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Showing posts from June, 2011

The Firefox 5 Brouhaha: Why Version Numbers Don't Matter, and Why People Who Think They Do Need to Get Over It

Mozilla caused quite a stir in the "enterprise" (whatever that means) crowd recently with their oh-so-bold move of releasing an update to the Firefox web browser and calling it ... holy crap on a cracker ... version 5. Firefox 5 was released only three months after Firefox 4, to the great consternation of people who--judging by the alarmist articles on this subject at any rate--have the uniquely bad combination of lack of IT knowledge, fear of change, and positions of power in IT. To people who are freaked out about this move, I have three words for you:Get over it.Here's the secret you fraidy-cat manager types need to know about version numbers: they're totally arbitrary. They don't imply the things you think they imply. Developers just make them up. No seriously, developers just make them up. Sure, certain loose rules apply that some people follow, but there's no science to any of this. The number of a release is whatever the people involved with the projec…

A Short Missive Concerning SQL Server, Named Instances, and JDBC

Since this seems to come up with some regularity on mailing lists and I happen to be in the midst of a massive SQL Server migration (lucky me) at the moment, I figured I'd set the record straight on this topic once and for all. Named instances in SQL Server are not magic. Like everything else on servers, they run on a port. This named instance nonsense is simply Microsoft's way to get around expecting people to use a port number. (Because as we all know, having to deal with numbered ports is probably the biggest headache anyone in IT has to deal with. Yes, I'm being sarcastic.) Anyway, even though the MS tools would like you to think this is all magic, not only do named instances run on a port, you actually pay a penalty by not referring to the port directly in your connection strings. Why? Because again, there is no magic in IT, and the named instance doesn't mean squat to anything but SQL Server itself. So if you give SQL Server a named instance when trying to connec…