Team Foundation Power Tools Released!

Here in Visual Studio Team Foundation, we take our power toys seriously.  So seriously, we've changed the name from power toys to power tools to reflect that these are no mere play toy apps, but useful tools to get real work done (or Git-R-Done for Larry the Cable Guy fans).  This release is a our biggest release yet and is jam packed with new tools to help you get the most out of Team Foundation.  So make more room in your tool belt because look what is included:

Process Template Editor - Now you can visually edit your team project process template in one place instead of editing multiple XML files.  Visually edit work item types (bug forms) and see what it is going to look like w/o uploading to the server and rerunning the Team Project wizard.  Project managers everywhere can rejoice!

Check-in Policies - We've heard the feedback that we need more check-in policies.  We include four check-in policies in this power tools release.

  1. Custom Path Policy - No longer does a policy need to apply to the entire Team Project.  Now you can pick the paths and patterns of files that you want to use for any other policy
  2. Forbidden Patterns Policy - prevent users from checking in files with a particular pattern (e.g. *.dll)
  3. Changeset comments - require user to type in comments before checking in
  4. Work Item Query Policy - Restrict checkins to ones that fix bugs in a specified work item query

Tree Clean - Have you ever wanted to see what files in a given directory are not in version control?  Have you wanted to remove these files so you can clean up your directory of compiler generated stuff?  The treeclean command is for you.

Update Workspace's Computer Name - Suppose you have hundred's of thousand files in version control but some of the developers have a network connection that is like sucking through one of those skinny coffee stir straw.  No one wants to do that initial get of all those files.  What do you do?  Ah, we have the answer for that - on a machine with a fast connection (e.g. close to the server), create a workspace called foo and do the initial get.  Burn a CD and send to the poor developer with the slow network connection.  After the developer copies the files on his disk to the same drive/path locations, the developer can run tfpt workspace /updatecomputername foo and just like that - the developer is ready to go.  We use to call the process of copying files to a disk and handing to someone else sneaker net.  Sneaker net is alive and kicking!

Build Test Tool Task - Now you can run unit tests after a successful team build by simply specifying the dlls or file name pattern in tfsbuild.proj.  No need to use the vsmdi file.

The best part of working on power tools is you get to hear these two words more often, "Ship It!"

Enjoy and leave feedback and questions on this blog or the forum.