Bower install / NPM install behind a proxy

Often when you work in a company network your are using a proxy to connect to the internet and it is not uncommon that you receive the following error when trying to execute bower install or npm install

ECMDERR Failed to execute "git ls-remote --tags --heads git://github.com/jquery/jquery.git", exit code of #128

The proxy is blocking the connection to Github because most proxy do not allow git://-urls. The solution for this is very simple. Just change the git urls to https and everything will work. This command changes all github urls to https:

git config --global url.https://github.com/.insteadOf git://github.com/

Not enough physical memory is available to power on this virtual machine with its configured settings.

Virtual Machines are more or less commodity for modern development environments. I have been very happy with VMWare Workstation for a long time. I have several SharePoint (and other) setups running and never had a problem.

Recently, I got the message

Not enough physical memory is available to power on this virtual machine with its configured settings.

whenever I tried to start a virtual machine. But my workstation had more than enough free memory available. Even restarting did not solve the problem. Google told me that a windows update could be the problem but I found only very old KB’s as potential causes.

By accident I stumbled upon a post that pointed to VMWare config.ini. Just add this line:

vmmon.disableHostParameters = "TRUE"

to the end of the file and VMWare starts working again. I am not exactly sure what the cause of the problem was, but at least I know how a workaround.

Logstash – File input not working on Windows

Logstash is a great tool to transform the information stored in unstructured log files into a structured format. When using it on a Windows machine there are several things you should pay attention to (and which are not 100% documented).

Let’s say you want to use a file input and specify it in this way:

input {
  file{
    path => ["C:\Logs\*.logs"]
  }
}

When you run Logstash nothing happens and your files are not processed.

The reason for that is pretty simple: Logstash doesn’t like the \ and because of that it does not recognise the path properly. So simply change the config to look like this:

input {
  file{
    path => ["C:/Logs/*.logs"]
  }
}

Always use in Logstash configs and you will easily get around this problem. The problem is also known to the Logstash community (see this bug) but there is no fix in place yet.

Hint:

The mechanism for detecting which files have been written and which log entries are new is also not working correctly on Windows (see this bug here). The link also contains information on how to get around this problem.

SQL Server Compact Edition – Still an option for lightweight persistence?

Recently, I was looking for a lightweight database for a small, independent application. One requirement was an easy deployment without installation of additional software on the server. The first thing that came to my mind was SQL Server Compact Edition. Technically it fulfilled all requirements perfectly but than I stumbled across this Connect Article.

“SQL Server compact edition is in deprecation mode with no new releases planned near future”

Sadly this disqualifies SQL Server Compact Edition for the use in a productive application and the recommended SQL Server Express or LocalDB do not really replace it.

Now the big question is, what to use instead of SQL Server Compact Edition for the use case of a lightweight, easy to deploy database on a Windows Server?

SSIS – Unexpected Termination

I did observe a confusing behaviour after patching a SQL Server 2012 to Service Pack 2. Some of the SSIS jobs running on that server started to fail with the message Unexpected Termination while most of the other jobs just worked as before.

Unexpected Termination can have multiple causes and if you search for that error in the internet you can find a bunch of different reasons and solutions. But non of them worked and to make the situation worse the jobs running on other servers without the Service Pack still worked. So I started looking into the known issues of the Service Pack and luckily I found this link: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2991528 

The error did not exactly match the entry I could find in the Event Viewer but all failing jobs used DT_TEXT or DT_NTEXT. I decided to risk installing the Cumulative Update (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2983175) containing the fix. After this, the jobs started to work just fine. So in the end the solution was extremely simple.

This is just one possible solution for the Unexpected Termination error but if you experience this error after installing Service Pack 2 you should definitely check if this is also your problem.

JavaScript – Documenting optional parameter

JavaScript is an awesome language but due to its nature parameter documentation is pretty important especially when it come to optional parameters. If you want to create a method like this:

module.exports.create = function (callback) {
    // Do something
    if (callback) {
        callback();
    }
}

Obviously, callback is an optional parameter but if we use this method in an IDE like JetBrains WebStorm it will always show us a wrong signature warning and other developers might think this parameter is mandatory.  We can overcome that situation by adding the correct comment on this method.

/**
 * The method does something. 
 * 
 * @param {requestCallback=} callback
 */
module.exports.create = function (callback) {
    // Do something
    if (callback) {
        callback();
    }
}

Now the IDE and other developers looking at our method know that the parameter is optional and can use it like that. This syntax can be used to provide a lot of information on the different request parameter. This link contains a very detailed description.

Failed to bring availability group ” online

Recently, I was installing a SQL Server Availability Group on two VMs to verify some open questions I had. And I am surprised that the installation went pretty smoothly. But when I tried to create the availability group I got the following error message.

Failed to bring availability group ‘<availability group name>’ online. The operation timed out. Verify that the local Windows Server Failover Clustering (WSFC) node is online. Then verify that the availability group resource exists in the WSFC cluster. If the problem persists, you might need to drop the availability group and create it again.    

The message seemed to be pretty precise and I started verifying my WSFC configuration but unfortunately I couldn’t find any mistakes there. After searching for a while I found the following support post: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2847723 It describes exactly my problem and the only thing I had to do was executing the following script:

USE [master]
GO
CREATE LOGIN [NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM] FROM WINDOWS WITH DEFAULT_DATABASE=[master]
GO

GRANT ALTER ANY AVAILABILITY GROUP TO [NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM]
GO
GRANT CONNECT SQL TO [NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM]
GO
GRANT VIEW SERVER STATE TO [NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM]
GO

It fixed the problem and I was able to create my availability group without any problems.