Site 24×7 and JSONPath Example

We had an issue a couple of days ago where two points of failure caused some downtime and so I spent most of today revisiting all my monitors to give us as much warning as possible if one of our services fails.

One particular API I set up lives on the as400 (iSeries) and operates off of it’s ZendCore server in PHP.  I quickly scripted a page to verify:  connection between ZendCore PHP and db2, that the connection to that endpoint was in fact SSL, and on what port.

The PHP code is very simple and returns a JSON string that looks like this:

{
    "AS400CONNECTION": true,
    "SSL": true,
    "PORT": "633"
}

The slight problem today was figuring out how to get Site 24×7 to not just verify the link, but check the JSON values and verify it is what I need.  If not, then send the alert.  In this case, I want to verify AS400CONNECTION is true and SSL is true.

Site 24×7 suggests using a REST API monitor and then asserting the value in JSONPath.  I was completely new to this and finding a good clean example was a bit tough, hopefully this saves someone some time.  Here’s …

First Heroku App: Small API in PHP to Talk to .Net Core

I’ve recently been curious about switching to a time API for my time stamps and removing any dependency the app might have on the server for a timestamp.  Upon Googling I found some paid services, some free and of the free ones, I noticed one was hosted on Heroku.  I’ve heard of Heroku, but never had a reason to attempt to use it.  This was the perfect chance.

How I Created a Small “GetTime” API

First, I created a free account on Heroku, nothing special.  After verifying my email, I logged in to my Heroku Dashboard and up on the right hand corner, selected Create New App.  I named it my company-api and out popped an app.

I decided on just plain, legacy PHP and a simple DateTime string passed thru JSON encode, just to get started.  No authentication, no timezone,  just a simple spit out if a request to the site came, like this:

<?php
    header('Content-type:application/json;charset=utf-8');

    $DateTime = new DateTime();
    $currentTime = $DateTime->format("Y-m-d H:i:s");
    echo json_encode($currentTime);
?>

I created a Git repo for this brand new file and pushed it out.  Then, I went back to Heroku, Dashboard, My App and Deploy.  I selected Github as my deploy “resource” …

Print PDF’s on Azure Using an API and RazorLight (Update 1)

The API mentioned in my first tutorial got taken down and so I had to do some updates.  First, choose another 3rd party API.  I currently am trying out  HTML 2 PDF Rocket and modified my code a bit:

[HttpGet]
public async Task<FileStreamResult> PrintAsync(int id)
{
    InvoiceVM invoiceVM = new InvoiceVM();
    invoiceVM = invoiceRepository.Get(id);

    var engine = new RazorLightEngineBuilder()
      .UseFilesystemProject(_hostingEnvironment.WebRootPath + "\\pdf\\")
      .UseMemoryCachingProvider()
      .Build();

    var view = await engine.CompileRenderAsync("PDF.cshtml", invoiceVM);
    string apiKey = "xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx";

    using (var client = new WebClient())
    {
        // Build the conversion options
        NameValueCollection options = new NameValueCollection();
        options.Add("apikey", apiKey);
        options.Add("value", view);
        options.Add("MarginLeft", "10");
        options.Add("MarginRight", "10");
        options.Add("MarginTop", "10");
        options.Add("MarginBottom", "10");
        options.Add("PageSize", "Letter");

        MemoryStream ms = new MemoryStream(client.UploadValues("http://api.html2pdfrocket.com/pdf", options));

        return new FileStreamResult(ms, "application/pdf");
    }
}

This is based directly off the HTML 2 Rocket documentation.  For the rest of the code see the first tutorial.

 …

Print PDF’s on Azure Using an API and RazorLight

The Problem

I recently had an issue with printing a report to PDF using Microsoft Reporting Service and a RDLC file, etc. Something similar to this. Unfortunately, it worked great in development, but refused to work once deployed into Azure. No matter what I did, I could not duck the GDI errors I kept getting, and apparently this continues through a line of various PDF exporting extensions, all of which rely on GDI for export. Turns out, I’m not alone in facing this problem and so, I decided to find a solution.

The Solution

My general idea was to use something to render my PDF view, send that view as one long html string to a free PDF microservice and get the PDF in return.…

PayTrace: 400 Bad Request For Declined Payment

TLDR:  post IS successful.  PayTrace, by design, returns a 400 error, which sets off exceptions in httpresponse.  Solution: catch the exception and then continue deserializing your response.

I coded a few weeks ago a .NET post to the PayTrace API which helps me demo and test payment by credit card using client side encryption.  The process more or less went like this:

  • Create demo account as a merchant on Paytrace
  • Download PEM key
  • On submit of form with credit card information, an imported PayTraceJS library encrypts the card number and csc code
  • Use the demo account’s username and password to submit a request for a token
  • Submit transaction (which includes encrypted info as well as other required fields) using token and await response

A successful http response returns a status code of 200.  I read it via stream, deserialize it using json into my CardResponse object (both successful and failure responses have the same design).  Everything went great until I began testing rejected cards.

Step By Step: Accepting Checks via Telecheck, Payeezy & Direct API (.NET)

This is a very basic tutorial on dealing with Payeezy, who’s documentation I found sometimes difficult.  Some of this guidance, I only found in forum threads and so I document…

Get What You Need

  1. Merchant Demo account
  2. Developer Sandbox account
  3. Merchant Token (demo)
  4. API secret (sandbox)
  5. API key (sandbox