Posts Tagged ‘VFP 9 SP2’


I just downloaded the latest update to the VFP 9 SP2 Hotfix this evening. This latest file includes the missing VFP9T.DLL (Multi-threaded runtime) file.

Same place, same bat channel…

I have been told the other hotfixes are no longer password protected too, but I have not had time to test because of a limited bandwidth while on vacation.



Earlier today in the comments section on my post about the release of the new VFP 9 SP2 hotfix, Sergey Berezniker and Emerson Santon Reed noted the VFP9T.DLL runtime file is not included in the post. It is something I noticed the day of the release but was tainted by the fact the Report Designer is not valid in the runtime. What I forgot is about the rollup of the previous hotfixes and how they should be included. The multi-threaded runtime is in the included Merge Module so you can get it by building an installer and installing the file. But it would be much simpler to get the file in the hotfix download.

The other issue is the previous two VFP 9 SP2 hotfixes (not the latest) just posted on Code Gallery still have the download files password protected. Annoying for sure, but not super critical because the new hotfix has these two rolled up. The business case for the old hotfix might be valid for some developers.

I contacted the Fox Team at Microsoft this morning and they jumped on the issue. This evening I got word that the fixes are in the final stages of getting prepared for release and should be ready in the next few days.

So the choice is yours. You can pull the hotfix and start testing the changes and how they impact your application. If you want the multi-threaded runtime and don’t want to build an install to get it, just hold still for a few more days. Things are getting fixed in all three downloads.



10, 9, 8, 7, 6 (main engine start), 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…. Liftoff!

I bet you think I am talking about a launch of NASA’s Space Shuttle. If you know me this is a good guess, but this time you are wrong. I have better news!

Microsoft has released a hotfix to the most serious Report Designer bug in VFP 9 SP2. This is the Data Group bug Cathy Pountney first blogged about here: Gotcha: Serious report bug with Data Groups introduced in VFP 9 SP2.

You can read about the fix in the Microsoft KnowledgeBase article #968409, titled “FIX: The group header of a data grouping is not printed at the top of each page as expected after you install Microsoft Visual FoxPro 9.0 Service Pack 2

This fix is considered by many to be the most serious bug introduced in VFP 9 SP2, and has often been referred to as the main stumbling block to the adoption of VFP 9 SP2. I am hopeful with this news that you will consider downloading the new hotfix and giving it a try to see if it works well for your apps. Only you can make the determination on what is best for your customers. Yes, there are more bugs to squash, but a high percentage of them have decent workarounds where this particular bug did not.

Additionally, there is some terrific news on how you can get the hotfix. Previous to this release Microsoft only made Visual FoxPro hotfixes available by calling Microsoft Product Support Services (PSS), report the bug in the hotfix, and then Microsoft would make it available to you. Hotfixes are easier for the team to release because there is less overhead, but getting it to the Fox Community is a pain in the neck because of the PSS bottleneck. So the “Fox Team” came up with releasing this important hotfix through MSDN Code Gallery so any Visual FoxPro developer can download and apply the patch without calling PSS. I think this is a real positive move for the Fox Community.

The hotfix can be downloaded on the download page of Code Gallery for the KB article.

Both the other hotfixes released for VFP 9 SP2 are rolled up into this release so if you have patched SP2 for the following fixes they are included in the new build:

  1. FIX: The toolbar on an SDI form is disabled in Visual FoxPro 9.0 Service Pack 2 (build 6303, 12-Apr-2008, KB 948528)
  2. FIX: Records from another user session that violate the criteria for a parent table are displayed in the browse window for a child table in a Visual FoxPro 9.0 Service Pack 2 multiuser environment (build 6602, 03-Jun-2008, KB 952548)

Update: Milind Lele tells me the previous hotfixes for VFP 9 SP2 are also available on MSDN Code Gallery (just in case you are not interested in the Group Header fix. {g})

Just in case you have not heard, in addition to the core EXE and runtime hotfixes we have a new VFP 9 SP2 Help file available on VFPX.

I am very excited about this news. I want to thank the “Fox Team” for their hard work and personal efforts to make the hotfix happen. I also want to thank those in the Fox Community who have reported VFP 9 SP2 bugs, those who have documented the workarounds, those who researched when some of the alleged SP2 bugs really surfaced, and those who tested out the hotfix to ensure it is the best possible fix for the reports at this time.

Hopefully this is just the third in a string of hotfixes we will see from Microsoft as they support the product we all love. Today is a very good day. This is one small step for VFP, one giant leap for VFP developers. Please spread the word!

Update: Read more about this release on Cathy Pountney’s blog!



As you may know, the April 2008 version of the VFP 9 SP2 Help file is broken. Actually I would consider it a serious mess. Lots of cosmetic things broken, and hyperlinks broken on important things like properties, events, and methods. I blogged about many of the problems found. A real mess, literally unusable, and not much hope from Microsoft to get it fixed by the Help team because of resources.

Several people (who will remain nameless at this time) started working behind the scenes to fix the Help file by decompiling it, repairing the problems, and rebuilding it. Some of us allegedly got closer than others and there allegedly was lots of collaboration, but one person allegedly made a serious breakthrough with lots of time put into getting it corrected.

I contacted Alan Griver and asked if a Help file allegedly was fixed, would Microsoft post it for the Fox Community to use it. You see, there are lots of legal entanglements with copyrights and third-parties and no one wanted anyone to be thrown in jail. It took a while and I was starting to lose hope.

A couple of nights ago Alan emailed me with the news that we can post the changes on VFPX under the Creative Commons license. This means the Fox Community has the rights to improve the VFP 9 SP2 Help file! Some final tweaks are going to be made to the new file, and one additional fix has to be made, but soon a usable VFP 9 SP2 Help file will be posted.

Thanks to Alan Griver for spending time battling Microsoft Legal and going to bat again for the Fox Community. Proof again that even though there might not be an official Fox Team at Microsoft, we still have friends who are helping us out. And thanks to all allegedly involved in the battle to assemble the Help file without some key source files. You know who you allegedly are and you folks rock!

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As I noted last night, a new version of the VFP 9 SP2 Help file is available for download.

I have reviewed the new Help file and it does have a couple cosmetic issues, which in my opinion are minor compared to the advantage of including the 600+ missing index items. There is one unexpected minor improvement too, and I found a more serious problem, but it is not a show stopper in my opinion.

Cosmetic issues:

  1. Blue header section is white.
  2. Header section is rearranged a bit.
  3. Parameters are no longer bold.
  4. Microsoft copyright missing at the bottom (maybe this could be to our advantage. {evil grin}
  5. See Also sections with different References and Other Resources subsections are all merged under Concepts.
  6. Help title would be better as Visual FoxPro 9.0 SP2 instead of dv_foxhelp91.

Cosmetic improvements:

  1. Code is more readable without extra white space.

Real problems:

  1. The only serious problem I have found in my limited testing the Favorites are missing. I am not talking about my favorite topics (those always seem to get lost when updating CHM files), but the entire tab and feature is missing. I use this a lot and it will be a big hit my productivity. It won’t stop me from using this version of the Help file.
  2. Internal links are broken on a number of pages (thanks to Andrzej for pointing this out to me and posting an image on the Foxite Upload site), also not a show stopper.
  3. PEM links are broken on pages for all objects I have looked at. This is definitely a serious problem so you have a choice, missing PEMs (used all the time by some people), or missing index entries in original SP2 Help. Both have a common workaround, use the Search page.

[RAS (26-Apr-2008 @ 10:30AM) - Updated to reflect internal links broken]
[RAS (28-Apr-2008 @ 2:26PM) - Updated to reflect PEM comment I posted yesterday, but not read by some readers based on posted feedback I have read]



Need Help? Specifically, need a more complete index in the VFP 9 SP2 Help?

As promised at the MVP Summit, Microsoft has made available the corrected VFP 9 SP2 Help file, which includes the missing index entries. Get the file at the Microsoft Download site.

One small step for VFP 9 SP2, one huge Help for VFP 9 developers…



Alan Griver spilled the beans today that Microsoft has some fixes for VFP 9 SP2. Alan announced the missing index items in the VFP 9 SP2 Help file are fixed and being reviewed, and will be available online sometime soon. The “Fox Team” has already fixed one report bug when the preview toolbar becomes unusable in the “new style” report preview. The fix is done and is going through the packaging process before being released to the Fox Community.

This is absolutely great news and a step in the right direction to help with the adoption rate of VFP 9 SP2.

There is more good news as the “Fox Team” is open to possibly fixing more SP2 regression bugs. No promises were made, but it is encouraging news that the serious bugs are being considered. It was a positive meeting and a good day.

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Just in case for some reason you don’t have your favorite blog reader pointing to Bo Durban’s Moxie Data Weblog, you might be interested in his posts on VFP 9 SP2 issues, bugs, and workarounds. Excellent posts with insightful details on one of the reporting issues. I look forward to reading more as this series continues.