How Many ColdFusion Titles Does Your Local Book Store Carry?

Over the weekend I passed by the Barnes & Nobles in Burlington, MA across from the mall, so I stopped to check out the latest titles in their vast Computers section, which spans about 8 bookshelves, each about 12-20 feet long and 5-10 rows high. This is an enormous amount of books for a generic book store just devoted to General Computing, Web Programming, Web Design, Graphic Design, Macintosh, Databases, XML, Perl, Java, C/C++, Windows, Unix/Linux, and more.

I poured over the titles looking for ColdFusion books, through the Java/J2EE section, past the ASP and PHP sections, on to the Web Programming section and even into the General Computing section, but there was no sign of the familiar blue and white covers, a popular color scheme in CFMX related books. Disappointed, and already thinking up a rant blog entry, I turned the corner and stumbled into the Web Design section. There among a towering but narrow shelf that was 10 or more rows high, saturated with Flash and Dreamweaver books, I finally recognized what I was looking for. Just below center were a tiny handful of ColdFusion books, including the CFMX Bible, the CFMX WACK set of books, the O'Reilly book, and a couple other titles I don't remember. Right next to it was a single Macromedia Flex book.


Video Archive of CFUNITED Keynote

If you missed CFUNITED this year or would just like to relive the Keynote event given by Tim Buntel and Ben Forta of Macromedia, then you might want to check out this 61MB clip of their 50 minute talk.

Highlights from the talk include the announcement of the CFMX 7 Updater codenamed Merrimack, the CFMX 8 announcement codenamed Scorpio, and the big hurrah from the crowd during the announcement of Macromedia support for the CFEclipse project.

Download Video [248 MB]

This was exported from iMovie on Mac OSX, which has better options for compression so that you can keep the full audio quality but compress only the video.

  • 0:00 Tim Buntel introduces himself and Ben Forta
  • 1:50 Ben Forta on where ColdFusion is today
  • 4:00 Ben polls crowd about CFMX 7 usage
  • 6:00 Ben on: Why Upgrade?
  • 7:00 Ben Forta begins discussion of what's new in CFMX 7
  • 19:20 Introduction to Amit Yathirajadasan of Georgetown University who demos CFMX 7 app
  • 20:50 Amit begins, but is generally inaudible
  • 25:30 Tony Weeg's big moment
  • 30:00 Tim Buntel recaps Amits talk and segueways to CFMX future
  • 30:19 Jared Rypka-Hauer saunters by...
  • 31:50 Ben Forta introduces CFMX 7 updater, code named Merrimack
  • 36:00 Start of CFEclipse discusssion by Tim Buntel
  • 42:00 Simeon Bateman of the CFEclipse Project joins the stage
  • 48:50 Tim Buntel and Ben Forta introduce ColdFusion MX 8, codenamed Scorpio
  • 53:50 Ben Forta demos the new CFMX 7 Language Poster

If you would like only the audio of the keynote, you can find it here.

For a video of the CFUNITED CFDJ Panel discussion, see this blog entry.

Verity in Distributed Configuration - Useful for CFMX 7 on Mac OS X

Here's a new article from Macromedia on configuring Verity to run on a seperate server than that which hosts the ColdFusion MX 7 server, as a distributed Verity configuration.

Configuring Verity and ColdFusion MX 7 on separate servers

This is especially useful for running ColdFusion MX 7.0 on Mac OSX since Verity is currently not supported on that platform, as noted in a previous blog entry.

Dual boot Fedora Linux and Mac on a Mac Mini

Why? Why not?!

Check out this article in Red Hat Magazine's May edition

Installing Fedora Core on the Mac mini
by Colin Charles.

I enjoyed the read. The two most novel aspects to me were the yaboot boot loader, used in place of the more familiar grub, and the fact that you can reinstall the Mac OS X at all while also specifying partitions. Nice!

Will I dual boot my own PowerMac G5? Not a chance! I've been dual booting Linux on every machine I can get my hands on for years, but my G5 will remain pristine.

CFMX 7 Search Service not available on Mac OS X

On Mac OSX, the ColdFusion Administrator page for Verity states:

Unable to retrieve collections from the Search Service. Please verify that the ColdFusion MX Search Server is installed and running.

So I reviewed the Macromedia documentation for running ColdFusion MX 7 on Macintosh and found that there was no mention of Verity at all.

After that, I went to the directory where the installer put the cfusion.war file and I found a file named cfmx-j2ee-readme.txt. Searching this document for Verity, I found the following paragraph:

Note: Verity runs on Windows, Linux, and Solaris. If your J2EE server runs on an operating system other than Windows, Solaris, or Linux, Verity support is unavailable on that server. However, you can optionally install Verity on a Windows, Linux, or Solaris server and configure your ColdFusion server to use the remote Verity server.

I know I've skimmed over this paragraph numerous times before, but it wasn't until today when I wanted to check Verity that I realized that this caveat now applied to me while on my Mac. Bottom line, either you have to install the Verity K2 Search Service on another OS like Windows and then connect to it from CF on Mac, or you'll have to find an alternative for Verity, such as Lucene. You can find a few articles by Aaron Johnson in CFDJ on how to use Lucene via a Java CFX (part 1,part 2).

Update: Check out this blog entry on running Verity in a distributed mode.

CFMX and CFEclipse ready to go on Mac

I spent the evening in the office tonight to configure a development environment for ColdFusion MX 7 on my new Mac as per the instructions on Setting up Eclipse 3.0.2 and CFEclipse 1.1.17 was a snap, and now I'm ready to go.

The only system prerequisite for Eclipse on a base OSX 10.4 system is to set the environment variable JAVA_HOME, which I prefer to set globally in /etc/profile. O'Reily has a useful article on this, Mac OSX and Java: Where's my $JAVA_HOME.

Setting up ColdFusion on Mac is very easy, and there are two excellent sources of information on this including the Macromedia documentation and Sean Corfield's website. If you prefer Tomcat over JRun, then in addition to the Macromedia doc you might want to check out the Apple Developer Connection article on Java and Tomcat on Mac OS X.

The base OS X 10.4 install come with Apache 1.3.33 already installed, which is suitable for ColdFusion, and wsconfig worked well in this environment. Along the way I discovered a useful Apache for Mac OS X resource, which I'll have to come back to soon, but to get started no research was necessary. A good resource for Apache2 on Tiger is on Simeon Bateman's blog.

Finally, if your running the firewall on OS X, then you'll have to customize the firewall rules to add the some or all of the following ports:

  • ColdFusion instance's Proxy Port (found in jrun.xml or console startup)
  • ColdFusion instance's JNDI Port (visible in JMC or console startup)
  • JMC Admin port 8000
  • Tomcat port 8080

Enjoying my PowerMac G5 with 30 inch HD Cinema Display

At long last, my dream machine has arrived. I've been blogging about it in anticipation, but what a pleasure its been now that its found its home on my desk. Colleauges have been popping in just to take a turn sitting in front of it. I love having so much information in front of me at one time... 2 browsers, chat, stickies, terminal, file system explorer, and more... all visable at the same time.

I've installed Tomcat and JRun with ColdFusion MX 7, but look for ongoing blog posts about my experiences as a Mac OSX newbie. With a very strong Linux background, I've got a head start with the commandline, but I'm still kind of awkward with all the new applications, the single button mouse, and the menu bar at the top instead of on the window.

Here's the full spec:

  • 2GB DDR400 SDRAM (PC3200) - 4x512
  • Dual 2GHz PowerPC G5
  • 160GB Serial ATA - 7200rpm
  • ATI Radeon 9650 w/256MB DDR SDRAM
  • Apple Cinema HD Display (30" flat panel)
  • 16x SuperDrive double-layer (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
  • One big-ass lock on the back of G5 and display!

I've also rearranged my office since you've last seen it to make more room, and added a lamp instead of using the overhead light. It makes a big difference and feels a lot more comfortable.

Solution: java.lang.NoClassDefFoundError: com/zerog/lax/LAX

This week I've been setting up my new PowerMac G5, and in the course of preparing to install ColdFusion on JRun I hit a wall in the form of a ZeroG installer error when installing Updater 5 for JRun.


Power Mac dream machine on its way

I've been comtemplating my jump into Mac OS X for a long time now, and I've recently decided to go for it. My dream machine should arrive this week to the office where I'll use the Power Mac G5 and its 30" display as my principle work station, in between my Windows XP box on one side and Red Hat Linux on the other.

I wasn't planning on the 30" display, but after spending a lot of time in the Apple store getting the feel of the displays, I couldn't get myself to part with the motherload of all displays. I mean, hey, I'm in front of a monitor for the better part of 50 hours a week here, so I'd better start making it a better experience than a 17" CRT on top a Wintel workstation that's bulging under the load.

Here's the full spec:

  • 2GB DDR400 SDRAM (PC3200) - 4x512
  • Dual 2GHz PowerPC G5
  • 160GB Serial ATA - 7200rpm
  • ATI Radeon 9650 w/256MB DDR SDRAM
  • Apple Cinema HD Display (30" flat panel)
  • 16x SuperDrive double-layer (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)


Commuting on Bicycle Again

Bike Route from Concord To Macromedia in Newton While I still love coming to work at Macromedia every day, now that I'm biking to work a few times a week again the best part of the day is now the bike ride home. I started last October, but soon the first snows fell and I had to hang up the bike. This April the temperature is back into the 60's and the last snow is a couple weeks behind.

The first 3 miles of the 13 mile trip home is largely uphill, but then as the roads grow smaller as I wind my way into the suburbs the ride flattens out and I can enjoy the sights and smells along the way.

Just past the train tracks on rt. 117 in Lincoln, I pass the Audubon Society's Drumlin Farm where cattle are grazing by the roadside. I love the smell of cow manure in the evening. I'm just that way.

Continuing through Lincoln I reach Codman Farm and the community gardens, and there I change from the pedaling on the sliver of road they call a shoulder to a flowing, country walkway with some fun hills that twist and curve under apple trees and along side sheep and wide open farm fields.

The country path continues along rt 126 where the nearby vernal pools are filled to the brink not just with fresh water but with a chorus of spring peepers. If I time it just right, I pass Walden Pond (satellite) just as the sun sets at the opposite end just before it passes through the distant pine trees.

I don't think listening to podcasts is great idea for bike riding on the roadside, but its a great way to review the days events, and I even wrote this blog entry in my head on the way today, now all that's left is the typing.

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