Apr 29, 2005 8:20 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals
Hello ALL!!

worked on 2 main things this week:

1. Any bugs that surfaced from the update of the Personal pages
2. Creating a moderator system.

1. Custom Links on the personal pages not updating
2. Download count not correct on homepage of a personal page
-- As a solution, we created a job to refresh all static files of each personal page once a day. It's not the best solution, but since that data can be accessed in other ways, we decided that is the best solution for now.
3. When authors with autoapproved status create skins, they do not show up on that author's personal page.


We needed a system in order to create moderators for anything like forums and/or skin libraries.

Well, The system i created is transparent enough to work for both, at least the core functionality of setting a moderator to moderate specific sections of the site. The core functionality is transparent enough that we will be able to migrate it to any of our sites that needs moderation of sorts such as any of our forums.

Well, time for the weekend!! hope you all have a great one!
4 Replies Reply 10 Referrals

My head hurts

Apr 22, 2005 6:39 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals
Hello all!

Well, This was basically a focus on closing out my main project which was making the personal pages much faster.

Some highlights from the project:

- I worked with Andrew_ on this project and we split the project into 2 pieces:
1. Create a system for all controls to inherit from and give all possible controls the ability to become static html files and once that class is made, convert all the necessary controls to use this system. -- Not an easy task

2. In junction with the system created in #1, there is a need for a set of flags that interact with these updated controls which basically tell the control to hide or show itself. With this system, there is some database administration needed to store these flags for each site in the proper db tables. After this is all set,
These flags have to be set properly based on the current personal page, and then need to hide/show the newly updated controls based on the value of these flags.

Hopefully not too confusing!

I was in charge of #2.

So basically,

I did the DB administration stuff, made sure the flags were being populated correctly from the db into our site object, and then had to go to where each of our updated controls were located, and set it's visibility based upon these flags.

Here's a little snibbet just incase you were curious:

CurrentSite.Flags = new ControlFlags(CurrentSiteID)


Control_MyArticles.Visible = CurrentSite.Flags("MyArticles").Value

so in the code above, if you have created any type of articles, the flag will be true, thus showing them, and if you have yet to create an article, it will hide the articles control of the home page. I hope this will help with browsing the personal pages!
one minor note: since these changes are only on the personal pages and not yet uploaded to the main Wincustomize.com, you may see some inconsistencies between your personal page and the main website. For example, you create a forum post from the main site and check the box to display as an article, this article will not show in your recent articles list yet.
Also worked on a few bugs:

1. Article Referrals not showing correctly: giving an error -- Fixed, had to update a procedure
2. If an article has 10 pages of comments, and you are currently viewing the 2nd page, then decide to comment, it should return you to the last page where your new comment exists. -- Verified, and it works

Next week:

Next week i will be starting on a system which will allow forum moderators. This feature alot of forums have which we do not so it is time to implement. After that, possibly Skin Moderators!!

Our overall goal for moderator system is to have a system in place where we can promote users of WC who really help out the community in many ways.

Well, crappy weather in michigan again!!!! have a great weekend all

5 Replies Reply 11 Referrals

Apr 21, 2005 4:56 PM by Discussion: WinCustomize Site Issues

Hello all,

For those special users with personal pages, we have made a fairly large update.

Our main focus was to make them faster, especially the home page so you can make it your homepage and not have to wait so long for the page to load!!!

Please note that we have not made the updates to the main site yet so any type of site interaction you do such as posting articles and comments, will not be reflected on the relevant portions of your personal page just yet! waiting to do more testing!

Please post any bugs you encounter or just want to leave a general comment about the personal pages, post to this thread so we don't have to search for feedback!

Thanks all!

Happy skinning


23 Replies Reply 4 Referrals

ahhhh Tax Day

Apr 15, 2005 8:08 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals
Hello All,

Well, this week has been a decent week in that not too many pressing things were slammed onto my plate which was great!

Still, did some bug fixes and am in the middle of a project with Andrew_ to speed up those personal pages!

Bug Fixes:

1. Posts on WC would duplicate the linetext of the articles! Bad bug! This was fixed by updating one of our stored procedures
2. Some Posts were being saved with blank lines within the articles DB
3. If a skin author who owns a personal page creates his first skin within a particular skin category and the skin goes into moderation and/or processing, that skin is no where to be found within his personal page. This has been fixed.
4. Within the Gallery Section of each personal page, there exists a drop down list and if that author has skins in moderation, there should is an item of the drop down list that says “In Moderation” that you can select to see skins that have not yet been approved. Well, Skins’ status can also be “In Processing”, so I added that entry within that drop down list so you can also see skins that are in processing
5. In the MySkins.aspx page, if a skin author doesn’t have any approved skins, but has skins in moderation or in processing, there was no way to view these skins. This bug has been fixed.

MISC Things worked on this week.
1. Andrew_ and I have tag teamed on making the personal pages faster. First let me say I love when things work smoothly between co-workers. By Splitting the duties, this little project will get done a bit faster, but most importantly, it will be done in a way that is much more expandable because there is twice the man power to implement the correct system!
The duties were split as follows:
a. Andrew_ is in charge of all the usercontrols we want to make static. He has created a system such that they will inherit from this nice little class and will create static files from these controls to save from db activity as well as server side processing. That system, in tandem with implementing them with all the controls is a tall task, and he basically finished it by wed which was awesome.
b. What I’m in charge with is setting up the proper tables within the DB and also some internal things that interact with his system such that if a control needs to refresh itself, the system I created will send a message to his control, and the control will refresh itself.

The system should be done by Monday or Tuesday and the team will Test and debug it, and hopefully the system will be in place live by wed or thurs.
I’ve learned a few things from this project that I can carry over to my next project which is implementing moderators for our forums. Once this project is done with, that is the next beast to tackle! Oh fun it will be let me tell you!

Well, have a great weekend all!!

7 Replies Reply 15 Referrals

Apr 8, 2005 6:53 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals
Hello all,

This week was one that I desparately needed. Our sites have been it's most stable this week since our move to chicago.
Still things to do to help with that, but that will be discussed later

Bugs Fixed:
1. Cannot Edit or delete posts
2. Editing and/or setting article's status is too slow
3. Within the libraries, the "Top Authors" Section of the right bar wasn't showing correctly.
4. Page Count for article comments was displaying incorrectly. For Example, if there are 4 pages of article replies, it was only showing as having 3, you would actually have to manually type in the url the 4th page.
5. Users could not move his/her posts from one forum to another in certain cases.

These are all bugs i had a chance to get to this week and now are currently SQUISHED!

MISC things done to help with site/server performance:
1. Did some profiling of our sites as usual, and just made sure our key queries weren't taken longer than usual, and noted others that need some TLC
2. Created some stored procedures to help with syncing articles from one db to another so that the process would be much more zippy when editing/deleting/setting status of articles.
3. When creating/editing/deleting an article from your blogsite of JU, it now queue's a job to sync that particular to our articles DB.
4. This task took most of the time this week, but i feel will help us in the long run.
Late last week, one of our external developers who is a whiz at Databases made a suggestion on how to structure a few of our intense queries. Well, Here are a few "things" that his suggestion has made an impact with:
a. Article Comments. Our methods of retrieving article comments wasn't bad, but was very average. this change made a 300% improvement in speed and efficiency.
b. Skin Comments. Similiar to the skin comments, it has made a significant impact in change.
c. Viewing and paging through featured articles
In all, i updated roughly 21 stored procedures to benefit from Alberto's suggestion. I figure i mine as well do it now before it becomes a major issue.

Some Key things that need to be addressed next week:
1. When a skin is created or approved, it doesn't always show up properly throughout the WC Main site as well as that author's personal page.
2. Personal pages!!!! Three key words - "Faster" "Faster" "Faster
we will be concentrating alot on using the new static page system t-man created this week and implementing it within the personal pages so that the browsing experience is much much better.

Well, i'm sure i forgot a few items, but that is it for the week. Have a great weekend! the weather in detroit is beautiful!

2 Replies Reply 9 Referrals

Apr 1, 2005 10:15 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals

It's been a short week, but have made a few big strides!

Optimization was the name of the game this week.

As you guys and gals know, our sites haven't been as happy as we all would like them to be lately which is due in part to alot of things, but which has raised

a very very large red flag.

Now on to the Updates:

  1. We learned a little bit ago, for all you .net web developers out there, that when you use an SQLDataReader that it does not get closed naturally after it is done doing a databind rather it holds the connection to the database open until the garbage collector comes by and does the proper actions for the datareader.  Well, This fix took me a while!  I went through all of our Wincustomize based code, which as you can imagine is large and made sure that all instances of SQLDataReader are opneing and closing the datareaders in a proper fashion with the proper exception handling to wrap around each code block.
  2. One of our developers emailed T-man and I today with something he has seen us do alot of which apperently isn't the most effective way to page through mounds and mounds of records.  Take for instance our Marathon thread, for quite some time now the thread has been unreadable and unmanageable on our part because the query to populate that bad boy has just been flat out painful.  Well, with the suggestions by Alberto, we have cut that query down to be over 6 times faster now than before, and although still not as fast as you guys want, it does the job much more efficiently and most of all doesn't take as much server processing to complete!
  3. Our database that is currently serving up articles was very dependant on our huge master DB for information, so, if the master DB was slow in responding, articles would also be slow to respond obviously.  Well, we thought it over, and the articles DB should be independant of the master database in such a way that if the master were to go down, the community should be able to still browse articles in most circumstances, well, we have made a large stride in doing so which didn't take much time at all.  Basically, T-man setup replication on a few tables from the master DB to be copied over to the Articles DB so if need be, it can run the forum lists independently.  All i had to do on my part was change some queries so that it would no longer look at the master for some information, but would look locally within it's own DB and now things seem to respond much better.  We will see just how well.
  4. I assisted Andrew_ in the forums he is writing that will soon be up for public use.  I wrote some cache callbacks for him so that when a forum listing expires from cache, it will refresh itself so that the next user will get a "faster" copy of the data and not have to wait for a call to the database.  I also did cache callbacks for the subtopic dropdownlists, and the forum bookmarks.
  5. BUG: User was able to obtain the "Admin" Honorific!  Little rascal, well, i make a check to see when you change your honorific, the code checks to see if you have the proper access and if so, gives you the honorific, else, STOP HACKING THE SITE!  :LOL: 

Yes, if you can see i had my DBA hat on this week, well for the last few weeks profiling and such to see what is bringing down our sites.  This weekend will tell alot about the strides we have made this week.  Let's just now cross our fingers and hope for a solid weekend of sites running the way they were first intended to!

Have a great weekend all, and i don't have any good jokes, but APRIL FOOLS ANYWAYS!  ;) 

Peace out


6 Replies Reply 5 Referrals

Time to get the ball rolling!

Mar 18, 2005 11:00 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals

Hello All,

Well, this week was dedicated to Bug fixes and R & D

Bugs fixed:

  1. When posting a comment and you are banned, it doesn't give you a message, it just returns you back to the page. Added functionality to spit you a message.
  2. When editing a post, your IP gets updated, made it so no IP's are updated.
  3. You can submit a rating to your own posts on JU forums, fixed this so if you are the owner you cannot rate your stuff
  4. Rss Feeds broken for channels, had to change some internal stuff to point to the correct DB
  5. Downloads stats don't show up, well, while this is a work in progress, a large portion of the stats do get updated now, it was a DB issue!
  6. JoeUser forums hit stats not being updated correctly, (HitsInCache) so did some internal stuff to fix this
  7. Found the bug why Views Overall was being calculated incorrectly, hopefully this is fixed :)

R & D

The personal pages need some TLC big time. So, i am figuring out a system so that the pages will load much faster and more efficiently overall. This project will need my undivided attention for the next 2 weeks or so. Sooooooo "LET'S GET READY TO RUMBLE!"


2 Replies Reply 7 Referrals

Dev Tidbits

Mar 11, 2005 11:52 PM by Discussion: Developer Journals

It's been a busy and exciting week for so many reason!

Let's start with bug fixes since we(I) tend to create so many of them!

  1. We had a report that if you post a link within your article that contained a "-" it would break the link! That is now fixed.
  2. People who were posting on the forums who didn't have a Wincustomize personal page could not edit his/her post. That is now fixed.
  3. When Deleting/Hiding/Locking/Sticky-ing a thread, the post would not automatically reflect this when viewed in the forum list. Fixed
  4. When adding/removing a comment from JU Forums, the Replies # would not reflect this change.  Well now if will, but after 5 minutes or so after the sync occurs and the cached article expires.
  5. The NewsItem Query for the mainpage took longer to execute than normal.  Added a flag within the procedure to allow for quicker response time.
  6. Job to update RSS Feeds on JU wasn't working.  Looking at the wrong Database :(

Features Implemented

  1. Let users change his/her honorific.
  2. Show Download totals at the bottom of the MySkins page
  3. When viewing a post in the JU Forums, if the post is also an article, then it displays a link to his/her blog site.


  1. Did a total of 4 different Tests and uploads to the personal pages for bug fixes and features.
  2. Did 3 different Tests and uploads to the Main WC site for bug fixes and features
  3. Assisted T-man in helping the beast come alive! Transfering data and changing sites to point to the new beast
  4. Did alot of analysis of the personal pages in attempts to make the site much more speedy!
  5. Articles were being cached for 20 minutes, now only for 5 minutes. This change will have to be uploaded next week.
  6. Late Wednesday night, found the bug that was bringing down WC.  Good ole' Arithmatic Overflow!

Some Goals for next week:

  1. Create a system for creating static pages on the fly which the personal page can benefit from tremendously
  2. Implement performance enhancements to the personal pages
  3. Start the process of creating a moderation system on our forums as well as Skin library.
  4. Performance Ehnancements, Performance Ehnancements, Performance Ehnancements, Performance Ehnancements


That's all i can think of right now!

Happy 311 day


5 Replies Reply 6 Referrals

Hope this satisfies the masses!

Mar 9, 2005 3:51 PM by Discussion: WinCustomize Talk
Hello all,

Well, if you haven't seen it yet, two features from the old wincustomize.com site have been implemented on the new site.

1. Changing your Honorific.
- When logged in, simply click the "My Account" tab on the top right corner and under the preferences section you will see
a "Change My Honorific" option. When you submit your change it tells you that your changes will take a few minutes to take affect, but they do happen instantly for the most part

2. Download Totals at the bottom of the MySkins.aspx page
- I know this one has been requested quite frequently and i'm just glad to get it everyone finally!
Under each section you should see two numbers, the first number is the totals for that particular page of skins you are viewing, and the number at the bottom is the totals overall. I chose to show both so you can select different sorting methods and see how a particular set of skins are doing. Hopefully you'll enjoy that feature.
A post has already been made about this feature at: Link So check that out as well!

Happy skinning!

30 Replies Reply 7 Referrals

Page 1 of 1