Improving Machine Setup
Have you set up a new dev machine and found it was frustrating or time consuming? It's important to have a repeatable, fast way to set up both bare metal and VM dev machines. As is true for many areas in tech, automation is the answer to alleviate the pains we experience with a manual process.
For Windows, the Boxstarter and Chocolatey projects have become very popular tools in the community to automate machine setup. Microsoft is pleased to recognize these projects and participate with the community in these efforts. We've begun by starting a new open source project on Github with sample scripts to dramatically simplify setting up dev machines, starting with App Dev, Web Dev, and NodeJS Development. We hope to work with the community to add many more.
How These Tools Work
Chocolatey is a package manager for Windows. The Chocolatey org hosts a community repository with over 5,800 unique packages in the community registry. The new setup scripts on Github refer to this community repository of packages.
Boxstarter was created to accompany Chocolatey by providing additional features such as resilient reboot, Windows customization, and integration with Hyper-V and Windows VM's in Azure. Boxstarter scripts are written in PowerShell and run by the Boxstarter command line application.
Read before you Run
These sample scripts default to installing third party software published by the community to the chocolatey.org repository. Microsoft is not responsible for and cannot guarantee the availability, legality, or safety of the software installed when using these scripts.
How to Run
The setup script project's Readme contains a table of 1-click links for each setup script. Clicking on one of these will download Boxstarter and run the intended script. The script will run hands free.
If you want to just try it out we recommend running a Windows VM in Hyper-V and testing the install process there first.
How to Help
We would love your help! Take a look at the open issues and if you decide to work on any please first add a comment on the issue so we don't overlap. Also please add a new issue if you have an idea on how to improve the project including additional dev scenarios that need scripts.
We're excited to work with the rest of you in the effort to improve machine setup. If this is the first you've heard about Chocolatey and Boxstarter we're glad to introduce you!
Thanks for reading.