Archives For Debugging


My previous post was about using the Azure Resource Manager to provision a Virtual Machine. It demonstrated how to use a custom PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) to stripe, format and assign a drive letter to a storage space that contains thirty-two 1TB VHDs.

Debugging a custom PowerShell Desired State Configuration was a challenge, because I was completely new to PowerShell DSC and to the Azure Virtual Machine DSC Extension. This post is all about how I managed to debug, refine and test using the artifacts created by the Virtual Machine Extension. Continue Reading…


I’ve been playing around with Windows Azure Blob Storage Service for a while now and I have noticed that using directories greatly facilitates debugging and maintenance.

Imagine a Container that contains 400 000 block blobs. The Windows Azure tools in Visual Studio 2012 allow you to list 100 000 blobs. When this limit is reached you are notified and there is nothing you can do to continue listing. At that moment you can use other tools like CloudBerry Explorer and Azure Management Studio. Both tools will allow you to browse the full list of blobs.

Listing 100 000 takes a considerable amount of time. Visual Studio lists blobs as a flat list, which isn’t very useful when you surpass 1000 blobs. CloudBerry Explorer and Azure Management Studio allow you to browse by directory.

Continue Reading…


Its no secret that Windows Azure Roles, Services and SQL Database Time Zones  are set to
UTC (Coordinated Universal Time). Forgetting this fact can get us in trouble! When we forget about
Time Zones, any operations dealing with dates and times are potential bugs!

For example

  • Scheduling jobs
  • Comparing dates and times
  • Performing operations on dates and times
  • Parsing string dates and times from the client
  • Storing dates and times in SQL Database

We naturally refer to time using our current Time Zone. Imagine that a system requires a specific Job to run every Monday at 16h05 GMT –5. Its very likely that I will create a new DateTime instance that represents 16h05 and that I will happily use it to schedule my daily Job.

Continue Reading…