Calling external DLLs from a Script Task in SSIS 2012
Development Calling external DLLs from a Script Task in SSIS 2012

The 2012 version of SQL Server has brought with it a number of new features, not least the new, Visual Studio 2010 shell-based Management Studio. However, the changes are more than just aesthetic, as I found out when I came to try and upgrade some SQL Server Integration Studio (SSIS) packages from SQL server 2008 to 2012. Most packages upgraded fine, but there were some issues when I tried to upgrade any packages that used Script Tasks containing references to external DLLs.

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How To Define an XSD file for an SSIS XML Source using an expression
Development How To Define an XSD file for an SSIS XML Source using an expression

I’ve been looking at migrating some SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) packages lately, and as part of the move, am parameterising a lot of settings to improve the ease of future configuration changes.  One of these changes involved a package that reads from an XML source and uses an XML Schema Definition (XSD) file to validate the source file.  However, with the XML source being in the data flow, you’re not allowed to set an expression on this property to assign a value at runtime.  Or at least not directly.  So, if you want to assign the XSD location from a variable or project parameter, just follow these simple steps.

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Skype app available for download on Windows Phone 7.5
Web & technology Skype app available for download on Windows Phone 7.5

UPDATE: Rather strangely, if not downright prescient, mere days after stumbling across the Skype beta app for WP7, Microsoft and Skype have today released the full version of the Skype app for Windows Phone 7.5.  You can use the same Marketplace link below to download the app, which replaces the beta version in the Marketplace.  If you already have the beta installed, it should notify you of an available update, which will patch over with the full release version.

Somehow I completely missed the boat on this one, but I found out today that an official Skype app has finally been released for Windows Phone.  I’ve been waiting for a WP7 Skype app since I first got my HTC Trophy back in November 2010, so I was surprised to see that the app quietly launched as a beta on 25th February this year.  I guess I must have given up checking!  However, when I searched for the app in the WP Marketplace, there was no sign of it (I’m guessing because it’s only a beta).  It also doesn’t seem to appear in the Marketplace via the Zune desktop client.

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Development How To Enable Remote Errors in SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS)

Just a quick one for a Wednesday afternoon.  I was recently asked if it was possible to enable remote errors in SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS), so that people (and applications) could return full error details from RDL execution, without having to consult the local log files.  It’s an incredibly easy task to enable this.  Here’s how:

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How To Connect SSRS Report Builder to a PowerPivot Excel file (Sharepoint)
Development How To Connect SSRS Report Builder to a PowerPivot Excel file (Sharepoint)

So, you’ve finally got around to setting up that SQL Server 2012 environment and you’re playing about with PowerPivot and SQL Server Analysis Services.  You’ve set up your sharepoint site and you’ve created and uploaded a new spreadsheet using PowerPivot that contains all that tasty cube data.  However, in your haste, you haven’t set up SQL Server Reporting Services Report Builder on the Sharepoint site, so when you open Report Builder on a separate server (or from a local install), and want to connect into your new quasi-cube (via your PowerPivot Excel file), how do you do it?  The Report Builder side of things is not too dissimilar to using a traditional SSAS cube as a Data Source.

The answer, is deceptively simple if you know where to look.

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Development SQL Saturday #105 Dublin Review

As I mentioned in my last post, I was recently over in Dublin attending SQL Saturday 105, a SQL Server conference and networking event hosted by PASS.  For anyone considering attending a future SQL Saturday event, I can definitely recommend it for developers, Database Administrators (DBA) and Business Intelligence (BI) developers of any level, from enthusiastic amateurs all the way to expert consultants.  Given the fortunate timing on Saturday’s event, it also doubled as the European technical launch for SQL Server 2012 (codenamed Denali during development).

Featuring a total of six sessions covering 3 tracks (Developer, DBA and BI), the event was packed, as over 200 SQL Server professionals from all over Ireland (as well as our intrepid 3 from Edinburgh) flocked to learn about some of the new features of SQL Server 2012 or just to pick up some tips and tricks from some of the industry’s best.

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Development SQL Saturday #105 In Dublin

As it stands, I’m currently getting organised to head to SQL Saturday #105 which takes place tomorrow (March 24th) in Dublin. This is the closest SQL Saturday event to Edinburgh so far, so I jumped at the chance to go. SQL Saturday is a regular event, created by the Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS) to provide SQL Server professionals and enthusiasts with opportunities to network with colleagues and experience some top quality training, while also being able to grow their own membership.

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GAME cancels Mass Effect 3 pre-orders alongside other EA releases
Gaming GAME cancels Mass Effect 3 pre-orders alongside other EA releases

GAME Group look to be in some trouble today after the news broke that they would not be stocking any EA published titles after Friday’s release of SSX.  The game retailer had some trouble with Metal Gear Solid at the start of February and had to stop taking pre-orders.  Things seem to have gone from bad to worse now and it looks like the group (including Gameplay and Gamestation) may be struggling to stock any major new releases in future.

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picnicerror.net is a personal blog where I post various ideas, thoughts and discoveries through both my day to day work in marketing technology and general hobbies and interests.

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