I've always been an avid gamer but over the years my group of gamer friends was whittled down; I’ve also found my time was more constrained. I fell out of the Warhammer scene and was lured to Magic the Gathering, the fantasy card world was so colourful and vivid. I still love to play MtG occasionally, I’ve flirted with MtGO but there’s nothing quite like owning and playing with physical cards, alas the Magic scene moves on far too quickly for me as a casual player to collect and stay competitive.

I’ve been watching a lot of TableTop recently, a YouTube show hosted by Wil Wheaton (that guy has actually grown on me a lot) My gaming curiosity was also recently perked when I attended a good friends birthday party where we played Cards Against Humanity what an evil little game that is, side splittingly funny but not something to play with your mum.  

So I’ve taken the plunge back into gaming, my collection at the moment is small, but I’m hoping to add to it overtime. I’ve been playing a lot of Ticket to RideEurope which is a game both my wife and I love. We’ve also purchased Tsuro, which is also fun and quick. We’re waiting to have some friends over so that we can play Betrayal at House on the Hill , but it looks like a real blast.


Blog being moved

I've taken the decision to move a large number of my blog posts from this blog to a new blog under a different domain name.

I'll try and keep this blog going but I doubt there will be many updates. For my latest blogs you'll need to head over to http:///www.1it.guru  in case DNS hasn't propogated or I've forgot or messed up the settings you can access it directly at http://1itgurublog.blogspot.com


GoDaddy PHPMailer Relay problems

This has been very frustrating, if you search for GoDaddy and PHPMailer you'll find loads of posts about how PHPMailer needs to be configured in order to work with GoDaddy's hosting.

I tried using some of the configuration information I found online but I wasn’t having any luck. I kept getting “Error: The following From address failed:” despite trying several different addresses (including valid addresses that I had setup on GoDaddy’s cPanel)

I finally came across Aravind is Online blog which nudged me in the right direction (http://aravindisonline.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/phpmailer-with-godaddy-smtp-email.html)

For completeness.
You cannot use an external host to relay email messages. You must use the following host: relay-hosting.secureserver.net  

I setup a mail user specifically for PHPMailer (I am hosting a subdomain so all my email services are elsewhere)

Use PORT 25 (numerous guides suggest 465)

Set SMTP Auth to true, Aravind’s guide suggests to set this to false, however this didn’t work for me.


US / UK Date format reverse in Excel

This problem has been bugging me for 3 days now; I am retrieving a date time from SQL. I have verified that the date is in my required format dd-mm-yy, and I have tried a few different ways of selecting the date just to be sure DATEPART(day, fieldname) , DATEPART(month, fieldname), I have even tried dd-MMM-yy.

If I display the date on a form or in a messagebox it displays fine, the moment I put the date value into an Excel cell it flips the day and month around. Originally I was going to work around the issue by prefixing all my dates with a single quote ‘ so that Excel treats them as being strings, however the end user wants to sort on some of the date values and it won’t work quite right as a string.

After banging my head against the wall for 3 days I finally came across the DateValue(date) function! Figured I’d share the solution to this frustrating little problem.


Excel 2010 .xlsm File hangs when opening

I've been writing some VBA macros to improve an Excel workbooks functionality. I was modifying a Sub Routine and just in case I made a mistake and need to revert back to it I made a copy and appended _backup to its name. As it happens I decided I preferred the original way the sub routine worked so I restored it (deleted the original routine) and then renamed the _backup. Turns out I had accidentally copied the routine twice (VBA didn't warn me of this). Thinking everything was fine I saved and closed my workbook, when I came back to it a few hours later I was unable to open it, Excel 2010 just sat at 100% without allow me into the workbook.

I found a few suggestions online to fix this and none worked, so here's what I did to get mine working.

Change the extension of the file from .xlsm to .xls and then open the file. I got prompted that there was a file type mismatch (or something similar) and it also gave me a complication error, something along the lines of problem with sub routine. As soon as I saw the sub routine error I knew where my coding problem was, corrected it and then saved the file back as .xlsm.

I hope this helps someone out, had me in a panic for a few moments.