Microsoft Azure Certifications Explained A Deep Dive for IT Professionals in 2020

Join Microsoft MVP Andy Syrewicze and Microsoft cloud expert Michael Bender for a full analysis of the Microsoft Azure certification landscape in 2020. This webinar will give you the knowledge to properly prepare for a future working with cloud-based workloads, covering:
Azure certification tracks
Training and examination costs
The best learning materials
Resources and labs for self-study
How to gain access to FREE Azure resources


Access VSTS api’s using PAT in powershell

Below is the powershell script that should be used to connect your VSTS api’s


$user = “<login emai id>”
$apiVersion41= “api-version=4.1”

$base64AuthInfo = [Convert]::ToBase64String([Text.Encoding]::ASCII.GetBytes((“{0}:{1}” -f $user,$accessToken)))

$uri = $vstsURL + $teamProject + “/_apis/build/definitions?”+ $apiVersion
Invoke-RestMethod -Uri $uri -Method Get -Headers @{Authorization=(“Basic {0}” -f $base64AuthInfo)} | ConvertTo-Json | Out-File output.txt


$vstsURL is the initial of your url. $user is your login email id. $accessToken is your PAT. Its character string something like ubrapexyhhot3iv6n3244ni6767hghghw5ifndpfz5ikfxo3oa.

This is tested with and should work for you too.

Dotnet Project and solution statistics

About this Blog

As a dot net programmer, we should know few important statistics of the application we are working on. This ensures that application is consistent in nature. In application with fewer projects it is earlier to get these statistics manually but in larger projects it become un productive task however still important. As an example multiple team member may add new projects with varying .Net framework version, programming language version etc.. The initial version of this utility can help you generate these statistics in a second and in a consistent form.

Below blog will cover

Prerequisite for this utility

How to use this utility


Prerequisite for this utility

  1. You need .Net framework version minimum 4.0.0 to run this utility.
  2. You also need ‘command prompt’ window to view the result.
  3. Dotnet solution file which has multiple projects in it.

How to use this utility

Open the command prompt and go to the path where this utility exe is kept and type Dotnetversion.exe

Press ‘Enter’ key.

About the application is displayed:

Press any key to continue…

Enter the Dotnet solution file path. If Solution file path is same as path where this utilty Dotnetversion.exe file is kept simply press Enter ELSE type the accurate path where dotnetsolution file is kept, like D:\ABC\XYZ\ etc..

Once solution file path is specified, next option is to enter the Solution file name. Again, if only 1 file exist at Selected folder path simply Press ‘Enter’ key ELSE specify the solution file name. No need to specify the file name extension.

Once both the solution file path and solution file name is given stats collection processing will start.


  1. The stats will show how many projects current solution had.
  2. Programming language of the project like CSharp/VB.Net.
  3. Programming language version. For CSharp projects it can be like 4 or 5 or 6 etc. For projects it can be 11 or 12 or 13 etc.
  4. Dotnet framework version of the project
  5. Project File name

As an example, I executed it on sample solution on my machine an both projects are .net framework 4.0 based.

Attached the exe file in this blog Download Link. Feel free to ask for questions.

SQL Server DB Statistics


In any application persistence of data is required. Database play very important role to fill this gap. Microsoft SQL server is one such database. We all know database contains multiple tables to manage the data for us. However apart from Tables many more entities exist in these databases.

The attached utility can help a developer or a DBA for get more insight into the database they are working on. There are many aspects related to database however this utility is first step towards knowing few general statistics about the database.

Prerequisite for the Utility

How to use


What Next

Prerequisite for the Utility

  1. This utility has been created using .net version 4.0.0. The utility contains only so only need .net framework 4.0 or higher on your machine to run this utility
  2. This utility require connection to database so you need connection string something like “Data Source=.\SQLEXPRESS; Initial Catalog=DatabaseName; Integrated Security=True; MultipleActiveResultSets=True”. This is just a sample representation of a connection string make sure you have correct connection string for your database available with you. Since I used windows authentication so this string does not have username and password ang in your case this string can contain username and password also.
  3. You also need MSDB database connection string. Few of the statistics will be picked from this database. As part of any fresh installation of SQL server you always get MSDB database. Sample connection string would be like “Data Source=.\SQLEXPRESS; Initial Catalog=MSDB; Integrated Security=True; MultipleActiveResultSets=True”. Since I used windows authentication so this string does not have username and password ang in your case this string can contain username and password also.
  4. Since you are accessing 2 databases make sure you have appropriate access rights on these 2 databases

How to use

  1. Attached utility contains only single .exe file. Simply copy the attached zip to any folder in my machine say D:\DBstats\, unzip it, unlock it and you are ready to use the utility.
  2. Open command prompt and go to folder where this utility is kept say D:\DBstats\.

  3. Type DatabaseStatistics.exe to run this utility.

  1. README about this utility is displayed. Read it to understand what this utility will do for you. Press any key to continue…

  1. Enter connection string something like:

    Press Enter.

  2. Enter MSDB connection string:

    Press Enter and utility is ready to get all the statistics it need.


Below are the statistics snapshot generated by this utility:

What Next

Working on next version on this utility to get more statistics.



exe download link: Download Exe

No PCL based Library in Xamarin going forward

Portable class library(PCL) concept is quite popular in Xamarin world. However in .Net 4.6.1 and onward this has been deprecated. PCL1

The way going forward is .Net standard libraries. So now when you create new Project in Xamarin suggested to use .Net Standard Library instead.

PC camera capture in WPF application

Sometimes we require PC camera to be captured from within a WPF application. Achieving this is not a daunting task. Few open source  and commercial library are available in the market that help us achieve this.

AForge is one such library. Attached is a sample WPF application using AForge.

Sample WPF application zip


U-SQL project template in Visual Studio

Those who have worked with Microsoft Azure Data lake know the use U-SQL. For others you can read a good definition here:
What is U-SQL
It is possible to create U-SQL project in Visual studio. For that you must have Azure SDK already installed on your machine. Once there you need tool Microsoft.Azure.DataLakeAndStreamAnalyticsToolsForVS2015.msi from location:
Microsoft Azure Data Lake and Stream Analytics Tools for Visual Studio

for blog

After success install of this tool you can open Visual studio and you will find new entry for the corresponding project and template.

Update PowerShell to 5.1 on Windows server 2012R2

As of Aug 2017, googled the link to download the latest version 5.1 and found below:
Powershell 5.1 on microsoft site. Refer figure below

Click on download button to move to next page and select the appropriate .msi to download.

“W2K12-KB3191565-x64.msu” may be the file you choose for download and run. So i did
the same and found the error that this may not be the correct setup to run.
Read on article to choose the correct file on
Powershell on Win server 2012 R
Went back to download page and this time downloaded the file as per below snapshot:

and executed it. It ran successfully.