Home

Steve Fenton is a three-time Microsoft MVP for developer technologies. He’s a Software Punk, an author, a programming-architect, a pragmatist/abstractionist, and a generalising-generalist. His day job spans the worlds of Product Management, Data and Analytics, Support, and Software Development. These are brought together in the DITE Cycle. Like many of you, he’s too busy to remember all of this stuff, so he writes it all down here.

Books by Steve Fenton

Pro TypeScript Second EditionWeb Operations Dashboards, Monitoring, and Alerting by Steve FentonExploring Octopus Deploy by Steve FentonCranked by Steve Fenton

A Note From Steve

The primary audience for the writing found herein is me. It’s super-easy to forget stuff if you don’t write it down, as I did the second time I had to fix a really tricky certificate problem in .NET. If only I had written down the answer, I could have saved hours of irritating replays of all the same steps I had used to find the problem in the first instance. My goal in life is to start a punk revolution in software development. I am also secretly S. M. Fenton the author of The Vanishing Room.

Recent Thoughts

You can review my full archive of thoughts, but the most recent entries are listed below.

What Data is Missing? Posted in: Analytics - When you start collecting data at scale, you need to decide when to invest in keeping “all the datas” and when to keep only a sample. When it comes to sampling, you need to ensure that the parts you discard and the parts that you keep are a truly representative sample. That means you need […]
Working With Public Coronavirus Data Posted in: Opinion - The UK Government provides public datasets that can be used by the media or the public. One such dataset contains information collected for the Coronavirus pandemic and its impact on people living and working in the UK. The problem with this dataset, though, is that we weren’t able to record the data until after the […]
Remove Blank Lines From a File with PowerShell Posted in: Automation, Programming - When importing a file full of data into a test system, I discovered that the CSV library I was using to do all the work was stopping when it reached a blank line. That makes sense, it thinks the data has ended. On inspection, I found quite a lot of blank lines, so there was […]
The Dunning-Kruger Snap Posted in: Psychology - This is a short post, which assumes you are already familiar with the Dunning-Kruger Effect. Simply put, the Dunning-Kruger Snap is a double realisation; part direct and part meta. The first part of the realisation is driven by tipping your knowledge past a precipice that triggers an epiphany of how little you know. It’s when […]
Make Azure Virtual Machine Disks Smaller Posted in: Azure - Making a disk larger on Azure is a simple process in the Azure portal. You just stop the machine, edit the disk, enter a new size and hit “Save”. When you try to make a disk smaller, though, you’ll be told “new disk size should be greater than 1024 GiB. Disks can only be resized […]
Use PowerShell to Send All Regex Matches to a New File Posted in: Automation, Programming - Yesterday I had to look at a list of stuff on a third-party website and match it up to a list of stuff we control. It took quite a bit of time and some Excel shenanigans to complete the task and as I know it’s going to crop up again, I decided to employ PowerShell […]
The type or namespace name ‘ApplicationInsights’ does not exist in the namespace ‘Microsoft’ Posted in: Programming - If you uninstall the Application Insights package from a .NET Core MVC project, you might get a few errors as it can’t “remove all the references” that might have made it into your application. The changes to StartUp.cs will be pretty self-explantory, but elsewhere you will get something a bit more off-the-wall as it references […]
Notifications for Web Apps Posted in: Programming - Although it has been abused with an enthusiasm that borders on the insane, there are good reasons to use the Notifications API in your web apps. For example, you write a mail client that allows the user to request notifications for key contacts… if they are browsing your web-based app, they should get notifications. To […]
IISExpress.exe Exited With Access Violation Posted in: Programming - I was happily typing away at some ASP.NET Core controllers and views, calling a view component to render out some paging links, when this happened… The program iisexpress.exe’ has exited with code -1073741819 (0xc0000005) ‘Access violation’. No exception visible in Visual Studio. No indication of where the error was. Nothing. The Internet supplied links to […]
Reduce Costs by 12x on Azure Posted in: Azure - I’m in the process of writing a little test app that I’d like to run on Azure to keep an eye on a suite of 1,000 websites. It’s a .NET Core app that replaces a test pack written with JMeter that has been manually “push-button” executed in the past. It means the tests can run […]