If you have to use Ninject with Solr…

My first time having to configure Solr for Sitecore recently taught me a variety of new things. (I know – how have I managed to avoid it this long?) Most of the basics of the setup have been well documented elsewhere, so I won’t repeat any of that. However setting up the site to use the Ninject DI container wasn’t as smooth as the documentation suggested, so here are some notes on the issues I hit in case you find yourself stuck: Continue reading


Downloading stuff from dev.sitecore.net

There’s been a bit of a theme in my recent posts about scripting stuff, and that continues this week. I’ve been looking at some ideas for automating tasks for developers recently, and one of the things I was interested in was being able to get stuff downloaded from dev.sitecore.net without having to do it manually. So, here’s some PowerShell that can help you with that… Continue reading

Low-effort Solr installs

I’m sure I’ve said before that any task you have to do more than once is worth automating. Well recently I’ve found myself needing to install Solr in a variety of places – so obviously my mind turned to automation. There are lots of ways this can be approached, and some people have already had a go at it for their own needs, but here’s my take. Continue reading

The curious case of what happened to my Indexing Manager

I’ve spent the last week or so working on the config changes necessary to migrate a client site running Sitecore v8.1 from using Lucene to Solr for its search infrastructure. I’ve not worked much with Solr before, so this has been a good opportunity for me to learn about how it works and how it gets configured. But when I deployed my changes from my local development environment to a central testing server I discovered some odd behavior which Google didn’t help with. So, for the good of search indexes everywhere, here’s what happened… Continue reading

Measure if you want to go faster!

I got the chance to speak at the Manchester Sitecore user group recently, introducing some tools and tricks that can be used to measure site performance while you’re developing your Sitecore code.

For anyone who wasn’t there (and those who were but, want to refer back to what I said) here’s a summary of the important bits of content from that talk…
Continue reading

An experiment with automatic tests

I spent some time working with some code recently, which had some annoying habits of failing oddly in scenarios where nulls got passed into constructors. While I was trying to work around some of these issues, it struck me that tests for parameter handling for constructors are one of those annoying things that tend to make unit testing frustrating. They’re annoying boiler-plate to write if you need them, and then a constructor signature changes, you end up with a lot of make-work test changes to do.

So as an exercise in “learning something new”, wondered whether I could automate them in a reasonable way… Continue reading