Building Balder on Windows 7 using Visual Studio 2010

Oct 16, 2010 at 4:08 PM

Hello Balder!

Forgive me as most of this is just stupid mistakes on my part.

I have been trying to use Balder as a solution for an existing Silverlight project with 3D content, but continue to hit frustrating roadblocks. Unfortunately at the same time I am trying to get used to a new computer with Windows 7, and Visual Studio 2010.

I will share what I’ve learned, as well as ask for help with new roadblocks.

The first problem was something new in Win 7, where downloaded files have a new “Blocked” flag automatically placed on them. Visual Studio 2010 will not open “Blocked” files. This was the first roadblock with trying to build the Balder source.

The issue was that after extracting the source from the zipfile, each file must then be unblocked, but right clicking and selecting properties. This is easy enough to do, except you are forced to do it one file at a time, you cannot select multiple files and unblock them all at once. Fortunately there is an easy simple solution!!! Unblock the zipfile BEFORE extracting the files (or if you’ve already extracted them, delete the entire source folder, unblock the zipfile, then re-extract).

Simple huh? Too bad Windows doesn’t tell you anything about this new “feature”.

Second issue…. (and this one is all me just being dense), but I thought I’d share it in case someone else has the same issue…….   Silverlight “Tools” and Silverlight “Toolkit” ARE-NOT-THE-SAME-THING!!!!!!!

Working with Silverlight in Visual Studio 2010… REQUIRES Silverlight “TOOLS”, not Silverlight “TOOLKIT”

I know this seems obvious, and it is… But if you are in a hurry, and don’t read carefully, realizing that the Silverlight pages tell you that you need “tools”, if you are interrupted (I frequently have to work on my development projects 5 minutes at a time), and come back to it later, it’s easy to find the “toolkit” and think you’ve done it right. It’s too bad that the tools and toolkit pages don’t mention this explicitly, it would have saved me a lot of hair pulling.

With the above fixed, my next post has me still trying to compile the latest Balder source (Balder-ebeb64df800a). Hopefully the problems are as simple as above, and I will greatly appreciate your help.

Thank you

Don

Oct 16, 2010 at 4:26 PM

Hello again,

I decided to put this in a separate post so the previous lessons-learned wouldn’t be confused with these issues.

Again, I am new to Windows 7 and Visual Studio 2010. It’s also important to note that while I am a pretty good programmer, I have to admit little knowledge of how even Visual Studio 2008 compiles more complicated projects. The assembly references still confound me, and most of the exceptions I get are asking me “Are you missing an assembly reference”. If anyone can recommend a good article of how to deal with these exceptions it would be a tremendous help.

For my current build issues, I am trying to build Balder for Silverlight with the most recent version Balder_ebeb64df800a.

I have tried opening Balder_Silverlight.sln from ~\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Solutions

Before even trying to build it, I am getting the following exceptions when I just try to load the solution:

C:\Balder3D\Balder Source\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Balder.Silverlight\Balder.Silverlight.csproj : error : Unable to read the project file 'Balder.Silverlight.csproj'. 
C:\Balder3D\Balder Source\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Balder.Silverlight\Balder.Silverlight.csproj: The project file could not be loaded. Could not find a part of the path 'C:\Balder3D\Balder Source\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Balder.Silverlight\Balder.Silverlight.csproj'.
 
C:\Balder3D\Balder Source\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Balder.Silverlight.Tests\Balder.Silverlight.Tests.csproj : error : Unable to read the project file 'Balder.Silverlight.Tests.csproj'. 
C:\Balder3D\Balder Source\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Balder.Silverlight.Tests\Balder.Silverlight.Tests.csproj: The project file could not be loaded. Could not find a part of the path 'C:\Balder3D\Balder Source\Balder-ebeb64df800a\Balder_ebeb64df800a\Source\Balder.Silverlight.Tests\Balder.Silverlight.Tests.csproj'.

Any suggestions on what I’m doing wrong will be greatly appreciated.

Don

Coordinator
Oct 16, 2010 at 5:47 PM

Hi,

too bad you had such a big hassle. Maybe I should put up a tutorial or WebCast showing how to build Balder and working with it from source. Thanks for sharing your frustration. Only thing I can promise is that we'll work on getting better!

Anyways, the last of the two posts - thats all on me. In fact I'll fix it straight away, as it just doesn't make sense. Thing is, that during development the SampleBrowser.Silverlight.sln has gotten to the solution of choice.
So that one is a big whack on our fingers for not correcting. 

Consider it fixed in a couple of seconds. 

As for tutorials or WebCasts, what do you think would be needed?  I've tried to ask people before without getting much response - working on the project makes you blind to what people are wondering about.

Coordinator
Oct 16, 2010 at 5:56 PM

Solution file fixed.

Oct 16, 2010 at 10:18 PM

Thanks adept.

Please don’t get me wrong, as I’ve found most of the problems I’ve had are on my end.

I will test the new source in a few minutes.

As for tutorials yes, how to build Balder would be a good one. I also think fewer solution choices would be easier to manage.

There are three Silverlight solutions…. [Balder_Silverlight.sln], [Balder_Silverlight_Design.sln] and [Samplebrowser.Silverlight.sln], why not just have the first one, and include the other two in it?

I’m also confused about [Balder.Build.sln] does that build everything?

I see there is an empty “ReadMe” file in the zip archive, maybe that’s a good place to explain what each build solution is for. It wouldn’t need to be updated often, only when solutions are added or removed. It may also be a good place to remind people about the three lessons learned in the original message of this thread. The new “Blocked” flag in Windows 7 was the biggest un-expected surprise so far. And the key is to unblock the zip before extracting the contents.

As I get better at working with Balder, I’m sure I’ll be able to make better, more useful suggestions, but these may be a good place to start.

Thanks

Don

Oct 17, 2010 at 12:19 AM

The fix worked fine, compiling with no errors at all

Thanks adept!

Coordinator
Oct 17, 2010 at 2:20 PM

Thanks for the input.  

The reason for the many Solution files is basically that I tend to work on different aspects of Balder and I hate waiting for compilation - sometimes I need all the tests, sometimes not.. But I guess I can go through and make it a bit more intuitive.
Maybe hide the convenience  solution files in a sub folder and keep the Solutions folder clean.

Also, actually writing something in the README file would be a good start. :)