Monday, 1 October 2018

Azure DevOps Default Enabled Alert/Notification - Which Can be a Nightmare for an Admin

As an admin of an Azure DevOps account you may be creating sample environments to simulate production behaviors, before applying any process changes to a Team project. In this case your choice would be to create a new team project and try out a simulation first. However, you might want to do the simulation with close to production data, so you will try to find a mechanism to make a copy of work items etc. from your production to a simulation Team project. How to do this with various options available is not the discussion today (which we can discuss in another post), as this post  is to show you an alert that must be turned off, before you do any sort of work item data duplication as a bulk, to avoid spam emails to many users of your Azure DevOps account. A lesson learnt the hard way is shared with you to prevent you from falling to same pitfall.

Friday, 28 September 2018

Build and Deploy SSIS with Azure DevOps Pipelines

SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) projects can be created to perform ETL (Extract Transform and Load) operations. As Implementing of Continuous Delivery becoming a mandatory aspect of any type of software project it is vital for SSIS projects to be able to implement CI/CD. With the availability of the extension “SSIS Build & Deploy” in Marketplace for Azure DevOps, the CI/CD implementation for SSIS has become straightforward to implement. Let’s look at a sample to understand how to get CI/CD implemented for SSIS project with Azure DevOps.

Monday, 17 September 2018

Making a Task Group Parameter Optional – Azure DevOps Pipelines

Task groups are really useful to share common actions with multiple build or release pipelines in Azure DevOps (VSTS). You can group multiple tasks ang create a task group forma build or release definition. then these task groups can be utilized in other build or release definitions in a given team project. Parameters in a task group help to pass values from build or release definition to the tasks in the task group. You can add a default value for these parameters or have to provide value from the build or release definition that is using the task group. Making a task group parameter optional is not straight forward and you need some do work around to get it working. Let’s look at how we can make a parameter optional for a task group in Azure DevOps pipelines.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Using Unified Agent for Executing Automated Tests Without Installing Visual Studio in Test Client–Azure DevOps/VSTS

As described in the post “Running UI Tests with Unified Agent” you can setup unified agent (same agent used for build/deployment in Azure DevOps/VSTS), in an application pool or in a deployment group to execute functional UI tests. The unified agent is really useful as it does not require to setup separate test agent using winRM based Deploy Test Agent task which is required if Run Functional Tests task is used for automated test execution.With unified agent you can use Visual Studio Test task, which is capable of running Selenium based UI tests as well, in addition to Coded UI tests. There was a dependency that you needed to have Visual Studio installed in the test client machine to get the Visual Studio Test task as it is packaged with Visual Studio. However, thanks to the NuGet package “Microsoft Test Platform”  you no longer need to install full Visual Studio in your test client machine to execute automated tests, with unified agent using Visual Studio Test task. Let’s look at how to use “Microsoft Test Platform”  and Visual Studio Test task in a test client using Azure DevOps Release Management.

Thursday, 6 September 2018

Getting Content of a File in VSTS Git Repo

GItHub has a easy way to get raw contents of a file by clicking on Raw button for any code file in GitHub, where it will redirect to url starting with ‘’. For example the PowerShell script here can be viewed as raw content or retrieved programmatically using PowerShell using Invoke-WebRequest with url Let’s look at possibility of retrieving raw content of a file in VSTS Git repo via VSTS REST API.

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