For those of you who do not know – I have left the MSF team and joined the Project Recovery Team at Microsoft (back in January). At some point, I’ll explain what we do in Project Recovery but for now, I want to talk about VSTS. I recently posted the following information to a question regarding my experience with running a project and using VSTS. It’s one thing to work inside Microsoft on projects where everyone knows how to use VS and TFS. Outside of the hallowed halls, there can be learning curve to using it. Don’t let that stop you. The benefits more than outweigh the costs.
Here is my post and my recommendation on how we got started:
“I run a development team at one of the government agencies and just happen to be a former VSTSer. Getting folks up and running is not a trivial task but we held a quick 2-hour ‘how-to’ session when we started working with VSTS. Most of our developers were able to get going with CM just based upon this session. The trouble came when we had new folks enter the project. Each one requires a twenty minute one-on-one workspace creation/get/edit/check in explanation. I haven’t met a person yet who has experience on VSTS/TFS coming in.
Getting TFS up and running took roughly half a day but the use of multiple domains (many reports do not have the fully qualified domains in the urls) made us hold off on using the full capabilities initially. We had started development at the same time as standing up TFS which was an interesting process. You look at the work of VS differently when using TFS (get all of those slns out of the documents and settings folders). We restructured our TFS tree a couple of times to put all of the pieces in the right place. Your architects should learn to use the command line.
Build can take some effort especially for more sophisticated apps (we are composite with everything from web/Biz Talk/VSTO/C#/VB script/C++/DB Pro). I’d recommend simple scripting to augment team build. Some of these areas required a few of us to dedicate a couple weeks to get all of the respective components built. It looks easy but gets harder as you get into all of the things that VS can do. Work item migration is still in-progress as our test folks had been using another bug tracking system. Many projects start with WIs first.”