TFS/VSTS/ALM/DevOps Ramblings #1

Accentient has a blog post up entitled Wassup Team Room?.  In it, Richard, with help from Brian Randell, describes a novel use for Team Rooms in TFS/VSTS:

Team Rooms can be used to simply let you know what’s been going on within a team project without any direct action by the team

Given the prevalence of Slack, HipChat, and other group chat solutions among developers, I think this is a great way to use Team Rooms.


Ben Day solves a problem with An ASP.NET MVC Site That’s Easy to Deploy from a TFS Build:

…If you’re in a DevOps mindset and you’re trying to deploy an ASP.NET Web Application (WebForms, MVC, WebAPI), you’re probably going to panic when you open up the artifacts directory (“a”) and find everything EXCEPT your web application.  If you’re used to doing “right-click deploys” or you’re used to building with the old XAML-based TFS build system, you’re probably wondering where your nice _PublishedWebsites directory is.

This is something that I struggled with back in May, when building out an Azure DevOps demo for Infront Consulting. Ben does a great job of explaining what is going on, and how to make things work in this post.


Buck Hodges pulls back the covers in Controlling exposure through feature flags in VS Team Services:

One question that I often get from customers is how we manage exposing features in the service. Features may not be complete or need to be revealed at a particular time. We may want to get early feedback. With the team working in master and deploying every three-week sprint, let’s take a look at how we do this for Team Services.

Buck always provides detailed posts, and this one is no exception.  He describes in detail how feature flags work and how they are used by the VSTS team.


Rene van Osnabrugge discusses how to copy files (and run tests) on a remote machine back to the VSTS build and release agent:

This week I was working on a script, running in my VSTS release pipeline that executed Pester tests on a remote machine. Running Pester tests on the VSTS Build and Release Agent work fine with one the awesome tasks on the Visual Studio Marketplace, but this was about running the tests remotely AND getting the output back in to the pipeline top publish the results.

I like this post for two reasons. First, he solves a potential problem rather elegantly. Second, he talks about Pester and PowerShell!  In my day job at Infront Consulting, I do a LOT of PowerShell work.  I discovered Pester a couple of years ago while helping to write the 100 Days of DevOps with PowerShell series at System Center Central:


Parting Quote, from Xiaolu Guo:

It is important to be comfortable with uncertainty.

    1. Rene van Osnabrugge October 3, 2016

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