Archive for January, 2009

MVP Interview

Categories: MVP
Comments: No

Last week I had the opportunity to be interviewed by Alessandro our MVP Lead about the MVP program and what’s it like being an MVP.

Well the interview is up and I think you’ll find it interesting, especially if you’d like to join the program ;-).

I’ve been wanting to write about Windows 7 for some time now but waited to try them more in order to get a clearer picture for Microsoft’s new operating system.

So here’s what I found out so far:


  • Really really small footprint which results in great performance. I’ve even tried it to a small netbook I’ve got and it works really really well.
  • New and improved taskbar allows program grouping. One of my greatest features. Windows 7 new taskbar groups all the programs that are running into a single icon in the taskbar. You can take a peak at the running instances by just hovering over it. What’s more, there’s a program specific context menu on each icon allowing you to perform common tasks faster.
  • Sidebar gadgets everywhere not just at the side. This has triggered a lot of discussion on the web. There are some people who are disappointed with this change but I always felt somehow restricted with that so I feel quite happy with this new feature. If you need to have the gadgets where you previously had them you can always arrange them like that.
  • Networking is greatly improved. Menus and Forms have been redesigned to be cleared and enable easier and faster connections to available networks.
  • Action Center a new feature that groups all error and attention messages into a single form.


  • Chrome not running. Well not that much of a disadvantage as I don’t really like and rarely use Google’s browser ;-).
  • Visual studio installation breaks after Live platform installation. This is one of the problems that bugged me most of all. I had to re-format my pc several times until I found out what was causing Visual Studio Setup crashes. The installation process was constantly crashing on Document Writer installation. I’m guessing that the problem was caused because Live platform was installing some Visual Studio Runtime that conflicted with Visual Studio.
  • Cosmote Internet On the go software doesn’t work. I use a mobile 3G usb dongle to connect to the web when I’m on the road and what I found out is that while software installs correctly, I can not connect with it. Thankfully I’ve found a workaround to this problem. After entering the pin of my mobile carrier I close the program and use Windows Dialup option to connect.
  • Generic Rdis Driver not found. I have a windows mobile PC which I often syncronize with my PC. What I found out is that the Generic Rdis driver that is used in order to connect my device just isn’t there anymore.
  • Sidebar gadgets System undefined exception. This is a tricky one and don’t know if that’s a windows 7 thing or an IE 8 one. I’ve posted an issue at both teams and hope that I’ll have a response soon.

More reading/searching

I’ve developed a couple of gadgets and have found that, since installing the latest built of IE7 or Windows 7 the settings pages have broken.

From some initial testing it seems as something has changed in the Sidebar event model.

What happens is that when handling the onload event of a gadget’s settings page, System hasn’t been loaded yet (thus the System undefined error). So there is no way to properly initialize the settings page’s  html Controls using the System.Gadget.Settings object.

I’ve also tried using the System.Gadget.onShowSettings event from my gadgets main pages to initialize my settings pages’ html controls but the problem then is that the Settings Pages haven’t been loaded yet so there is no dom access to my html controls.

Has anyone else noticed this problem?

<DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" 
<html xmlns=""> 
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" /> 
<link type="text/css" rel="stylesheet" href="css/luna/luna.css" /> 
<script type="text/javascript" language="javascript" src="js/Settings.js"><script> 
<body onload="InitPage()" style="width: 500px; height: 500px; font-size:xx-small"> 


function InitPage() { 
    //<-- This causes System Undefined error 
    System.Gadget.Settings.Read("someSetting"); System.Gadget.onSettingsClosing = SettingsClosing; }

First let me say have a happy new Year full of happiness and successes to everyone.

It’s been a while since my last blog post but I’ve decided to take some time off and spend Christmas and New Year with my family this year. It’s been great, I got a chance to play with my son a lot, visit Amfikleia a small village on the foot of Parnassos mountain, where we got to stay in a horse farm and build snowmen and play snow fights on Parnassos Ski Center

IMGP0011 IMGP0058 

Now I’m back though with a crave for more blog posts. So stay tuned, coming up next Windows 7 adventures.