Multicore SOLR and Tomcat On Windows Server 2008 R2

by dcurtis 4/4/2011 7:20:00 AM

Instructions for installing a multicore instance of SOLR plus Tomcat on Windows Server 2008 R2 were not clear anywhere.  I finally got everything to work by piecing together bits and pieces from various sites to get everything running.  The following are the steps I performed:

  1. Downloaded and installed the 32-bit/64-bit Windows Service Installer for Tomcat
  2. Installed Tomcat on the server (no special instructions here--just run the install and install wherever you wish)
  3. Verified the installation of Tomcat by going to http://localhost:8080
  4. Edit Tomcat's conf/server.xml and add URIEncoding="UTF-8" to the <Connector> element as shown here
  5. Download SOLR from one of the mirrors found here (downloaded the apache-solr-1.4.1.zip package) and unzip the package
  6. Create a directory where SOLR will be hosted from (in my case I used e:\inetpub\solr)
  7. Copy the contents of the example\solr directory to your SOLR host directory (in my case e:\inetpub\solr)
  8. Create directories under your SOLR host directory for each of the cores you wish to create (I created a dozen or so folders for each core I wanted to create in the e:\inetpub\solr directory.  The directories included en-US, en-CA, en-GB, etc.)
  9. Copy the solr.xml file from the example\multicore directory and paste it into your SOLR host directory (e:\inetpub\solr for my example)
  10. Edit the solr.xml file to include the information for each of the cores you created (if you created a folder under your host for a core named en-US, then add the following under the <cores> element in the solr.xml file: <core name="en-US" instanceDir="en-US" />)
  11. Stop the Tomcat Service
  12. Copy the *solr*.war file from the dist directory in the unzipped SOLR package to your Tomcat webapps folder
  13. Rename the *solr*.war file to solr.war
  14. In the notification area in the right-hand side of the Windows task bar, right-click on the Apache Tomcat 7 icon and select Configure
  15. Click the Java tab and add the following to the Java Options text box: -Dsolr.solr.home=e:\inetpub\solr (change e:\inetpub\solr to wherever your SOLR is being hosted)
  16. Click OK in the dialog and then start-up the Tomcat service
  17. Open the conf\solrconfig.xml files under each of the cores you created and change the dataDir element to point to a specific directory.  If this step is not completed, all of your cores will be using the same data store for their data.
  18. Stop and re-start the Tomcat Service
  19. Test that your cores are running by running a query from the web browser http://localhost:8080/solr/en-US/select?q=*:* (replace "en-US" with whatever you've named one of your cores)

If I get a chance, I will update the instructions and add some illustrations to make it a bit easier to follow

****UPDATE****

I added steps 17 and 18 to my original post--if you skip this step, all of the cores will be using the same datastore and therefore overwrite each other.  Sorry I missed that the first time!

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SOLR

Fixing a "The process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process" error message on Windows 7

by dcurtis 1/7/2011 3:31:00 PM
I have IIS installed on Windows 7 and started receiving a "The process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process." error when trying to start a web site in the IIS snap-in. After a brief search on google I found this information on how to resolve the issue.  The problem was, I couldn't really see what was using the port.  After some trial and error, I discovered that it was Skype that was using the port.  Once I closed Skype, the web site started with no issues and then I was able to start Skype again and use it as usual.

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IIS 7 | Windows 7

How to Fix Cisco VPN Client Error 442 on Windows 7

by dcurtis 1/4/2011 6:51:00 AM

This is mostly a note for my benefit so that if I ever have this problem again, I know where to look.  Wink

 I was using the VPN Client with no issues for months and then suddenly I kept getting the 442 error and after following all of the suggestions I found through search, I still couldn't resolve the issue.  Finally I found this site here which solved my issue.  I recently installed the new Intel my WIFI driver and it uses the internet connection sharing service to share the signal.  Apparently that service and the VPN Client don't play nice with each other.

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Extending the Commerce Server 2007/2009 Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager

by dcurtis 8/7/2010 5:42:00 AM

I'm currently working on a project that is putting a web front-end onto the Commerce Server Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager and the Catalog Manager.  As we were creating the specifications for the project, we were disappointed that some elements were missing from the property definitions.  For instance, we would like to have a description for the property definition to indicate what the property is used for.  We searched for any information about extending property definitions, but we had little success finding anything until we stumbled upon a blog post found here.  As stated in the blog post, many of the entities in the schema manager can be extended.  The following is a step-by-step procedure for performing the extensions:

First, open the Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager and create your new property (for this example I am going to create a property named NewProperty just to illustrate the process.  The data type or the options I selected for this property are irrelevant to this example so I won't display them here.).

Next, the NewProperty property needs to be added to the property entity.  To extend one of the entities, click on the Edit Property Metadata link.  As you'll see from the following image, there are other entity types you can extend as well:

Commerce Server Catalog and Inventory Schema manager entity metadata.

Next, select NewProperty from the list of Available Properties and click the Add>> button to add it to the Assigned Properties as shown in the following image:

Click the Save and Close button, and that is it!  You've extended the property entity.  Unfortunately, when you open any of the existing properties in the Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager, you will not see your new property to set the value--you'll need to access the property programmatically in order to set the value.  The link I posted earlier in this post contains the code necessary to set your new property so I won't repeat it here.  The only thing you'll need to remove is the code that creates the property and adds it to the entity.

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New Site Launch: UtahPacificBridge.com

by dcurtis 7/7/2010 7:40:00 AM

Just launched a new site for Utah Pacific Bridge & Steel: http://www.utahpacificbridge.com

The site is based on the Sitefinity framework.  I've also used a couple of Flash components on the site:

  • FlashEff for the effects on the home page
  • SlideShowPro, ThumbGrid, and Director for the gallery page

 

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Site Launch | Telerik

New Game Launch: Where's Bulldog

by dcurtis 6/9/2010 1:19:00 PM
Just launched a new game on Facebook in collaboration with a few other groups.  I didn't do any of the flash--I did all of the back-end server work using web services and the entity framework as well as the hooks between Flash and Facebook.  Check it out: http:/apps.facebook.com/wheresbulldog

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Facebook

New Site Launch: PrecisionExams.com

by dcurtis 4/12/2010 3:51:00 PM

Just launched another site I've been working on: http://www.precisionexams.com/

The site utilizes progressive enhancement so if javascript and the images are disabled, a user will still be able to navigate through the site and reach all of the content (most bots from search engines fall in this category so it makes it easy for them to crawl).  I'm using the jQuery library along with several plug-ins from the jQuery community.

Precision Exams and Surveys (Precision) provides clients with the tools, analysis, and insight necessary to develop and execute high-quality assessment and learning programs, meeting the real-world needs of learning providers.

Let me know what you think.

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php

Lenovo W510 Overheating

by dcurtis 4/5/2010 1:05:00 PM

I just purchased a Lenovo W510 and have found it to be a terrific machine so far; however, I ran into a strange problem today--I was using the machine on a docking station and I put a Logitech mini usb transmitter into one of the USB 3 ports for the first time.  Later, I had to reboot the machine, but found that I could not get past the Lenovo splash screen during the reboot.  After several failed attempts I removed the machine from the docking station and found it to be EXTREMELY hot.  I shut everything down and then submitted a case with Lenovo support. 

While waiting for them to re-contact me about the issue, I thought I'd do a search and see if anyone else had a similar problem and found a post here.  Looks like Keith had a similar issue with a Microsoft mini USB transmitter.  I removed the transmitter and voila, the system was able to boot again.  Looks like I'll only put the transmitter in either the docking station or the non-usb 3 ports going forward.

Thanks Keith!

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Installing SQL Server 2008 Developer on Windows 7 Professional

by dcurtis 3/2/2010 5:04:00 PM

Like many others out there (based on my search at least) I struggled to get SQL Server 2008 Developer installed on Windows 7 Professional.  So you don't have to read through the rest of the details, here is what worked for me: copying the contents of the ISO or the CD to my local drive and then running the installation from there under the administrator account.

Ok, so here are the details.  I had Vista Ultimate 32-bit installed on my laptop with SQL Server 2008 Developer installed; however, my hard drive failed so I decided to upgrade to Windows 7 Professional 64-bit.  I installed Visual Studio 2008 and let it install SQL Server 2005 Express edition forgetting that I had previously installed 2008.  Later, while trying to restore one of my databases, I discovered my error so I tried to install SQL Server 2008 Developer and the nightmare began. 

  • I looked at so many differerent knowledge base articles, support posts, and blog articles that my head is still spinning.  There were so many recommendations: don't run the installation from a disk--run it from a mounted ISO instead, install Visual Studio 2008 SP1 first and then install everything else, uninstall the SQL Server compact framework, etc.  Finally I ran across a post here that listed several different fixes--one of which saved the day.

The following is a summary of all of the steps I took to get this running:

  • I applied Visual Studio 2008 SP1 (this is needed to install SQL Server 2008 on a machine that has VS 2008 already installed)
  • I uninstalled anything that even mentioned Microsoft SQL Server from my system
  • Logged into the system with an administrator account (in my case it was the domain administrator account from my network--I assume local administrator will work, too)
  • Copied the contents of the ISO to my hard drive
  • Ran the installation
  • SUCCESS!

Now I am in the process of installing SQL Server 2008 SP1 as that is needed for running everything on Windows 7.

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Windows 7 | SQL Server 2008

C# Static Contstructor Not Called When Referencing Static Object

by dcurtis 1/16/2010 12:40:00 PM
I had a situation today where I had a static constructor that was never getting initialized and setting some of the default values.  As a result, other content within my code suffered from the same issue.  I searched in vain for a solution and couldn't find anything until I finally revised my search terms.  It turns out that Visual Studio was firing the constructor the first time it would run, but then it encountered an error and would never fire again.  I found a reference in the .Net Development Center that mentioned shutting down the development web server; however, I had already tried that and it didn't do anything for me.  What did work, though, was changing something within the class as the author of that post said (adding a comment, inserting a space, deleting something) and then recompiling and I was finally able to get the static constructor to fire so I could continue to debug the code.  

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Visual Studio 2008 | C#

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Derek Curtis Derek Curtis
President, Plaid Pony Technology Solutions LLC

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