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  • Integrating VSTS for DevOps with privately hosted Azure App Service

    Wondering how you can make the Azure App Service private to your network by totally blocking public discoverability? In this blogpost, I’ll show you how and also show you how easy it is to use a grid of virtual machines in the cloud (in Azure Dev Test Lab), attached to the same private subnet to automate the deployment of your web application to the privately hosted Azure App Service.

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  • Team Services - Use one build definition to build all branches & release selectively

    With the flexibility in branching, it’s very easy to create a branch per feature. Sometimes I notice that people lack the same enthusiasm when it comes to creating build pipelines for these new branches. The downside of course is the more build definitions you create, the more administration overhead in keeping them all up to date as you make changes to your build pipeline. Wouldn’t it be great if you could just use one build definition to build all branches?

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  • VSTS Status Monitor - A Google Chrome extension to monitor VSTS Status

    Interested in getting notified when Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) goes down for maintenance or when it comes back up? Well, now you can, using this simple Google Chrome extension.

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  • How to transform Web.Config file 'Properly' with VSTS!

    Web development and the frameworks that go with it have evolved over the years, but when it comes to transforming config file people still use the old ways! If you are still using one of these approaches, you need to change…

    • One configuration file per environment
    • Tokenization of configuration files using parameters.xml and then using a tokenizer to replace values during deployment
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  • SpecFlow VSTS Build pipeline with SpecRunner For BDD Style Automated Gherkin Functional Tests

    In this blogpost I’ll show you how to create an automated build pipeline for SpecFlow with VSTS using SpecRunner to execute your automated BDD functional tests written using Gherkin syntax. We won’t stop just here, I’ll show you how to add the SpecFlow+ extension to create living functional test documentation accessible right from VSTS… We’ll end by looking at how to pin some of this on a dashboard in VSTS to surface some key testing metrics for visibility with your development and operation teams…

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  • Infrastructure Deployment Pipelines: Deploying Infrastructure in Azure with VSTS

    Would you consider a 16 character alphanumeric password stored in an excel spreadsheet in a shared location secure? I’ve had the joy of watching infrastructure engineers provision infrastructure in the cloud like they have done on-premise for years - MANUALLY! The concepts of Infrastructure as Code have been around for a while, so have configuration management tools like Chef and Puppet but, both the cost & complexity scares people from adopting either. VSTS on the other hand has a very low entry barrier in both cost & complexity and integrates the Application Lifecycle Management into DevOps in a way which doubles the value provided by the automation pipelines. In this blogpost I’ll take you the full 9 yards with a walk through on how to set up an infrastructure deployment pipeline using VSTS …

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  • HOWTO: Check browser type and its version in your VSTS/TFS extensions

    Ever wanted to check which browser (and browser version) your VSTS/TFS extension is running on? Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services Web Extension SDK has a great set of utility methods. In this blog post we will see couple of such methods which will help us to detect browser type and its version.

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  • HOWTO: Copy text to clipboard in VSTS/TFS Extensions

    If you have used TFS/VSTS, you might have used “Copy to Clipboard” option at least few times - either on the workitem context menu or to copy the repository URL on Clone Repository dialog . In this blog post we will see how to implement that functionality and copy text to clipboard from your VSTS/TFS extensions using Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services Web Extension SDK and Typescript.

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  • HelloWorld Chef on Windows, Knife, Cookbook, IIS, Windows Azure & everything in between...

    Configuration Management is one of the key pillars of DevOps. Configuration Management helps address snowflake servers and configuration drift. Microsoft has it’s own offering for configuration management in azure with hosted DSC server through Azure Automation. Microsoft has an equally compelling story with the open source tools such as Chef and Puppet. While Chef is truly amazing in it’s capabilities, getting it going on a Windows machine can be challenging due to the various moving parts in it’s configuration… In this blogpost I’ll show you what it takes to get started with Chef by setting up Chef server on Windows, creating your first cookbook, uploading it to Chef using Knife and then using this runbook to manage a Windows host in Azure using the Chef Azure extension… Quite a mouthfull… Grab a coffee, let’s go through this together…

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  • So... how did it feel recording training for Microsoft?

    Off late I have been working with Microsoft to pull together training on DevOps. The experience of working with the Microsoft products, the staff and the broader ecosystem reflects that the Microsoft of today isn’t the Microsoft we’ve known for years…

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