First Install of tools for programmer

My primary tools are Visual Studio ( and the Express suite) , Sql Server ( and SQL Server Management Studio )( and the Express suite) and Office (Excel, Word)

Those are the modification that I do every time … I wish there were enabled by default :

For VS2010

Go to=> Tools, Options , Html, Formatting ,Check “ Insert attribute value quotes when typing”


This saves me a lot of time , when I put : input type=”text” , the “  are inserted automatically.


Go to=> Tools, Options , Designers , uncheck “Prevent saving changes that require table re-creation”


As a developer, I do modify tables … and this wont let me the first time …

For Excel, Word

Alt+F11 (Visual Basic Editor), Tools, Options, Editor Tab, uncheck “Auto syntax check”, check “require variable declaration”


“require variable declaration”  :This saves you a lot of time debugging or writing “Option Explicit” .

“Auto syntax check “ : I do not want a message box each time I do an error. The error is seen in red … no need for a Msgbox.

How about you, dear reader ? Do you have programs that require after installation modifying of options ?

TT files – generate enum from database

Many times you will program against a table that contains something like an enum , like Status( open=1 , close=2, sent=3, approved=4 )  .

It is peculiar to wrote those status as text in the other tables – and you do not like also to have update their codes in the C# (VB.NET) code source each time you will add another one.

Rather , it is convenient to auto-generate from database at once.

But how to do it in Visual Studio ? The answer is .tt files – the files that generates also POCO

So here it is my own template for such enum from database .

To use ,unzip, add to your project that contains the edmx and do what is says below- and you will see as many  .cs file as tables want to put.

//    NO Copyright .Use at your own risk.
//    Please modify :
//    1) the names of tables to generate enums : string nameforenum
//    2) the connection to the database : string connectionstring
//    3) the name of the model : string inputFile
//    Then save the file and you will have an enum …


Why the posts can not be equal

There are multiple times that I have been accused of having made the posts either too heavy, either too simple , either the code is not good, either…

I have to say that :

1. You can not follow me, if you want …

2. The reason of the posts is that I want to share my experiences with another and gather feedback.

So stick with me and please help me with what project should I start


I am trying to think about doing a open source project to experiment with various MVC / EF / WPF /and so on features.
I was thinking about

  1. Image gallery or
  2. Employee management system.

What kind of project do you think it worth the effort to implement ?
Thank you for your suggestions!

C# quiz

Fast small quiz for sunny afternoon :
What is writing at the console those lines : ( please do not use a compiler) :

            decimal? v = 100;
            decimal? x = null;
            x += v.Value;

My standard way to work with dropdown box in ASP.NET MVC – 2 steps (or 3 if you want to add long description)

I have written a small post about dropdownlist template in ASP.NET MVC here :

I think that the dropdownlist should be explained more – aand the example will be :

First, let’s say we have Employee and Department. And we have Employee that has a field, named IDDepartment.

When edit/create a user we want to display a dropdownlist for Department in order for the user to choose the department.

Step 1 : obtain from database a list of departments and transform into List<KeyValuePair<string,string>>  – where the first string is DepartmentID and the second is Department Name.

Let’s say there is a method to do that : deptList.Values

Step 2 : display into the aspx/ascx file with List_KVP template

<%: Html.EditorFor(model => model.deptList.Values, “List_KVP”, “IDDepartment”, new { SelectedValue = Model.emp.IDDepartment })%>

Here is the weak part: the “IDDepartment” is not strongly typed. You can transform that …but it requires writing another extension. However, when you modify the code for

SelectedValue = Model.emp.IDDepartment

it is right nearby…

For reference, here is the List_KVP.ascx

<%@ Control Language="C#" Inherits="System.Web.Mvc.ViewUserControl<List<System.Collections.Generic.KeyValuePair<string,string>>>" %>
    string Val = "",style="";
    if(ViewData.Values != null && ViewData.Values.Count > 0)
        Val = (ViewData["SelectedValue"]??"").ToString();
        style = (ViewData["Style"] ?? "").ToString();
    if (style.Length > 0)

    var id=ViewData.TemplateInfo.GetFullHtmlFieldId("") ;
    id = id + "";

<select id="<%:id %>" name="<%:ViewData.TemplateInfo.GetFullHtmlFieldName("") %>" style="<%: style %>">
    <% foreach (var val in Model)
       { %>
            <option  value='<%: val.Key %>' <%:(val.Key == Val)?"selected=selected":"" %>><%: val.Value %></option>
    <%} %>
<% if(Model.Exists(x=>x.Key ==Val) )
       <script type="text/javascript">
   $(document).ready(function () {

       $('#<%:id  %>').change();
   }     );

Oh, and if you ask how to add a description , nothing more simple :
Step1 : add to dropdown an onchange event : onchange=’javascript:funcDepartmentRetrieve(this)”
Step 2: create a java script function that retrieves the long description from the id

 <script type="text/javascript">
         <%: Html.JavaScriptFind( Model.deptList.LongDescriptionValues, "funcDepartmentLong","notfoundDepartment") %>

Step 3 : Mix the 2 javascript functions

For your reference, the code for JavaScriptFind is

 public static MvcHtmlString JavaScriptFind(this HtmlHelper hh, ICollection<KeyValuePair<string,string>> values, string Name, string NotFound)
            string s = "function " + Name + "(value){  switch(value){";
            string ret = "case '{0}' : return '{1}';" + Environment.NewLine;
            foreach (var item in values)
                //TODO : compensate for '
                s += string.Format(ret, item.Key, item.Value);
            s += string.Format("default : return '{0}' ;//+ value;"  + Environment.NewLine, NotFound);
            s += "};";//switch
            s += "}";//function
            return MvcHtmlString.Create(s);

ASP.NET MVC pass data from a view to master

One of recurring questions in MVC is how to share data between views and master. The question must be reformulated : how to share data between ACTION and master.

The short answer is : Model of the View returned from Action have to put some data to the Model of the Master

The long answer here in 4 steps

Step 1: ensuring error.aspx page works fine

a)copy \Views\Shared\Site.Master into siteerror.master( the error.aspx inherits from a specialized model)

b) change in \Views\Shared\Error.aspx

<%@ Page Language="C#" MasterPageFile="~/Views/Shared/Site.Master" Inherits="System.Web.Mvc.ViewPage<System.Web.Mvc.HandleErrorInfo>" %>


<%@ Page Language="C#" MasterPageFile="~/Views/Shared/SiteError.Master" Inherits="System.Web.Mvc.ViewPage<System.Web.Mvc.HandleErrorInfo>" %>

Step 2 : make the master strongly typed :

add a ModelMaster class

public class ModelMaster
public ModelMaster()
DataFromAction = "default data";
public string DataFromAction { get; set; }

and display this data to the html of \Views\Shared\Site.Master

<%@ Master Language="C#" Inherits="System.Web.Mvc.ViewMasterPage<MasterDataFromAction.Models.ModelMaster>" %>


<h1>This is data shared from View : <%= Model.DataFromAction%></h1>

Step 3. Make the action return a strongly typed view. We will make , for example, the Index action from Home controller.

Add the ViewModelIndex class

public class ViewModelIndex :ModelMaster
public ViewModelIndex()
: base()
base.DataFromAction = "data from index";

and modify controller action and view

First Index action in \Controllers\HomeController.cs

public ActionResult Index()
ViewData["Message"] = "Welcome to ASP.NET MVC!";
ViewModelIndex vmi = new ViewModelIndex();
vmi.DataFromAction = "here comes data from index action";
return View(vmi);

Then the view :

<%@ Page Language="C#" MasterPageFile="~/Views/Shared/Site.Master" Inherits="System.Web.Mvc.ViewPage<MasterDataFromAction.Models.ViewModelIndex>" %>

The result is here :

When do you do this things? The sooner, the better 😉

Please find attached the project