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The Stumblings of an IT Manager ...2 days before we go live and you want WHAT....?

Ok, I am definately going to chalk this one up to lack of experience working on really large projects.  I have been struggling trying to get a project to compile locally so that I could debug the portion of code that I created and add it to source control, but my local dev just keeps failing. Its a large project (30+ top level solutions, each with 1-3 levels of included projects with between 5-9 projects per level), with lots of intertwining dependencies, but everyone else can get it to compile.  I had tried everything from getting a new copy of the entire project, overrwriting my local after removing the VSTS Workspace, removing the binaries before everything...  In the end it came down to naming conventions and directory length.

I am new to this project so I haven't had my hands on/in much of the project, and it turns out that lots of the sub projects in the site have some pretty long names (I have now run across some projects that are named under the following format:
CompanyName.ProjectName.CodeType.Plugin.BLL etc.)  And when you embed a project named like that within another project named similarly (not an issue with conflicting names, just length remember), and combine that with my personal directory setups (C:\work\projectname\branchname\sprintname\); it's definitely possible to exceed Microsoft's path limit of 260 characters when compiling. (ref. http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa365247(VS.85).aspx#maxpath). 

What really threw me off in this was that a.) I was the only person on the team that was having issues (in hindsight due to my methodical approach at structuring directories), and b.) It was only happening with a couple of the items in the large project (where I was just barely exceeding the max path, and only in certain areas), and not across the board.  The other thing is that the script that we are using to compile the project is a simple batch file, with no error checking.  It would be really useful to have a directory "check" routine in something like this that would verify the path length, and give an error message other than "*.dll was not found".  Granted this probably won't happen to me again after the headache that this caused.  Oh well, you live you learn, you write more code.

Posted on Tuesday, December 22, 2009 10:34 AM | Back to top


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