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June 10, 2003--In this issue:

1. Developer .NET Perspectives

  • Using Visio to Diagram the Database

2. Announcements

  • Get Exclusive VIP Web Site Access!
  • Check Out SSMU's Sizzlin' Summer Sale!

3. Resource

  • Featured Thread: Unable to Run ASP.NET Files

4. Events

  • Security 2003 Road Show

5. New and Improved

  • Develop with Snap-In Parts

6. Contact Us

  • See this section for a list of ways to contact us.

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1. Developer .NET Perspectives

by Bill Sheldon, bills@interknowlogy.com

  • Using Visio to Diagram the Database
  • Last week, I discussed the ASP.NET Starter Kits Web site's series of starter kits, which come with a full suite of documentation for front-end customization and source code so that you can customize the application logic. This week, I want to help you get acquainted with the data associated with one of the starter kits: the Community Starter Kit.

    Like the other starter kits, the Community Starter Kit is supported by either Visual Studio .NET or the Microsoft ASP.NET Web Matrix Project. One of the add-ons to the Visual Studio .NET Enterprise Architect (VSEA) edition is Microsoft Visio for Enterprise Architects. This version of Visio is more advanced than the standalone version of Visio (i.e., Visio Professional 2002) that you can purchase from the Microsoft Office Download Center. (Oddly, Visio is officially part of the Microsoft Office suite, but a quick review shows that it isn't part of any version of the Office suite.) In this and future columns, I'll be using the VSEA version of Visio. However, the features I use are also available in the Visio Professional 2002. For more information about the differences between the two versions, see the Microsoft article "Visio-based Software and Database Modeling Solutions: Which one is right for you?" at the following URL:

    http://www.microsoft.com/office/visio/evaluation/indepth/devtools.asp

    At its core, Visio is a tool for creating diagrams. When you start Visio, you're in a traditional multiple-document interface (MDI) application, awaiting the creation of a new document. If you've never used Visio before, I highly recommend that you take a few moments and create a new diagram, such as a simple block diagram, and become familiar with adding shapes, connecting them, and repositioning objects.

    Because of the ease with which you can create and edit diagrams, Visio has probably become the primary system-engineering tool for modeling networks. However, you can also use Visio to gain an understanding of the underlying database associated with the Community Starter Kit.

    The first step is to create a new Database diagram, specifically a Database Model Diagram. On the File menu, select New, Database, Database Model Diagram. Next, you need to open the database and transfer all the tables from the database into our diagram. Fortunately, you don't need to manually transfer all the tables. Instead, go to the Database menu, which becomes visible when you open a database diagram, and select the Reverse Engineer option. This option launches the Reverse Engineer Wizard.

    On the Reverse Engineer Wizard's opening screen, you'll see the "Data sources" and "Install Visio drivers" boxes. The Community Starter Kit's database is either a Microsoft SQL Server or Microsoft SQL Server Desktop Engine (MSDE) database. However, the "Data sources" list box doesn't include SQL Server. So, in the "Install Visio drivers" box, select SQL Server, then click Setup. In the Microsoft SQL Server Setup dialog box, select the ODBC Drivers tab. Scroll to the bottom of the "Select ODBC Drivers to use" list box, select SQL Server, and click OK.

    The "Data sources" list box on the Reverse Engineer Wizard's opening screen should now be empty. Click New to open the Create New Data Source dialog box. Select the System Data Source option, then click Next. In the dialog box that appears, select SQL Server and click Next. Finally, enter a name for your ODBC connection and click Finish.

    Clicking Finish opens the "Create a New Data Source to SQL Server Wizard." On this wizard's first screen, enter a description for your connection, select the server that's running SQL Server or MSDE, and click Next.

    On the second screen of the "Create a New Data Source to SQL Server Wizard," select the authentication mode. If you're logged on as a privileged user, using the default NT Authentication is the easiest option. Click Next.

    The third screen of the "Create a New Data Source to SQL Server Wizard" requires customization. The "Change the default database to" check box, which isn't selected by default, lets you change the default database. Instead of connecting to the "master" database on your server, select this check box. Then, in the drop-down list, select the CommunityStarterKit database, which the Community Starter Kit creates during installation. You can accept the remaining defaults on this screen and the next screen, then click Finish.

    After the "Create a New Data Source to SQL Server Wizard" creates your new data source, the Reverse Engineer Wizard's opening screen appears again. Click Next to continue the reverse engineering process.

    On the Reverse Engineer Wizard's second screen, you need to select which objects you want to reverse engineer. You can accept the default selections from this screen, or if you want to save some processing time, you can clear the "Stored procedures" check box. Click Next.

    On the Reverse Engineer Wizard's third screen, you need to select which tables and views you want to reverse engineer. I recommend that you use the Select All option. Click Next.

    If you left the "Stored procedures" check box selected on the second screen, the Reverse Engineer Wizard displays a screen on which you choose the stored procedures you want to reverse engineer. If this screen appears, select the stored procedures, and click Next

    At this point, the Reverse Engineer Wizard's asks you a simple Yes or No question about whether you want to automatically add shapes to the diagram. The default is No, but I recommend that you select Yes. That way, your diagram will show the database tables. Click Next.

    On the last screen, the Reverse Engineer Wizard warns you about the amount of time required to reverse engineer the database's tables. Ignore this warning, accept the default settings, and click Finish.

    At this point, Visio connects to your database and reads the structures associated with it. Visio then generates a rather large diagram that will probably be reduced to about 10 percent of its actual size so that you can see the entire diagram. I'll discuss how to analyze this diagram in a future column, but for now, you can examine the diagram to become familiar with it.


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    2. Announcements
    (brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)

  • Get Exclusive VIP Web Site Access!

  • The Windows & .NET Magazine VIP Site is a subscription-based online technical resource that's chock-full of problem-solving articles from all our publications. For a limited time, you can access this banner-free site at which you'll find exclusive content usually reserved for VIP Site members only. Only VIP subscribers can access this site after June 13, so check it out today!

    http://vip.winnetmag.com

  • Check Out SSMU's Sizzlin' Summer Sale!

  • We've slashed prices on Microsoft Certified Training courses 2073 and 2092 if you order by phone during the month of June. Only $999 per course! Call 800-793-5697 or 970-663-4700 and ask for the Sizzlin' Summer Sale prices! Order by June 16 for a free book! Course information is at

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    3. Resource

  • Featured Thread: Unable to Run ASP.NET Files

  • Forum member keremcan is trying to run ASP.NET files but keeps getting the error "Access to the path 'C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v1.1.4322\Temporary ASP.NET Files\root\2135a508\8d69a834' is denied." He tried granting the ASP.NET user full control on the Temporary ASP.NET Files folder, but it didn't work. If you can help, go to the following URL:

    http://www.winnetmag.com/forums/rd.cfm?cid=37&tid=59849

    4. Events
    (brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine)

  • Security 2003 Road Show
  • Join Mark Minasi and Paul Thurrott as they deliver sound security advice at our popular Security 2003 Road Show event.

    http://www.winnetmag.com/roadshows/security2003

    5. New and Improved
    by Sue Cooper, products@winnetmag.com

  • Develop with Snap-In Parts
  • sembleWare announced sembleWare Visual Welder, a Visual Studio .NET add-on for application construction and assembly in a 3-D environment. You can assemble business applications from reusable business components, called Parts, with minimal program coding. Parts are business-level pieces of systems, such as invoices, customers, transactions, or product items. Parts contain definitions of how they should appear on the screen to a user, what business rules apply, how they're structured within a database, and how they interact with other Parts. During the development process, you snap the Parts together. sembleWare Visual Welder is expected to be available in third quarter 2003. Pricing starts at $399 for a single license. Contact sembleWare at 201-242-1522 or sales@sembleware.com.

    http://www.sembleware.com

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    6. Contact Us

  • About Developer .NET Perspectives -- bills@interknowlogy.com
  • About the newsletter -- kbemowski@winnetmag.com
  • About technical questions -- http://www.winnetmag.com/forums
  • About product news -- products@winnetmag.com
  • About your subscription -- Developer_dot_NET_update@winnetmag.com
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