Meeting Recap for September 14, 2002

FoxPro News:

The 2002 Visual FoxPro DevCon is under way.  One of the highlights of this year's DevCon is a beta preview of the upcoming VFP 8, due out probably some time around the end of the year.  We'll have more to say about that at this month's meeting (see below).

The Great Lakes Great Database Workshop (GLGDW, a.k.a. Whilfest) is now just a few weeks away.  For details, go to

Looking ahead, Essential Fox, the only spring FoxPro conference in North America, will be held April 25 - 28, 2003 at the Westin Crown Center in Kansas City, Missouri.  Find out more at  You can even register early without paying by visiting, and selecting the "Reservation" option under the "Form of Payment" section.

Microsoft's Visual FoxPro home page ( has gotten a make-over.  Log on and check it out.

If you or any of your customers are running VFP 6, there is a patch available which addresses a security vulnerability in this version of VFP.  Go to to read about and download it.

Main Presentation:

At the September meeting, I demonstrated two "virtual PC" products: VMWare Workstation ( and Virtual PC (  Both products allow you to create multiple virtual machines on a single PC.  You can specify how much RAM and hard disk space each virtual PC has, and install a different operating system on each one.  Each virtual PC is completely independent of the host O/S, has its own registry, and can be easily copied from one workstation to another, or stored on a server or CD.  Both products also have rollback and commit capabilities, which allow you to start a virtual machine session, install software, do all kinds of mucking around, then shut down and discard all your changes, putting the virtual machine back in the exact state it was in before you started.  All this is possible without creating a dual- or multi-boot, and there is no need to allot specific partitions of your hard disk to the virtual machines.  VMWare Workstation offers a 30-day free trial and sells for $300-$329.  Virtual PC has a 45-day free trial, and sells for $229.

I also demonstrated a utility I wrote for updating local IntelliSense tables with custom items from a "master" table placed in a shared location.  A download for this will be made available on the GRAFUG website in the near future.

Next Meeting:

The October GRAFUG meeting will be held Saturday, October 12, 2002 (next Saturday!).  The meeting will start at 11:00 am and last about 2 hours.  This month we will be looking at all the new features of VFP 8.  This version was promoted as being an "end-user" release, offering a lot of new features that your users can see.  Indeed it does, but it also includes a significant number of language and IDE enhancements, including several new classes, all of which can help you write more efficient code, and be more productive.  Hey, it even has some report writer enhancements!

As always, if there's anything that you'd be willing to present, or there's a topic that you would really like to cover at a future meeting, please send me an email and let me know.
Our meetings are held at:
Optimal Solutions, Inc.
3101 Prairie SW
Grandville, MI 49418
Phone: 616-281-6040

Directions:  (From 28th Street)
Go to Ivanrest and turn south
Go to Prairie (second light) and turn left
Optimal Solutions is the 4th driveway on the left

For links to a map, please refer to the website:
For other questions, contact me at

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