Friday, June 22, 2007

All Derived, All The Time (I wish...)

I have been working on a PeopleSoft inquiry page a bit this week. I was looking at the specifications for the page and saw I didn't need to create any physical objects in the database (tables or views) to do what I needed to do. I was planning on just using derived tables and values and just loading up a rowset with data from PeopleCode and pushing the rowset to the grid. I was using an existing derived table at row level 0 and created an additional derived table with all of the fields I needed for row level 1 (the grid). Everything derived. I added my fields at row level 0, added my grid object, added the fields I needed for the grid from the derived record and attempted to save. Error message of no data found in row level 1. What? I went back and looked, verifying that I had added the fields. Tried to save again. Same error. I went and showed one of my colleagues who also theorized that what I was trying to do should work. He got the same error. He added a field from a table that physically exists in the database and it saved. So the moral of the story is that in a PeopleSoft page, you can have all derived field at row level 0, but you must have at least one field that physically exists in the database in row level 1 for the page to work.

This posting probably is rambling and doesn't flow well, but hey, it's late on a Friday...


Thursday, June 21, 2007

PeopleSoft and Firefox, Part One

I wanted to leave the door open for part two, if ever need be...

One ongoing gripe I have with Firefox is the speed of the browser in PeopleSoft. IE is hands down faster and I have yet to figure out why. Does IE cache more of the HTTPS pages where Firefox does not? Does the IE Trident rendering engine just work better with PeopleSoft than the Gecko rendering engine in Firefox? Did a very un-thorough Google search with nothing much to show for it. If anyone has an ideas or opinions, please post a comment.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


We have been test-driving Notepad++ around here for the past couple of days. With the recent release of Textpad 5, we have been looking to see what else is available out there that is open source. We have been big Textpad fans for the last several years and have been looking forward to the changes that were coming with release 5, but the load time to open the app is huge. We have been conditioned for software to be lightning fast, so Textpad 5 left us wanting. I tried to revert back to Textpad 4, but had all kinds of little registry gremlins that caused me grief.

We have PSPad in the running too, but it has the same app load delay as Textpad 5 (but it has a ton of cool features).

Anyway, we will be using Notepad++ here, probably until next week until another text editor draws our attention.

Open Source Desktop Encryption Solutions

Let me throw out a couple of scenarios:

1.) You get a call from a user who needs a data extract of "XYZ" data. You run the extract, export the data to a spreadsheet and send the data back to the requester.

2.) You have 10 databases you work in, all with different passwords.

Consider these questions:
In scenario 1, what if the extract had some sensitive information in it? Where is that extract, in your local temporary folder? Is that temp folder under your profile (probably not) and who has access to it? What if it is sitting in your local temp folder and your laptop grows legs...

In scenario 2, do you remember all of you passwords or do you store you passwords in text docs locally, in a wiki, post-it note on your desk, etc. to make it easier to access the userid/ passwords?

TrueCrypt: This software allows you to create a encrypted partition in a file (yes, a file) on your harddisk that you can mount as a volume in the OS. Save anything you want to it.This is perfect for using as a temp directory. Provides a solution for scenario 1. If your laptop does take up jogging, the file is a bunch of gibberish without the passphrase.

KeePass: This software fixes the problem presented in scenario 2. The software basically keeps an encrypted database of your any userid/passwords you want to store. Add as many as you want. You only need to remember the single, encrypted passphrase to access the database.

Both of these products are available on multiple platforms. I can only vouch for the effectiveness on Windows XP.

Just to have one less thing to remember, save your KeePass database inside of your TrueCrypt partition.