Getting started with Storybook and Vue

  1. Starting with an empty folder you can run
     npx sb init
  2. During the addition you’ll be prompted for the template type - select vue
  3. If this is brand new then you’ll need to install vue. The template assumes you have it installed already.
     npm install vue vue-template-compiler
  4. Run storybook with

     npm run storybook

    This will get storybook running and you’ll be presented with the browser interface for it

Adding Vuetify

  1. In the project install vuetify
    npm install vuetify
  2. In the .storybook folder add a preview-head.html file. This will be included in the project template. Set the content to

     <link href="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/@mdi/font@4.x/css/materialdesignicons.min.css" rel="stylesheet">
     <link href="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/vuetify@2.x/dist/vuetify.min.css" rel="stylesheet">
  3. In the .storybook folder add to the preview.js and include

     import { addDecorator } from '@storybook/vue';
     import vuetify from './vuetify_storybook';
     addDecorator(() => ({
     template: `
             <v-container fluid >

    This will add vuetify wrapping to the project. You can now just go ahead and us the components in your .vue files. Here is an example:

             <v-text-field dense label="User name" hint="You can use your email"></v-text-field>
             <v-text-field dense label="Password" hint="You need to use upper case and lower case"></v-text-field>
     module.exports = {
         data: function () {
             return {
             userName: null,
             password: null,
             rememberMe: false,
         computed: {
             isValid: function () {
             return true;


    If you’re using a service layer then you an shim that in to prevent making network calls. However that might not be what you want to do so you can instead shim in something to intercept all network calls. This can be done using the mock service worker addon https://storybook.js.org/addons/msw-storybook-addon

    To get it working install it

     npm i -D msw msw-storybook-addon

    Then to the preview.js file you can add a hook for it

     import { initializeWorker, mswDecorator } from 'msw-storybook-addon';

Quick Noda Time Conversions

Noda time makes working with timezones, well not a snap but better than dental surgery.

Convert a DateTime and TzDB Timezone to UTC

A TzDB timezone is one that looks like America/Edmonton or, one might presume Mars/OlympusMons

DateTimeZone timezone = DateTimeZoneProviders.Tzdb.GetZoneOrNull(timezoneId);
ZoneLocalMappingResolver customResolver = Resolvers.CreateMappingResolver(Resolvers.ReturnLater, Resolvers.ReturnStartOfIntervalAfter);
var localDateTime = LocalDateTime.FromDateTime(dateTime);
var zonedDateTime = timezone.ResolveLocal(localDateTime, customResolver);
return zonedDateTime.ToDateTimeUtc();

Convert from a UTC to a zoned DateTime

 var local = new LocalDateTime(dateTime.Year, dateTime.Month, dateTime.Day, dateTime.Hour, dateTime.Minute, dateTime.Second);
var tz = DateTimeZoneProviders.Tzdb[timeZoneID];
return local.InZoneLeniently(tz);

But be careful with this one because it might produce weird results around time change periods. If you want to avoid ambiguity or at least throw an exception for it consider InZoneStrictly


Installing Fonts on Windows with Powershell

You’d like to think that in 2021 installing a font would involve just copying it and some advanced AI system would notice it and install it on Windows. Again the future has failed us.

Let’s say you have a folder of TTF fonts you need installing. Just copying them to the c:\windows\fonts directory won’t work. You need to copy them with a magic COM command that is probably left over from when file names in Windows looked like PROGRA~1. I’ve seen some scripts which add the font to the windows registry but I didn’t have much luck getting them to work and they feel fragile should Microsoft ever update font handling (ha!).

Here is a script that will copy over all the fonts in the current directory.

echo "Install fonts"
$fonts = (New-Object -ComObject Shell.Application).Namespace(0x14)
foreach ($file in gci *.ttf)
    $fileName = $file.Name
    if (-not(Test-Path -Path "C:\Windows\fonts\$fileName" )) {
        echo $fileName
        dir $file | %{ $fonts.CopyHere($_.fullname) }
cp *.ttf c:\windows\fonts\

The fonts don’t seem to get installed using the same file name as they arrive with so that last cp line puts the original files in the fonts directory so you can run this script multiple times and it will just install the new fonts. If you wanted to get cool you could check for a checksum and install fonts where the checksum doesn’t match. Don’t both trying to use CopyHere with the flag 0x14 thinking it will overwrite fonts. That doesn’t work for the font directory.

If you want to check and see which fonts are visible to .NET on the system then you can try

[void] [System.Reflection.Assembly]::LoadWithPartialName("System.Drawing")
(New-Object System.Drawing.Text.InstalledFontCollection).Families

Transport for Azure Service Bus

There are two transport mechanisms for service bus

  • AQMP
  • AQMP over web sockets

The default is to use plain AQMP but this uses port 5671. Often times this port may be blocked by firewalls. You can switch over to using the websocket based version which uses port 443 - much more commonly open already on firewalls.

.NET Code

You just need to update the TransportType in the service bus set up

var client = new ServiceBusClient(Configuration["ServiceBusConnection"], new ServiceBusClientOptions
    TransportType = ServiceBusTransportType.AmqpWebSockets

Azure Functions

The simplest way of getting websockets to work on functions is to update the connection string to mention it


Add user to role in sql server

This can be done with

sp_addrolemember @rolename = 'role', @membername = 'security_account'


sp_addrolemember @rolename = 'db_owner', @membername = 'evil_hacker_account'

another example

sp_addrolemember @rolename = 'db_datareader', @membername = 'datafactory'


Sequences are a handy feature in SQL server which provide an increasing, unique number. You wouldn’t typically use them directly but might use them under the covers in an identity. However from time to time they are useful when you need numbers but your primary key is a uniqueidentifier or you need two different ways of numbering records. I’ve been using them to associate records in a table into groups.

create SEQUENCE Seq_PermitNumber 
    start with 1 
    increment by 1

You can then use them like this

update tblManualPayment 
   set PermitNumber = next value for Seq_PermitNumber 
 where PermitNumber is null

This will give each record a unique permit number.


Using Durable Entities

Durable entities are basically blobs of state that are stored somewhere (probably table storage). You can retrieve them and signal them with changes. They can be tied directly into standard Azure functions.

You build one as pretty much a POCO that looks like

public class DuplicatePreventor
    public int CurrentValue { get; set; };

    public void Add(int amount) => this.CurrentValue += amount;

    public void Reset() => this.CurrentValue = 0;

    public int Get() => this.CurrentValue;

    public static Task Run([EntityTrigger] IDurableEntityContext ctx)
        => ctx.DispatchAsync<DuplicatePreventor>();

In this example there is one piece of state: the CurrentValue. You can retrieve it using the Get() function. Add and Reset are other signals you can send to the state.

Using it in a function involves adding a client to the signature of the function like so

public static async Task<IActionResult> Run(
    [HttpTrigger(AuthorizationLevel.Function, "post", Route = null)] HttpRequest req,
    [DurableClient] IDurableEntityClient client,
    ILogger log)

Once you have the client you can retrieve an existing state by specifying an entityId and then getting it from the client

var entityId = new EntityId(nameof(DuplicatePreventer), webhook.order_number.ToString());
var duplicationPreventionEntity = await client.ReadEntityStateAsync<DuplicatePreventer>(entityId);

This gets you back a wrapper which includes properties like EntityExists and EntityState.

You can signal changes in the entity through an unfortunate interface that looks like

await client.SignalEntityAsync(entityId, "Add", 1);

That’s right, strings are back in style.


If you create the durable entity in your function and then request it’s value you at once you won’t get the correct value - you just get null. I’d bet they are using some sort of outbox model that only sends data updates at the end of the function execution.


Advanced Web Application Firewall Rules in Azure with Terraform

If you’re creating an Application Gateway in Terraform for Azure you’re using this resource azurerm_application_gateway. This resource allows for some basic configuration of the Web Application Firewall through the waf_configuration block. However the configuration there is very limited and basically restricted to turning it off and on and choosing the base rule set. If you want a custom rule then you need to break off the rules into a separate azurerm_web_application_firewall_policy. This can then be referenced back in the azurerm_application_gateway through the firewall_policy_id

You can use the advanced rules to set up things like Geographic restrictions. For instance this set of rules will block everything but requests from Canada and the US.

### Web application firewall settings
resource "azurerm_web_application_firewall_policy" "appfirewall" {
  name                = local.basename
  resource_group_name = var.resource_group_name
  location            = var.resource_group_location

  custom_rules {
    name      = "OnlyUSandCanada"
    priority  = 1
    rule_type = "MatchRule"

    match_conditions {
      match_variables {
        variable_name = "RemoteAddr"
      operator           = "GeoMatch"
      negation_condition = true
      match_values       = ["CA", "US"]
    action = "Block"

  policy_settings {
    enabled = true
    mode    = "Detection"
    # Global parameters
    request_body_check          = true
    max_request_body_size_in_kb = 128
    file_upload_limit_in_mb     = 100

Importing an Encrypted Backup into Azure Managed SQL

Let’s say you’re moving an encrypted backup into Azure. The encryption was set up like this

   ENCRYPTION BY PASSWORD = 'a password that''s really strong here'  
   WITH SUBJECT = 'test1backup',   
   EXPIRY_DATE = '20220101';  

Now we need to export this certificate which can be done with

BACKUP CERTIFICATE BackupKey TO FILE = 'c:\temp\backupkey.cer'
    FILE = 'c:\temp\backupkey.pvk',
    DECRYPTION BY PASSWORD = 'a password that''s really strong here',
    ENCRYPTION BY PASSWORD = 'A strong password for the certificate' )

Now we have two file which contain the public and private keys. We need to combine these into something that Azure Key Vault can understand and this something is a .pfx file. There is a tool called pvk2pfx which can be used for this task and it is found in the Windows Enterprise Driver Kit https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/drivers/download-the-wdk. It is also installed as part of visual studio. On my machine it was in C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\10.0.17763.0\x86\pvk2pfx.exe

Run this command to combine them

& "C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\10.0.17763.0\x86\pvk2pfx.exe" -pvk C:\temp\backupkey.pvk -pi 'A strong password for the certificate' -spc C:\temp\backupkey.cer -pfx c:\temp\backupkey.pfx

Next up we need to import this key into azure keyvault. This can be done using the GUI or the command line tools. Everybody likes a pretty picture so let’s use the Portal. Click into the key vault and then under certificates

Then click on Generate/Import and fill in the form there selecting the .pfx file created above.

The password will be the same one you used when exporting from SQL server. Once the certificate is imported it should be available to anybody or any application with access to certificates in key vault.

You can open up SQL Server Management Studio and in there add a new certificate selecting the certificate from the Key Vault connection




This is a really nice tool for manipulating JSON on the command line. The syntax is, however, esoteric like you would not believe. Here are some cheats to help out

If you have an array and want to take just the object at a specific index


which returns the 3rd element

If you want to extract a value from an array of objects then you can use


This works for multiple levels too so if you have nested objects you can


Given an array where you want to filter it then you can use this

[ .[] | select( .LicensePlate | contains("PM184J")) ] 

To select a single field you could then do

[ .[] | select( .LicensePlate | contains("PM184J")) ] |  map( .LicensePlate)

If you want multiple fields built back into an object do

{LicensePlate: .[].LicensePlate, EndTime: .[].EndTime}