Skype won’t send any pictures I try to send

Posted on: Saturday, 10 October 2015 09:30

If you can’t get Skype to send pictures and keep seeing an error saying “this photo is unavailable” then hopefully this quick tip will get you back up and running with exchanging media.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–No constructors found by AutofacUtil ConstructorFinderWrapper

Posted on: Wednesday, 7 October 2015 09:30

While writing an Orchard CMS driver class for a tutorial recently I found myself confronted with this error message. If this has happened to you then your gut instinct might be that you are going to have to learn something about Autofac and it might get complicated. Read on for a quick solution.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–If you cast it they will come, or Accessing your field of dreams

Posted on: Tuesday, 6 October 2015 09:30

I see a lot of people coming up against issues trying to get at the fields they have added on their content types. If you can’t figure out how to access the data then read on to discover the important points you need to understand which will make accessing fields easy.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–Zoned out, or Why changing still doesn’t move your module

Posted on: Monday, 5 October 2015 09:30

This is a common problem that can catch out Orchard users and developers but after you learn this easy to remember tip you should be able to solve it quickly whenever you experience in the future.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–No Persister for: SomePartRecord

Posted on: Friday, 2 October 2015 16:31

If you’re making a module with a record class and you start seeing errors saying that there is no persister for the part record class you’re working on then you have probably made this simple mistake.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–A duplicate value cannot be inserted into a unique index

Posted on: Thursday, 1 October 2015 09:30

Work on an Orchard CMS widget had been going pretty well. It display OK and didn’t seem like it had any problems but each time I tried to save anything I’d get an exception thrown.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–Curling up with Orchard, or brace line breaks without ReSharper

Posted on: Wednesday, 30 September 2015 09:30

Orchard CMS requires that all commits to the core use the JavaScript style curly brace positioning, where the opening brace is on the same line as the method signature. If you use ReSharper then it comes with an automatic .resharper file that applies this out-of-the-box but non-users can still get this functionality with plain vanilla Visual Studio.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–Getting at the Orchard.Layouts JSON for your template defaults

Posted on: Tuesday, 29 September 2015 09:00

If you have started using the Orchard.Layouts module which has seen some pretty significant updates in the last few releases you might be wondering how you get at the JSON data that you’ve been finding in content part default layout data setting. There are two ways but both are a bit tricky.


It’s been pointed out to me by several people that this technique doesn’t work any more. I don’t know an alternative way to solve this, sorry.

What do I mean exactly?

When you have a LayoutPart attached to one of your content items you will see a section like this in its Content Definition page:


This data pre-populates the page when you create a new content item.

If you want to customise your own content types with LayoutParts that come with defaults its possible but their currently there isn’t anyway to access this through the admin panel directly. Instead you need to take one of the two courses listed below.

XML export

The first option is to export the data using the import/export module that comes with Orchard CMS. You can so it this way but then you will get the JSON data in xml encoded format so it will need extra processing.

Access the clipboard data

(Special thanks to Daniel Stolt, one of the core Orchard.Layouts developers, for this idea)

In Chrome you can select an element, hit Ctrl+C and then that JSON data is actually placed on the system clipboard, along with the plain-text of the element. It's how copy-paste works.

The trouble is that you probably don’t have an application installed that will paste clipboard data with the type “Chromium Web Custom MIME Data Format” so if you try to paste it back again all you will get is the plain text representation.

To get at this data you can use LINQPad to extract this hidden JSON data:


Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Download LINQPad 4
  2. Paste this query into the query window:

    var s = (System.IO.MemoryStream)System.Windows.Forms.Clipboard.GetData("Chromium Web Custom MIME Data Format");
  3. Set the Language to C# Statement(s) for multiline support. Note the (s) on the end.

  4. Query > Query Properties > Additional References > Add > Search Forms > Add System.Windows.Forms.dll reference > OK
  5. Run the query
  6. Bonus tip: File > Save to save the snippet for next time. You can load it back from the My Queries tab in the bottom corner.

Troubleshooting - NullReferenceException: Object reference not set to an instance of an object.

You copied something else into the clipboard while setting this up, copy the original back from Orchard.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–Stop “Unable to launch the IIS Express Web server” SSL clashes

Posted on: Monday, 28 September 2015 11:27

When I’m working with Orchard I often want to have several copies of Visual Studio open, running several copies of Orchard for testing and comparison reasons. This is how I stopped the “Unable to launch the IIS Express" Web server” errors when I tried to launch two at the same time.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–Orchard suddenly starts showing a 404 error for every page including the root

Posted on: Friday, 25 September 2015 11:18

As your working on your Orchard CMS website or maybe right after you have deployed it, you might suddenly find that nothing is working. If you’re getting a simple 404 page no matter what you try then this is the first thing you need to try.

SOLVED: Audio buzzing and crackling whenever the GPU is active or the mouse is moved

Posted on: Thursday, 24 September 2015 15:00

This problem seems to be somewhat common out there and mostly the solution is unique to your particular setup. Recently I was struck with a bad case of audio feedback from my computer whenever anything was happening on the screen. It was so bad I couldn’t even play computer games any more as the noise was too distracting. After trying a ton of different combinations I finally figured it out.

Orchard CMS Quick Tip–Always Start Without Debugging

Posted on: Wednesday, 16 September 2015 19:26

When you’re working on Orchard CMS in Visual Studio you will probably be tempted to press F5 as you normally do to start the solution in a web browser. Don’t do it!

SOLVED: Web Deploy fails with The "CollectFilesinFolder" task failed unexpectedly.

Posted on: Sunday, 30 August 2015 23:42

If you’re seeing this error when you’re trying to build a package with Web Deploy then you have some deeply nested folders in your project which is causing the problem. A common problem web developers of 2015 have to wrestle with is fighting the Node Package Manager on a Windows developer box. Read on to get this issue quickly solved so you can deploy your site.

SOLVED: Error CS0246 The type or namespace name 'Orchard' could not be found while upgrading Orchard CMS

Posted on: Friday, 21 August 2015 16:51

Orchard CMS is a great MVC based CMS which is really flexible but as it stands its upgrade process is a long and complex process far from the simplicity of WordPress and other competitors. After you have followed their many-step upgrade process you will need to bring any custom themes or modules back into your main solution. At this point I started getting hit with compile time errors. With a huge solution like Orchard it can be be daunting task to figure out the solution but after some digging around I figured out what was causing this particular issue.

Getting control of the WordPress Galleries

Posted on: Wednesday, 12 August 2015 14:25

For a few versions now WordPress has had a gallery shortcode feature that you can add in via the Add Media button. Getting it to play nice with your theme however can take a bit than is really needed. Here are a couple of tips I picked up when I had to customise it for a recent client project.

Make a mental note: Its time to update your chkdsk skills

Posted on: Tuesday, 11 August 2015 13:30

You might not need this right now but if you’re using a Windows 8 or newer computer then you should have this information tucked away for when that rainy day inevitably comes pouring down on your precious data. In this article I explain the updates to chkdsk and why you don’t need to chkdsk /f any more.

SOLVED: Fixing an “Unidentified Network” error with our TL-WA850RE Wireless Repeater

Posted on: Friday, 7 August 2015 16:00

We have a wireless repeater in our house which boosts the signal to a full five bars at even the farthest reaches of the house. It’s worked pretty well except needing to be rebooted here and there but recently it completely stopped working. If you’re connecting to your repeater but then getting “Unidentified Network” and no internet connectivity then read on to see how I solved this.

Starting a local instance of IIS Express with PHP support

Posted on: Thursday, 4 June 2015 00:50

If you're a developer that works in Microsoft Visual Studio you’re probably quite used to the handy local web server that appears when you summon it with an F5. There are many alternative ways to spin up a local web server. Recently I’ve used virtual machines, Node, even PHP comes with its own built in dev server. They all have their strengths but this article shows you how to keep it in the family with a quickly deployable instance of IIS Express that supports both .Net and PHP.

How to reset a WordPress password on the database

Posted on: Monday, 25 May 2015 13:03

You’ve gone and forgotten your password? You didn’t set up your recovery email address? No, it wasn’t your fault, the client has forgotten? You inherited the site and the records aren’t right? Well whatever the reason, don’t panic. This guide will show you how to recover that account without having to do anything too drastic.

ASP.NET 5 Beta 4 “Couldn't determine an appropriate version of KRE to run”

Posted on: Saturday, 23 May 2015 13:57

I’ve started getting to grips with the new ASP.NET 5 project system and during the course of this process I’ve encountered a few glitches. This time a project I downloaded based on earlier beta3 code wouldn’t run for me in the browser. I found the solution to this issue in this article.

ASP.NET 5 Beta 4 "The Debugger cannot continue running the process. Unable to start debugger"

Posted on: Friday, 22 May 2015 13:00

I’ve just started getting to grips with the new ASP.NET 5 project system and its friends. As everything is still in development there are still some kinks being worked out. Here is a quick solution if you see an error saying "The Debugger cannot continue running the process. Unable to start debugger".

ASP.NET 5 Beta 4 “The 'prepack' script failed with status code 99”

Posted on: Thursday, 21 May 2015 12:05

I’ve started getting to grips with the new ASP.NET 5 project system and during the course of this process I came across a compilation error “The 'prepack' script failed with status code 99”. It was a pretty easy fix which I’ve detailed below.

SOLVED: Why my Joomla contact form was refusing to send its email

Posted on: Monday, 13 April 2015 02:10

While working on a Joomla website recently I had the annoying problem of a contact form failing to send. It took longer than I would have like to spend looking for the solution so hopefully you will find this article before spending the time I did trying to get to the bottom of it. As usual, in hindsight its actually quite simple.

SOLVED: Contact Form 7 won’t send your forms

Posted on: Monday, 6 April 2015 02:07

You’ve finished the site, the client has signed off and all that’s left is the launch but the form test keeps failing. Right, we better solve this one quickly then!

Supporting nested shortcodes in WordPress

Posted on: Monday, 30 March 2015 23:59

If you’re writing your own [shortcodes] or have done in the past then its important that you follow this little tip. It will only take a couple of minutes to implement and it will save your end-users from problems.

Bootstrap 3 Show Many Slide One Carousel

Posted on: Sunday, 29 March 2015 13:18

This is a sample showing how to configure the Bootstrap 3 carousel to show many panels at once but only slide one at a time.

Setting up a special blog sidebar in a Roots/Sage WordPress template

Posted on: Monday, 23 March 2015 21:56

If you want to display a special blog menu on the blog posts but a normal menu on the rest of the site then this handy tip will show you how.

Getting the most out of Sublime Text 2

Posted on: Wednesday, 18 March 2015 18:50

Some cool tips that explain how to add in extra packages for LESS and Grunt support.

SOLVED: TypeError: Cannot call method 'toCSS' of undefined

Posted on: Tuesday, 17 March 2015 13:57

Just a simple tip to help you quickly resolve the issue in the subject of this post.

SOLVED: 'grunt' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file.

Posted on: Monday, 16 March 2015 16:32

If you’re following a tutorial which uses grunt and all of a sudden you’re getting this issue then read on for the quick and simple fix.

Wrapping a Disqus implementation in a Roots-based WordPress theme

Posted on: Friday, 13 March 2015 15:12

The Disqus filter is incredibly easy to get set up on your blog but it doesn't seem to provide a wrapper method for you to add your extra mark-up. This tutorial teaches you how to integrate it into your Roots-based theme.