TFS & Visual Studio ALM – by Neno Loje

(formerly Team System, VSTS)

How to configure SMTP Settings for Team Foundation Server

January 22nd, 2013 · 1 Comment · Screen Galleries, TFS 2010, TFS Administration, Visual Studio Online

There are three places where you might want to configure SMTP settings:

  1. On TFS itself via » TFS Admin Console » Email Alert Settings:
    http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms400808(v=vs.110).aspx
  2. SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) via » Reporting Services Configuration Manager: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms345234.aspx
  3. SharePoint (SP) via » Central Admin » System Settings » Outgoing e-mail settings:
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc288949.aspx

Here are some screenshots:

TFS Admin Console:
Configure SMTP Settings in TFS Admin Console

Reporting Services Configuration Manager:
Configure SMTP Settings in SQL Server Reporting Services Configuration Tool

SharePoint Central Administration:Configure SMTP Settings in SharePoint Central Administration

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How to find the product key for Team Foundation Server 2012

January 22nd, 2013 · No Comments · TFS Administration, Visual Studio Online

As a MSDN subscriber, the product key for Team Foundation Server 2012 does appears under the “Visual Studio 2012” section of “My Product Keys”:

The product key for TFS 2012 is available on MSDN.

See also: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc668758(v=vs.110).aspx

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Where to get Team Explorer from

January 22nd, 2013 · 1 Comment · TFS 2008, TFS 2010, TFS Clients, Visual Studio Online

It can be downloaded from the Microsoft Download Center:

Notes:

  • The “Installer” versions download necessary update files from the internet.
  • (*) = Install the GDR updates if you want to use TFS 2012 or TF Service.

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How to enable the backlog view in TFS 2012 Web Access

January 22nd, 2013 · No Comments · TFS Administration, Visual Studio Online

Q: Why is the backlog view missing in TFS 2012 Web Access?

Where's the backlog tab gone?

A: In TFS 2012, web access permissions control what Web Access features are available to users. By default users get “Standard” permissions.

Here’s how to fix it: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/visualstudioalm/archive/2012/06/04/enabling-feedback-requests-the-backlog-and-sprint-planning-in-team-foundation-server-2012.aspx

Web Access Permissions control what features from Web Access are available to users.

Note: Make sure that all users with “Full” permission have either Visual Studio Premium, Ultimate or Test Professional (more info can be found here).

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Question: Can I use SQL Server 2012 with TFS 2010

January 15th, 2013 · No Comments · 16237, Team Foundation Server, TFS 2010, TFS Administration

Answer: It’s not supported, and thus not recommended.

If you want to use SQL Server 2012 consider upgrading to TFS 2012, which fully supports it.

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Restart Team Foundation Server AT using command line

December 24th, 2012 · No Comments · Tools and Utilities

In order to restart the TFS app tier, you can run these commands on the AT itself:

%windir%\system32\inetsrv\appcmd recycle apppool /apppool.name:"Microsoft Team Foundation Server Application Pool"
net stop tfsjobagent
net start tfsjobagent

You can download the ready-to-use script file here.

Note: You need to run this script as administrator.

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Free Book: Testing for Continuous Delivery with VS 2012

October 29th, 2012 · No Comments · Microsoft Test Manager (MTM), Training and Learning, Visual Studio Online

New Book: Testing for Continuous Delivery with Visual Studio 2012Microsoft patterns & practices published a new book.

What’s the book all about?

“Testing is potentially an obstacle to agile software deployment. The smallest change in your code could require the whole application to be retested. This book shows you how to minimize these costs by using the testing infrastructure of Visual Studio 2012. The code samples gives you a starting point to test your infrastructure.”

Who should read the book?:

“This book is aimed at test engineers, managers, developers, and folks interested in understanding the changing world of test.”

Read online: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj159345.aspx

Download: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=35380

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SharePoint-based Dashboards on TFS Project Portal showing 404 File not found error after upgrading to new instance

October 24th, 2012 · No Comments · 15787, Troubleshooting TFS

After upgrading to TFS 2012, the Scrum Dashboards stopped working and only show a 404 error.The issue

On the TFS Project Portal, you get a 404 error from SharePoint instead of the dashboard.

Background

Then that project were probably created with the Visual Studio Scrum 1.0 template, and that template is not available on the new SharePoint server.

How to fix

  1. Download and install Visual Studio Scrum 1.0
  2. In the Project Portal subfolder, look at Readme.txt
  3. Execute the batch commands listed in that Readme.txt to upload the missing .WSP file
    (on the first line, starting with “SET STSADM”, make sure to replace version “12” with “14” if you are using SharePoint 2010, or accordingly for any newer versions).

(Big thanks to Trevor Hancock, Hassan Fadili, and Wes MacDonald for the solution.)

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Available Check-In Policies for Team Foundation Server 2012

October 15th, 2012 · 2 Comments · Project Management with TFS, Team Foundation Server, Team Foundation Version Control, Tools and Utilities, Visual Studio Online

Shipping as part of Visual Studio 2012:

  • Builds – Requires that build was successful (CI builds) and therefore build breaks must be fixed before a new check-in.
  • Changeset Comments Policy – Requires that user provide comments on check-ins. (new in VS 2012)
  • Code Analysis – Requires that Code Analysis is run before check-in. [More]
  • Work Items – Requires one or more work items be associated with the check-in.

Note: The Testing Policy that shipped with VS 2010 is not longer available.

Added after installing TFS 2012 Power Tools (needs to be installed an all VS clients):

  • Custom Path Policy – Allows you to scope other check-in policies to specific folders or file types.  [See here for how to use it.]
  • Forbidden Patterns Policy – Prevents users from checking in files with filenames that contain forbidden characters or patterns.
  • Work Item Query Policy – Requires that the associated work items need to be part of the result of a specified work item query.

Note: When using an older version of VS (2008/2010) you need to install the corresponding version of the TFS Power Tools (VS 2008 requires 2008 Power Tools, etc.)

Developed by the Community:
  • Code Review Checkin Policy – allows to enforce Code Reviews prior to check-in (by Colin Dembovsky). Get it here.
  • Checkin Time Tracker v3 – allows you to gather effort values from developers during check-in (by AIT TeamSystemPro Team). Get it here.
  • Column Limit Check-in Policy – prevents users from checking in files that don’t comply with your column limit coding style guidelines (by Gambitrex). Get it here.
  • Merge / Branch Only Check in Policy – Block check ins that are not part of either a branch or merge operation (by Leon Mayne). Get it here.

Note: When using an older version of VS (2008/2010) you need to install the corresponding version of the check-in policies (for a list of check-in policies for VS 2010, see here).

What about the "Override Warnings" link?

There might always be an unforeseen reason why not all policies could be fulfilled.

How can I deploy custom Check-In Policies to all team members?
How can I create custom Check-In Policies?:

Do you know another great check-in policy for TFS 2012? Let me know!

–Neno

Updated (May 17th, 2013): Added Merge / Branch Only Check in Policy.

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My New Book: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012: Adopting Agile Software Practices (3rd Edition)

October 4th, 2012 · 1 Comment · Team Foundation Server, Training and Learning

ISBN-10: 0321864875Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012: Adopting Agile Software Practices
From Backlog to Continuous Feedback (3rd Edition)

Sam and I updated our book on agile software engineering to reflect the feature set of the new Visual Studio & Team Foundation Server 2012.

How to get it:

ISBN-10: 0321864875

Paperback: Amazon | InformIT
DRM-free PDF: InformIT
Amazon Kindle: Amazon

Promotional Offer

Use code VSTFS2012 at InformIT to get 35% off the printed copy or the DRM-free PDF. Offer valid until December 31st, 2013.

Sample Chapters

  • Chapter 2: Scrum, Agile Practices, and Visual Studio (25 pages)
  • Chapter 9: Lessons Learned at Microsoft Developer Division (23 pages)

    Table of Contents

  • Foreword to Third Edition by Brian Harry
  • Foreword to Second Edition by Ken Schwaber 
  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: The Agile Consensus
  • Chapter 2: Scrum, Agile Practices, and Visual Studio
  • Chapter 3: Product Ownership
  • Chapter 4: Running the Sprint
  • Chapter 5: Architecture
  • Chapter 6: Development
  • Chapter 7: Build and Lab
  • Chapter 8: Test
  • Chapter 9: Lessons Learned at Microsoft Developer Division
  • Chapter 10: Continuous Feedback
    Authors
  • Sam Guckenheimer is the product owner for the Microsoft Visual Studio product line.
  • Neno Loje is an independent Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) consultant and Visual Studio Team Foundation Server (TFS) specialist.
    Book Description

    This is the definitive guide to applying agile development and modern software engineering practices with Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012—Microsoft’s complementary Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) platform. It focuses on solving real development challenges, systematically eliminating waste, improving transparency, and delivering better software more quickly and painlessly.

    Previous Editions
  • 3rd Edition, 2012: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012: Adopting Agile Software Practices: From Backlog to Continuous Feedback
    The latest edition was an update. We revised it to reflect the new capabilities and tools in VS & TFS 2012 (especially the ones that support small and agile teams) as well as an updated chapter on lessons learned at Microsoft. (There we only minimal changes to the parts on Scrum and agile practices).
  • 2nd Edition, 2011: Agile Software Engineering with Visual Studio 
    The second edition was essentially a complete rewrite, focusing on Scrum and software development in a modern and agile manner using tools from VS 2010 (not sure why this was marked as a 2nd edition as this really is more a entirely new book).
  • 1st Edition, 2006: Software Engineering with Microsoft Visual Studio Team System
    This was the initial version by Sam and Juan J. Perez, targeting VSTS 2005.
    What other’s say about the book
  • Brian Harry’s blog: Sam and Neno’s VS 2012 Book Available at Launch
  • Matteo Emili: Review – Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012: Adopting Agile Software Practices: From Backlog to Continuous Feedback
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