How to copy Visual Code extensions to another machine

Earlier this month I was setting up an Ubuntu VM on Windows 10 for development and after installing Visual Studio Code it was time to install the extensions I’m used to having around.

There were 30 of them installed on my main development box. I probably don’t use most these of extensions, but I wasn’t in the mood to sort them out, so I searched for a way to export the settings so I could import them into Code running in the VM.

I wasn’t able to find what I was hoping for, the closest thing being the answers to “How can you export VS Code extension list” on StackOverflow.

The answers were a step in the right direction but not quite where I ultimately wanted the solution to be:

  1. Having the list of extensions checked into source control with the rest of the project. For instance, if the team agreed on using ESLint as a build step, having a script to automate installing the corresponding extension (possibly one of many) could help in ramping up new project members.
  2. Having a way to sync extensions between machines or a way to export a list of extensions (not tied to any specific project) I could easily import to anywhere needed, such as disposable VMs, a new machine provided by an employer, etc.

I didn’t have time to figure out how to implement any of those ideas to the full extent of how I think they should work, but in the spirit of “Always Be Automating” I did the next best thing which was hacking a couple of one-liners, a step closer to the solution I want it to eventually be.

First I created a file containing the list of extensions:

I think for most people the easiest way to access the list from other machines is putting the file somewhere online. I’m of the opinion that the best place to store anything development related is on GitHub, so I uploaded the list to a gist over there:

Then all I had to do to install those extensions was to CURL that file and pipe it into code:

That did the trick and I was able to continue working on whatever I was working on, although I wasn’t quite happy with the gist’s URL. See, I don’t know of anyway of getting rid of that automatically generated GUID which would make the URL more memorable.

Earlier today after watching Amanda Sliver and John Papa on Five Things, where she mentioned how to list Visual Studio Code extensions from the command-line, I decided to fix that URL problem putting the list on a GitHub repo with GitHub Pages turned on so instead of a cryptic URL I have something more memorable.

I decided to call the repo Codex, for Code Extensions. That gives me an easy to remember base URL: https://alfredmyers.github.io/codex/

For now, I only have a single list in “all.txt”, but there’s nothing stopping me from creating other lists containing extensions for specific purposes or projects. For instance:

  • https://alfredmyers.github.io/codex/dotnet.txt
  • https://alfredmyers.github.io/codex/nojejs.txt

Oh… And by the way, once you CURL that list, you can pipe it into any command you’d like. For instance, to uninstall all those extensions we got from all.txt:

Just make sure you have a list of the extensions you really need hanging around so you can use it to reset everything to a desired state.

I you find the idea interesting, feel free to fork the project (https://github.com/alfredmyers/codex) and hack it to your needs. And don’t forget to turn on GitHub pages so you can access the lists using an easy to remember base URL such as https://{your-user-name}.github.io/codex/.

error: gpg failed to sign the data

A couple of months ago I noticed that commits I’ve done through the GitHub web interface were receiving a “Verified” badge while commits done through the Git command line in WSL (Windows Subsystem for Linux) at my local dev machine weren’t.

I’m all for badges so I followed the steps found at About commit signature verification to setup GPG signing. The thing is, there was something still missing and as a result, when trying to commit I was getting an error message as follows:

error: gpg failed to sign the data
fatal: failed to write commit object

Fortunately, the solution is simple. Export a variable named GPG_TTY as follows:

export GPG_TTY=$(tty)

I ended appending it to ~/.bashrc so as to persist it between terminal sessions.

Cannot find runtime ‘node’ on PATH. Is ‘node’ installed?

On my current Windows box, I have Node.js installed only in WSL – not on Windows itself.

When debugging a Node.js application from within a Visual Studio Code instance started from WSL, you may receive the following message:

Cannot find runtime 'node' on PATH. Is 'node' installed?
Cannot find runtime ‘node’ on PATH. Is ‘node’ installed?

While the dev experience certainly could be better, the solution is quite simple: Click on the “Open launch.json” button and add a configuration for “useWSL” with the value set to “true”.

warning CS0618: ‘Html.FromHtml(string)’ is obsolete: ‘deprecated’

Recently, while supporting a team updating their dependencies on Xamarin.Android I found some code similar to the following:

Starting with API level 24, Html.FromHtml(string) is deprecated and Html.FromHtml(string, FromHtmlOptions) should be used instead.

Here’s how the code looks after updated:

The system does not support local kernel debugging

If you’re trying to do some local kernel debugging with one of Windows Debugging Tools’ debuggers and Windows isn’t booted into debug mode you’ll get a message like one of the following (all commands run from an elevated command prompt):

kd -kl

Microsoft (R) Windows Debugger Version 10.0.15063.400 AMD64
Copyright (c) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

The system does not support local kernel debugging.
Local kernel debugging requires Administrative privileges.
Only a single local kernel debugging session can run at a time.
Local kernel debugging is disabled by default. You must run “bcdedit -debug on” and reboot to enable it.
Debuggee initialization failed, HRESULT 0x80004001
Not implemented

windbg -kl

—————————
WinDbg:10.0.15063.400 AMD64
—————————
The system does not support local kernel debugging.

Local kernel debugging requires Administrative
privileges, and is not supported by WOW64.
Only a single local kernel debugging session can run at a time.
Local kernel debugging is disabled by default. You must run ‘bcdedit -debug on’ and reboot to enable it.
—————————
OK
—————————

You can enable Windows debug mode by using…

bcdedit.exe -debug on

 or msconfig.exe, but if you have BitLocker enabled for your OS drive, you’ll have to have to enter the recovery key or recovery password.

Here’s the message from msconfig.exe:

—————————
System Configuration
—————————
BitLocker Drive Encryption is enabled on your OS drive. Because these changes modify the machine’s boot settings, the machine will enter recovery mode at next boot and you will need to provide a BitLocker recovery key or recovery password. Are you sure you want to proceed?
—————————
Yes No
—————————

Depending on what you’re up to, that’s just too much of a hassle. Fortunately there’s a tool from Sysinternals that removes the need of booting Windows into debug mode: livekd.

By default, livekd will run kd.exe, but you can tell it to run WinDbg by passing the -w option:

livekd -w

Several other options can be set when running livekd (see the link above for details). The ones it doesn’t understand are passed on to the chosen debugger.

Important to note that the feature set of the debugger when running through livekd is not the same as when running without it. See the docs for more information.

 

 

 

warning CS0618: ‘Device.OS’ is obsolete: ‘TargetPlatform is obsolete as of version 2.3.4. Please use RuntimePlatform instead.’

Here is a couple of compiler generated warnings I found on project I was recently reviewing:

  1. warning CS0618: ‘Device.OS’ is obsolete: ‘TargetPlatform is obsolete as of version 2.3.4. Please use RuntimePlatform instead.’
  2. warning CS0612: ‘TargetPlatform’ is obsolete

A CS0612 is generated when the code references a type or member to wich the parameterless ObsoleteAttribute was applied.

CS0618 is generated when the code references a type or member to wich a parameterized ObsoleteAttribute was applied.

In this case, the reference to Device.OS has to be replaced with a reference to Device.RuntimePlatform.

Since Device.OS was an enum of type TargetPlatform and Device.RuntimePlatform is a string, it is necessary to update the right hand of the expression as well.

For that you can use one of the string constants defined on the Device class:

  • iOS;
  • Android;
  • WinPhone;
  • UWP;
  • WinRT;
  • macOS;

Here’s how the code looked like originally:

And here’s how the looks code after the update:

Getting the latest version of Sysinternals’ tools

You can easily grab the latest version of any Sysinternals tool pointing your browser to https://live.sysinternals.com

Say you want to run Process Monitor, point your browser to:

https://live.sysinternals.com/procmon.exe

and voila!

All browsers will download the file to your system, but Internet Explorer and Edge will give you the option to run the tool automatically as soon as it finishes downloading.

But here’s a neat trick I learned today while reading the first chapter of Troubleshooting with the Windows Sysinternals Tools (2nd Edition):

You can run any Sysinternals tool directly from a UNC path such as the following:

\\live.sysinternals.com\tools\procmon.exe

Being a UNC share, you can map it as a local drive and use it from Windows Explorer, from the command line or from PowerShell.

The book goes on to tell that for this to work, a Windows Service called WebClient needs to be running.

On recent versions of Windows it is stopped by default. There are a handfull of ways to start the service – both explicitly and implicitly. Some of them require user elevation, others don’t, but the neatest way I didn’t find in the book:

pushd \\live.sysinternals.com\tools

pushd will map the share to the first available drive starting from z: and change the current directory to it.

Although running this way is kind of slow (the files are being downloaded from the internet after all…), it is still usefull for those situations where you wanna get in, do whatever you gotta do, and leave without having to worry about deleting any files later.

When you’re ready to remove the mapping, popd will remove it and change the directory back to the one that was current when you pushd in.

 

ASP.NET For The oWin

It’s been a while since my last post but I’m eager to come back blogging again.

I’ve started at a new job back in May supporting software development teams and since then I’ve been getting back up to speed with the .NET Framework and studying like crazy all things ASP.NET.

The ASP.NET stack has changed a lot in the ten years since the last time I looked seriously into it as a whole while preparing for certification exams. Using just user management and role management as an example, in the span of ten years ASP.NET went from ASP.NET Membership to ASP.NET Simple Membership to ASP.NET Universal Providers to ASP.NET Identity (to ASP.NET Core Identity? – I haven’t yet taken a look into that to see how different it is from its classical ASP.NET counterpart).

The good news is that for the most part it all has gone open source. I feel that not many people appreciate how much the source code worths as a learning tool.

Now let me get back into building an OAuth 2.0 authentication server using OWIN.

High Performance Browser Networking

Acabei de terminar a leitura do High Performance Browser Networking, uma ótima introdução ao tópico de como o browser lida com a infra-estrutura de rede.

Eu já tinha alguma noção de como a(s) rede(s) pode(m) impactar aplicações rodando em PCs, mas nunca tinha pegado pra ler material que discutisse isto sob o ponto de vista de aplicações mobile, principalmente de apps que rodam quando o celular está conectado a redes 3G, 4G, etc.

Dado que o acesso à internet se dá cada vez mais por redes wireless (Wi-Fi, 3G, etc), o tipo de informação contida no livro é fundamental para o projeto de sistemas que pretendam oferecer um mínimo de usabilidade a seus usuários.

O livro pode ser lido gratuitamente online em https://hpbn.co/, mas se prefere um livro um livro impresso, pode encontrá-lo na Amazon e outras lojas online.

 

Um ano de Poética em Construção

Pessoal, neste sábado (27/08) a partir das 15h o Grupo de Estudos Poética em Construção estará celebrando um ano de atividades e estaremos na Casa Elefante mostrando os trabalhos dos participantes do grupo além de outras atividades ligadas à fotografia.

Estarei com uma projeção da minha série “Bom Retiro Aluga“.

A Casa Elefante fica na Rua Dr. Cesário Mota Júnior, 277 ali pertinho da Santa Cecília.

Outras informações podem ser encontradas na página do evento.

Seria muito bom tê-lo lá conosco. Aparece lá!