Monday, November 14, 2016

A Base-64 Decoder That Works!

Let's face it...  debugging ASP.NET production websites can be challenging.  HTML sessions are 'stateless', meaning from one post to the next, the server has no idea what post came first.   For example, let's say there is a website that prompts the user for their name on one page, and on the subsequent page the user is prompted for their address.  Well, the server has no intrinsic way to join the data together from those two pages to save it all in a table somewhere.

Web scripting language use various methods to store this state information.  Some use cookies to store the data from one page to another.  Some use a unique key, placed into a cookie, or in the URL as a parameter to retrieve the data from an internal 'session store' on the server.  ASP.NET can save the session state several ways.  One way to save part of the session state is in something called a ViewState.  This is basically the state of a page; just part of the entire session state.

Well, this ViewState is stored right in the web page as a 64 bit encoded string.  It's not encoded but definitely looks that way.  It's unreadable without a decoder.  Anyway...  If something is stored in the ViewState, programmers can have a bitch of a time trying to pull it apart and see the data.  But...  This information can be invaluable to debugging a production problem.   There are varied ViewState tools on the web for decoding this gobeldygook into something that is somewhat coherent.  I use Base64 decoder and encoder at motobit.  It's simple and works.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

So, Trump Is Our President

What the hell is this company coming to???  Think I will create a series of these...  Share as you wish.  Some may not be safe for work; you have been warned!

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Simple Is Still Simple

Yes, contrary to the conventional state of technology and computer programming, simple is still simple.  Well, at least it should be.

Quite frequently I read different articles about programming in an attempt to maintain professional relevance.   Some are well written articles on good programming techniques.  Some are poorly written but the core material is still good.  Some are well written pieces about some fluff fad and then there are occasionally the poorly written article about some programming technique or library or concept  that has 'bad idea' written all over it.