Testing for Continuous Delivery with Visual Studio 2012 RC

Microsoft patterns & practices has release Testing for Continuous Delivery with Visual Studio 2012 RC the guide describes how testing has been changing over the years and how Visual Studio 2012 RC helps us achieve continuous delivery. Just to get your interest here is a statement from the preface.

“Testing has always been the less glamorous sister to software development, scarcely noticed outside the software business, and the butt of complaints inside.”

I had the privilege of working on this book with the author’s as a contributor and reviewer.

Visual Studio 2012 RC is available.

VS Ultimate RC

Visual Studio 2012 Application Lifecycle Management Virtual Machine and Hands-on-Labs / Demo Scripts

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Agile, Scrum webcasts to join

Agile.org has some create webcasts on subjects concerning Agile, Scrum. You can either sign up to them or go to the archive listing. Couple of interest are:

Agile Practices in a Traditional Organization

Adopting Test-First Development

Release Duration and Enterprise Agility

On May 15th is Agile and Quality: It is not an Oxymoron but a Necessity

Click here to check out the public webcast series.

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ALM User Group in Toronto meets May 24th

It is Methodology May at the TALMUG

Methodology. In the world of software development there are not many words that raise contention quite as quickly as this. But why is that? What are the differences between Agile, Iterative, and Rigorous software development methodologies? There has been buzz about Scrum, XP, Lean, Waterfall, Kanban, and RUP for years; how do they fit into this discussion? But most importantly, why should you care? What does the test team think of all this?

In Methodology May the TALMUG brings you a panel of ALM professionals to discuss and debate these very questions and maybe help you see what methodology could work best at your company.

Pizza and Pop will be available at 5:30pm - Come out and join in on the discussions.

Being held at 40 University, Suite 1301, Toronto meeting starts at 6pm.

Follow on twitter @TOALMUG

Click here to Sign Up 

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Create Reports for TFS2010 Test Results

Check out instructions on how to create reports for your TFS2010 Test Results. There is also an example that you can follow.

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Unit Testing 101–check out this webcast on unit testing

Typemock is presenting a webcast “Introduction to Unit Testing” if your a tester this will be a good intro into unit testing. Pass this onto your developers even if they unit test.

Software testing isn’t just a task for QA. In order to prevent bugs and release quality code to market, you also need developer testing, including unit testing. Discover why you should start unit testing, and how you can get started with automated tests quickly.

Click below to register

Introduction to Unit Testing

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Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Test Vs. QTP

Karthik K.K has posted on LinkedIn (click to see) a chart that compares the features of Visual Studio & Test Manager to Quick Test Professional (QTP).

I like the last item:

Visual Studio 2010 Test QTP Who’s Best
VSTS is cheaper and can be used for both development & testing. QTP is costlier and can be used ONLY for testing. VSTS

VSTS can also be used by Business Analyst, Project Managers, and Stakeholders. It can assist teams being Agile or Scrum or Waterfall thru a process template. The process template can be customized to meet your company need. VSTS reports on all aspects of a project and can tell you at any time where in the project you are at, the quality of the project to date, the status of your requirements/user stories. You can have a “Requirement to Test Matrix” in seconds at anytime.

If this alone has got your attention and you want to know more contact me directly.

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Agile vs. Traditional Approach to Unit Testing

Harry Baran from Thoughtworks posted a blog that I think is very much worth sharing. Harry outlines in his posting some of the difference between unit testing in Agile to the Traditional approach.

Unit testing in any process needs to be getting the attention it deserves, if done right it can be an early quality indicator for the solution under development. Test teams need to get involved in unit testing to some capacity no matter what process/methodology being followed. Pair up your developers and testers, offer training to your testers in unit testing and coding, hire testers with coding skills, let your testers see and understand what is being unit tested.

To quote Harry Baran: “Unit tests are foundations of an agile project. They enable fast feedback, continuous testing, continuous integration and refactoring.”

As children we were taught to share, for some reason one of the most important aspects of developing an application has not been shared. Time to change that, isn’t it? 

Unit Testing: Agile vs. Traditional Approach

Great write up Hari, thanks,

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Toronto VS ALM User Group kick off meeting April 12th

The first Toronto VS ALM User Group kick off meeting is being held on April 12th @6:30pm sign up at TALMUG to get the details and register.

The User Group is for all roles within the Application Life Management team. Topics presented will vary from generic ALM practices to ALM with Visual Studio. If your involved in product management, a stakeholder, a business analysis or product owner, a developer or a tester this User Group is for you.

The goal of the first meeting will be to:

  • Define the group’s mission
  • Select an appropriate name
  • Document the roles of the executive
  • Recruit volunteers
  • Funding
  • Discuss how to reach out for sponsors
  • Discuss meeting locations
  • Discuss ideas for the first few meeting topics

Come out on April 12th and help us to kick-off this new user group code named TALMUG.

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Agile book pre order deal – Software in 30 Days

New Agile book by Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland can be pre-ordered at Amazon for a great discounted price.

About the book from Amazon:

A radical approach to getting IT projects done faster and cheaper than anyone thinks possible

Software in 30 Days summarizes the Agile and Scrum software development method, which allows creation of game-changing software, in just 30 days. Projects that use it are three times more successful than those that don't. Software in 30 Days is for the business manager, the entrepreneur, the product development manager, or IT manager who wants to develop software better and faster than they now believe possible. Learn how this unorthodox process works, how to get started, and how to succeed. Control risk, manage projects, and have your people succeed with simple but profound shifts in the thinking.

The authors explain powerful concepts such as the art of the possible, bottom-up intelligence, and why it's good to fail early—all with no risk greater than thirty days.

I highly recommend reading this book.

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Functional/System testing with Visual Studio/Test Manager

If your reading this blog you likely understand what functional testing and you may use the term system testing.

Wikipedia defines these terms as:

System testing of software or hardware is testing conducted on a complete, integrated system to evaluate the system's compliance with its specified requirements. System testing falls within the scope of black box testing, and as such, should require no knowledge of the inner design of the code or logic”

Functional testing is a type of black box testing that bases its test cases on the specifications of the software component under test. Functions are tested by feeding them input and examining the output, and internal program structure is rarely considered.”

If you have read Agile Software Engineering with Visual Studio (by Sam Guckenheimer & Neno Loje) you will have heard about “reducing waste”. Identified as tasks that reduce waste are functional and system testing. These two tasks can be done during code development through unit tests reducing the cost of bug fixes, bug analysis, creating a suite of automated tests and automated regressions tests and reducing the number of people involved in testing and the bug. In some teams developers and testers have been testing the same thing one through unit tests and then again later by a testers. This is duplication of work effort that is a expensive waste.

In Visual Studio there are unit testing tools and third party add in tools that developers can use to create very robust unit tests. You maybe thinking “the developers do not test the same “stuff” that testers do”. Your right, I agree. However since the team is encouraged to make changes to reduce waste why don’t we testers help them. In Visual Studio we can create test cases that are associated to the requirement/user story work item that describes what needs tested. We can pair up with developers to help them write robust unit tests to cover all the testing including boundary, error and data testing.

There are people that believe the future of the “software testers” is about to make a big change. Testers will need to be able to write and execute unit tests themselves therefore requiring the basics of coding and the ability to add assertions (validation) to the unit tests. (Check out MSDN’s Verifying Code by Using Unit Tests topics. ) I believe this will be a reality in the future but I also believe it will evolve.  If you want to start now pair up with your developers to help them create unit tests that execute both the “happy path” and boundaries of an individual method, class or component. Help them to create system integration tests. Getting expose to how unit tests are designed and coded will help you move into the future. In addition having knowledge of what has been unit tested reduces test duplication later. TFS and Visual Studio help us with all this through work item traceability.

Example of work item traceability:


Example of a Test Case and Associated Automation:


Visual Studio has the tools that will help us move into the future with confidence and the security we’ll need. Humans in general are not adapt to change but change we must. I am one of those people that embraces change and excels in change but then I have had Visual Studio in my pocket!

- Kent Beck

The role of professional testing will inevitably change from “adult supervision” to something more closely resembling an amplifier for the communication between those who generally have a feeling for what the system must do and those who will make it do.

Kent Beck author of Test-Driven Development (Addison Wesley 2002), 86.

Visual Studio – my companion, my mentor, my stability, my aid, my reporter, my success

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(stay tuned, next blog  I will show you how easy it is to create a unit test!)