PSA: Backup Your BitLocker Key

OneDrive, Security, Tips
Windows BitLocker Drive Encryption is a feature integrated into Windows that allows you to encrypt data stored on your computer/tablet. For the most part, everything “just works” and you never have to think about BitLocker once you’ve enabled it on your computer. However, it is possible that BitLocker could encounter an issue or condition that prevents it from being able to unlock your drive. If you’ve encrypted a portable drive using BitLocker to Go, and you’ve forgotten the password, you will not be able to retrieve your files. That is, unless you have a BitLocker recover key. Creating a BitLocker recovery key is fairly quick and simple. You also have multiple options of where/how to store your recovery key. To create a BitLocker recovery key (for Windows 10): Press the…
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Windows 8 BitLocker Recovery Keys

OneDrive, Tips, Windows 8, Windows 8.1
With an ever-growing concern around data security, it’s no surprise that many companies (and individuals) make use of Microsoft’s BitLocker drive encryption technology. BitLocker, once enabled, will encrypt your entire drive (or drives) on your computer (e.g. desktop, laptop, or tablet). As long as your computer continues to run “normally”, things are hunky dory. However, if you end up in a “recovery” situation with your computer, you will need a BitLocker recovery key. Not just any recovery key, but a specific key that will work only with your computer. You’ll know you need your recovery key when you are presented with a screen that looks something like this: It is good practice to backup your BitLocker recovery key for just such an occasion. However, if you haven’t backed up your…
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TFVC vs. TF-Git Survey Results

OneDrive, Surveys, TF-Git, TFS, TFVC
Several weeks ago I posted a survey asking for your thoughts about Team Foundation Version Control (TFVC) vs. Git within Team Foundation Server/Service (TF-Git). With a total of 27 respondents, here are the results of the survey questions: Which version of Team Foundation Server are you using? I have to admit that I find it interesting that 45% of the respondents are using Team Foundation Service. It would be interesting to see if this statistic holds with a larger group of TFS customers. What is your primary version control repository? In this case, about 70% are using TFVC with the remaining 30% using Git. This will be an interesting statistic to follow over the next few years as Git gains popularity, and capabilities, within TFS. If you are using TFVC…
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TFVC vs. TF-Git – A Quick Survey

OneDrive, Surveys, TF-Git, TFS, TFVC
I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately about whether it would make sense for our application development teams to make the move to Team Foundation Git (TF-Git) as the primary version control choice within TFS. We are still using TFS 2010 as our primary TFS instance today although we have several projects in Team Foundation Service (TFService) as part of a pilot.  As we make preparations to move to TFS 2013 (we have not yet decided if we’ll host TFS 2013 on premises or if we’ll make exclusive use of the TFService) we are putting some thought into whether or not we should make the leap to TF-Git. There are plenty of pros and cons regardless of which option is chosen.  For example, TF-Git is very well suited for…
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200GB Option for SkyDrive

OneDrive
If you’ve been waiting for the option to buy more than 100GB of storage on SkyDrive, your wait is over.  You can now buy an extra 200GB of storage space for $100/year. As you can see in the screenshot below, the space you purchase is added on to whatever you already have (in the Total Space column). The current price per GB is $0.50/year vs. ~$0.60 per GB/year for Google Drive.  Not a huge difference but a little less.  Though Google Drive makes up for part of this by providing the first 15GB free (vs. 7GB for SkyDrive). Also, if you buy one of the new Surface 2 devices, you will get 200GB of SkyDrive storage free for two years.
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Tracking Home Inventory

OneDrive, Tips
About a month ago, I received a message from my sister informing me that her house had been robbed and that pretty much everything of value had been stolen.  Luckily, she wasn’t home when the robbery took place so she wasn’t in any danger of being harmed.  Not everything that was taken can be replaced (e.g. family heirlooms, jewelry, etc.) so we are hopeful that at least some of her valuables will be located.  However, if they are located, she will still have to prove they are hers.  Luckily, she had recorded the serial numbers of the items (e.g. camera, laptop, etc.).  Having the serial numbers recorded does not guarantee that one will get their stolen property returned to them.  However, if your stolen property is recovered, it will definitely…
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.NET Mocking Framework Survey Results

OneDrive, Surveys, Testing
Two weeks ago, I posted a survey (using Excel Surveys available in SkyDrive) asking you what your preferred/primary .NET mocking framework was. We plan to use this data to help drive out which frameworks we want to evaluate further. The survey closed yesterday and, out of 147 responses, here is how everything shook out: 147 responses may not seem like a lot and, in the grand scheme of all .NET developers across the world, it’s not.  There are several ways you can look at this number:  Out of everyone that viewed the survey request, the majority of them didn’t want to take the time to give their input; they don’t use .NET-based technologies and/or mocking frameworks; I just didn’t reach a wide enough audience and/or provide enough time to get…
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A Backup Strategy

Guidance, OneDrive, Windows 8
Anyone using computers for any amount of time knows that backups are a must.  We’ve all heard or read that it’s not if your hard drive fails but rather when your hard drive fails you’ll wish you had backed up your files.  However, history has taught me that it’s not always a failed hard drive that makes me run to my backups but the more likely catalyst is my own actions.  For example, have you ever re-imaged a computer, thinking you’ve backed up everything you considered important, only to realize five minutes after installing the operating system that you forgot to include something really important in the backup set?  I have! :-) So, with the new year starting, now is a great time to think about a backup strategy.  Even…
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//build/ 2012 100GB SkyDrive Voucher Never Expires

General News, OneDrive
For those lucky enough to attend the //build/ conference this year, you not only received a Microsoft Surface RT tablet PC and a Nokia Lumina 920 smartphone but also a voucher for 100GB of additional SkyDrive storage. After applying my voucher code to my existing SkyDrive account, I had a total of 125GB of storage. The extra 100GB shows up as an "enthusiast bonus" as shown here: Naturally, the first question I had after adding the additional storage was - Does the Enthusiast Bonus ever expire? After posting my question to the SkyDrive forums and not getting an answer after a couple of days, I contacted the SkyDrive Billing Support team. After about 12 days, I finally received the following response: Thank you for your patience. We have already gotten…
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