Important notice

Please note that this blog is discontinued here. All the posts are also coppied to my new blog at http://boris.gomiunik.net.
Important: Due to large amount of comment spam further commenting has been disabled here. If you wish to send me a comment, plase look up the same post on my new blog and leave comment there. Thanks!

12/29/2006

Update to previous post - offline active content

If you'll be making the offline version of a website and you're thinking to include the active content like Flash or JavaScript (or both) you can surely use the Mark of the Web, which I've described in the previous post.

There is a catch though. You can't make the mark of the web for pictures. So if you'll be linking from your web pages directly to some images it won't work! The Internet Explorer security will block it.

The only way I could link "directly" to the image was to put the image into an empty page, equip the page with "mark of the web" comment and then link to that page.

If anyone knows a better way to resolve this, I'd be more than happy to read about it. You can let me know in the comments.

12/28/2006

Active content blocked when having page offline

Another issue when making offline web pages is the Windows XP service pack 2 issue, which blocks active content like javascript or flash animations.

When viewing offline page that contains flash animation or JavaScript with Internet explorer you can run into a problem. A yellow security bar or a notification about blocking active content.

Microsoft has an official workaround for this, named "Mark of the Web comment". Here's also description of it in Adobe's site.

To make it short. If you don't want your users to be troubled with this, just add the following to the top of your html code:

<!-- saved from url=(0013)about:internet -->

or

<!-- saved from url=(0022)http://www. yoururl .com -->

(the number in brackets represents the length of your URL - including http://)

This tells Internet Explorer to treat the page like Internet zone for which usually has the permissions for active content.

Verify all hyperlinks on your website

I had to do an offline version of a website recently and ofcourse once you have the site on a CD it's too late to make changes to it. That's why you have to absolutely sure that all of the links work.

SharePoint Designer and FrontPage have a great tool for checking this. First if you're using SharePoint Designer, you have to verify that it's using metadata to manage content on your website. To do this select the Site Settings command in Site menu. On the General tab make sure the Manage the Web site using hidden metadata files is checked. 

 

Next click the Web site tab and below select the Reports view. Under Problems category select Hyperlinks.

FrontPage or SharePoint Designer will display all the links in the website and check if they're broken. If you have a broken link you don't even need to open the page. Just right click the broken hyperlink and select Edit hyperlink.

And when you fix the link, just click the button Replace.

A very nice feature that can save you couple of hours of clicking through and checking bad links.

Technorati tags:

12/19/2006

New Screen Hunter

Remember my post about screen capturing software? Well There is a new version of screen hunter available. Now with even nicer interface, better options for capturing, etc. And still free for personal or business use. Great work, guys!

Click here to review and download it.

12/13/2006

Skip Multiple Pages in SharePoint paged view

If you have more than 200 items and paged view displaying only 100 items in SharePoint, you can skip to the last or any page you wish. Here's how:

  1. At the bottom of the page copy the shortcut to next page
  2. Paste it in your URL (should look something like javascript:__doPostBack...
  3. Change the number at the end to the position number you want to start: for example: to display page 7, starting with item 701 enter 701.

True, this works in SharePoint 2. If someone knows how to achieve this in wss3, my comments are open :). If not, maybe I'll figure out how.

12/04/2006

Is (part of) your website slow?

You've checked the line... You've checked the connection... All perfect. But still noticing your website loading slowly?

Maybe all is perfect but there's only one component loading slowly. With this perfect tool you can measure how long it takes for each part of your website to load.

Technorati tags:

Something nice for Christmas from the web

You can find many beautiful things on the web for christmas. Just take a look at christmas clipart on Office online.

I'm happy that me and my company is also contributing to spreading the christmas joy through a portal called prazniki.net.

Something that also puts me in a beautiful christmas mood is christmas music. Here's a nice collection of christmas songs that you can download for free.

11/19/2006

A future perspective on photos

This post is not about web development, but more about what we'll soon have on the web.

My wife recently returned from Malta and she brought with her quite some number of photos. They're all nice but to imagine exactly how this place looks is a bit hard. For example to fully enjoy the view from a balcony - you have to take multiple photos and then make panoramic stitching.

Well, this site looks very promising to put a new perspective - almost like being there. Still in technology preview but you can already see. What it does is it takes bunch of photos from one place and recognizes which is located where (according to common objects on photos) - and then you can view the photos in 3-D space!

 

Photosynth screenshot

A cheap alternative to travel ;)

11/13/2006

More than 2 columns in SharePoint Data view

If you insert a SharePoint Data View Web Part (DVWP) in a page using FrontPage or SharePoint Designer, you have some nice layout options. A lot of times I like to make a web gallery using picture library, but the DVWP has only a two-column layout. If you'd like to have more columns (for this example, let's make 4 columns), here's an easy way.

  1. When selecting layout of DVWP (in FrontPage select smart tag and click Style, in SharePoint Designer select Smart tag and select Change Layout), chose the two column layout:


  2. Next in source code look for mod 2 (you'll find 2 occurences)

  3. Replace the number 2 in both of those occurences with the number of columns you wish (for our example we'll make mod 4)
  4. At the end change or remove the width property of the table cell, which is set to 50%
    - Using tag selector select the element which is holding table with details


  5. Delete or correct the "Width" attribute, because you have more columns and each can't have 50% of width.

And there you have it. You're in control of columns now :-)

Free Tools Galore pt. 9 - For those who believe in writing code

The cleanest way to build a website is to write clean code. Like that you control the components that usually graphical editors take over. Even though I like the graphicak WYSWYG editing, sometimes I simply have to dig into code and make manual corrections.

If notepad is just a bit not enough for you (like for me), here is an improved version:

Notepad++

Just check the list of features... Tabs, Color coding, auto completion, Code grouping, Macro recording and playback, bookmarks, zoom, multiple views, etc, etc, etc. The guys really made a great product.

When you install the program, it can even replace the default program for viewing source code on the Internet. So super. Next time Internet Explorer will tell me in which line of code I made an error, I'll be able to find it!

Just check the list of languages it has color coding for... The menu doesn't fit in a screen! :)



(in the screenshot above I'm checking a website template from OSWD (I know they write good code)).

11/06/2006

Bigger, nicer, on steroids - new Office online

Looks like I'm starting to repeat myself... Some time ago I was posting about a very good place to find beautiful pictures and photos for your website - Office online. I have to make again the post about it, because it deserves it. It's renewed - bigger, better, nicer and looks like with a lot more contents.

Thumbs up!

10/31/2006

Writing long posts in SharePoint? Beware of TimeOut

If you're writing longer texts into Windows SharePoint Services lists be careful. By default WSS has a 30-minute security timeout. This means that if you'll click on a New Item and then write in the contents for 30 minutes and 1 second, you'll get an error message when clicking Save and close. If you click back, usually the long text you entered will be lost!

There are 2 ways to avoid this. One is if you're a server administrator:

  1. In Start Menu click Administrative tools and SharePoint Central Administration.
  2. Click Configure virtual server settings and select the site you want to configure security timeout for.
  3. Under Virtual Server Management click Virtual server general settings.
  4. In the section Web Page Security Validation you can edit or turn off the timeout settings.

!!!! Warning !!!! - With this you're increasing the security risk of the WSS website so be sure that if you're going to increase the timeout or turn it off, that you know what you're doing.

Other - simpler - client way

There is another way though and it's done by the editor:

Before hitting Save and Close - copy the long text you've written into the field, into the clipboard, then refresh the page and paste the long text back. Now you can safely click Save and Close.

Too bad this way you can only save the contents of one field, though...

10/28/2006

My God! 2-way Sync between excel and WSS is GONE!?!

I love the new Microsoft Office 2007. It really has a lot of improvements. But now I have a problem. I'm used to exporting a list into excel, making advanced editing there and then synchronizing the data back to the SharePoint list.

But soon I realized (after a long search) that the button to synchronize data back to SharePoint is GONE!

Thanks to my friend, Pedro Serrano for confirming that fear... Here's a post in his blog. I've already installed a Send a smile tool and sent couple of frowns because of this functionality depreciated. Some of the solutions I'm using are built based on this functionality. Please, MSFT, bring it back.

Expand - Colapse with more than just clicking on + / - in a data view web part

SharePoint and FrontPage have a very nice functionality of grouping the data in a list data view according to selected group. What in my opinion can be improved, is that you expand or colapse the group with a click on the whole cell rather than targeting that small plus or minus sign in front of a group name.

Not to reinvent hot water again: this is already discovered so let me point it out:

http://dev.collutions.com/blog/Pages/Grouping.aspx

Thanks, Jim Duncan!

10/16/2006

Special characters (č, ž, š) in Flash (updated)

Coming from Slovenia I have to face with the problem of slovenian characters in the web applications. Usually FrontPage or SharePoint designer take good care about that for me. The problem arises when I need to use Flash that reads external file.

Example: I need to embed a flash that will read the text that will say "Študija".

If I include in the text file the word Študija, Flash will not recognize this character (at least in most cases). I've found, that you have to use special codes for characters like č, ž, š, etc. But which? After some time searching the net and combining knowlege, I've come up with a table of codes for the following characters:

č: %C4%8D
Č: %C4%8C
š: %C5%A1
Š: %C5%A0
ž: %C5%BE
Ž: %C5%BD
ć: %C4%87
Ć: %C4%86
đ: %C4%91
Đ: %C4%90
ä: %C3%A4
Ä: %C3%84
ő: %C3%B6
Ő: %C3%96
ű: %C3%BC
Ű: %C3%9C
ß: %C3%9F

So in my case instead of Študije I have to use %C5%A0tudije to have Flash spell out the correct word.

Update: Thanks to Jose here's a list of other special characters to use. There are no č, ž, š in that table so it's a nice complement to this post.

http://www.adobe.com/go/tn_14143

10/14/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 8 - More photos for your website

I've already posted about where to get free graphics for your website.

Another place that quickly became one of my favourites is stock.xchng. Liked it from the first moment. I've already registered and posted 2 photos to share with the community (click here to see my profile and photos on sxc).

The site is nice, has a community, some real nice tutorials for working with images and when I posted 2 photos it took some time for them to get published. They have administrators checking the quality of the photos and if the photos are appropriate for publishing.

Here are my 2 photos, only after a day of being published they're already rated and commented:

 

10/12/2006

Shorter URL of a document library

I always like to access our company's SharePoint Document Library via URL. And on the way I like to save every keystroke (can't help it - I'm lazy). To have the url of the document library as short as possible, when creating it make the following:

  1. Create document library and name it something very short - for example doc

  2. When the library is created, under Modify Settings and Columns in that document library click Change general settings and now you can rename your document library to the desired nime, like for example Company's Documents


Yeee. Now you can access your document library couple of clicks faster:

http://yoursharepointurl/doc

10/11/2006

Links in a SharePoint document library open in a new window

To make links from SharePoint lists, document libraries, etc. open in new window is usually easy with FrontPage 2003 or SharePoint Designer and inserting a Data View.

But this caused problems. In some cases when you're including xslt data view you can have trouble saving site like template. What worked for me is to put a little script just before the </body> tag, that changed the target window of links inside of document library. The script is based on WSS CSS recognition so you can use it also for other cases.

Below is the code for the script:


<script language="javascript" type="text/javascript">
i=0
while (document.links[i]) //check all document links
{
if (document.links[i].parentNode.className == "ms-vb2" || document.links[i].parentNode.className == "ms-vb" || document.links[i].parentNode.className == "ms-vb-icon") //if is inside of DL webpart, do it:
{
document.links[i].target='_blank'
}
i++
}
</script>

10/06/2006

VistaMan!

Yeeee! Forgot to post. Recently (18.9.) there was an event for Microsoft's partners in Slovenia. At the end I've also had a presentation with 2 of my friends. We've all come to the finals so we've earned the title Vistaman, to prove that we can present the new Office and Vista. Congratulations to Matjaž Šircelj that won the competition and to Simon Jurič for also a very good presentation!

How did I remember that just now? Because our Ministry of internal affairs - the police today kindly reminded me about that date... More specifically when I was driving there ;)

Guess a prize comes with a price ;-)

Want to create hyperlinks manually in SharePoint's rich text field

SharePoint has a nice feature when it comes to edit the multiple lines of text. That is rich text editor. What I'm missing the most in this is the button for creating hyperlinks.

So only if you typed in an URL like www.b4contact.com this was recognized. What if you wanted to create a hyperlink to some cool site like in this example?

Here's a video I've prepared some time ago and dug it out. If you have FrontPage or a friend with FrontPage, you can enable the hyperlink button.

Thanks to Piflar - multimedia e-learning portal (for now only in Slovene - for now!) for enabling me the tools and hosting of my contents.

10/03/2006

Logging to SharePoint through Internet and Password problems?

If you're like me using SharePoint over the Internet (for extranet, and other purposes) and if you're opening the same site a lot of times, you might want the computer to remember the username and password for that site. But the computer simply doesn't want to remember the username and password...

Although many do not recommend this, here's the way to do it:

In Internet Explorer under the menu Tools click Internet Options. In the open window now select the Security tab.

Next select Local Intranet and click the Sites button.



In the new window click the Advanced button and in the next window type in the URL of your SharePoint site. If the site is not using SSL (https:) remember to clear the "Require server verification..." checkbox. At the end click the Add button and confirm all the windows with OK or Close.

The next time you'll log on to the SharePoint Site check the box Remember my password and that'll be the last time you'll log in to that site manually on this computer.

!!!Important!!!

If you're accessing sensitive data on SharePoint remember to secure your computer account with a password and protect the unauthorized access to this computer, because anyone can access to this site from this computer now!

9/29/2006

Programs not starting like they should?

Some time ago I've had the craziest problem with one of my friend's computer. After she installed one player, everything that she wanted to run (like for example Word, Outlook, games,...) - EVERYTHING started that player with an error message. I went almost crazy looking for solution. That's why I want to point it out here if anyone will ever have the same problem:

What happened is that the .exe extension got associated with that player (like for example some media type like .mp3 associates with windows media player). So basically when we tried to run any .exe - program file it was understanding to run that player and open .exe in it.

Crazy. I couldn't fix the registry, because regedit is also .exe file.

This is what saved me and my friend's computer.

Update: Due to a broken link, I've changed it and added a link to some more xp file association fixes:

Windows XP file association fixes.

9/26/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 7 - Vector drawing

There are quite some good vector graphics editors available on the market. But again keeping the stle of free I have to recommend you Inkscape - an open source scalable vector graphics editor.

It has all the features for drawing with vectors that you need. I had to prepare t-shirts and I used this program. The print shop was surprised with the quality of result and also they were happy because I didn't forget to convert text into curves (which Inkscape automatically offered.)

9/21/2006

Semi transparency on a web?

Well FireFox already supports semi-transparent png and the effects with these are super. Also Internet Explorer 7 now has the support for transparency in png. But to wait for everybody to change from IE6? That might take a while.

But if you need semi-transparent effects on your website, here's a very neat optical trick to make it.

Read more here...

Really super. Will use it with my next project.

9/16/2006

Posting to Blog directly from new Office

Wow. This is amazing! You can actually post blogs directly from word! This post is actually made with the new Word 2007! Just click the office logo, select new and from templates select New blog entry.






Although I'm having some difficulties posting to the new blogger Beta, but I'm sure it will be fixed when both word and blogger will go out of the beta.

9/15/2006

What to do if users don't have flash?

Not everybody has Flash installed. It's quite easy and free to install it, but still there are some cases that simply someone viewing your website might not have Flash player installed. You can put an alternative content for users that don't have flash player installed. So instead of your flash animation you still can display HTML.

This is super, because if you have your whole site built in Flash you can still make HTML substitute for the ones without the player.

Thanks to Deconcept's SWF Object script file...

Simple to integrate and simply works :)

9/14/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 6 - Compressed files manager

Windows already has an integrated .zip compressed file support. But I've experienced problem in bigger zip files. And also sometimes I'm receiving lots of compressed files in other formats, such as .rar.

A solution to this problem is:

7-zip file archiver.

It has its own high compression format and also supports

  • packing/unpacking to/from 7z, ZIP, GZIP, BZIP2 and TAR
  • unpacking from: RAR, CAB, ISO, ARJ, LZH, CHM, Z, CPIO, RPM, DEB and NSIS

From what I've seen from news it also supports .ISO. What I especially like is the nice Windows Explorer integration.

9/13/2006

Width of Rich text field in the form

I'm probably one of the biggest fans of SharePoint, because it enables me to do virtually anything with a bit of creativity. So you can expect some more of the SharePoint stuff here (by the way: I'm not a programmer, so don't catch me on too technical details.)

One thing that was annoying me and some of our customers is that when entering info into rich text field it was simply too narrow. The width is for resolution 1024x768. That's all fine and dandy, but if you like to type a lot the narrow field when entering information just won't do.

To expand the field you have to open the NewForm.aspx and EditForm.aspx in FrontPage or SharePoint designer and just before the </body> tag add the following code:

<script language="javascript" type="text/javascript">
document.getElementById('urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office#FIELDNAME_iframe').style.width=WIDTH
</script>


Ofcourse replace the FIELDNAME with actual name of the field and WIDTH with desired width in pixels.

For the FIELDNAME you have to use the SharePoint name, not the display name (sometimes they aren't the same). You can find the SharePoint name of the field easily if you


  1. modify settings and columns of the list

  2. click on the name of the field in the "Columns" section

  3. check value of parameter Field in the URL (click on image below to see the screenshot)


Save the file and you'll have the result. Click on the thumbnails below to see larger images.


Before:



Code:



After:



There you have it. Not as nice to look at, but nicer to write in :).

9/12/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 5 - Graphics for your web site

My friend, Jose has a good post about where to find free graphics. When in need of graphics for your website, the problem can be the authorship rights. That's why you have to search for royality free pictures.

Or you can check office online.

Check Jose's tip about free clipart.

Through Office online you can find lots of quality photos that you can freely use.

Click to activate and use this control?

If you're keeping your computer secure and up-to-date with updates, you've probably noticed that in Internet Explorer you have to first click on the flash animation or any other object (such as movie, etc) to be able to interactively use it.

Here's a screenshot of what I have in mind.




I understand that Microsoft is trying to protect us from unwanted actions in our computer but if as a web developer this bothers you, I've found a solution.

Here's one from Macromedia:

http://www.adobe.com/devnet/activecontent/articles/devletter.html

And personally I like the solution that I've found on Amara Software site:

http://www.amarasoftware.com/flash-problem.htm

And the flash works... Until next update :)

9/11/2006

Having problems with your flash animation?

Here's a problem that I've had:

I'm working on a website and I received a flash animation to put it it. The problem was that the site also included DHTML menu with layers. The problem is, that the menu layers don't want to display above flash animation.

A screenshot of the problem:





The solution is very simple: Just add <PARAM NAME="wmode" VALUE="transparent"> to the flash object tag, like shown below:





And voila. Works for me:


9/08/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 4 - for build your website

If this blog is also for webmasters and those wanting to become one, I should start addressing this topic.


In the office I'm using FrontPage 2003 and lately the super new SharePoint Designer. But these are the tools we use in the office and are really proffessional.


If you want to create a website at home or with minimum costs, you can use NVU - free web authoring tool.


It has enough if you want to build the website for free, nice features and support for plugins also.

Below is a screenshot of user interface (click on the thumbnail to see bigger screenshot):

It has nice views (HTML Tags is a nice view)

Tag selector: a feature I can't live without when working with web pages. You can find it at the bottom of user interface:

One nice feature is also that you can see the width and height of the element (table, etc.) in the rulers. Below is the sample of the table. You can see the width in the top ruler (click thumbnail for bigger preview)

It is XHTML compliant as you can see in the source code view. (click for bigger image)

Absolutely nice if you want to create web sites for free. Nice also the site manager and possibility to publish the site via FTP.

What I was missing is

  • support for working with layers
  • opening non-html files (for example CSS)

9/05/2006

Nostalgic for old games?

Had an old game that you simply loved? Want to play it again? Not all is lost. In the era of superpowerful computers the games are advancing so fast that it's even hard to follow.

If you want to slow your pace and play an old game, the wonder of Internet is super. Just look for abandonware. Tons of all the games you knew or you didn't know.

So if you're looking for something simple to relax, this is an additional option for you. The sure thing is: your configuration will meet the minimum requirements. :)

9/03/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 3 - Graphics program

If you need a program to modify your photographies, images, etc. you have some choices. PhotoShop is really good, but doesn't fit under the free tools category. A free substitute for PhotoShop is the GIMP, but if you're looking for something more light-weight, I recommend Paint .NET. It has enough of the functionalities that you'd require - layers, all sorts of different effects, powerful tools for working with drawings, images.

As a Webmaster I find this tool (because of its lightweight and especially because it's for free), I found it really indispensable.

Here's a screenshot of the user interface

The task panes are semi-transparent when over the image

It has support for layers and some blending modes

And the color select tool has the hex option! Super if you need this for web development.

P.S. - what do you think of the picture I was editing in Paint .NET? ;)

9/01/2006

Links to tools available all the time

Just a quick notice. I've published the links of the tools on the right side so you'll be able to find them all the time. As I get new tools and good stuff, I'll update the linkbar on the right.

8/31/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 2 - For Capturing Screen

If you have to create manuals for the work you've created (regarding software), you'll love this next tool:

Wisdom Soft's Screen Hunter



Already the free version has a lot of good features:
- capture rectangle area / window / full screen
- capture to clipboard or/and a file
- include mouse pointer in a screen capture

Especially that last helped me a LOT. Definetly recomended. On the site you can also find video guides, screenshots, etc.

8/29/2006

Free Tools Galore pt. 1 - Download manager

As promised, I'll start a series of posts in which I'll expose the free stuff on the Internet. You can get really a lot of free stuff even without digging deep. If you have something that's REALLY good please comment it back to me, so I can include (and ofcourse download :)).

Let's present the first pick:

For me to be involved in Internet is almost a must-have a good download manager. If you're (like me) one of the people who don't want to stay alert over your large downloads, you will love the Free Download Manager.


Free Download Manager
Free Download Manager


It has it all (download resuming, multiple section download, integration with a browser, download basket) and is easy to use.

The name is also promising. You can't expect a Free Download Manager to be for charge in the future :). Congrats and also congrats on not complicating with a name.

The freeer, the simpler - the better

I'd like to share an experience with you. It's about a multimedia e-learning portal that we've been developing now for three years. It has undergone 2 major changes. The idea was born when I was driving to a meeting with my boss and we said that it would be great to have a place on the internet where you'd be able to learn by watching videos and listening to instructions.

So little planning, little developing and Clippy's Web was born. It was a great portal and it had videos in slovene language. Super. But the results didn't quite arrive. Why? Because we've decided that only part of contents will be for free and the other part for "premium" - paying members.

With a lot of effort in creating contents, marketing the portal, etc. we simply didn't get as many visits and members as we wished. So we decided for a change - a portal called B4Learning. We've changed the system in a way that each had to be a member and we also offered free membership. Like a benefit for being a member each received his own mini-portal with access to training videos, his own calendar and a place where to publish his/her files online. GREAT... Yeah, maybe for geeks like us. We've had even less visits and even less members!!!

No way! It was a time almost to panic. So at last we saw that the model of Internet is to offer for free. So now we have all the contents available in the new portal - Piflar's Web (meaning a Geek's Web) without any hassle of registration, long processes etc. You enter the portal and you can access the tips you like.

And I'm happy to see that the results are starting to show! So the model of free like the most popular model of Internet (freeware, open source etc.) is the winning model. Earning some money from it? That's a topic for next time. In my next post I'll also share some free tools you can find on the Internet for your computer or the web.

8/27/2006

WebBorG is Born

Well the hardest thing is acomplished. The blog is created. All I needed was a liiitle push to create my blog. This is my seccond attempt to start blogging, hopefully more successful.

WebBorG? Well, not CyBorg since I'll be dealing with web here and I'm also a fan of star trek so Borg are cool from there. And also if you use my name - BORis Gomiunik you can also come up with BorG. :)

I've been trying to start with my own blog for weeks now. I have quite a lot to share with you.

So what is this going to be about? Since I'm a web developer for B4Contact - a company that is a great deal specialized in customizing user experience with Windows SharePoint Services (WSS), I've come across some tricks, tools, tips, howto-s and similar. And I want to share this with you.

Also: I love JavaScript. Untill now I could make almost all I needed with it. So WSS and JavaScript go together in a perfect harmony. And I'll prove it to you.