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Writing cleaner JavaScript code with gulp and eslint

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

With the new ASP.NET Core 1.0 RC2 right around the corner and it's deep integration with the node.js workflow, I thought about putting out some examples of what I use for my own workflow.

In this scenario, we're going to see how we can improve the JavaScript code that we are writing.

Gulp

This example uses gulp.

I'm not saying that gulp is the best tool for the job. I just find that gulps work really well for our team and you guys should seriously consider it.

Base file

Let's get things started. We'll start off the base template that is shipped with the RC1 template.

The first thing we are going to do is check what is being done and what is missing.

/// <binding Clean='clean' />
"use strict";

var gulp = require("gulp"),
    rimraf = require("rimraf"),
    concat = require("gulp-concat"),
    cssmin = require("gulp-cssmin"),
    uglify = require("gulp-uglify");

var paths = {
    webroot: "./wwwroot/"
};

paths.js = paths.webroot + "js/**/*.js";
paths.minJs = paths.webroot + "js/**/*.min.js";
paths.css = paths.webroot + "css/**/*.css";
paths.minCss = paths.webroot + "css/**/*.min.css";
paths.concatJsDest = paths.webroot + "js/site.min.js";
paths.concatCssDest = paths.webroot + "css/site.min.css";

gulp.task("clean:js", function (cb) {
    rimraf(paths.concatJsDest, cb);
});

gulp.task("clean:css", function (cb) {
    rimraf(paths.concatCssDest, cb);
});

gulp.task("clean", ["clean:js", "clean:css"]);

gulp.task("min:js", function () {
    return gulp.src([paths.js, "!" + paths.minJs], { base: "." })
        .pipe(concat(paths.concatJsDest))
        .pipe(uglify())
        .pipe(gulp.dest("."));
});

gulp.task("min:css", function () {
    return gulp.src([paths.css, "!" + paths.minCss])
        .pipe(concat(paths.concatCssDest))
        .pipe(cssmin())
        .pipe(gulp.dest("."));
});

gulp.task("min", ["min:js", "min:css"]);

As you can see, we basically have 4 tasks and 2 aggregate tasks.

  • Clean JavaScripts files
  • Clean CSS files
  • Minimize Javascript files
  • Minimize CSS files

The aggregate tasks are basically just to do all the cleaning or the minifying at the same time.

Getting more out of it

Well, that brings us to feature equality with what was available with MVC 5 with the Javascript and CSS minifying. However, why not go a step further?

Linting our Javascript

One of the most common thing we need to do is make sure we do not write horrible code. Linting is a code analysis technique that detects early problems or stylistic issues.

How do we get this working with gulp?

First, we install gulp-eslint with npm install gulp-eslint --save-dev run into the web application project folder. This will install the required dependencies and we can start writing some code.

First, let's start by getting the dependency:

var eslint = require('gulp-eslint');

And into your default ASP.NET Core 1.0 project, open up site.js and copy the following code:

function something() {
}

var test = new something();

Let's run the min:js task with gulp like this: gulp min:js. This will show that our file is minimized but... there's something wrong with the style of this code. The something function should be Pascal cased and we want this to be reflected in our code.

Let's integrate the linter in our pipeline.

First let's create our linting task:

gulp.task("lint", function() {
    return gulp.src([paths.js, "!" + paths.minJs], { base: "." })
        .pipe(eslint({
            rules : {
                'new-cap': 1 // function need to begin with a capital letter when newed up
            }
        }))
        .pipe(eslint.format())
        .pipe(eslint.failAfterError());
});

Then, we need to integrate it in our minify task.

gulp.task("min:js" , ["lint"], function () { ... });

Then we can either run gulp lint or gulp min and see the result.

C:_Prototypes\WebApplication1\src\WebApplication1\wwwroot\js\site.js 6:16 warning A constructor name should not start with a lowercase letter new-cap

And that's it! You can pretty much build your own configuration from the available ruleset and have clean javascript part of your build flow!

Many more plugins available

More gulp plugins are available on the registry. Whether you want to lint, transpile javascript (TypeScript, CoffeeScript), compile CSS (Less, SASS), minify images... everything can be included in the pipeline.

Look up the registry and start hacking away!

Categories: Blogs

Creating a simple ASP.NET 5 Markdown TagHelper

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

I've been dabbling a bit with the new ASP.NET 5 TagHelpers and I was wondering how easy it would be to create one.

I've created a simple Markdown TagHelper with the CommonMark implementation.

So let me show you what it is, what each line of code is doing and how to implement it in an ASP.NET MVC 6 application.

The Code
using CommonMark;
using Microsoft.AspNet.Mvc.Rendering;
using Microsoft.AspNet.Razor.Runtime.TagHelpers;

namespace My.TagHelpers
{
    [HtmlTargetElement("markdown")]
    public class MarkdownTagHelper : TagHelper
    {
        public ModelExpression Content { get; set; }
        public override void Process(TagHelperContext context, TagHelperOutput output)
        {
            output.TagMode = TagMode.SelfClosing;
            output.TagName = null;

            var markdown = Content.Model.ToString();
            var html = CommonMarkConverter.Convert(markdown);
            output.Content.SetContentEncoded(html);
        }
    }
}
Inspecting the code

Let's start with the HtmlTargetElementAttribute. This will wire the HTML Tag <markdown></markdown> to be interpreted and processed by this class. There is nothing stop you from actually having more than one target.

You could for example target element <md></md> by just adding [HtmlTargetElement("md")] and it would support both tags without any other changes.

The Content property will allow you to write code like this:

@model MyClass

<markdown content="@ViewData["markdown"]"></markdown>    
<markdown content="Markdown"></markdown>    

This easily allows you to use your model or any server-side code without having to handle data mapping manually.

TagMode.SelfClosing will force the HTML to use self-closing tag rather than having content inside (which we're not going to use anyway). So now we have this:

<markdown content="Markdown" />

All the remaining lines of code are dedicated to making sure that the content we render is actual HTML. output.TagName just make sure that we do not render the actual markdown tag.

And... that's it. Our code is complete.

Activating it

Now you can't just go and create TagHelpers and have them automatically served without wiring one thing.

In your ASP.NET 5 projects, go to /Views/_ViewImports.cshtml.

You should see something like this:

@addTagHelper "*, Microsoft.AspNet.Mvc.TagHelpers"

This will load all TagHelpers from the Microsoft.AspNet.Mvc.TagHelpers assembly.

Just duplicate the line and type-in your assembly name.

Then in your Razor code you can have the code bellow:

public class MyClass
{
    public string Markdown { get; set; }
}
@model MyClass
@{
    ViewData["Title"] = "About";
}
<h2>@ViewData["Title"].</h2>  

<markdown content="Markdown"/>

Which will output your markdown formatted as HTML.

Now whether you load your markdown from files, database or anywhere... you can have your user write rich text in any text box and have your application generate safe HTML.

Components used
Categories: Blogs

Should our front-end websites be server-side at all?

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

I’ve been toying around with projects like Jekyll, Hexo and even some hand-rolled software that will generate me HTML files based on data. The thought that crossed my mind was…

Why do we need dynamically generated HTML again?

Let me take examples and build my case.

Example 1: Blog

Of course the simpler examples like blogs could literally all be static. If you need comments, then you could go with a system like Disqus. This is quite literally one of the only part of your system that is dynamic.

RSS feed? Generated from posts. Posts themselves? Could be automatically generated from a databases or Markdown files periodically. The resulting output can be hosted on a Raspberry Pi without any issues.

Example 2: E-Commerce

This one is more of a problem. Here are the things that don’t change a lot. Products. OK, they may change but do you need to have your site updated right this second? Can it wait a minute? Then all the “product pages” could literally be static pages.

Product reviews? They will need to be “approved” anyway before you want them live. Put them in a servier-side queue, and regenerate the product page with the updated review once it’s done.

There’s 3 things that I see that would require to be dynamic in this scenario.

Search, Checkout and Reviews. Search because as your products scales up, so does your data. Doing the search client side won’t scale at any level. Checkout because we are now handling an actual order and it needs a server components. Reviews because we’ll need to approve and publish them.

In this scenario, only the Search is the actual “Read” component that is now server side. Everything else? Pre-generated. Even if the search is bringing you the list of product dynamically, it can still end up on a static page.

All the other write components? Queued server side to be processed by the business itself with either Azure or an off-site component.

All the backend side of the business (managing products, availability, sales, whatnot, etc.) will need a management UI that will be 100% dynamic (read/write).

Question

So… do we need dynamic front-end with the latest server framework? On the public facing too or just the backend?

If you want to discuss it, Tweet me at @MaximRouiller.

Categories: Blogs

You should not be using WebComponents yet

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

Have you read about WebComponents? It sounds like something that we all tried to achieve on the web since... well... a long time.

If you take a look at the specification, it's hosted on the W3C website. It smell like a real specification. It looks like a real specification.

The only issue is that Web Components is really four specifications. Let's take a look at all four of them.

Reviewing the specificationsHTML Templates

Specification

This specific specification is not part of the "Web components" section. It has been integrated in HTML5. Henceforth, this one is safe.

Custom Elements

Specification

This specification is for review and not for implementation!

Alright no let's not touch this yet.

Shadow DOM

Specification

This specification is for review and not for implementation!

Wow. Okay so this is out of the window too.

HTML Imports

Specification

This one is still a working draft so it hasn't been retired or anything yet. Sounds good!

Getting into more details

So open all of those specifications. Go ahead. I want you to read one section in particular and it's the author/editors section. What do we learn? That those specs were draft, edited and all done by the Google Chrome Team. Except maybe HTML Templates which has Tony Ross (previously PM on the Internet Explorer Team).

What about browser support?

Chrome has all the spec already implemented.

Firefox implemented it but put it behind a flag (about:config, search for properties dom.webcomponents.enabled)

Internet Explorer, they are all Under Consideration

What that tells us

Google is pushing for a standard. Hard. They built the spec, pushing the spec also very hary since all of this is available in Chrome STABLE right now. No other vendors has contributed to the spec itself. Polymer is also a project that is built around WebComponents and it's built by... well the Chrome team.

That tells me that nobody right now should be implementing this in production. If you want to contribute to the spec, fine. But WebComponents are not to be used.

Otherwise, we're only getting in the same issue we were in 10-20 years ago with Internet Explorer and we know it's a painful path.

What is wrong right now with WebComponents

First, it's not cross platform. We handled that in the past. That's not something to stop us.

Second, the current specification is being implemented in Chrome as if it was recommended by the W3C (it is not). Which may lead us to change in the specification which may render your current implementation completely inoperable.

Third, there's no guarantee that the current spec is going to even be accepted by the other browsers. If we get there and Chrome doesn't move, we're back to Internet Explorer 6 era but this time with Chrome.

What should I do?

As for what "Production" is concerned, do not use WebComponents directly. Also, avoid Polymer as it's only a simple wrapper around WebComponents (even with the polyfills).

Use other framework that abstract away the WebComponents part. Frameworks like X-Tag or Brick. That way you can benefit from the feature without learning a specification that may be obsolete very quickly or not implemented at all.

Categories: Blogs

Fix: Error occurred during a cryptographic operation.

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

Have you ever had this error while switching between projects using the Identity authentication?

Are you still wondering what it is and why it happens?

Clear your cookies. The FedAuth cookie is encrypted using the defined machine key in your web.config. If there is none defined in your web.config, it will use a common one. If the key used to encrypt isn't the same used to decrypt?

Boom goes the dynamite.

Categories: Blogs

Renewed MVP ASP.NET/IIS 2015

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

Well there it goes again. It was just confirmed that I am renewed as an MVP for the next 12 months.

Becoming an MVP is not an easy task. Offline conferences, blogs, Twitter, helping manage a user group. All of this is done in my free time and it requires a lot of time.But I'm so glad to be part of the big MVP family once again!

Thanks to all of you who interacted with me last year, let's do it again this year!

Categories: Blogs

Failed to delete web hosting plan Default: Server farm 'Default' cannot be deleted because it has sites assigned to it

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

So I had this issue where I was moving web apps between hosting plans. As they were all transferred, I wondered why it refused to delete them with this error message.

After a few click left and right and a lot of wasted time, I found this blog post that provides a script to help you debug and the exact explanation as to why it doesn't work.

To make things quick, it's all about "Deployment Slots". Among other things, they have their own serverFarm setting and they will not change when you change their parents in Powershell (haven't tried by the portal).

Here's a copy of the script from Harikharan Krishnaraju for future references:

Switch-AzureMode AzureResourceManager
$Resource = Get-AzureResource

foreach ($item in $Resource)
{
	if ($item.ResourceType -Match "Microsoft.Web/sites/slots")
	{
		$plan=(Get-AzureResource -Name $item.Name -ResourceGroupName $item.ResourceGroupName -ResourceType $item.ResourceType -ParentResource $item.ParentResource -ApiVersion 2014-04-01).Properties.webHostingPlan;
		write-host "WebHostingPlan " $plan " under site " $item.ParentResource " for deployment slot " $item.Name ;
	}

	elseif ($item.ResourceType -Match "Microsoft.Web/sites")
	{
		$plan=(Get-AzureResource -Name $item.Name -ResourceGroupName $item.ResourceGroupName -ResourceType $item.ResourceType -ApiVersion 2014-04-01).Properties.webHostingPlan;
		write-host "WebHostingPlan " $plan " under site " $item.Name ;
	}
}
      
    
Categories: Blogs

Switching Azure Web Apps from one App Service Plan to another

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

So I had to do some change to App Service Plan for one of my client. The first thing I was looking for was to do it under the portal. A few clicks and I'm done!

But before I get into why I need to move one of them, I'll need to tell you about why I needed to move 20 of them.

Consolidating the farm

First, my client had a lot of WebApps deployed left and right in different "Default" ServicePlan. Most were created automatically by scripts or even Visual Studio. Each had different instance size and difference scaling capabilities.

We needed a way to standardize how we scale and especially the size on which we deployed. So we came down with a list of different hosting plans that we needed, the list of apps that would need to be moved and on which hosting plan they currently were.

That list went to 20 web apps to move. The portal wasn't going to cut it. It was time to bring in the big guns.

Powershell

Powershell is the Command Line for Windows. It's powered by awesomeness and cats riding unicorns. It allows you to do thing like remote control Azure, import/export CSV files and so much more.

CSV and Azure is what I needed. Since we built a list of web apps to migrate in Excel, CSV was the way to go.

The Code or rather, The Script

What follows is what is being used. It's heavily inspired of what was found online.

My CSV file has 3 columns: App, ServicePlanSource and ServicePlanDestination. Only two are used for the actual command. I could have made this command more generic but since I was working with apps in EastUS only, well... I didn't need more.

This script should be considered as "Works on my machine". Haven't tested all the edge cases.

Param(
    [Parameter(Mandatory=$True)]
    [string]$filename
)

Switch-AzureMode AzureResourceManager
$rgn = 'Default-Web-EastUS'

$allAppsToMigrate = Import-Csv $filename
foreach($app in $allAppsToMigrate)
{
    if($app.ServicePlanSource -ne $app.ServicePlanDestination)
    {
        $appName = $app.App
		    $source = $app.ServicePlanSource
		    $dest = $app.ServicePlanDestination
        $res = Get-AzureResource -Name $appName -ResourceGroupName $rgn -ResourceType Microsoft.Web/sites -ApiVersion 2014-04-01
        $prop = @{ 'serverFarm' = $dest}
        $res = Set-AzureResource -Name $appName -ResourceGroupName $rgn -ResourceType Microsoft.Web/sites -ApiVersion 2014-04-01 -PropertyObject $prop
        Write-Host "Moved $appName from $source to $dest"
    }
}
    
Categories: Blogs

Microsoft Virtual Academy Links for 2014

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

So I thought that going through a few Microsoft Virtual Academy links could help some of you.

Here are the links I think deserve at least a click. If you find them interesting, let me know!

Categories: Blogs

Temporarily ignore SSL certificate problem in Git under Windows

Decaying Code - Maxime Rouiller - 2 min 41 sec ago

So I've encountered the following issue:

fatal: unable to access 'https://myurl/myproject.git/': SSL certificate problem: unable to get local issuer certificate

Basically, we're working on a local Git Stash project and the certificates changed. While they were working to fix the issues, we had to keep working.

So I know that the server is not compromised (I talked to IT). How do I say "ignore it please"?

Temporary solution

This is because you know they are going to fix it.

PowerShell code:

$env:GIT_SSL_NO_VERIFY = "true"

CMD code:

SET GIT_SSL_NO_VERIFY=true

This will get you up and running as long as you don’t close the command window. This variable will be reset to nothing as soon as you close it.

Permanent solution

Fix your certificates. Oh… you mean it’s self signed and you will forever use that one? Install it on all machines.

Seriously. I won’t show you how to permanently ignore certificates. Fix your certificate situation because trusting ALL certificates without caring if they are valid or not is juts plain dangerous.

Fix it.

NOW.

Categories: Blogs

Telerik and Testdroid—Real Device Testing Made Easy

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
To deliver high-quality mobile applications, testing is critical. Fortunately, Telerik Test Studio and Bitbar have your back. Hop on this one-hour webinar to learn how Test Studio and Bitbar Testdroid Cloud have joined forces to offer you a comprehensive and intuitive real device testing experience. 2016-05-03T12:30:00Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Antonia Bozhkova
Categories: Companies

Test Studio Web and Desktop R1 2016 Updates

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
The latest release of Test Studio is here with major updates across the board, including improved coding UX, to help you test your apps more easily than ever. 2016-04-22T19:14:55Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Konstantin Petkov
Categories: Companies

Recapping the Test Studio 2016 R1 Release Webinar

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
During the latest Test Studio 2016 R1 release webinar you all asked some very good questions that were right on target. Let's recap the webinar with some Q&A. 2016-04-14T15:29:32Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Iliyan Panchev
Categories: Companies

How We Test Software: Chapter Two—Telerik Platform

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
Have you wondered how the teams working on Telerik products test software? We continue with the next chapter in our detailed guide, giving you deeper insight into our very own processes. This chapter focuses on Telerik Platform. 2016-04-11T21:07:02Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Angel Tsvetkov
Categories: Companies

Let the New Test Studio Turn You Into a Mobile Testing Hero

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
The first major Test Studio product update for this year is now live. Go grab your free evaluation copy, and keep on reading to learn what’s new, including enriched mobile testing with support for web apps and more. 2016-04-01T15:08:05Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Antonia Bozhkova
Categories: Companies

How Our Telerik Teams Test Software: Chapter One

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
Have you wondered how the teams working on Telerik products test software? Today we launch a detailed guide, giving you deeper insight into our very own processes. 2016-03-22T14:34:15Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Daniel Djambov
Categories: Companies

Telerik Test Studio and Selenium

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
Mixing different frameworks into one automated testing solution can lead to powerful results. Test Studio and Selenium are two frameworks that complement each other well. 2016-03-18T15:46:17Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Iliyan Panchev
Categories: Companies

Product Notifications in Test Studio

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
With Product Notifications, Test Studio becomes easier to use than ever, helping you discover new functionality and save time. 2016-02-11T16:02:11Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Konstantin Petkov
Categories: Companies

Looking Back and Ahead as We Recap the Test Studio Webinar

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
The latest updates to Telerik Test Studio have arrived. We recap what's new and upcoming here, which we also recently discussed in our webinar (which you can watch here). 2016-02-09T17:23:21Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Iliyan Panchev
Categories: Companies

Looking Back and Ahead at the Telerik Test Studio Webinar

Telerik TestStudio - 4 hours 34 min ago
The latest updates from Test Studio are here, adding more mobile features and other enhancements. Learn about what’s new in an upcoming webinar. 2016-01-22T17:21:44Z 2016-05-06T14:46:14Z Antonia Bozhkova
Categories: Companies

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