Word 2007 Quick Tip – How to show invisible table borders/gridlines

Every time I reinstall Word, I always forget where in the settings I can turn on the display of table gridlines. I find it really frustrating that it’s not on by default since, when you can’t see the invisible borders of cells, you can’t tell how many cells make up a section of white space. So, for my future reference and your benefit (hopefully) :), here’s how you turn on gridlines (table borders) in Office 2007.

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Subversion – Move folder in one repository to its own repo (in Windows) using svndumpfilter

I recently wanted to clean up a subversion repository of mine and move some of the larger folders/projects into their own repository. There’s not much documentation on how to do this in Windows (what I primarily use) which is the main reason why I wanted to share this info.

Now, in the past, I’d moved whole repos using the svnadmin dump command, but now I had to make sure that I only got revisions related to a specific folder. Fortunately, there’s this handy little program that comes with subversion called svndumpfilter. This little tool lets you filter out revisions from an svn dump based on a path in the repo. It will even renumber the revisions for you so that when you load the new dump file into it’s own repo, the revisions will all be in order starting from revision 1.

Ok, let’s get to it!

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Fix: Cannot Generate SSPI Context

I was recently working on an ASP.Net project and was receiving this error on attempting to .Open() my SQL Server database connection:
System.Data.SqlClient.SqlException: Cannot generate SSPI context.

As you may have noticed, the connection uses SSPI (i.e. Windows login authentication) to connect to SQL Server. I thought this was a bit strange and tried restarting the project (it was running in debug mode). That didn’t help.

Fortunately, I remembered that my Windows password was set to expire today. It had expired while I was logged in, and so, was preventing me from being able to authenticate my login with SQL Server.

So, if you’re receiving this error, try updating your password if it may have expired.

Fondusi’s Dev Blog – Week 6 – Part 1 – C# Sockets and Servers

This week we spent some time doing little things – fixing bugs, changing how things look, etc. We also started work on the networking code which is what I talk about in this post. I discuss the beginnings of the TCP multi-client server application with actual code examples and descriptions.

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Fondusi’s Dev Blog – Week 5 – Lighting and Spatial Partitioning

This week we managed to get a lot of things done. Andrew did a lot of work on the region editor and I added some cool new features and fixed bugs in the lighting system.

This post covers changes to the lighting system and spatial partitioning/hashing. I go in-depth on how to use spatial hashing to not only cut down on the amount of things drawn, but to draw only the things that can be visible on screen.

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Fondusi’s Dev Blog – Week 4 – Lighting and Shaders

This week we focused on getting the lighting system working in the tile engine. In order to do this, I had to change the way the tile engine was being rendered. Read on to see how we did it and how it looks.

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Creating Render Targets in XNA 4.0

While working on the game engine for Fondusi’s, I had to change how my tile engine was rendered in order to add the lighting. At first, all tiles were just rendered directly to the screen (back buffer, actually) but with the lighting, I was tweaking pixel alpha values and it ended up causing issues with stacked tiles. So, what I needed to do was to draw my tiles on one surface, draw the lighting on a second surface, and then draw the lighting surface onto the tiled surface with it’s own pixel shader effect. (Really, I just sample the lighting surface in the pixel shader while drawing the tile surface to the back-buffer.)

In order to draw it like that, I had to add new render targets. Now, I was following a blog post on Shawn Hargreaves’ Blog which was (quite!) out of date. So needless to say, I had a few issues implementing it the same way. Fortunately, they’ve made it a lot easier to use render targets in XNA 4.0 and that what I’m going to show you below.

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Fondusi’s Dev Blog – Week 3 – Tile Behaviours

This week we got some of the extra mapping tools working like the paint bucket and the eye dropper, which allows you to select a tile from the map (so you don’t have to find it on the tilesets). We also set up “tile behaviours” (read the full post for more info), added the ability to switch between player mode and camera control, added some validation functions for mouse clicks on the game from (see here for more details), added an outline for the player name font, and did an overhaul of the particle engine system to make it more generic and useful.

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Fondusi’s Dev Blog – Week 2 – Pixel Shaders and Moving Players

The second week of development was spent reorganizing the map editor and fleshing out more-or-less how we wanted it to look and function. We added a basic pixel shader effect file and changed how players move across tiles, which I discuss in more detail in the full post.

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Fondusi’s Dev Blog – Week 1 – Tile Engine and Map Structure

Assuming you’ve read up on the first post, it’s time for the first (back-logged) Fondusi’s Development Blog weekly post.

Week 1 – August 1st – 7th

Note: We decided to start out making the map editor so we could get the tile engine up and running quickly before we needed the server, client or networking code. So, until further notice, all posts relate to developing the map editor.

This week I set up the solution’s main projects and began work on the tile engine. I based the map layout on the old game’s map objects and added new capabilities as I saw fit. The major new addition was using map layers. Basically, this is like having two maps stacked on each other. There are special tiles that allow the character to switch between layers. This means we can do things like allow players to walk over other players on bridges or have a house with two floors on the same map.

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