Posts

Generate Random AES Encryption Key

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I was looking for a way to quickly generate a random AES key online, but couldn't find anything. I looked into a couple methods using JavaScript, but determined that a C# solution would be better.

I needed to base64 encode the key array to store that value in a config file.

Here's the code I ended up with:
https://gist.github.com/aaronhoffman/09b56f77a95205fe10365bde2f4a02e5




Hope this helps!
-Aaron



Sync Gmail Contacts Between Accounts

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For the last few years I've needed a way to easily sync contacts between gmail accounts. The only method previously supported by Google is to export to csv then re-import the contact list.

This may work for some, but clearly there is a desire for something else.


I finally found some time to dig into the Google Contact APIs and created a site to perform this sync operation easily, without needing to install any software:

https://www.gmailcontactsync.com/







Steps to sync:

 1. Authorize your gmail account
 2. Link an second gmail account (up to 5 currently)
 3. Compare two accounts to see which email addresses and phone numbers will be created.
 4. Click the Sync Accounts button to initiate the sync! It's that easy!



Hope this helps,
Aaron


links:
product hunt





Hide Main Menu for Visual Studio 2017

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To improve my development experience, I disable as many windows and toolbars in Visual Studio as possible. The one toolbar that you can not disable via the IDE itself is the "main menu" toolbar (File, Edit, View, etc.).




There is an extension that I've used in previous versions of Visual Studio that hides this menu until the user presses the `alt` key. Here is a link to that extension in the gallery:

old -- https://marketplace.visualstudio.com/items?itemName=MatthewJohnsonMSFT.HideMainMenu -- old


For whatever reason, that extension does not appear available in 2017, so I've published my own extension to complete the same task: https://marketplace.visualstudio.com/items?itemName=AaronHoffman.HideMainMenu2017


I will gladly take mine down if Matthew Johnson ever updates his extension.


Hope this helps!
Aaron


git - protect local master branch, prevent commit and push

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If you've worked with a remote git hosting service like github, you're likely familiar with the concept of protecting a branch. Other remote git hosting services (vsts, bitbucket, gitlab, etc) also support the concept. It's a good idea to protect your remote in this way, but why stop there? You can also protect your local dev environment from human error by using git hooks.

A new git repo (`git init`) comes with various hook examples in the `.git/hooks/` directory. We can tie into two of those hooks, `pre-commit` and `pre-push`, to prevent commits to your local master branch, and to prevent attempting to push to the remote master branch (even from a local feature branch).

Place the two files found in the gist linked below in your repo's .git/hooks directory to prevent the two actions described above:

https://gist.github.com/aaronhoffman/ffbfd36928f9336be2436cffe39feaec



Hope this helps,
Aaron



Search iPhone Text Messages with SQLite SQL Query

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In my experience, the iPhone text message search functionality is usually pretty awful. Especially if you're trying to find a text from a few years ago. Luckily, if you backup your iPhone using iTunes, your text messages are exported/stored in a SQLite database, and it is fairly easy to query.

Here are the steps to SQL Query your Text Messages.

  1. Backup your iPhone using iTunes.

  2. Find the SQLite file that contains your text messages.
    - in ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup/* with a filename of 3d0d7e5fb2ce288813306e4d4636395e047a3d28

  3. Ensure you have a SQLite Query tool (SQLiteBrowser is pretty good).

  4. Open your SQLite Text Message DB File using your favorite SQLite query tool.

  5. Execute this query to see all your messages.

Disclaimer, I had to guess at the table structure, therefore I can not confirm that the joins in this query are 100% correct. My quick spot checks seemed to check out, and I was able to query the message.text field to find old…