LoadRunner and IE8

Had this small problem today and I believe it would be interesting to share the solution. I was “forced” to update to Internet Explorer 8 (IE8) and for my surprise, VuGen crashes when trying to record anything with it.

My first thought was to check for patches. No patches, LoadRunner was already on version 9.52 (9.50 + 9.51 patch + 9.52 patch). Checking some forum posts I’ve found that the issue can be caused by the “Disable Execute Bit” (DEP) functionality. So how to disable it??

You have to open the boot.ini file (C:\boot.ini) and add the following string to your boot line:

/noexecute=alwaysoff

Usually it will become something like that:

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT=”Microsoft Windows” /noexecute=alwaysoff /fastdetect

I’m not sure if the same solution can be applied to Windows Vista or 7. Also I don’t know if older LoadRunner versions are affected too, but this worked for me. :-)

Remote Shutdown/Restart on Windows

This is one of things you certainly already had to do.. You are working remotely and for some reason your session freezes (Windows, you know) and you can’t do anything.. Usually you would ask for a colleague that seats nearby to hard reboot your desktop, but what happens when that is not possible???

Now, how to perform a remote shutdown/restart on a Windows box:

  1. Open Computer Management (Local)
    In the console tree, right-click Computer Management (Local), and then click Connect to another computer.
  2. In the Select Computer dialog box, click Another computer, type the name of the computer that you want to restart or shut down, and then click OK. You can also click Browse to search for the name of the computer.
  3. In the console tree, right-click Computer Management (Remote computer name), and then click Properties.
  4. On the Advanced tab, click Startup and Recovery.
  5. Click Shut Down to open the Shut Down dialog box.
  6. Under Action, select the actions you want to perform on the computer to which you are connected.
  7. Under Force Apps Closed, select the circumstances under which you want to force applications to close when you shut down or restart the computer, and then click OK.

Note

  • To open Computer Management, click Start, and then click Control Panel. Click Performance and Maintenance, click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Computer Management.
  • You must be recognized as an administrator or a member of the Administrators group on your computer and on the computer you are managing to perform this task.

Via Microsoft

How To Convert a Windows Performance Monitor (PerfMon) Log

This is a very useful tip if you use PerfMon logs to monitor your applications. In my case, I have a few tools that require the logs to be in binary format and I also like to analyze a few counters manually, opening the logs on Excel. Converting the logs, I can set up only one set of counters and then convert it later.

It is also useful if you can’t set up the counters and have to work with previously generated logs or logs provided by a third party.

Windows 2003 and XP provide a number of command-line tools to monitor performance. These are the logman utility (logman.exe), the relog utility (relog.exe), and the typeperf utility (typeperf.exe).
The relog.exe utility can create new performance logs from existing performance logs. You can use the Relog.exe tool to:

  • Convert a log from one type to another, such as a Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 log to a Windows XP log, or a binary log file (.blg) to a comma-separated values (.csv) file.
  • Resample a log file, and then create a new log file that is based on specified counters, a time period, or a sampling interval.

For example, to convert a binary PerfMon log to a CSV file, use the command:

relog logfile.blg -f csv -o logfile.csv

For details on how to use relog, in a Windows XP box, run “relog -?” or review http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=303133

Performance Measured by the Penny

Cloud computing is a game changer for developers. Not because it requires a new architectural model, that is driven as much by fads and fashion as it is by actual hardware requirements. Nor is it the seemingly endless capacity with near-perfect scalability that the cloud is promising. The game changer is how poorly performing code now has a real price in hard currency.

Since personal computers replaced time shares, performance has been a nice to have. Generally speaking, either the application performance is good enough for the hardware it is running on or it isn’t. You don’t gain anything by dropping your peak CPU utilization from 90% to 81%, expect perhaps a small discount on your electric bill.

With the cloud platform, dropping your CPU utilization by 10% directly translates to a 10% reduction of you monthly bill from your cloud provider. For example, Windows Azure costs 12 cents per machine hour of computational time. Using this knowledge and a good profiler, you could literally say a certain block of code is costing the company X dollars per month.

Once the cost of poorly performing code is know, companies can then make economically sound decisions on whether or not to spend time and money to fix it. Simply by comparing the monthly cost of the code with the salary of a developer tasked with improving it, engineering managers can say with certainty how much time can be spent before the laws of diminishing returns kick in.

The performance=money equation will also bring dynamically typed languages into sharp focus. If we have truly reached the time where dynamically typed languages are “fast enough”, then that will be reflected in the price for renting cloud servers. If, on the other hand, production costs start to skyrocket then there will be irrefutable evidence that a statically typed language is in order. But of course this will have to be decided on case-by-case and project-by-project basis.

Via InfoQ