Lately I’ve been spending a of time within Team Foundation Server (TFS), specifically around deployment and release management so when I got an email from Brian Blackman (Principal Consultant here at Microsoft) that said that the Rangers created a build customization guide, I quickly downloaded it and began absorbing the info like the Borg. There’s a lot to digest but the TOC for the guidance document is logically laid out and the quick reference posters give quick insight into multiple areas (e.g. build infrastructure/process, teams and personas and more).

Those that aren’t familiar with the Rangers should spend some time at Willy's blog as there’s a wealth of information to be had by him over there. This Visual Studio ALM Ranger project has the primary goal of delivering scenario based and hands-on lab guidance for the customization and deployment of Team Foundation Build 2010 activities such as versioning, code signing, and branching.

Quick overview of what’s in each download package:

  • Guidance contains scenario based practical guidance,frequently asked questions and quick reference posters
    • Selected PDF contains guidance and quick reference posters in PDF format only.
    • Complete contains guidance, quick reference posters and localization files in all available formats.
  • Hands-on Labs (HOL) includes:
    • HOL documents that provide walkthroughs of the technology, based on the guidance.
    • HOL Package contains a HOL environment setup package allowing you to setup the HOL environment in your own environment.
    • BRDLite Build Process Reference Template walk-through.
  • Samples contain build process templates used by the team as part of the guidance.
  • Videos which showcase the guidance in quick 5-10min videos.

The Epics included in the guidance are:

  • Practical guidance and tooling to simplify the customization of Team Foundation Build.
  • Practical guidance to use Team Foundation Build process templates to automate build and non-build scenarios in Microsoft environments.
  • Practical guidance to enable simple and flexible deployment of applications and their data stores.
  • Practical guidance for Activities to empower developers and build engineers.
  • Quality hands-on labs that complement the guidance and effectively guide the user through the features.
  • Visualization of the guidance using quick reference posters.