank so I will still get at least one more call. At least this time I can tell them that I already donated blood.

Since there’s a limit on the number of times you can donate blood. I will not be able to donate again until April 17th. This means you need to wait about 10 weeks before you can donate again. This is only the second time I ever donated blood so I’m really new to all this stuff. I hope that someone makes good use of it.

Web Site Migration is Keeping Me Busy

January 10, 06 by kenrich

Yeah, I realize I haven’t been blogging too much here. I’ve been a little bit busy in the past few weeks. I am currently involved in migrating a host of websites over to new servers and (at the same time) converting those sites from Microsoft SQL Server database to MySQL.

We are doing the switch in order to provide clients with a more stable hosting environment with a 24-hour support staff. It will also provide clients with a web hosting control panel allowing them to manage all aspects of their hosting. The conversion to MySQL is for reliability and performance reasons.

In the process of converting our sites into MySQL, I am actually writing the code so that it will support both Microsoft SQL Server and MySQL. That way, if the client wishes to move back to SQL Server, it’s only a simple matter of changing the database connection string. This gives us the best of both worlds.

I sure will be happy when the conversion is completed. It has taken a lot of time to do so far and we are about 75% done with only two weeks left. I guess I should get back to work and jamming on these sites. Hope that I will have some time to blog here in the future.

Code Launch Hell

December 13, 05 by kenrich

Something that really irritates me about my current work environement is that our senior developer has a nasty habit of launching an entire site and causing massive problems on our production server. Because our code is constantly evolving, we should be launching changes as we go along.

Recently, management made the decision to create multiple versions of the software much like a boxed software product would be done. Each version can be developed in parallel. However, we have blurred the lines and don’t really have rigid definitions of what constitutes version 1.0 and what belongs in 2.0. Often times, code is copied into an older or newer version when it doesn’t really belong there.

This morning when I arrived at work, I noticed a lot of changes had been made to our web application. Lots of the pages just didn’t work and produced errors when I tried to load the page. Most of these errors were due to changes in a new version of our software. They were mostly bad arguments to stored procedures or unexpected results from procedures. I just wish the senior developer would take the time to check some of the code that gets launched. I would also like to see major code launches be done late at night when the site receives less traffic and customers and clients are less-likely to see how screwed up the site is. It’s mistakes like these that prevent our company from being more successful.

How Hard Should You Work?

December 07, 05 by kenrich

This recent blog post discusses the type of attitude you should have about how you are being compensated for your job. It emphasizes that you should work hard no matter if you feel you are underpaid or mis-treated. Of course, I had to add my thoughts on this matter.

You have to balance the amount of work piled on you with your personal sanity. It doesn’t make sense to kill yourself to keep pace with arbitrary deadlines. Do whatever you feel comfortable with and don’t push yourself too hard. Also, you need to recognize the implications of working overtime might have on your family, friends and personal life.

The company I work for could easily double it’s work force and still have tons of work for everybody. I have a ton of work on my plate and no end in sight. It’s not exactly the best situation, but I get paid okay. The problem is that management has no clue about how much work goes into my everyday job tasks. It’s hard to raise your salary without impressing upon your management about this.

Spam and Sober-Z Virus

December 05, 05 by kenrich

Lately, the Internet has been hit with a ton of spam. The culprit is a new work that is delivered via e-mail called “Sober-Z”. You have probably seen the e-mail before which reads something like:

You’re activity has been monitored
Stop visiting illegal web sites.

And the e-mail is usually sent from fbi.gov or cia.gov. Sent along with this e-mail is an attachment containing the worm. When opened, it will use your entire address book to send out spam to other users on the internet. Because the spam is being sent out from computer users and not a centralized server, the virus is that much harder to defeat.

With any luck, users will update their computers or install the latest virus scanner to block proliferation of this virus. I created Microsoft Outlook rules to filter out all of the garbage in my Inbox. I reject any e-mail that doesn’t contain my address in the To: box and also any e-mail that contains one of my “spam keywords” if it wasn’t sent to me from someone in my distribution list.

My New Work Computer Has Arrived

December 05, 05 by kenrich

I finally got a new computer here at work. It’s blazing fast compared to my outdated 1GHz pentium III box. I’ve been making good use of it to catch up on the mountain of bugs that are piled on my plate. I hope to get caught up sometime in 2006.

Business has been really good here. The end-of-the-year is a particular busy time for us here (but then, we always have plenty of work to do around here). With the addition of some new clients, we look to be really busy for the foreseeable future. Maybe soon, they will consider hiring on some new developers in order to catch up with all of the extra work (yeah probably not.)

This weekend I went out to eat with my family and had a very good time. The weather has gotten particularly cold in the past couple of weeks. Of course, it’s nothing compared to other parts of the country where they are knee-deep in snow. Sometimes, it gets so cold here that I can’t stand to wear shorts and a t-shirt when I go out at night.

Up to My Eyeballs in Bugs

November 17, 05 by kenrich

Man, the hits just keep coming where I work. I am up to my eyeballs in bug reports to take care of. At the current rate, they are going to have to hire some more people here to help get a handle on all of these bugs. Our other developers are creating bugs faster than I can fix them.

The problem is that we have a huge web application written in classic ASP with a SQL Server backend. For anyone that hasn’t worked in ASP before, let me tell you it can be a nightmare. We were supposed to be migrating to dotNet but there’s just no time to do it. It takes up all of our time to keep up with the current workload as it stands.

Over the years I’ve become an expert at ASP (Active Server Pages), but with four different coding styles to work with and no clear programming style guide, it is hard working with other people’s code. That is what I’ve been tasked to do though. Previously, we had people fix their own bugs (because they programmed the application and know how it works). I guess our developers figured that they could make themselves look a lot better if I handled all the bugs and they could take all the credit for building new applications. That’s convenient eh?