2012 Greater Moncton Excellence Awards–Emerging Business

By Sebastien AubeSeptember 25, 2012 at 10:16 AM


Please join us on Friday October 19th at the Ramada Crystal Palace to honour a number of excellent companies in the Greater Moncton area.

This year we are proud to be nominated in the “Emerging Business category.” We wish our co-nominee, Dr Brent Howley, as well as all other nominees the best of chances on that day.

About Cognitive X Solutions:

Cognitive X is a software solutions provider based in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.

Our highly skilled team of passionate professionals are hard-wired for software development and have been plugged into our industry for over 20 years, combined.

We are prepared to handle any project, from basic to complex, ensuring successful completion and delivering solutions which exceed expectations.

Cognitive X serves a wide range of clients including individuals & small business, as well as those in the insurance, education, manufacturing, government and large industry sectors.

Our team is here to serve your specific needs, help you to overcome your challenges and provide you with solutions that are easily adopted and maintainable.

Let us bring your idea to life and put technology to work for you.

Posted in: Awards


ASP.NET MVC 4 and Mocking ModelState

By Adam GreeneAugust 23, 2012 at 8:37 AM

Actually, mocking isn’t quite the word (but we’ll talk about that in a moment).

At Cognitive X, we specialize in web development using ASP.NET MVC (currently using V4), and we very much love Test Driven Development.  So as part of our development process with MVC, we write tests for our Controller Actions.  One of the problems that we run into with testing controllers outside of the MVC framework is that they are not fully setup and many pieces are missing that allow the controller to function properly.  The biggest one being ModelState.

For example, given the following piece of code, no matter what, it always returns true because the ModelState is actually empty, when run outside the normal MVC pipeline:

if (ModelState.IsValid)
    // Perform action

So inorder to properly test our controllers, we wrote a method that would take the model and setup ModelState correctly (including running all validations on the model).  It was quite easy with V3 of ASP.NET MVC to do this, but with MVC 4 and the introduction of so many new providers (ModelMetaDataProviders, ValueProviders, etc), the old way no longer worked. I spent a morning chasing ModelStateDictionaries through the MVC code (thank goodness for ILSpy, it made my life so much easier), trying to figure out where it actually got filled out.  What I eventually hit upon was the code hidden within the Controller.TryValidateModel, which did exactly what I wanted it to do. The only problem is that it’s protected internal and no good for a general support extension.  So I pulled the code out, rewrote it a bit, and here it is:

public static void SetupModel<T>(this Controller ctrl, T model)
            if (ctrl.ControllerContext == null)
                Mock<ControllerContext> ctx = new Mock<ControllerContext>();
                ctrl.ControllerContext = ctx.Object;

            DataAnnotationsModelMetadataProvider provider = new DataAnnotationsModelMetadataProvider();

            var metadataForType = provider.GetMetadataForType(() => model, typeof(T));
            var temp = new ViewDataDictionary();

            foreach (var kv in new RouteValueDictionary(model))
                temp.Add(kv.Key, kv.Value);

            DefaultModelBinder binder = new DefaultModelBinder();

            ctrl.ViewData = new ViewDataDictionary(temp) { ModelMetadata = metadataForType, Model = model };

            foreach (ModelValidationResult current in ModelValidator.GetModelValidator(metadataForType, ctrl.ControllerContext).Validate(null))
                ctrl.ViewData.ModelState.AddModelError(CreateSubPropertyName("", current.MemberName), current.Message);

So like I said, Mocking is not really the right word for it, it’s actually setting up ModelState to contain the right validation information / model errors, so that controller actions work as expected.

Posted in: Programming


WCF: Multiple Secure Ports

By Adam GreeneJune 25, 2012 at 5:09 AM

The Problem

We were faced with an interesting issue on a project recently.  We had WCF (Windows Communication Framework) running on a custom port (as IIS does not allow more than one HTTPS site per port, per IP) and once we purchased a second IP address, we moved the web services site to the regular HTTPS port (443) on that new URL.  But because we already had clients in the field running the application that called the web services, we needed to maintain both ports on the same DNS name (443 and the custom port).   The problem?  WCF does not support this scenario without modification, especially if you have a custom ServiceHost (which we do as we wanted to introduce StructureMap into the WCF bootstrap process).  Let’s look at the solution.

The Solution

The first step in the solution is to tell WCF that you actually want to support this scenario.  You simply add the following line (line #2) to your web.config file in your WCF web services web site:

		<serviceHostingEnvironment multipleSiteBindingsEnabled="true"/>
				<binding name="BasicHttpBinding_INotify" closeTimeout="00:01:00"
                    openTimeout="00:01:00" receiveTimeout="00:10:00" sendTimeout="00:01:00"
                    allowCookies="false" bypassProxyOnLocal="false" hostNameComparisonMode="StrongWildcard"
                    maxBufferSize="524288" maxBufferPoolSize="524288" maxReceivedMessageSize="524288"
                    messageEncoding="Text" textEncoding="utf-8" transferMode="Buffered"
					<readerQuotas maxDepth="32" maxStringContentLength="8192" maxArrayLength="16384"
                        maxBytesPerRead="4096" maxNameTableCharCount="16384" />
					<security mode="TransportWithMessageCredential">
						<transport clientCredentialType="None" proxyCredentialType="None"
                            realm="" />
						<message clientCredentialType="UserName" algorithmSuite="Default" />


The next step is to make sure that all your end points are using relative Uri’s and not absolute.  In our custom ServiceHostwe had the following code (note line #27):

public ServicesServiceHost(Type serviceType, params Uri[] baseAddresses)
            : base(serviceType, baseAddresses)
            serviceBehaviourType = typeof(ServicesServiceBehavior<>).MakeGenericType(serviceType);
            Initialize(serviceType, baseAddresses);

protected void Initialize(Type serviceType, params Uri[] baseAddresses)
            var httpsAddresses = from ba in baseAddresses
                                 where ba.Scheme == Uri.UriSchemeHttps
                                 select ba;


            foreach (var httpsAddress in httpsAddresses)
                var serviceContract = serviceType.GetInterfaceWithAttribute(typeof(ServiceContractAttribute));
                if (serviceContract == null)
                    serviceContract = serviceType;

                var binding = ConfigureBinding();
                    this.AddServiceEndpoint(serviceContract, binding, httpsAddress);
                catch (Exception e)

                if (!this.Description.Behaviors.Contains(typeof(ServiceMetadataBehavior)))
                    this.Description.Behaviors.Add(new ServiceMetadataBehavior()
                        HttpGetEnabled = true
                var mex = MetadataExchangeBindings.CreateMexHttpBinding();
                this.AddServiceEndpoint(typeof(IMetadataExchange), mex, "mex");

	.IncludeExceptionDetailInFaults = true;
                ServiceSecurityAuditBehavior ssab = new ServiceSecurityAuditBehavior()
                    AuditLogLocation = AuditLogLocation.Application,
                    MessageAuthenticationAuditLevel = AuditLevel.SuccessOrFailure,
                    ServiceAuthorizationAuditLevel = AuditLevel.SuccessOrFailure,
                    SuppressAuditFailure = false

The simple solution was to change line #27 to:

this.AddServiceEndpoint(serviceContract, binding, "");

and everything worked.  To achieve the same results in XML, you simply would add an endpoint description to the XML like this (note that the address attributes are empty):

  <!-- This endpoint is exposed at the base address provided by host: http://localhost/servicemodelsamples/service.svc  -->
  <endpoint address=""
            contract="Microsoft.ServiceModel.Samples.ICalculator" />
  <!-- secure endpoint exposed at {base address}/secure: http://localhost/servicemodelsamples/service.svc/secure -->
  <endpoint address="secure"
            contract="Microsoft.ServiceModel.Samples.ICalculator" />

Posted in: Programming