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     Introduction to Visual Studio 2005 Team System
    Computers
    In the world of software development, the Microsoft Visual Studio tools have always been seen as market leaders or strong competitors at the very least. When Microsoft applies itself diligently to developing a system, the result is often a crushing blow to many other hyped technologies. (Not to talk like I have a stomach full of the Kool-Aid, but working with these technologies certainly pays the bills.)

    The Visual Studio 2005 Team System is the next big thing to come out of Redmond. Clearly, a LOT of resources have been devoted to this. It is seen as a competitor to not only the Serena (old PCVS) project management suite, but also the Rational (now IBM) suite of software architecture tools. Testing is done in the fashion of LoadRunner and WinRunner is part of the Team suite. Visual Studio IDE also integrates with WinRunner directly.

    The Visual Studio IDE itself (code named "Whidbey") has new features.
    - Code Refactoring - "pulling a large stretch of inline code into its own method" or "converting a field to be a property."
    - Edit and Continue - If you run into an exception at runtime, you get an exception helper that provides tips for fixing common errors, but more importantly, you can edit the code, select F5, and it continues right where you left off.
    - ClickOnce - Deployment model much like Macromedia Flash
    - Smart Tags - Properties for GUI IDE objects appear right in the windows
    - Code Snippets - In the seminar we used an example code snippet that generates an Instant Messenger message, Very Cool!
    - Exporting IDE Settings - take your IDE settings with you. Very handy for moving between machines
    - Line Revision Marks - Track changes in the IDE similar to the display in the SourceSafe compare
    - Temporary Projects - Visual Studio .NET Whidbey does not save your project until you click on or select Save.
    - Data Inspection Improvements - while debugging , You can either view the contents of the variable as text, html, or xml in a separate viewer window
    - Docking Window Changes - Easier to position your IDE windows

    See this article:
    A Programmer's Introduction to Visual Studio .NET "Whidbey"

    Two other features that are huge to me are the class diagrams that are part of the project and the ability to build Microsoft Office projects.

    There is also an integration of FXCop to check for Code Correctness.
    FXCop at Gotdotnet

    Team System and Team Suite
    The Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Team System adds even more on top of the development environment. The Team System is for collaboration and project management. There are several different clients for the team system. A non-techie project manager would get the basic Team System client access to allow importing and exporting project data with Excel and Project. Developers and Architects also have two different versions.

    See the Visual Studio 2005 Team System Overview for more details.
    Virtual PC Image from MSDN - Trial Software

    In the lab we used a Virtual PC image that is available for the MSDN subscribers. The image contains Visual Studio 2005 Team system: all the servers and the Team Suite IDE. It is installed on the Windows 2003 Server eval edition and uses SQL Server 2005 preview as the back end. So it is a quick look at all these technologies. I highly recommend this if you can get it, as it will save you MUCH installation time if you have Virtual PC. Virtual PC is available as a 45 day trial edition. So you can test the whole set of stuff at no cost.
    Virtual PC Trial
    Windows 2003 Trial
    Visual Studio and SQL Server 2005 Trial

    Team System is for techie and non-techie alike
    The Team System has a work items table that is exportable to Excel and is viewable in the IDE. It is a shared version of the "TODO" list. All bug fixes and enhancements can be listed in Work Items so that the developers or testers can get their daily tasks from the work items.

    Non-technical project managers can view all the development project items for the whole project within the Team System project server. Note that this is not a full-blown implementation of Project Server, so for the over all end to end project management; you would end up maintaining two project plans. The team system one would pertain only to actual software design, development, and testing.

    The team system also allows document collaboration and document management. Project documentation can also be stored and managed as if by a SharePoint site. The documentation is maintained in the team explorer.

    If you don't require the functionality offered by one of the Visual Studio Team System role-based clients (for software developers, testers or architects) but you need to access a Team Foundation Server, you can use Team Explorer. This small footprint application can easily be installed on clients. Team Explorer's primary users will most likely be project managers and analysts.

    Team Explorer has no cost itself but every user must have a client access license (CAL) for the Team Foundation Server. The server software itself comes with 1 CAL. You can install the software from the Team Foundation Server CD.

    Team Explorer can be used as a stand-alone product but it also integrates in Visual Studio 2005 Professional Edition or any of the Visual Studio Team Editions.

    If you use Microsoft Office Project or Excel to access the Team Foundation Server, a CAL for the Team Foundation Server is also required.



    Architecting
    Architects can use the System and Application Architecture ti create the applications and interfaces in a GUI design mode that looks like it was built off Visio.

    Introduction to the Visual Studio 2005 Application Designer

    We could even go through and define N-Tier architecture with the presentation layer, business logic layer and data layer, then build interfaces and classes within them.

    Once the architecture is settled, you can click code generation to create all the modules and classes with skeleton methods and properties.

    Microsoft Solutions Frameworks (MSFs) exist as process templates so that the project manager can enforce a particular style of software development: Agile (extreme) or Formal (traditional).

    Testing is built in
    We can create a test project within our solution to exercise all of our project methods. This is huge as it allows integrating a test harness with your inline modules and ensuring that a developer will deliver a reliable set of classes to the solution.

    Source Control is enhanced.
    Two big features: Check in Policy and Shelving. You can set a policy within the project that code cannot be checked into source control without running tests on the code. Developers may “shelve” their code which means that it is on the server, but not in the global source tree. You may have "buddy" checkouts from the "shelf" to do code evaluations or to compile code on a different system.

    A Build server exists as part of the team system that builds the solution from the source tree at a central location. The build server can then execute the automated tests following the build and report any errors.

    The project manager can report on "code churn", how much has changed, and also “code coverage”, how much code is covered by a test.

    A migration tool will be available to transfer existing SourceSafe repositories and all their change tracking data. The source code control and team system can also be used outside of the Visual Studio IDE for Java or PERL developers too.

    Visual Studio 2005 Team System: Enterprise-Class Source Control and Work Item Tracking



    What is coming next?

    Check out the Visual Studio Roadmap to see the "Orcas" product to support the Longhorn 64 bit Windows platform

    Other Links:

    Visual Studio Team System home


    Visual Studio 2005 Developer Center

    Microsoft Technical Forums --> Visual Studio Team System -->


    Get All Your Devs in a Row with Visual Studio 2005 Team System
    (Process templates and documents)


    Get the Betas of Visual Studio and SQL Server



      
    Posted on Friday, July 29, 2005 @ 15:02:58 UTC by BB
    "Introduction to Visual Studio 2005 Team System" | Login/Create an Account | 0 comments
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