Derik Whittaker



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Re: Don’t use your email account for testing

Orin (Ayende @ Rahien) has a post about not using your email account for testing (found here).  I would go a step further and say don’t use your development teams group address.  Recently I was developing a heath check windows service that was designed to poll one of our web services that died all the time.

*** Side bar ***
This service dies when bad data is provided to a unmanaged dll we are using.  When this happens it kills the app pool.
*** End side bar ***

When this service noticed that our web service was not responding it would send an email out to our group so that someone could restart the app pool.  Well, during my testing I was not resetting my polling timer correctly, so every tenth of a second an email was being sent out to our team.  By the time I noticed what was going on I had sent about 1000 emails to the team…. Opps.

So, the lesson learned here was to NOT use either your account or your teams group account.

Till next time,

Posted 09-12-2007 8:43 AM by Derik Whittaker
Filed under: ,



Mike wrote re: Re: Don’t use your email account for testing
on 09-12-2007 10:33 PM

I think many of us have done that kind of thing at some point. :-)  It's always fun when you suddenly realize why you're getting 100's or 1000's of emails and scramble to kill the process that's sending them.  Of course, it's even more fun when your entire team let's out a collective "WTF?" as they start to receive the emails.

As you said...lesson learned.

Jim Bolla wrote re: Re: Don’t use your email account for testing
on 09-12-2007 10:38 PM

What we've done on projects is create a dedicated IMAP mailbox so that anyone responsible for  the project could check it.

Now that I'm getting more comfortable with log4net, I'm thinking that this could be done via that. This would allow it to be a little bit more dynamic on how it sends the notifications. For production it could be email, for development and testing it would just log to file.

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