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Bryon Root on Visual Studio ALM

The first time I saw Test Manager, I thought to myself that it would be a wonderful tool for Release Build Configuration and Operation (DevOps).   Having the ability to run a test suite with all the test steps, parameters, and expected results on release night is necessary in order to have a complete and smooth release process.

Over the years I have been involved in many releases.  Some went very smooth while other did not. I could say that some were painful before, during, and after the release. 

Some of the common issues and questions that I have seen over the years are:

  • What are the new features in the release?
  • How to I test the new features and do small regression tests to make sure the system is working as expected?
  • If I find a bug or have a deployment issue, how do I capture all the correct information the team needs?
  • How can I get the bug or event back to the development team quickly for a fast resolution?
  • How do I not stay here all night writing up what did happen and pulling the bug and event information together.

If these questions ring any bells in your current release process, then you owe yourself to take a closer look at Test Manager.

Incorporating Test Manger into the release process will solve the questions above.

Now, don’t get me wrong; Test Manager 2012 is a fantastic tool for the software development cycle. It solves a number of problems that most development and QA teams face today.  The new features are wonderful and are explained in more detail here.

One of the biggest issues that Team Manager solves is the laborious write-up on a bug or event (just for clarity, I’m calling events configuration changes and event and bugs as software issues). If you have been a release person, you know what I’m talking about.

During deployment and testing something happens.  Then you spend the next couple hours pulling everything together to deliver to the development team so they can start work on the bug or event ASAP.  Pulling all of the system logs, IntelliTrace logs, repro steps, etc… is not an easy task, especially late at night. 

Test Manager does this for you!  As I mentioned above, when I first saw the information I could collect and create a bug for the development team I was hooked.  Having an integrated system that pulls this information together at the time of the bug or event is a huge win for DevOps and Development teams.  

  • Yes, no more late night write ups on what happen!  Instead it’s creating a bug with a push of a button and all of the information is capture in the new Work-Item bug for the development team to review.
  • Yes, no more, “what the heck is the release person talking about?!”  All the information is captured at the time of the event.  Not after, where it’s difficult to identify, debug, and resolve.

The other added benefit of incorporating Test Manager in DevOps is the transparency it provides.  The Release, Operation, Configuration Build, Support or teams, can see what new features are being deployed and how to test them.  Even new hires can use the test suites to get familiar with the system and software.

Do I love Test Manager, Yes I do! 

The opportunities that Test Manager provide for Release, Build, Configurations, and Operation areas (DevOps) are too much and costly to ignore.

 

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