Team Foundation Service at the cloud. Setup continuous integration with Microsoft and non-Microsoft test provider

Today I’d like to write about a new offer from Microsoft — Team Foundation Service in the cloud. For now everything is free so this is a great time to play with this technology.

After great success of cloud-version source control I was 100% sure that Microsoft has to react and give their service. Especially because they have already a good product like TFS (after Perforce I really love TFS J). As I said for now TFS is a preview so everything is free. At 2013 a new price will be announcing. However, free plan will include max 5 users at system and some limit for builds (which in my opinion — ideally for small start-ups and freelancers). Previously I used Dropbox + SVN for all my freelance/home projects. Then I’ve switched almost everything to Bitbucket. However, all of this solutions don’t have continuous integrations, test runner and project planning (especially for agile, where TFS always was much-much better then jira).

In this article I’d like to show how easily we can create a simple application, host it at TFS in the cloud, setup continuous integration for each check-in and use not Microsoft test framework. Continue reading

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XP days in Kiev, Ukraine

Few days ago (on November, 16-17) I was at one of the biggest Ukraine conference related to agile engineering practices. The main topics were Unit Testing, TDD, Continuous Integration, BDD, Code Review, Refactoring, Acceptance Testing and etc. More about conference you can read here and about all session here.

This time there were a lot of different speakers of over the all country the word, such as UK, Norway, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, of course Ukraine and even Australia and USA.

Comparable to Belgium our Ukraine IT events of course are not so interesting and technically high. However, just we can do it better! J First day of conference wasn’t really good. And unfortunately, I’ve chose English speaker’s scene where wasn’t really interesting. However, second day was much-much better! Here I’d like to emphasize just three fantastic lectures on my opinion:

  • The frustrated architect (Simon Brown, UK) — the speaker was very enthusiastic. No agile dogmas, only real examples about the role of software architecture in agile.
  • Enabling TDD in BigData world (Vyacheslav Moskalenko, Ukraine) — there was only own expedience from his project about NoSQL solutions, ways to test it and TDD for big data. It was interesting for me, especially because I’ve never worked with this kind of project. Hope to solve this misunderstanding soon J
  • Agile Anti-Patterns (by Sander Hoogendoorn, Netherlands) — absolutely awesome lecture and speaker! It was very inspiring, energetic and fun, lots of fun! I’m waiting for video from this session and would like to show some dogmatic agile “experts”. Because I’m a little bit tied from “Agile projects can’t fail! And waterfall projects always fail because it’s waterfall”. Especially, if you are doing agile + TDD — you don’t have a choose, only success J This speaker told us about a lot of dogmas which people just doing only because they think it will be real agile. I like his critics (especially because I’m “2 days certificated scrum master” as Sander said). And I’m completely agreed that people are doing a lot of this crap, just because other ways it would be true agile!

Now I’m waiting for the videos from the conference and will try to add it ASAP to this post.

At the end, XP days was successful at my opinion. Thank a lot to all people how it did. Hope to join as a speaker someday.

TechDays 2012 at Brussels, Belgium

February 14-16 was fantastic conference at Brussels, Belgium. Also it was the biggest conference when I’ve ever been.

Just have a look at these speakers:

  • Scott Guthrie is a Corporate Vice President in Microsoft’s Server and Tools Business division,
  • Nick Harris is a Technical Evangelist at Microsoft specializing in Windows Azure,
  • Ben Riga is Senior Technical Evangelist for Windows Phone 7 in Microsoft’s Developer and Platform Evangelism (DPE) group,
  • Steve Sanderson works as a program manager for Microsoft in the team that brings you the ASP.NET technology stack,
  • Jeff Prosise is cofounder of Wintellect (www.wintellect.com)

and lots more interesting speakers.

This is absolutely fantastic, isn’t it? J You can find all videos from this event here.

There were a lot of question at the beginning of the year. What is the main way/trend of Microsoft? Is it real rumours about JavaScript (I remind that it was only February!)? And as usual what interesting features were prepared for as from Microsoft?

Let’s give short answer on these questions.

First of all, before this year everybody say that main language at Microsoft stack of technologies was C#. After TechDays 2012 I’d say: now there are 3 equal programming languages C#, C++ and JavaScript.

Yes, JavaScript became strong language at Microsoft world. You should even use JavaScript for creating CRUD operation on Windows Azure Mobile Services (I won’t say here about missing test system and source code tracking hereJ). Next significant point: all Microsoft skills and power is shifted to mobile world: html5, JavaScript and of course mobile platforms.

Secondly, mostly interesting question is about Silverlight future.

After this event I have a following opinion. Steven Sinofsky completely kills Silverlight as a Microsoft trend. However, don’t start to move all your application out of this. There is really good feature for this technology at business sector (especially at conservative business, such as insurance/financing/bank sectors). Here I’m pretty sure Silverlight can be a good choice for creating Rich Internet application.

Last one, but not boring part. Microsoft features.

There are only few words: web + Azure! New Microsoft ASP.NET MVC 4 is absolutely fantastic framework. Have a look at the video from Scott Guthrie “A Look at ASP.NET MVC 4”

A Look at ASP.NET MVC 4

BTW: after session I had a small conversation with him about web and new ASP.NET Web API. I’d like to say: he is really energetic person which can energetically charge an interlocutor. After this few minutes I was full of energy and felt as a Superman J
Next huge topic was Microsoft Azure, awesome platform!

There is a video from Nick Harris about new features here:

Devices + Cloud: Using Windows Azure with Windows Phone, iOS, Android, …

At the end, I would like to say, that TechDays 2012 was a good event, thank you everybody who helped to organize all of this! I really enjoy it and hope it wasn’t my last such a big TechDays.