Drilling into VSTS 2010 Testing
With the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference (PDC) around the corner,
I half expected things to get pretty quiet ahead of the show. So imagine our
surprise when the Redmondians began peppering us with new information about
upcoming dev-related products like Visual Studio 2010, .NET Framework 4.0, the
"Dublin" app server and the "Oslo" modeling and repository
Updates to Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) took center stage in a recent
blog post by Microsoft Developer Division Senior Vice President S. "Soma"
Somasegar. He said the next version of Microsoft's VSTS will allow developers
to more easily test for and isolate bugs.
week, we covered Microsoft's announced plans for the Team System IDE. As
part of the announcement, Microsoft officials said it will extend its role-based
clients to include a VSTS 2010 Architecture Edition (which includes the Architect
Explorer and Layout Diagram designer), a VSTS 2010 Test Edition and a VSTS 2010
As ever, Microsoft seems to be taking a crafty tack with its integrated testing.
Rather than compete with the full-scale test harnesses provided by third-party
vendors, Microsoft is focusing on roles integration -- an enduring theme in
the VS space. Specifically, VSTS Test Edition will help testers and developers
work more smoothly together by providing better situational awareness for both
"We think about testers as largely disenfranchised from the application
lifecycle and the tools that are out there for them aren't where they need to
be," said Dave Mendlen, director of developer marketing at Microsoft.
"Overwhelmingly, most of the testing that goes on out there in the industry
is manual testing, so we now have a set of tools that enable the manual tester
to capture what's going on with their test runs," he added.
The testing tool promises to let the tester specify the precise state of any
given build, such as what's been checked in and what's changed in the source
code. That way, the developer can compare the state of the build when trying
to reproduce the bug. This should help stamp out "no-repro" bugs,
"One of the other common blockers to reproducing a bug is the collection
of actionable data on the bug," Somesegar noted. "By providing a set
of tools designed specifically for testers, we are enabling better documentation
of test scenarios as well as more thorough collection of data when a scenario
fails. This includes the collection of system data, as well as stack trace information,
screen images and even fully indexed video capture of the testers' screen attached
to the bug." Somasegar attached some screens to his post illustrating this
Returning to the roles integration theme, Somasegar pointed out that the "collaboration
hub" that's the basis of Team Foundation Server (TFS) "enables all
of the roles in the lifecycle to work together on shared requirements, shared
code assets, and a powerful build management system."
Ultimately, Somasegar wrote, the new TFS features in VSTS 2010 "provide
the same level of visual capabilities for source code and build management as
we provide for architectural design."
What do you think of Microsoft's efforts to advance test in VSTS 2010? E-mail
me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With reporting by Executive Editor Jeffrey Schwartz.
Posted by Michael Desmond on 10/07/2008 at 1:15 PM